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Here's a good roll-aboard bag that can double either as a seat or a work table for your laptop.

Solidly constructed, with this clever extra concept, this is an appealing bag at a good price.

 
 
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SeatKase Carry-On Luggage

A good bag, a great price, and a clever extra feature

On the top of the SeatKase bag is a flap.  Open it up and you have either a seat you can sit on, or a work table you might place your laptop on.

The wheels lock up when you sit down on the bag, giving it a stable base.

This clever extra feature in no way detracts from the bag's main mission, and so provides a positive reason to consider SeatKase next time you need a new roll-aboard luggage piece.

 

 

This bag is especially designed to support the weight of an up to 250lb person.  Sure, we've all maybe sat on our bags occasionally in the past, but have probably felt a bit guilty doing so.  This bag allows you to sit down in relative comfort and without needing to worry about destroying your bag in the process.

A clever idea that has been well thought through and implemented.

 

Price and availability

$99 list price on the manufacturer's website.

At present the bag seems only to be sold on the SeatKase website.

Warranty

SeatKase offer a very generous return policy with no stated time expiry, but are a bit vague about warranty.  They said it is a typical warranty with typical exclusions (ie airline damage).

Official size

22" x 14" x 9" (45" total)

Measured maximum external size

21.75" x 14" x 9"
The 9" could be squished down a bit if needed, making it easier to fit the bag (if not over-full) into small areas.

It is nice to see a bag which truly is the size it is claimed - this will fit all templates sized for 22x14x9 with no problems.

Measured internal size

19" x 13" x 6.75"

The bag has an external pouch that can add another inch or two to the 6.75" dimension in total, but an object measuring much larger than 7" in that dimension would have difficulty fitting into the main compartment.

There is very little space lost by adding a seat flap to the top of the bag - the flap represents about 1" or so of the total 21.75" size.

Expandability

No.

Weight

10.8 lbs claimed.  Tests to about that weight.

Construction

The bag is made from ballistic nylon.  There is no extra ribbing around the edges to protect against wear.

A solid internal framework gives it the strength to support people sitting on it weighing up to 250lbs.

Much of the construction is by rivet rather than screw, and it doesn't seem easily feasible to repair/replace a wheel if one breaks on a journey.  Fortunately, the solid construction of the wheel assemblies should make this a rare situation.

All compartments are lined.

Overall, this presents as a moderately well constructed bag, as it would need to be to withstand the extra stresses it will face with people sitting on it.

Color choices

Black  Blue  Red

Handles

The bag has one main carry handle on the long side.  It is padded and sprung, so it is held close against the side of the bag when not being used - this is a good thing because it is less likely to be snagged on things.

There are no support legs on the side opposite the side with the handle, and - be careful - there are a couple of tempting pockets to put things like tickets or other things in on this side.

Be sure, if carrying the bag by this handle, not to put it down with the handle upright if you have fragile things in the pockets on what has become its underside, and not to put it anywhere damp or dirty.

There's a rudimentary 'pull' type handle as part of the wheel assembly to help you when loading the bag into an overhead.

Instead of a commonly found third handle on the short side opposite the wheels, the space that would normally be used by a handle is instead taken up by the seat cushion and flap.  So SeatKase have slightly changed the design of the telescoping handle, giving it some extra extension stops, and suggest you use this as a third carry handle.

This is not always a good idea.  I've several times been doing this, only to have the catch slip open (probably due to me inadvertently pushing the release on the carry handle) and the handle suddenly opens all the way out, causing the bag to drop precipitously to the floor.

Towing Handle

Extends 39.5".  Easy to open and shut, and has five different extension positions (in addition to closed).

It can be difficult to get exactly the right extension length you're seeking, and in reality, most people would seek either the 'slightly open' position (about an inch above the top of the bag) so as to be able to carry the bag, or the 'open to my height' position which for most of us would be either the 36" or the 39.5" maximum length.  The other two positions - 30" and 33" - are unlikely to be used much, other than perhaps by children.

Telescoping design with three sections.  Doesn't wiggle much.

Mounted internally and protected from external forces.

Wheels

Two wheels that roll with a little resistance, each measuring 2.75" by 0.85".

About one quarter of each wheel is protected inside the bag structure.

The wheels have extra ribbing on them to make them less likely to slip on smooth surfaces (ie when you sit on the bag) and when pressure is applied on the wheels (again, when you're sitting on the bag) the wheels move up into their wells and lock in place, giving you as stable a platform as can be hoped for.

Stair skids

Yes - plastic moulding above the wheels.

Outside compartments

Two front compartments, one above the other.  The lower one measures 11.5" wide and 11" deep; the zip goes across the full width and leaves an opening about 10.5" wide through which to put things.  There is not much gusseting and depending on how full the inner side compartment is will depend on how much stuff you can fit in here.

The upper one measures 10" wide by 6" deep, and has a zip running around three sides, creating a flap that opens out, hinged on its bottom side.  The flap has fabric side pieces to limit how far it opens, so things don't fall out.  Inside was an included clear plastic zip pouch, measuring 8" x 5.5".

This compartment might be useful for keeping tickets in while traveling, or you could use the clear plastic pouch to hold liquids in - it is easy to take out when going through security.  The pouch is slightly smaller than the maximum 'quart size' allowable, so if you had a lot of liquids, you'd need to store them either in the lower (larger) compartment or inside the bag.

There are two slots on one of the sides of the bag.  These could be used, presumably, for sticking a newspaper in, and perhaps for having travel documents stowed there as well.

Lastly, there is a compartment on the back of the bag.  This measures 13" wide by 8" deep, and has two zips that open from the center of the wide side.  There is a gusset in the middle of the compartment which allows it to expand somewhat in the middle of the compartment, but not so much at the edges.

Inside compartments in base

There is a mesh compartment on one of the sides, measuring 12" x 7", with a zip running along its long dimension.

Inside compartments in lid

The lid has a mesh compartment measuring 12.5" wide x 15" deep, with a zip running along the 12.5" side.

Suit carrier included

No

Other Removable holders inside

Yes - in addition the loose clear plastic pouch in the outer compartment, there is a second clear plastic pouch inside the base of the unit, attached to the unit by a couple of snaps.  This pouch measures about 10.5" x 7", with a zip running along the 10.5" side.

Note that this bag is larger than regulation 'quart size' for TSA purposes.

Waterproof compartment

No, but you could use one of the two supplied clear plastic pouches for this purpose.

Packing Straps

Two sets of non-elastic bands (but with adjustable length straps run across the narrow dimension of the inner base compartment, about one quarter and three quarters of the way up.

External carry hook/strap

No.

ID holder

No.

Other features

Yes - the seat/bench flap on the top of the bag.

You can see from the illustration on the top of this page the seat cushion opened up - normally, to sit on or when traveling, it is folded down (and is kept down by a velcro strip).  This makes for a comfortable spot to sit on.

The other suggested use for this is as a computer desk - you'd sit on a regular seat and put your laptop on the SeatKase bag in front of you, rather than on your knees.  In that case, you'd fold up the seat cushion to provide a more secure cradle for the laptop.

I didn't like this use - the laptop was too low for me.  Ergonomically speaking, your computer keyboard should be slightly above the level of your lap anyway (ideal height is about 26.5" from the ground), but depending on the type of chair you are sitting in, the 21" height of the suitcase up to where the laptop would be placed with the flap open/up meant the laptop was slightly or appreciably lower rather than higher than it would have been simply on your knees.

The laptop felt precarious but actually was quite stable.

 

 

Review methodology

Please note that weights and measurements are approximate.  Measurements in particular are surprisingly subjective, and almost no bag/case has even measurements across every part of the bag.

External measurements are usually taken at the largest possible part - like an airline would do if trying to negatively prove your bag was illegally oversized.

 

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Originally published 5 Oct 2007, last update 19 Dec 2013

You may freely reproduce or distribute this article for noncommercial purposes as long as you give credit to me as original writer.

 
 
Related Articles
List of Carry-on Bags Reviewed
Our Favorite Carry-on Bags
How to Choose a Carry-on Bag pt 1
How to choose a bag pt 2
Reader comments on their carry-on luggage experiences
Reviews pt 1 :  Briggs & Riley
Reviews pt 2 :  Heys USA
Reviews pt 3 :  High Sierra
Reviews pt 4 :  Samsonite
Reviews pt 5 :  Swany
Reviews pt 6 :  Travelpro
Reviews pt 7 :  Lower priced bags
Reviews pt 8 :  Unusual and specialty bags

See also

Series on larger checked bags - reviews, buyer guide, reader comments, etc

Other related topics

Domestic Airline Carry On Luggage Policies
International Airline Carry On Luggage Policies
Domestic Airline Checked Luggage Policies
Your Rights if your bags are delayed or lost
Luggage Locator review
Distinctive MyTag Luggage Tags
Luggage Transportation Services
Packing Tips
 

 



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