July is a brand that has only recently made it to the UK but is already making waves. The Australian luggage company produce some incredibly stylish cases in equally vibrant colours. However, there was one case in its collection that really stood out to me.
Our Australian team reviewed the July Carry-On Pro a few years back and delivered it full marks for good reason. It’s a great-looking hard-shell case that comes in a choice of seven colours. I opted for a more reserved Navy model but the Moss green and Clay versions look very fetching.
It’s not just looks though. The Carry-On Pro has two features that really help it to stand out from regular carry-on luggage. The first is the power bank that sits just under the handle and can be easily popped out for charging (or checking in). It’s a 10,000mAh pack with two USB-A outputs for charging and a choice of USB-C or Micro-USB charging inputs. It’s enough to fully charge your phone a couple of times and has saved me at airports when I couldn’t find a wall socket.
The second feature is more unique. On the front of the hard-shell case is a removable laptop sleeve. Having this front section means that you don’t have to bring a second laptop bag. The sleeve is padded for protection and will fit a 15-inch MacBook with ease. The fact that it’s removable means that you can easily keep this part in your seat pocket, or take it with you to meetings when you arrive. It also means that you can quickly get to your laptop, passport and other essentials without having to open up your case.
The case runs of four spinning wheels which are nice and smooth to push the case and appear hard-wearing. The extending handle is nice and chunky too, providing smooth extension and is very sturdy even when fully extended. There’s subtle branding built in the the lid, in the form of the July lettering. You can also customise your case by having your own initials – or one of the optional symbols on the back of the case.
Inside the case the top and bottom sections are split equally, with the top section covered with a zipped netting. The main or bottom section has a compression lid, which also has a zipped netted section within it to store small items. There’s also a small zipped pocket at the back.
The extending handle, power pack and wheel arches do take some space out of the capacity of the bag. I found that even though this case is considerably larger than my Monos bag, it didn’t fit a huge amount more inside it. However, my other bag is always slightly too small for what I want to take and I find that I usually have space left inside the July Carry-On Pro. Plus, it’s always good to have a little space to bring gifts home.
The laptop sleeve is definitely very handy. However, as it’s pretty slim, it doesn’t leave room for a pair of noise-cancelling headphones and my laptop charger – so these either have to go inside my case, or in a separate bag.
The July Carry-On Pro is within most airline carry-on restrictions, and even on smaller planes, I haven’t had any problems storing the bag in the overhead bins. I know that, with this case, I can get everything I need for a three-to-five-day trip with no problem. In fact, I’ve managed a six-day trip with just this case.
Priced at £275 from the July UK store, it might not be the cheapest carry-on but it has everything you need. Plus it looks great. If you’re looking for check-in luggage, the accompanying July Check-in Trunk is also worth a look and is the only case I’ve ever had compliments from check-in staff about.