Check out our new Handbag Packing Masterclass --> CLASS BEGINS SEPTEMBER 15TH

The 32L Zuca Pro Carry-on Suitcase: You Can Actually Sit on It

Zuca pro carry-on suitcase review

This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase using them, we will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. It helps to keep this site running – thank you!

Tired of getting caught without a seat in the airport waiting areas? Do you prefer rolling luggage but still like to pack light and carry-on?   

Then check out this novel rolling suitcase that you can also sit on! 

Our friend Catherine tells us why she chose her funky Zuca Pro, a suitcase that has become a favorite of flight attendants and business travelers alike.

Zuca Pro Quick Review

  • TOP PICK FOR: Short term or business trip travelers, those wanting to travel carry-on only with a rolling suitcase, and light packers who won’t be trekking anywhere.

PROS

  • Carry-on size approved
  • Has a built-in seat
  • Ideal for packing cubes

CONS

  • 9.3 lbs empty
  • Might not pass carry-on regulations for airlines with weight restrictions
  • Not as easy to maneuver as a 4-wheel spinner suitcase
Zuca Pro Travel Suitcase Review

Zuca Pro Suitcase

Price Range- $$$$$


Why I Chose the Zuca Pro

I wanted a bag that looked professional enough for business travel but was rugged enough for my other adventures. However, I refuse to check bags.

I’d read about several bags, but being able to sit on it was what sold me.  I’ve been stuck in many airports without seating, and nothing sucks more than getting off a 16-hour flight and having to wait around for a connecting flight with no seating in the waiting room.  

I also love that it is designed for packing cubes, which is my preferred way of packing.

It might be a bit on the expensive side as far as suitcases go; I paid $295 for it at the time.  However, I loved it so much that I paid another $295 to get one for my husband a few years later.  It has been worth every penny.

Sizing and Structure

Zuca Pro Travel Suitcase Dimensions

At a roomy 32L, the Zuca Pro is a perfect size for me. 

It’s a convenient rolling suitcase with two wheels. It is mainly constructed of fabric, but has a very light aluminum frame around it, which is why you can sit on it! 

It’s designed for business travelers and is TSA approved for carry-on luggage.

It is the width of an airplane aisle, so I don’t have to *carry* on my carry on. I turn it around and push it in front of me. 

Technical Specs

  • 41″ Telescoping handle
  • Aluminum alloy frame is light, super strong and rated to safely support up to 300 lbs
  • The removable ZÜCA Insert Bag is made from premium water resistant 1680D ballistic nylon and is hand washable
  • 4″ Lightweight polyurethane wheels absorb shock and make for a seriously silent ride
  • Gear platform to carry additional load
  • Feet, made of nylon 6, go easy on scratchable surfaces 
  • Chrome plated, rust-resistant screws

Packing the Zuca Pro

Zuca Pro Suitcases

Even though it’s small enough to carry on, it’s big enough to fit quite a bit of stuff in it. I pack in packing cubes, which stack nicely in the vertical style of the bag and don’t shift around much. 

Zuca even has a pro packing pouch set for sale that is made perfectly for the Zuca Pro. Their clear tops make finding your things easy.

Although this bag is geared more towards business travelers, I think that lots of types of travelers can benefit from this bag. Light packers can get more than a short trip out of the 32L. 

My Zuca and I recently spent two weeks in Sri Lanka, and we’re headed to Italy in March.  Carry-on is the way to go!

Zuca Travel Types

Zuca makes a variety of specialized bags. You can find bags ideal for school, activities like figure skating and disc golf, or even highly organized bags for professional makeup artists to securely carry their supplies. 

They make several types of travel-specific bags as well. The following four Zuca travel bags are similar, but with some very key differences.

The Pro

The Pro is the classic model that comes in a variety of colors. If you buy it directly from the Zuca website, it includes 5 packing pouches, 1 TSA compliant toiletry bag, and a matching travel cover for added protection should you decide to check the bag.

DIMENSIONS: 19.5″H x 10″W x 13.5″D 
WEIGHT: 9.3 lbs (frame and bag)
CAPACITY: 32 liters 
PRICE: $309


The Flyer Business

The Flyer Business is perfect for business professionals, as it includes a padded pocket for a tablet or 10”x14” laptop and a wider opening for supplies and samples. It has slightly different dimensions and weight than the Pro but includes its own set of accessories: one small pouch, four large pouches, and a travel cover.

DIMENSIONS: 20.5″H x 14″W x 9.65″D
WEIGHT: 9.3 lbs (frame and bag)
CAPACITY: 32 liters
PRICE: $339


The Navigator

The Navigator is very similar to the Flyer Business in dimensions but does not include the pouch accessories or cover. For those looking to save a few extra travel dollars, it’s the cheapest of the travel models, but it’s also slightly heavier.

DIMENSIONS: 20.5″H x 14″W x 9.65D
WEIGHT: 10.6 lbs (frame and bag)
CAPACITY: 32 L
PRICE: $249


The Navigator Expandable

The Navigator Expandable is the largest of the Zuca travel bags and is ideal if your packing varies or you need a bit more space. However, it’s very important to note that it is the only Zuca Travel bag to not meet FAA specifications for carry-on.

DIMENSIONS: 20.5″H x 16″W x 9.65″D
WEIGHT: 11.8 lbs (frame & bag)
CAPACITY: 37 – 52 L (expanded)
PRICE: $279

Recommendation

I would absolutely recommend this suitcase. I tell everybody who travels with a suitcase that they *have* to get this bag!  I’m a Zuca evangelist.

Zuca Pro Travel Suitcase Review

About the Author: You can learn more about Catherine on her blog, A (P)interesting Year.



Pin these to your favorite boards

zuca pro bag reviewzuca pro suitcase review
Add your voice & leave a comment!

Gear We Use

Organization

Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.


Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.


Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Clothing

Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Accommodation

Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking!

Booking.com – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. tiffany says

    I featured this suitcase on my blog a few months ago as well. I don’t own one, but I saw a guy sitting on one and struck up a conversation with him about it and began my research. Although, I don’t own one it does seem like the perfect suitcase for a business traveler or someone who knows the benefits of light and minimalistic packing.

  2. Catherine says

    It really is Tiffany! I love, love, love this bag. It’s great for business travel, but it’s worked for my more adventurous non-work related trips. I usually end up talking it up at least once a trip from someone who asks about it.

  3. Stella says

    I travel so much and – after searching for a good carry on for a very long time – bought a Zuca last June. I fell in love with it. I love that I can sit on it even when waiting for a hotel shuttle. I easily fit a weeks worth of clothes in it with no problem at all. I got the Zuca backpack, too, and it is a wonderful companion piece. I would definitely recommend a Zuca Pro.

  4. Sara A. Mueller says

    I have a Zuca travel pro, and I *love* it. Easily the best piece of travel luggage I’ve ever had. The instant seat anywhere has helped me and travel companions on a number of occasions where there was no place else to sit down.

    The cubes are necessary to seriously pack it with clothes, but you really really want them. I pack by days in them – each one with this color tab has three days worth of regular clothes, that color has the slightly dressier dinner outfit. I can pull out one plus my bathroom kit and change without having to dig through the whole of the bag. I have one extra mesh packing bag that I use for dirty laundry until I can rewash it, as the volume in that bag grows while the volume in other bags shrinks.

    I splurged for the wheels that light up when the bag is in motion, because they’re super fun and as a writer I get to be a bit less ‘business standard’ when I travel. When I go through airports, I now hear a trail of ‘oh Mommy, LOOK!’ in my wake.

    This is an expensive bag, but ike the others who’ve tried it, I’m completely sold. I’m looking forward to getting their backpack in the future!

  5. Amy Stewart says

    I’m another huge fan of the Zuca, and have used mine for several years as my only suitcase when traveling domestically and abroad. It makes traveling through airports so much easier and more comfortable than with non-roller suitcases. And the usefulness of the seat can’t be underestimated! It’s great for long lines at airports, for extra seating when all seats are taken, and as a flat, stable surface to stack other bags on when at airport restaurants with limited space. I’ve also used mine as a small table. And the fact it has such a small footprint makes it the ideal shape and size for hotel rooms with very little floor space. I like to extend the handle and use it as a coat rack as well.

    My only concern is that the carry-on size has recently changed. The zuca is 10″ x 19.5″ x 13″, but the latest United Air maximum carry-on size is 9 x 14 x 22. The hard “exoskeleton” means that it can’t compress down from 10″ to 9″, so I’m concerned that it’s now going to have to be gate checked, which defeats the entire purpose. Does anyone have any experience with traveling with this bag under the latest size restrictions? Will it still fit in an overhead bin, even though it won’t fit in the sizer?

    I’m grudgingly going to a backpack as my only suitcase for an upcoming trip since I don’t want to risk having to check my beloved Zuca. But I know my shoulders will hate me for it.

  6. Paige says

    They make these for sports as well, I have one for figure skating and it’s FANTASTIC, love how much fits inside and how easy it is to travel with, not to mention sturdiness. Plus they come in so many colors and patterns!

  7. Tabitha says

    I have the Zuca pro, Zuca backpack, Zuca mini briefcase and Zuca flier. I love all of them. The Zuca pro also works great for amusement parks as you can carry all your stuff and not have to use a locker. The Zuca flier is what I use to travel and I also bought the light up wheels, it is really neat. I would highly recommend this suitcase!

  8. Amy Stewart says

    The Zuca Flyer isn’t compliant with the new United Airlines dimensions either, at 9.65″ deep, when the max is 9″. I am so disappointed… I wish Zuca would make a new slightly smaller sized bag that is FAA compliant. I’m saving my Zuca for road trips and conventions. It’s a fabulous convention bag, serving as a seat, a table, locker, and a trolley for hauling boxes or large, heavy things. I even used it to haul 8 large pizzas into the convention center, in boxes that would have been impossible to carry otherwise.

Leave A Reply