(NewsUSA) - It's never been harder to pack for a flight. Airlines' three-ounce rule, which forbids any liquid or gel in a bottle over three ounces in size, means repackaging personal products or buying sample-sized items for your carry-on bag. At the same time, most airlines now charge for checked bags and enforce rigid restrictions on height and weight.
Some clever Americans, however, have started beating the system by shipping their luggage to their destination. In fact, companies like First Luggage, Luggage Free, Universal Express, Carry My Luggage and Pak Mail report an increase in the number of suitcases, golf clubs, and scuba gear that customers ship to hotels and resorts.
Shipping luggage reduces the hassle travelers face at airports. Those who ship their luggage do not have to stand in long check-in lines or baggage claims. And they're less likely to learn that suitcases have been lost or damaged en route.
For this reason, many business travelers now opt to ship presentations and displays ahead of time, so they know that their equipment will arrive on time and in one piece. Parents, too, have discovered that shipping their luggage makes traveling with young children less stressful, since they do not have to make kids stand in lines or carry a child and a suitcase at the same time.
"Our customers enjoy the benefits of shipping their belongings on ahead. We eliminate the fear of lost luggage and the stress of dragging cumbersome bags through airports and security lines," says Adriene Thompson, marketing director of Pak Mail. "We've shipped everything from boogie boards to trade show booths to baby cribs, all arriving at their destination damage-free and on time."
Travelers should, however, keep some items with them at all times. Never check money-related items, like credit cards or checkbooks, jewelry, laptops and other electronic devices, medications or important personal items like glasses, passports, keys, favorite toys or important documents.