What’s the best luggage to travel with?

Whether you’re travelling for lengthy periods or just for short trips, a badly-made or poorly-chosen bag can play havoc with your experience. A sudden malfunction can cause significant delays, forcing you to make trips around cities or areas that you’re unfamiliar with in order to buy expensive replacements or to get something fixed. Cheap or expensive, there are some great options out there that will make your trip a whole lot smoother.

Carry on luggage

A bag for hand luggage is, often, all that is needed for holidays – providing a convenient way to carry clothing and essentials without the hefty costs that airlines attach to larger items. A hardcase provides that extra durability, though with some slight extra weight, and we’d recommend the Samsonite Fiero 28″ spinner (http://shop.samsonite.com/luggage/samsonite-fiero-28%22-spinner/55844XXXX.html) – an item that wheels beautifully, offers superb organisation through its internal dividers, and is made from strong, 100% scratch resistant polycarbonate. A TSA approved lock, meanwhile, provides top-notch security on your trip.

Sturdier, checked luggage options

If you’re travelling for a long time, or with your family, you may need to take checked luggage to provide that home-from-home that you need. Look no further than the Traveler’s Choice Tasmania three piece (http://www.travelerchoice.com/shop/tasmania-polycarbonate-expandable-spinners-luggage-suitcases-sets/), which offers the utmost in convenience (superb, reliable rolling motion) and security (internal tie-tapes for securing belongings, three dial combination locks). A great one for enviably long holidays and one-way-ticket adventures.

Duffle bags

For a stylish duffel bag for the individual’s trip – the Cenzo Leather Weekender (http://cenzobags.com/product/cenzo-leather-duffle-bag/) is the ultimate. Offering beautiful materials through its brown, Italian leather, and practicality through its floor to floor zip, this duffle is a roomy, elegant carry on, perfect for making a impact whilst holding plenty of items.

Whatever the type of luggage, you’ll want to make sure it gets their safely and securely every time.  Take a look at our How It Works page to find out just how easy a luggage delivery service can be.

What’s the best luggage set?

If you travel a lot, it is perhaps more worthwhile to invest in a matching luggage set. These sets contain bags of different sizes, so that you always have a suitable piece of luggage, no matter where you are going or how long for. Below you’ll find some of the best luggage sets that cater to a range of budgets and purposes.

Best hold and hand luggage combo
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Traveler-Piece-Expandable-Carry-Luggage/dp/B003SMJCE2
The US Traveler Rio 2 piece set is made of a durable polyester, making for a hard-wearing purchase including self locking handles. With a large case combined with a hand eld bag which fits perfectly into the over-head lockers in most airlines, both pieces are expandable, allowing you to increase or reduce the space used as necessary. It also comes with a handsome price tag, so you won’t have to break the bank.

Best value luggage set
http://www.americantourister.co.uk/ocean-grove-3-piece-set-a-black-graphite/product-en.htm
American Tourister offer a budget, three-piece set containing three differently sized cases; the smallest of which is suitable for use as hand luggage. At incredible value for money, these simple cases include expandable compartments and several pockets for organised packing. They are also incredibly easy to handle, with four multi-directional spinners.

Best luxury luggage set
http://shop.samsonite.com/luggage/samsonite-winfield-2-fashion-20%22-spinner/56844XXXX.html
For a truly sophisticated purchase, try a renowned brand such as Samsonite. Their Winfield Fashion line comes with three cases crafted with a stylish metallic-look design. Made with the latest lightweight technology yet very durable, this set will provide you with high quality luggage with promising longevity. The largest case is also excellent for long-haul or extended trips due to its extensive size.

After investing in a luggage set you’ll want to make sure it gets to your destination safely and securely every time.  So why not head over to our How It Works page to find out how easy it is to send your baggage with First Luggage.

What’s the best luggage scale?

When you get to the airport, packed and ready to go on your relaxing holiday, there’s nothing worse than discovering you need to pay extortionate excess baggage fees because you’ve not weighed your luggage. For every kilogram that you have exceeded your luggage limit by, a hefty fee will be charged to you, putting a dampener on your holiday spirit. Surely you’d rather reserve that money for some souvenirs or an extra couple of cocktails by the beach?

How can I weigh my luggage?

While there are scales located at the check-in desks at the airport, by then it’s likely too late, unless you’re planning to unpack your cases in front of everyone. There is an easy remedy though, as luggage scales can be purchased for a reasonable price online. This one came up as highly rated on Amazon (at the time of writing).  Many of these are portable and digital; simply attach your baggage to the hook and a clear reading will be displayed. If you don’t fancy buying a portable scale, you could even try weighing your luggage on normal bathroom scales.

How can I avoid excess baggage fees?

If you really do need to take large amounts of luggage with you, don’t be unprepared and get a shock at the airport. You could ship your luggage direct with www.firstluggage.com. With the option to ship all over the world, you can have your bags ready and waiting for when you arrive.

Do you have any luggage scale recommendations?  We’ll give a 10% discount to any recommendations we publish on the blog so leave your suggestions below.

What’s the best luggage brand?

If you travel a lot, it’s important to make sure you have high quality luggage to withstand the strain of excessive handling and aircraft movement. The length of your flight will affect the style and type of luggage you buy, as will whether your travel is for business or leisure. Below are three of the best luggage brands available to suit a range of purposes and budgets.

Samsonite

Widely renowned as one of the best, premium brands on the market, most Samsonite cases come with a length warranty and are lightweight, durable and strong. The Cosmolite cases are among the best examples, with luxury curves and four-wheel design to make for easy movement. They are well worth the hefty price tag and are sure to survive even the bumpiest of flights.

Luggage X

Another brand that prides itself on its high durability, claiming to be ‘virtually indestructible’ but with a lower price tag, is Luggage X. These cases come in large sizes, and are suitable for longer trips requiring more baggage. The shell is incredibly tough and comes in a range of colours, so you can be sure not to lose your case at baggage claim.

Antler

Renowned for its chic style, Antler luggage is light and durable while maintaining a fashionable design. They have a range of trendy cabin-sized baggage and larger cases. While these come at a price, you’ll be sure to turn heads with these hard-wearing, stunning cases.

What’s your favourite luggage brand?  And your comments below and we’ll give a 10% discount on your next luggage delivery for any we use in this post.

What’s the best luggage for international travel?

Choosing the correct luggage to travel with internationally is a fundamental aspect of making sure that your trip is simple and manageable. There are plenty of options on the market to suit all budgets and needs.

When researching luggage options, there are a couple of things to bear in mind to make a well-informed decision. These may include the sturdiness, purpose and dimensions of your ideal luggage. The material that the luggage is made of is also a crucial aspect to consider. Although luggage varies in price, it is always best to buy a more expensive item that will last, rather than a cheaper item which could break within a couple of uses.

Soft side cases such as polyester are the cheapest but less durable option. Nylon should last longer than polyester though as it is stronger, lightweight and a lot more flexible. The positives of these materials is that they are lighter, so will not add a great deal to your luggage allowance limit.

A hard side case is possibly the best option for long journeys due to the amount of transfers that your luggage is likely to go through. Although these cases are easily scratched, your personal belongings will be much safer.

A two wheeled case can be hefty to pull around, however the wheels are much sturdier than those on four wheeled cases. The latter is much easier to pull as there is no force needed, yet damage may be caused to the wheels if dragged along uneven flooring.

Of course, the safest and securest way of getting your luggage to your destination first time, every time is to use a luggage delivery service like First Luggage.  Head to out How It Works page to find out more.

The best way to get your ski equipment to the slopes

You’ve been counting down to your ski holiday for months and you’re dreaming of powdered slopes and warm Jacuzzis. Finally, the time has come for you to put this trip in motion and start to pack, but how are you going to get all of your bulky equipment and clothing into just a handful of bags?

A ski trip is not a holiday for which you can pack lightly. You’ll need warm clothes, a ski jacket, ski trousers, thick socks, thermals, gloves, a helmet, goggles, ski boots, and a pair of skis! Airlines have different procedures for transporting ski equipment, some charge extra for transporting such items, which can quickly add an unwanted cost to an already pricey trip.

The problems with transporting your ski equipment via an airline doesn’t only come down to cost. A pair of skis can cost over £300, so you’ll want to ensure that they reach you in one piece and don’t get damaged from being carelessly tossed on to the plane. Transporting ski equipment can be heavy and uncomfortable to carry through a busy airport, especially if you’ve chosen to wear your bulky ski jacket in a bid to save space and weight with your luggage.

Of course, to avoid this stress you can always rent your equipment when you get to the ski resort, but this then poses another set of problems. Rented equipment is not always of the best quality and can be damaged by previous users. Lengthy queues at the rental hut take up valuable time on the slopes and rental payments can be pricey without the ownership of any equipment at the end of it.

A great way to avoid baggage charges and the stresses of transporting your own ski equipment is to use a premium luggage delivery service. The company will pick up your ski equipment from your house or office and will ensure a safe delivery before you land on the other side. There won’t be any stress at the airport and there certainly won’t be any worries around damage or non-delivery!

For more information on our ski equipment delivery service take a look at how it works here.

4 Amazing European Cycling Routes You Have To Try!

If you feel inspired by the Tour de France, you may be considering a cycling holiday of your own in Europe next summer. Stumped for where to go? Don’t worry, here at First Luggage, we’ve collated four amazing routes to enjoy – and we’ll safely deliver your bike to whichever destination you choose, and wherever you want to start from!

cycling europe
1. The Danube Bike Trail

This is one of the classic European cycle routes, suitable for all levels of competency, whether you’re fit and experienced or looking for an easy route to enjoy with all the family. The entire route takes in Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania, all the way to the Black Sea, but the 326 km section from Passau, in Germany, to the Austrian capital Vienna combines easy cycling with spectacular scenery.

2. Up the Rhine from Basle

Referred to as EuroVelo 15, this well sign-posted route follows the Rhine from its source in Andermatt in the Swiss Alps, to Rotterdam in the Netherlands. At 1230 km, this long distance route is over mainly flat cycle paths, passing by scenic towns on both the French and German sides of the river, as well as through the Rhine’s industrial heartland.

3. The Romantic Road

Start in Wurzburg for this epic 500 km route from the River Main to the Alps in the south. Follow clearly marked cycle paths through wonderful forests and historic town and villages. Suitable for all the family.

4. Alpe d’Heuz

You don’t need the legs and lungs of Chris Froome to tackle one of the most famous Alpine climbs in cycling, but you definitely need a good level of fitness for this one day epic in the south-east of France. From the start at Le Bourg d’Oisans, the ascent to the top is 13.2 km and averages 8.1 per cent. In summer the heat can be intense, so take an extra bidon or two!

If you’d like our help getting your cycling gear out to Europe check out how it works here or if you’d like to use our specialist Eurostar service head here.

Luxury Excursions in Barbados

If you’re heading to Barbados for a luxury trip, the Sandy Lane Resort is the ideal place to stay in absolute comfort, enjoying all the relaxation the Caribbean climate has to offer. While you’re on the island, why not make the most of your stay and explore some of these luxurious locations?

Beautiful Barbados
Limegrove Lifestyle Centre

For luxury shopping in Barbados, it has to be the Limegrove Lifestyle Centre. The centre offers a fantastic shopping experience, complete with high-end designer names in clothing and jewellery. Based on the fashionable West Coast of the island, Limegrove has a wonderful selection of brands to keep you shopping all day, plus an art gallery and a cinema for when you feel like a change of pace.

The Cliff Restaurant

Luxury travel is nothing without luxury food, and The Cliff is the perfect place to sample the very finest dining in Barbados. Popular with celebrities, the restaurant serves up beautifully-presented, mouthwatering food in a stunning setting, overlooking a cove populated by stingrays and other fish. A torchlit meal at The Cliff is sure to be a memorable experience.

The Mews Bar

The ideal way to spend the end of your night, at the Mews Bar, you can sip your favourite drink in a stylish setting, with classy live jazz and other music providing entertainment. The bar stocks a range of fine whiskies and champagnes plus a menu of delicious cocktails, catering to every taste.

Bajan Helicopters Sightseeing Tours

What better way to see the beautiful island of Barbados than by getting a unique bird’s-eye view? Touring the skies in an air-conditioned helicopter lets you sit back in comfort and enjoy incredible views that few people get to see.

If you’re heading to Barbados this year, why not let us carry your luggage for you? First Luggage will get your luggage from your home to your hotel so you can travel through the airport hassle free. For more information on how we can help, head to our website www.firstluggage.com.

 

The Perfect Luggage for your Cruise

 

Of all forms of luxury travel, cruise packages are the most logistically complex in terms of luggage. You’ll be packing for different cultures and climates, with everything from casual wear to a tux, in order to cover all eventualities.

cruise ship first luggage beach vacation
Life on the ocean wave!

Usually, you’ll arrive at the departing port a day or two before boarding, meaning that you’d benefit from travelling light and exploring before taking the bulk of your luggage into your cabin. This is where the first advantage of suitcase transportation can come in handy – pack a light carry-on bag for the essentials you only need a day before your cruise, then take delivery of your bulky suitcases just before hopping on to the ship for that first glass of champagne.

 

Many of the best cruises start and end in different ports. For example, you may board in Venice but after an extensive cruise of the Mediterranean, your final port destination may be Istanbul. With most cruises running between seven and 14 days, it’s obvious that you need a full set of luggage and several changes of outfit for the journey. Why not have your luggage sent to meet you as you board, and have a premium luggage delivery service take it from you – washing and all – as soon as you’ve stepped off the boat? An added advantage of this is if you inevitably end up with more luggage than you boarded with – one of the highlights of any cruise is to shop!

 

The final advantage is that you’re then “luggage free” (read: hassle free!) as you go from ship to plane to home, with none of the stress and aggravation of getting to the airport, checking in heavy bags when you get there, and then dragging the whole lot home. Suitcase transportation means that your bags will be waiting for you when you get home, and your precious souvenirs and duty-free port bargains safe and intact.

 

Whether you’re a seasoned cruiser or it’s a honeymoon or holiday of a lifetime, having your luggage picked up and delivered makes an already luxurious experience the epitome of a true luxury travel service.

What you need to know about…Travelling with Pets

If you’re going abroad on an important trip – whether it’s for a holiday, a family event or any other non-work trip – you might enjoy it more if you’ve got your beloved pet with you. In fact, it might be something you need to factor in, because you may not have any other choice.

If that’s the case, then most airlines will accommodate most domestic pets. However, there are a few things to think about before you book your tickets.

dog first luggage
Please take me with you!

Do they really need to go?

Do you crave your pet’s company so much that you can’t do without them? Will they be more distressed at home without you than they would at getting on a plane? Weigh up your options before you book anything, so you know whether they need to come with you or not.

What does the vet say?

Have your pet checked out by a vet before you go, to ensure that they’re fit to fly. The vet may also recommend some ways to keep your pet calm and well-behaved during the flight.

Check your destination

Some countries are extremely strict about animals coming into the country, and others less so. Find out what the law is in your chosen destination before you try to take your pet with you, otherwise you could find yourself in hot water.

Find out re-entry conditions

If you’re taking your pet away and plan on bringing them back again, find out what the re-entry regulations are for bringing the back into the country. Will they need to be quarantined? Do they have to be wormed? There are some laws specifically aimed at making sure only disease-free pets come back into the country, even if they started out here in the first place.

Speak to the airline

Every airline has their own policy for flying with pets, so speak to your airline first or go onto their website to see what their specific guidelines are.

For all your other precious cargo, premium luggage delivery is available to remove the stress of travelling by air. With First Luggage, you’ll be safe in the knowledge that your luggage will be handled with care, tracked and delivered straight to you at your destination.