You've just landed at your travel destination, but the Airbnb won't be available for a few hours. What to do? You could start exploring the city, but nothing ruins that exhilarating experience more than having to drag around heavy luggage everywhere.
Sure, you could drop your bags off at some places in airports and train stations, or perhaps rent a luggage locker somewhere, but there are other, cheaper options out there. Over at the New York Times, Stephanie Rosenbloom suggests using luggage storage services that operate out of typical businesses, like restaurants, markets, dry cleaners, and salons. They work similarly to Airbnb, but for your bags. You go online and book a time and location, drop off your bags, then pick them up later. And yes, most of them provide some form of insurance against damage, theft and loss. Here are some of the options out there:
- Nannybag: Available throughout France, the UK, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Portugal, Belgium, Ireland, Germany, Czech Republic, Greece, Switzerland, Austria, Finland, Luxembourg, and the USA (New York City only). Costs $AU8/€6/£6 per bag per 24 hours. Can add another 24 hours for $AU5/€4/£4 per bag. Includes up to €1500 (around $2300) insurance coverage per bag.
- CityStasher: Available in several cities in the UK, as well as Paris, Berlin, and Amsterdam. Costs £6 ($AU11) per bag per 24 hours. Can add another 24 hours for £5 ($AU9) per bag. Includes up to £750 ($1278)) insurance coverage per drop off.
- LuggageHero: Available in New York, London, and Copenhagen (they plan to expand to more cities in the future). Costs $US2 ($3) an hour per bag for the first 24 hours. Includes up to $US2 ($3),000 insurance coverage for each bag.
- Knock Knock City: Available in New York with plans to expand to San Francisco. Costs $US2 ($3) an hour per bag. Includes up to $US500 ($639) insurance coverage per drop off.
- Vertoe: Only available in New York City. Offers luggage storage by the day at $US5.95 ($8) per bag per day. You can also store luggage by the week or month. Includes up to $1278 insurance coverage per bag.
Not only are these services useful for travellers, but they can be handy for locals who want to ditch their briefcase or shoulder bag before heading over to happy hour. It should be noted, however, that the insurance provided by these services may not cover everything you keep in your bag, so be sure to read the fine print.
These services also recommend you don't keep things like jewellery, cash, or fragile items in your bags just in case, so be prepared to toss your expensive items in a purse or daypack if possible.
Check-in Time Hours Away? How to Ditch Those Annoying Bags [The New York Times]