Carry-ons: better small than sorry

Carry-on luggage size restrictions can vary with the airline, the plane, the destination, and the gate agent. The International Air Transport Association recently recommended carriers adopt a standardized limit of 21.5 inches by 13.5 inches by 7.5 inches deep — a 20-percent reduction from previous guidelines that would make many, if not most, of our trusty wheel-aboards obsolete.

While U.S. airlines and consumer advocates wrestle with IATA’s proposals, savvy manufacturers are rolling out more diminutive carry-ons that won’t risk rejection. At 19 inches by 13 inches by 6 inches deep, the newest wheel-aboard bag from Lipault Paris is even smaller than the IATA limits, but the bag maximizes its 1,178 cubic inches of inner space with a wide-open interior.

Roomy zippered pockets inside and out allow for additional bulk. Fully lined, with adjustable straps to secure clothing, double zippers, a padded carry handle and a sturdy extendable aluminum pull-handle, the nylon twill bag weighs in at a mere 5 pounds. And oh, the colors — from bright bold purple, aqua or tangerine, to unassuming black, navy or espresso. Hey, break the mold, if not the rules, and go for the eye-poppers, which are also easier to spot in a crowd.

Lipault Paris 2-Wheeled 19-inch Carry-On Bag is $169 at