The four-wheeled Lipault Paris Plume 22 is first and foremost a fashion statement. If you want to be noticed and/or never lose your bag, then this unstructured carry-on may just be for you. It comes in three bright colors: espresso, aqua and tangerine, and it's easy to maneuver through airports and planes thanks to its swiveling wheels. It doesn't offer much protection for your valuables like a hard-sided bag would, nor does it have the same carrying capacity as some of the other bags that we tested, like the Delsey Shadow 3.0 21 or the Samsonite Silhouette Sphere 2 21, but it does fit everything you need for a long weekend. Whether you like the style of this bag or not is a matter of taste; it is loud and proud. For a more understated, classic bag, check out our Top Pick for Business Travel, the Briggs and Riley Baseline Domestic.
Lipault Paris Plume 22 ReviewPrice: $199 List Pros: Lightweight, casual design available in bright colors
Cons: Too casual for business, dirt shows up easily, doesn't offer much protection for bag's contents
Dimensions (excluding day packs): 21.5 x 14 x 8
# of Wheels: 4
Manufacturer: Lipault Paris
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Lipault Paris Plume 22 is a soft-sided, unstructured, 6 lbs 6 oz bag, whose dimensions are 21.5 x 14 x 8 inches. It has four swivel wheels, a top and side carry handle, one external pocket, and two internal pockets.
Ease of Transport
The Lipault Paris Plume 22 scored fairly high in this metric. The four swivel wheels maneuver easily in the airport or down a plane's aisle, and the top and side carry handles allow for easy removal from the overhead bin or trunk of a car. When it came to using this bag on uneven surfaces, however, the thin wheels did not fair as well as the wider split-wheels on the Samsonite Silhouette Sphere.
Lipault states that this bag has a 48 L capacity. While it did pass our "wintertime long weekend" pack test, it did not hold the same amount of clothes and shoes as the 44 L Briggs and Riley Baseline Domestic. This bag does not have the ability to expand; however, the unstructured design does make cramming odd shaped objects into the bag, like shoes, much easier than a more structured or hard-sided bag. It is also easier to store, so if you have limited storage space at home you may prefer a more unstructured bag.
It seems like the main feature this bag has to offer is its color. The internal compression straps are basic, as are the two interior pockets. There is a padded exterior pocket, however it was too small for our 16" laptop and seems better suited to smaller netbooks or tablets. The one unique feature on this bag was that the telescoping carrying handle zips into its own pocket, though we are not quite sure why that would be useful.
The Lipault Paris Plume 22 is made of a high-sheen nylon, which, according to the manufacturer, is easy to clean. While this material most likely won't snag like the fabrics on some of the other models that we tested, the bright colors will show marks or dirt more readily than a darker colored bag. The wheels are sturdily constructed and held up fine even after dragging this bag down a flight of stairs with a heavy load. The telescoping handle is not quite as sturdy as some other models. One side of the handle was sticking slightly in the housing, preventing it from fully extending unless we manually lifted it up. We noticed this happening after only one flight, which is discouraging, considering that the telescoping handle is one of the most used features on a carry-on bag. If you are looking for a sturdier handle, check out the Samsonite Silhouette Sphere 2 21.
The lack of framing and structure on this bag keeps the weight down. It weighed 6 lbs 6 oz on our scale (6 lbs stated manufacturer weight) and combined with the four-wheeled design means you hardly notice the weight of this bag when pushing it through an airport.
We didn't rate this bag highly in our style metric because frankly, the look just wasn't for us. People who like to make bold statements in life, and luggage, might prefer this bag more than others. While the bright colors are fun, the 'tangerine' model that we tested easily showed the dirt on the wheels. Orange everything, including wheels, is one thing, but dirty orange is another. The espresso color would probably not look as dirty so quickly.
This carry-on bag is best suited for general airline travel, though probably not business, and we'd recommend against checking the Plume if you have fragile items inside and/or don't want it to get dirty.
This bag retails for $199, both on the manufacturer's website and popular online retailers, which makes it quite a bit more expensive than the equally chic Samsonite Winfield 2 20. For $30 more you could get our Editors' Choice winning Samsonite Silhouette Sphere 2 21, a much sturdier and more versatile bag, in our opinion.
Our testers either loved the style of the Lipault Paris Plume, or they didn't, and unfortunately for this bag, most of us didn't. Bright colors aside, soft-sided, unstructured luggage has limited uses, in our opinion. It doesn't offer much protection for fragile items or the same wrinkle-free capabilities as bags with integrated garment bags, and it's not able to expand in case you need to carry more items on your way home. If you love the look, then go for it; otherwise, there are plenty of better options out there.
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Most recent review: April 23, 2015
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