Bypass baggage claim, make a beeline for the beach!

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The last time my family of four was at the airport, we had a total of 12 suitcases and bags between us. I know, as a family travel expert, I should utilize some of my own tips for efficient packing! By the time we lugged everything to our hotel, we were pooped and sore. But that won't happen again! I've found a VIP service that enables us to skip baggage claim altogether and get a jump on our vacation.

VIP luggage delivery lets you hit the ground running and get your trip off to a great start

The last time my family of four was at the airport, we had a total of 12 suitcases and bags between us. I know, as a family travel expert, I should utilize some of my own tips for efficient packing! My husband and I each had one large suitcase, our girls shared one, my husband had golf clubs, and we each had a small carryon suitcase in addition to backpacks and purses. Yep, that makes 12 total items to push, pull or lug on our backs. We had to get all of this stuff from the remote parking lot where we left our car to the airport bus shuttle, then to the tram that took us to the airport terminal.

Airport Luggage

After arriving at our destination airport, we then had to wait for all that gear to come off the baggage carousel and transport it to our hotel. Since we took a taxi, we had to hire a large cab to accommodate all of the luggage. It would have been ideal to take public transportation, but there was no way we could handle the number of bags we had with us. By the time we actually got to our hotel, we were pooped and sore. There had to be a better way to manage all of our stuff!

My solution for the next trip? I'm going to www.maketraveleasier.com to book Bags VIP Luggage Delivery, a service I learned about at a recent travel conference. We will still need to get all of our bags to the airport and checked in, but then the vacation can truly begin! Bags VIP service will take over once we get to our destination. That means we can hit the ground running as soon as the plane lands. Our bags will be delivered to the hotel (the bags are dropped off with the bellman so you need to give the hotel a heads up!). So if you want to go straight to the beach instead of wasting time dealing with luggage, you can.

sandcastle beach

A delivery fee of $49.95 covers the cost of transporting three to eight bags from the airport to your hotel or vacation home within a 40-mile radius of the airport. It's $29.95 for one bag and $39.95 for two. Those prices don't cover the checked baggage fee that most airlines charge. That fee stays the same, with the amount dictated by the airline you use. Obviously, you'll save money by packing efficiently. I know, I know…do as I say, not as I do!

I can see how this service would be a lifesaver for parents of young children. It’s hard to pack lightly when you have little ones who still need bulky car seats, pack-n-plays and strollers. The Bags VIP service is even more handy if only one parent is travelling with the kids and their gear. I can remember a time when my husband was at a conference in Arizona and I thought it would be a great idea to take my two daughters, then a toddler and infant, out to meet him for a long weekend vacation. I was so overwhelmed by the time I got there that I went straight to the spa for a massage and left him to figure out what to do with the kids! I definitely could have used some help from Bags back then.

We also get bogged down with extra bags when we go skiing. It’s great that Bags VIP can easily handle the delivery of our ski gear, and they don’t charge for oversized (or overweight) bags, though it’s important to let the company know that some of your luggage will be larger so they can plan accordingly. This is also a good tip for golf club delivery.

Golf.JPG

If you worry about parting with your luggage, it's good to know that Bags provides email status updates starting with pickup at baggage claim up until everything is delivered to your destination.

And how about business travelers? As the host of a travel show, my life revolves around flights and hotels, not just for the program, but also for conferences and speaking engagements. There are times when I have to go straight from the airport to an event, and it's always a hassle to bring my luggage with me. The next time I am in this situation, I can use Bags to deliver my luggage directly to the hotel so I can go straight to the meeting. Problem solved!

Whether a family vacation or a business trip, I can see Bags being part of my future travel plans. It’s a service that solves a problem. My mom always says, “Many hands make light work.” In this case, the hands belong to the folks at Bags VIP Service, who can save me a lot of grief. Let the family vacation, or the business trip, begin on a high note!

Interview Rick Steves

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