New company pitches idea for luggage shipping

July 31, 2013 8:23:27 PM PDT
Traveling can be both exciting and a hassle at the same time. For some, struggling with luggage has become increasingly unbearable. Seven On Your Side takes look at a possible alternative you may not have considered.

Door-to-door luggage pick up services are increasingly common. If the idea sounds expensive to you, you'll be happy to know we found a company that's actually comparable to the airlines and sometimes a little expensive than the airlines, especially when you factor in added convenience.

It is common to see travelers struggling to get their packed suitcases off a baggage carousel. Some of those bags are barely below the 50-pound limit.

We met somebody who thinks he has a better idea. Brian Altomare was featured on the season finale of ABC's "Shark Tank" and pitched his business which aims to help people with their extra luggage. His company, LugLess, will pick up your luggage and deliver it door-to-door to your destination. The big selling point is convenience for the traveler.

"They can skip check-in, they can skip baggage claim, they can skip baggage fees and literally they can travel with both hands free," said Altomare.

Alan and Nina Minney of Oakland are days away from a moving to Dallas. Their Oakland Hills home is filled with boxes. Movers are getting ready to ship things out, but it will be days before their shipment arrives. So they pack some bags LugLess will get to Dallas ahead of their other stuff, so they'll have the bare necessities while they wait for the moving truck to arrive.

"I would defiantly much prefer to send bags ahead than be standing around baggage claim," said Nina.

Alan will be starting a new job and will the first to arrive in Dallas along with their cat Meesha. Traveling light was important to him. Price was not a consideration.

"When you're trying to deal with all the different logistics and be in all the different locations, convenience kind of trumps price," said Alan.

We compared prices on LugLess with five similar services and LugLess' charge of $59 per standard bag was the least expensive. Standard shipping requires bags to be picked up five days in advance. Prices go up significantly for express service. Insurance is included in the price.

"We have up to a $500 money-back guarantee and we declare and cover up to $500 per bag," said Altomare.

Depending on the season, LugLess averages 300 to 500 customers per month. It's not for everybody. This traveler explains why he wouldn't use a luggage pick up service.

"I like to be close to it. If it's out of site, it's out of mind. If it's traveling in the cabin below me, then I want to be close to it," said Mack Tatarsky, a Mill Valley resident.

"So we're a disrupt brand. We're changing the way people travel and it's just going to take more time," said Altomare.

We have a price comparison between LugLess and some of its competitors here. The comparison also includes the cost of curbside check in.

Programming Note: You can find out how Altomare did on "Shark Tank" this Friday at 8 p.m. when the season finale is repeated on ABC7.


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