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UPS' New Luggage Box Wants to Stick It to Airline Baggage Fees

June 30, 2010 at 9:19 AM | by | ()

Obviously this isn't it. It will be much larger than this.

Almost $800 million dollars. That's how much the airlines got from baggage fees during just the first quarter of this year. It's a huge number, sure, but if you think that most passengers nowadays must pay $25 per bag each way, then that adds up quite quickly. With dollar signs like these in the eyes of the airlines, don't expect baggage fees to be going anywhere but up anytime soon.

At least now there's another option aside from giving in and paying the fee: Buy UPS' new Luggage Box. Instead of doing all of the schlepping and all of the paying, UPS will do the schlepping, but yes you've still got to pay. UPS says that rates are competitive with what the airlines charge for checked baggage, so we'd estimate that shipping your luggage box may cost $30, but there is the option to pay extra for return shipping in the same box, for your trip home. No need to visit a UPS store again for that.

Why use UPS' luggage box? They make a pretty good case:

It's not just a box; it’s a suitcase with options. Pack it, ship it, check it or carry it on. You choose. Visit The UPS Store the next time you run out of space in your suitcase or need a quick shipping solution. We’re here to make it easy and we’ve got you covered. Not traveling? The luggage box makes a great tradeshow or conference carrier, or it can even be used as a keepsake storage. Its possibilities are endless!

We're really liking this idea, especially if it means competition for the airlines and their escalating fees. Thus, we've compared the two options:

· Conventional checked baggage: Haul it to the airport and up to a ticket counter. Wait in line. Check it, pay the checked baggage fee (assuming it's not overweight, then pay even more) and put it through the airline's scanner. Watch as an airline employee corrals your bag with other luggage and then leave it behind. At your destination, spend time anxiously hoping it arrives at baggage claim. Schlep it out of the airport and off to your hotel.

· UPS Luggage Box: Call your local UPS store in advance to make sure they have the luggage box in stock. Drag your luggage to the UPS store and stick it in the box. Pay for it. Leave. Call your hotel to inform them to be expecting a box. Pick it up from the concierge at your destination hotel.

There's more information on the new luggage box here, but we're pretty sold. Next time we absolutely have to check luggage, it'll be going UPS.

[Photo: Aphnetworks]

Archived Comments:


I guess my big question would be: "How long will it take?" I've read the blurb on their site, which doesn't indicate how the boxes will be shipped.

I've used UPS to ship my shopping home from trips before, but it always takes a few days to arrive.

I have trouble believing they really mean same-day delivery of 45lbs of my stuff for $30, which is what the airlines still offer.

I wouldn't cry if they proved me wrong, though!

good point

You've got a very good point! I don't believe the Luggage Box is same-day by default. You'll probably end up waiting for 3-5 days for regular delivery. There will no doubt be a more expensive, expedited option for next-day.