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Rockland Melbourne 20 Review

An inexpensive suitcase that is easy to use and expand
Rockland Luggage Melbourne 20
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $120 List | $55.74 at Amazon
Pros:  Expandable, affordable, zippered internal divider
Cons:  Questionable construction, difficult to wheel
Manufacturer:   Fox Luggage
By Cam McKenzie Ring ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Feb 12, 2020
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46
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 6
  • Ease of Use - 35% 5
  • Storage & Features - 30% 4
  • Versatility - 20% 6
  • Durability - 15% 3

Our Verdict

The Rockland Melbourne 20 can be found very cheaply online, making it an easy choice for budget-conscious shoppers and our choice for Best Buy on a Tight Budget. However, this basic bag lacks many features of more expensive models; and the longevity. It's a hard-sided bag with four single wheels that seem to have a mind of their own, rarely moving in a straight line. It is expandable, though it doesn't boast as large of a capacity as many others we tested. Its telescoping handle is not particularly sturdy (it was flexing pretty ominously when we tried pushing the Melbourne while full), and the tabs that secure the grab handles proved to be easily broken. However, if you're an infrequent flyer seeking something on a tight budget, and you're willing to baby your carry-on a bit, this bag may still work in your favor.

Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Rockland Melbourne 20 is made of ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) plastic and measures 22 x 13 x 9 inches. It weighs just under 7 pounds and comes in over 25 colors.

Performance Comparison


Does it fit? Yes! This compact bag shouldn't ever be denied at the gate.
Does it fit? Yes! This compact bag shouldn't ever be denied at the gate.

Ease of Use


In other reviews, we write about how awesome the four-wheeled design is for maneuvering flawlessly through the airport (read: over polished surfaces). All four-wheels bags are not created equal, however, and less expensive carry-ons like this one just don't have the same amazing rolling prowess as other contenders. The Melbourne pulls annoyingly to one side, and the rickety handle makes it difficult to push while full. The handle can adjust to two heights (34" and 39"), which is nice for fine-tuning the right handle height for pushing, but isn't impressive next to a line-up of models that have 3 or 4 height options.

These small spinner wheels seem to have a mind of their own and don't like to travel in a straight line. They are also not geared towards rolling over anything but smooth airport floors.
These small spinner wheels seem to have a mind of their own and don't like to travel in a straight line. They are also not geared towards rolling over anything but smooth airport floors.

Storage & Features


While we are surprised at how much of our pack test fit in the bag, though it was a bit of a squeeze. This bag also expands an extra 1.5 inches, which allows us space for a suit or fancy dress, but there's no way to ensure that it will come out anything other than completely wrinkled.

We were able to fit two pairs of shoes  four pairs of jeans  ten shirts  a sweater  workout clothes  and toiletries in this bag  but there wasn't room for dressy clothes or a way to keep them wrinkle-free.
We were able to fit two pairs of shoes, four pairs of jeans, ten shirts, a sweater, workout clothes, and toiletries in this bag, but there wasn't room for dressy clothes or a way to keep them wrinkle-free.

The compression straps are basic and don't compress much, but do help secure loose items on that side of that suitcase. The other side can be zipped up completely, and there is one small internal pocket that's big enough for a few pairs of underwear or a toiletry kit. There are no exterior pockets (common with hard-sided bags), which is something to consider if you like to stash odds and ends in the outer pockets of your suitcase.

The expandable option is a nice feature - it won't fit in the overhead bin this way but it is great for when you buy too much stuff on vacation and choose to check your bag on the way home.
The expandable option is a nice feature - it won't fit in the overhead bin this way but it is great for when you buy too much stuff on vacation and choose to check your bag on the way home.

Versatility


This bag has a boxy and plain look to it. It's not super sleek, nor does it offer a techy look. Also, the red bag that we tested had a pink and white polka dot interior, which we think is decidedly "junior" in its styling. The textured surface does help hide scratches though, which help keep it looking newer for longer.

This inexpensive suitcase has a plain design with few extra features.
This inexpensive suitcase has a plain design with few extra features.

This is a fairly basic bag, and its features reflect that. There is no integrated lock like some of the other hard-sided bags in this review, nor can the zipper tabs accommodate one. We do like the differentiation between the bag's main zippers and the expandable zipper, and the expansion option is a nice feature for such a small bag.

We always appreciate when the expandable zipper tab and the main zipper tabs are different shapes and sizes so that we don't accidentally open the expander section every time we try to open the bag.
We always appreciate when the expandable zipper tab and the main zipper tabs are different shapes and sizes so that we don't accidentally open the expander section every time we try to open the bag.

Durability


This bag is made of ABS plastic, which is less durable than the polycarbonate of more expensive - and more durable - bags. The Rockland's zippers are not very thick or burly, and we have major concerns over the telescoping handle, which one of the most rickety and rattly of any in this review. Additionally, the top carry handle is secured by flimsy tabs that proved to be easily broken.

The grab handles of the Rockland are attached by flimsy tabs that are easy to damaged. Part of this tab broke during our first trip with it.
The grab handles of the Rockland are attached by flimsy tabs that are easy to damaged. Part of this tab broke during our first trip with it.

Value


If you plan on using your bag once in a blue moon and aren't overly concerned about quality in your carry-on, this may be the bag for you. One other important aspect to note is that even though this bag has a three-year warranty, we've read multiple user reviews online stating that this warranty is extremely difficult to claim. Rockland Luggage does not have an official website and is made by Fox Luggage. After digging around online and sending a few emails, we found the contact information for the warranty office: customer service at Fox can be reached at (323) 588-1688 and customerservice@foxluggage.com. Be sure to keep your hang tags, receipt, etc., if you think you might want to make a warranty claim down the road.

This bag is great for travelling with kids. They can push it themselves and it gives them a place to take a break.
This bag is great for travelling with kids. They can push it themselves and it gives them a place to take a break.

Conclusion


The Melbourne 20 has a few attractive features and is certainly affordable, but its rickety handle and poor rolling action leave us unimpressed overall. If you fly infrequently and always take care of your belongings, this rather inexpensive suitcase could work for you. But if you're rough with your stuff or always on the go, you'll probably want to spend more on one that can handle the extra (ab)use.

Cam McKenzie Ring