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I’ve always despised carry on travelers; that annoying group of people who manage to pack everything for their whole trip into their carry on bag, and claim you can do it too.

They never need to check a bag meaning they make the quickest of exits from planes and airports, and breeze past everybody else who is stuck waiting for their luggage to appear. And they have a far easier time maneuvering trains, buses, taxis, and other forms of transport without hauling heavy bags. Sorry (not sorry) if that’s you.

Granted, my bitterness towards the carry on traveler is a front for ridiculous jealousy. I’m the girl who entertained Milan airport as I unpacked my luggage in the queue, and dressed myself in 5 kg of clothes to avoid excess baggage fees. I’m the girl who’s scratching the pavement because the weight of my luggage has snapped the wheels on my suitcase. Or perhaps I just had a bad suitcase.

Either way, I’ve always been the worst over-packer, notorious for bringing way too much. And while I know all the tricks to packing light, and I’ve read the same blog posts as you, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’ll never be one of those people. When I travel overseas, I need 20 kg worth of stuff.

How You Can Travel Luggage Free

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How to Pack Heavy But Travel Light

Despite fantasizing about the day I might become a carry on traveler, I’m not willing to sacrifice my luggage. But dealing with luggage at the airport is a huge inconvenience, and that’s obviously why some people only ever travel with carry on.

It’s stressing that you’ll miss your flight because you’re stuck in a long bag check line. And then having to pick it up and re check it before a connecting flight. It’s worrying about your luggage being lost in transit, and wasting your prime travel time standing around a conveyer belt hoping that you’re bag will be in the next round.

It would be so lovely if there was someone who could just take our bags for us and make them reappear on the other side!! Someone who would pick up your luggage from your home or office and deliver it wherever you want it to go.

Surprisingly, that’s not a far fetched dream, as I realized when I read Travel With Bender’s review of Luggage Free.

What is Luggage Free?

Luggage Free is a specialized luggage delivery service. They offer travelers to ship luggage ahead to any destination worldwide, meaning we avoid the inconvenience of carrying, checking and claiming luggage – even going through customs!

Lugagge

Whether it’s your standard luggage or a ski delivery, company representatives arrive, wrap the bags in protective plastic, tag them and transport them directly to your destination. Everything is protected and insured. They can ship luggage to any destination including hotels, cruise ships and private residences virtually anywhere in the world.

The most obvious uses would be for a hassle free business or leisure trip. But you could also use it if you wanted to ship your luggage to a destination you’re not immediately traveling to.

For instance, in 2014 we moved from the US to Australia. We sold our home in Arizona, though planned for a 3 month roadtrip to Alaska before we caught our international flight. We loaded all of our possessions into suitcases and crammed them into our little Chevy Malibu. Don’t get me wrong – we made everything fit, but at close to 900 pounds (inclusive of our weight), we began to seriously worry about our safety driving from San Diego through remote roads into Alaska.

If I had known about luggage free, I would have shipped half of our luggage ahead of time to meet us in Australia.

How it Works

You might think this kind of service sounds too good to be true, but it works! You can make your booking online or via the phone. The online booking process is very simple, and should only take 5 minutes to do. You’ll be asked to provide a specific date and time when you want your bag picked up, as well as a pickup address. If you’re in a rush they can pickup from most major US cities within 6 hours, and within 24 hours elsewhere.

To complete the booking you’ll also need a scanned copy (or photo) of your passport, a list of what’s in your bag (for customs and insurance), as well as a delivery address. You’ll recieve a confirmation email after filling in the form, and that’s the process complete!

On the day of pick-up a professional delivery expert will pick up your luggage, and once delivered you will received an email to confirm your luggage has been successfully delivered. It’s really very straightforward!

Pro Tip: If you’re shipping to a hotel ahead of time, make sure you call them in advance to let them know. Most hotels won’t have a problem holding your bag in storage until you arrive.

Luggage

How Much Does it Cost?

Pricing varies depending on a couple of different factors, and is easy to estimate based off the pricing table on their website.

For instance, it’s more expensive to send golf clubs, skis and bikes, and the cost will depend on how quickly you want it delivered (between 1, 2, 3 or 5 days). They price standard luggage by the pound which is a nice change from most companies who charge bulk pricing. I mean, why should you pay the higher weight if your luggage weighs significantly less?

When you ship your luggage, the company guarantees it will arrive on time or there will be no charge for your shipment and they will give you up to $500 per bag to make it right. That’s the best luggage shipping guarantee in the world, period!

The Perks of Traveling Luggage Free

Time saver. Print your boarding pass at home so you can get to the airport and walk past those queues of frustrated passengers waiting to check in their luggage.

“If you have layovers, you won’t have to pick up your luggage and recheck it again, which is a major time and sanity saver if you have a short stop before your connecting flight; and you’ll never worry about your bags being lost in transit again!”

Airport

Ease of transportation. It’s much easier to manage one carry on bag while you’re transiting than it is to haul heavy luggage. You’re more mobile, and it’s less stressful jumping on a crowded subway, bus or train. Also, you won’t be immediately pegged as a tourist, which is especially helpful if you’re making your way through an area known for petty theft.

No waiting for bags. The average time at a baggage carousel is 30 minutes. Obviously, a massive perk of traveling luggage free is being able to bypass all of those suckers waiting for their luggage. Beat the rush to exit the airport and get on with your travels sooner than everyone else.

Great option for the physically challenged. If you have physical limitations or disabilities which mean you have a hard time moving heavy suitcases, Luggage Free will definitely suit you.

In a Nutshell

I’m not willing to cut down on the luggage I take with me on a trip, though I wish I enjoyed the same luxury and convenience of those who travel with only their carryon.

Luggage free is a fantastic service which means I can have my cake and eat it too. It’s as fast, easy and convenient as they claim, and it means I no longer harbor ill feelings towards the carry on traveler. Because I’m one of them too!

Visit www.luggagefree.com to organize luggage shipment for your next trip.

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Megan is an Australian Journalist and award-winning travel writer who has been blogging since 2007. Her husband Mike is the American naturalist and wildlife photographer behind Waking Up Wild; a website dedicated to opening your eyes to the wild & natural world.

Committed to bringing you the best in adventure travel from all around the globe, there is no mountain too high, and no fete too extreme! They haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on their list.

Follow their journey on Facebook, TwitterYouTube, Pinterest and Instagram.

Photo credits: Featured photo by twentymindsomething.

    28 Comments

  1. I actually used a service like this to move to Paris. They picked up two very heavy suitcases and in about 30 hours, my stuff had been delivered in France. I’d love to try it on a trip, especially a ski trip. So nice!

    • Amazing Leah! It’s so hassle free … which is not something you usually expect from an international move. Would definitely be so useful if you’re traveling with skis … I can’t imagine trying to navigate through airports and public transport while carrying them.

      Happy holidays! After your next trip let me know what you think about Luggage Free :)

  2. I’ve heard of these services, but never really understood the need. You make some very good points about how ‘luggage free’ could be much easier for some people. Especially for expats like me that are relocating to a different country, but decide to travel prior to arriving at the new destination, it makes a lot of sense. Cutting time spent at the airport is also something that I think everyone would like to do!

    • Absolutely Drew – I think it’s one of those things we like to think we can manage ourselves, but you realize is so worth the investment after you’ve decided to give it a go.

      Especially as an expat who makes a lot of international moves :) If you try the service let us know what you think!

  3. It does sound amazing especially for long trips when you have to carry a lot or hav eto change flights. I am going to check it out for sure. Anyway the airlines ask you to pay for your luggage why don’t have it delivered to your final destination from the start.

    • Exactly … I’ve just heard that some airlines are starting to charge for space in the overhead bins now too :O!! The hidden fees associated with baggage really are starting to get ridiculous. I say we boycott the airlines and just ship it to where we want to go :D!

  4. I would definitely use this service, especially for ski and snowboard gear. We always end up renting equipment even though we have our own just because it’s such a pain to travel with.

    • I would probably rent as well instead of trying to travel with all that equipment and gear. Though those costs add up too, so depending on how long the ski trip is, a service like this could actually save you :)

  5. Interesting idea! ‘Iggy be something to look into when we are moving to Spain!

    • Absolutely – it’s such a lifesaver, especially if you want to do some travel inbetween your move :)

  6. This service might make it possible for some mobility challenged people to travel to places they thought out of reach because of their inability to handle luggage. I would never have considered this service due to stubborness; however, having injured rotator cuffs in my shoulders hoisting suitcases overhead on our last trip,I’m willing to rethink this.

    • I think it’s one of those things we like to think we can manage ourselves, as you said, out of stubbornness, but it’s also one of those things that you try once and then decide you could never live without!!

      Especially for those with physical limitations … would be a lot easier on your shoulders for sure if you could bypass all the hassle at the airports and have your luggage waiting for you at the hotel when you arrive.

      Happy travels Suzanne :)

  7. It’s the first time we hear about this. It sounds like a great alternative. Bonus: less troubles, right? Very good article! Travelling with a carry-on or with luggage is always a bit complicated… especially for women!

    • Glad we could introduce you :) Yes, don’t make me decide between my billion pairs of shoes lol

  8. I have heard of this service, but have yet to use it. I do agree that it’s a worthwhile service. Can you imagine how helpful this would be for a golfer or skiier? This would make things so much easier and it would definitely help maneuvering the airport.

    • Absolutely – I’ve seen athletes struggling through airports before, golfers, skiiers, even with surf boards – and it doesn’t look fun at all!

  9. That sounds amazing. Although we are carry on travelers most of the time, when you go for eight months at a time, it would be so helpful especially if the clothes you need for the first leg are for Fall and the next, for winter! Happened to us in 2017! Should have known

    • Absolutely – it’s so hard when trying to pack for a trip where you’re hitting multiple seasons and climates. When I did Africa we were hiking Kilimanjaro and heading on a safari, so needed everything from warm jackets and layers to desert gear and tents. I couldn’t see over my luggage trolley when I arrived :D!!

  10. There’s o way I would e able to travel with a carryon only! Luggage free looks like a pretty neat service. I’ll certainly be checking it out and might give it a whirl on my next trip.

    • Yes, I’ve battled internally with wishing I could go carry on for so long, but I finally accepted the fact that I wouldn’t be happy if I tried to do it. Luggage Free is a great service :)

  11. This sounds like a very good idea. I was 1.5 kg over my allowance coming back from Bangkok to London two weeks ago, I had take out 1.5 kg before my bag was checked. It would be a lot easier to send my baggage in advance, I think 33.5 kg was a little bit excessive but it was for a 10 week stay lol

    • No judgement on 33.5 kg for a 10 week stay – you need a lot of stuff for that amount of time! Definitely look into Luggage Free for your next trip – I’ve been in that situation before, having to take clothes out at the airport to get the bag down. Lol I ended up having to wear like 10 layers onto the plane :D!!

  12. This service would have been a lifesaver when I was moving to Las Vegas for 2 months for work a few years ago. I especially like the idea for those with mobility issues.

    • Absolutely Brianna – keep it in mind if you end up moving again in the future. Takes so much stress out of the whole move :)

      And it’s brilliant for those with mobility issues … it means a lot more people will be able to think about travel where it may have been quite intimidating before.

  13. I always wonder how these people are able to travel with one carry on bag. Craziness. Are they wearing the same thing every day??? My Camera gear and MacBook take up all the space in my carry on. On my last trip I was trying to figure out how to carry my camera gear, my suitcase and my drone. Arghhh.

    • I know right!! All the more power to them, but I can’t give up my gear … I’m the same, our camera gear only barely fits into our carry on, that, with my laptop, and a spare change of clothes just in case, and that’s all the room we’ve got.

      I haven’t yet gotten around to purchasing a drone, but I’ve heard that it can be awkward to navigate through airports and other transit with.

  14. This concept is a definite lifesaver for a heavy packer like me! Another bonus is you also “look” like a light traveller in airports LOL

    • Haha that’s very true too … it’s all about appearances right!

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