What to Know About Shipping Luggage Ahead of Travelby Laurie Wilson /
More travelers are shipping their bags to their hotel or resort these days instead of traveling with them to make the trip more efficient—saving time at the airport, minimizing the risk of lost bags, and even saving money.
There are several luggage delivery-centric companies that can streamline the process including LugLess.
“With summer travel season just heating up, LugLess has definitely seen an increase in travelers wanting to streamline their trips and breeze through airports without hauling their luggage,” says Aaron Kirley, President and Co-Founder of LugLess.
“In fact, in 2022 demand for our luggage shipping service has more than doubled from pre-pandemic levels, which we believe is indicative of travelers seeing the value in fewer stops inside the airport and the potential cost savings of shipping luggage in advance.”
How it works:
- You book your luggage shipment on LugLess.com in much the same way you’d book a flight, says Kirley. You detail where you’re headed and the dates you’d like your luggage to make its trip, and specify where you’ll be staying—hotel, resort, Airbnb or private residence.
- You are then shown the best prices across Lugless’ carrier partners, including UPS and FedEx, and receive the shipping labels directly to your email or phone.
- You choose to either drop off your bags locally or have them picked up at your door.
- Your luggage travels to your destination.
“Shipping luggage is safe and reliable,” says Kirley. Still, there are some things to avoid shipping, like medication. “Something simple like a delayed flight could leave you without those medications, so it’s not worth the risk. The same goes for various forms of ID or your trip itinerary, which should always stay on your person or in a carry-on during trips.”
Most hotels and resorts are equipped to accept luggage being shipped, and most do so without an extra fee. “However, it’s always a good idea to call ahead and confirm this prior to booking a luggage shipment, as some hotels may charge a small handling fee,” says Kirley,
LugLess has a starting price of $20 to ship a bag domestically. “Our partnerships with carriers like UPS and FedEx allow us to provide the best rates for travelers that want to ship their bags,” he says. “Most trips won’t cost you any more than an airline would charge for a checked bag, and in some cases, it actually costs less to ship luggage than let the airlines handle it
Kirley offers these additional tips:
- The Early Shipper Gets the Discount The same way that booking your flight early often gets you the best rate, sending your luggage ahead oftime will let you beat those higher baggage fees.
- Double Tag It Along with the shipping label on the outside of your baggage, print out an extra one and stick it inside. That way, if the outside one somehow gets torn off, you'll have the inside one as a backup. Also, if you're shipping more than one bag, make sure the tags correspond with the correct luggage or you might get dinged with extra fees.
- Be Ready to Roll It's possible your clothes might be in your suitcase longer than when you check a bag so roll your clothes instead of folding them. This will reduce the amount of wrinkles and even help everything from shifting.
Michelle O’Donnell, ex-travel agent and owner of Brit Adventures used baggage shipping company Luggage Forward to transport her luggage while traveling from Canada’s East Coast to the West Coast.
“I think it's a great idea as it can save you the hassle of carrying or pulling your heavy luggage everywhere—especially if you have multiple bags for your trip,” she says. “They simply take the trouble out of traveling for you and the luggage meets you at your destination. Of course, the quicker you want it to arrive the more expensive it gets but I think it's worth it.”
Fred Hoffman of True Wilderness offers these solid tips:
- Invest in good luggage If you're going to be sending your luggage ahead of time, you'll want to make sure that it's high quality and will stand up to the journey. Look for sturdy suitcases with smooth wheels and plenty of compartments for easy packing.
- Choose a reliable shipping service There are a number of different companies that offer luggage shipping services. Do your research to find one that has a good reputation and is known for delivering items on time and in good condition.
- Pack your luggage carefully When packing your luggage for shipment, be sure to wrap fragile items securely and pack them in the middle of the suitcase. This will help protect them from being damaged in transit.
- Make sure your luggage is insured Most shipping companies will offer some level of insurance for your shipment, but it's always a good idea to double-check that your belongings are covered in case of any accidents or delays.