Smart Travel Tip: How to Ship Luggage

For every 1,000 bags handled by US airlines, only 6 get mishandled. While this figure sounds good at this scale, with nearly 2.5 million passengers traveling every day, this number quickly jumps up over 10,000 a day.

This has led an increasing number of people to look into how to ship luggage.

If you’ve ever lost a piece of luggage or know someone who has, you know what it can do to ruin a trip. You’ll show up for business meetings looking unprofessional. If you’re on vacation, you could show up to the beach with nothing but your winter clothes.

Shipping your luggage might be a no-brainer after considering the statistics but if you don’t know how to ship luggage, you could feel stuck. Follow these 9 tips to make sure you’re prepared for your next trip.

1. Eliminate Waste

Your first step before deciding how to ship luggage should be to make a list of all the things you absolutely need. Then rewrite a leaner version of that list. For the least expensive shipping and easiest time moving your luggage around, get rid of unnecessary items.

You should be able to shave some weight off by considering the weather and if necessary, wearing some of the clothes you’ll need while traveling. You can always take advantage of the hotel or your host’s laundry machines.

Make sure you pack intelligently. If you have fragile items to pack, use softer objects to help to pack or protect them. Don’t add packing materials to your luggage when you can avoid it.

This will help save space, weight, and time.

2. Get All The Details

Before you decide how to ship luggage, get all the details about where you’re shipping to. If you’re going to a work function, you might be checking in at a hotel or conference center that you’re unfamiliar with.

Make sure you have the right room number, address details, and phone number. You don’t want to have your luggage meant for West 42nd Street delivered to East 42nd Street.

Double check spelling with the person you speak with from the delivery company as well. You don’t want someone with a similar sounding or similar spelled name getting your luggage in their room.

3. Find Out Urgency

Do you know how soon you need the package to be delivered versus how much the delivery options cost? Compare some carriers to see who can offer you the best deal.

If you get a good quote from someone but would rather work with another company, quote the other company when you speak to the one that you want to work with. You never know what it’ll take for them to dig out a promo code or special discount for you.

4. Check Weight Limits

Some shipping companies have weight limits for individual packages. Any luggage or package that exceeds that limit should be split into multiple packages or parcels.

You might also be packing lightly when you’re far off from hitting the limits. It’s better to know how much rope you have before you start limiting yourself.

Some companies have no weight limits at all, just size limits. Call ahead to find out when you’re figuring out how to ship luggage.

5. Schedule Pickup

If your package is too heavy to drop off or if you’re too busy before your trip, see if they can pick up your package for you. You might need to have someone around to do the handoff.

Scheduling pickup should be fairly easy. Most delivery companies will work around your schedule and be available to pick up on off hours if you work a 9-5 schedule.

Some companies even offer airport courier services to make things easier.

6. Let Your Recipient Know

Call the help desk or hospitality service desk of where you’re heading and be sure that they can accommodate you. They may need some information from the delivery service or to hold a credit card number from you.

Just be sure they’re prepared before a 100-pound baby gets dropped on their doorstep.

7. Label Inside And Out

Make sure you’ve included a label with all of the essential contact information you can think of. Add your phone number and even an email address along with your home address.

Tape it securely to the front of your luggage and make sure it’s completely visible and weather resistant.

Put all the same information on another piece of paper and place that inside of your luggage. Accidents can happen, things can get torn, and having a second label on the inside of your luggage can save it from being lost.

It can also help confirm with handling staff that you’re the rightful owner, rather than your luggage being handed over to someone who claims it’s theirs.

8. Wrap It Tightly

If you can find some masking or painter’s tape that won’t damage your luggage, pick that up. Wrap the zippers and every potentially porous edge with the tape. This will keep anything from falling out or anything from seeping in.

Buy some plastic cling wrap for your luggage. Tightly wind it around the outside of your luggage. This will protect it from the elements and also make sure your label doesn’t get wet.

The more tightly you pack and protect your luggage, the less damage your items are likely to incur during transit.

9. Get Insured

Don’t skimp on insurance. If your delivery company offers insurance of any kind, you should take advantage of it.

See what the limitations are and find out what you could be covered for. If you’ve already got insurance on expensive electronics, you might not need to buy a redundant plan.

Figure Out How To Ship Luggage So You Can Enjoy Your Trip

Worrying about your luggage should be the furthest thing from your mind when you’re preparing for a trip. There are so many other things to prepare in advance and ensuring that your luggage arrives on time and to the right location shouldn’t be one of them.

If you’re ready to ship luggage in advance of your next trip, contact us today for more tips on getting the right service for your needs.

The Ultimate Guide to International Delivery

Have you ever shipped a package and then wondered if it was sent via the Pony Express? Or maybe it took so long you wondered if they invented a special Snail Express and put your package on it.

Joking aside, sometimes it seems to take way too long for international delivery. Does it really need to be that way?

No, it doesn’t.

Transportation these days is fast. There’s no reason you can’t get a package to almost anywhere in the world in a couple of days.

The problem is that international delivery is a little more complicated than domestic. There are borders to cross, more paperwork to fill out, and customs to clear.

However, there are a few things you can do to help the process move along. Here are five tips to help speed up international delivery.

1. Choose Your Carrier with Care

The most important piece of the puzzle is choosing the correct carrier. It would seem that shipping times would be pretty standard from company to company. But they’re really not.

It depends on a variety of factors. Some examples are

  • The volume of packages they handle
  • The type of transportation they have available (hint: airplanes are faster)
  • How often they send out shipments
  • The type of technology they use
  • Their relationship with customs

The customs issue is a big deal. A lot of delays in international delivery have to do with clearing customs.

To facilitate deliveries, courier companies develop relationships with customs in the receiving country. The relationship isn’t always the same.

That means that even shipping times with the same company may vary from country to country. It depends on what kind of deal they’ve worked out with that country’s customs department.

Do you tend to ship to a particular country or countries frequently? You want to check your potential courier’s average shipping times to those countries.

Package tracking is an important part of international delivery. Packages often change hands as they move around the world. Nothing gives you better peace of mind than knowing where your package is at all times.

Some couriers may charge extra for package tracking. That’s not always a bad thing, but you need to realize that it may be part of the cost.

When comparing companies, the cost is, of course, an important consideration. But if speed is very important to you, the cost may be secondary.

Decide which is most important when choosing your courier company. Understand that you will usually pay more for faster service.

2. Understand Your Shipping Options

Most courier companies offer a variety of shipping options. This is great for you because you can offer your customers more choices.

Some customers may be more concerned with cost and don’t mind a longer shipping time. Others may want their items as fast as possible and don’t mind paying for it. A flexible courier gives you the opportunity to be flexible with your customers.

A courier with superior customer service can also come in handy. You don’t have to figure out the best way to ship a package yourself.

You can simply call and talk to a representative from the courier service. They are well versed in shipping times and costs to the areas they ship. Tell them what factors are important to you and they will recommend the best shipping method.

3. Clearing Customs

As we’ve mentioned, clearing customs is often a factor in delaying international deliveries. Most courier services help a lot with this and handle any customs inquiries. They will work to ensure your package arrives on time.

However, there are a few things you can do to help facilitate quick customs clearance. The main thing is to completely and correctly fill out the paperwork. Most customs delays happen because the description is lacking or doesn’t match.

Countries have different regulations regarding items that they will accept. It’s unreasonable to expect you to know them all.

But it would be a good idea to know the regulations concerning your product. At least for the countries you ship to most often.

Also, be sure your customers are aware of customs and import taxes. It’s standard practice for the customer to pay the tax, but it’s good form to let them know.

Sometimes customers may ask you to mark the package as a gift. This lets them avoid paying the customs tax. This is illegal and you will be liable if customs figures it out.

4. Insurance

While rare, packages do go missing in transit. It happens more often with international deliveries because they change more hands.

Insurance is a great backup plan to have in place in case something happens. But be smart about it. It may be more cost-effective to pay for the occasional stray package yourself. It primarily depends on the product you sell.

5. Currency Concerns

Set your shopping cart up to display prices in the correct currency for your customer. For example, for a customer in the UK, it would show pounds, in European Euros, etc.

This will help to avoid confusion about pricing when customers are purchasing internationally. Plus, to do their own conversions, customers have to leave your site.

Clearly display the shipping options that you offer for international delivery. Again, do this in the customer’s currency to keep things simple. People like websites that are clear and what you see is what you get.

This helps cut down on returns and disgruntled customers. The last thing you want to have to deal with is international return shipping. It’s a pain and expensive. Make your return policies clear to customers so they’ll know if they have to pay return shipping.

International Delivery Made Easy

Find a courier company that will make your international deliveries easy. This will cut down on shipping headaches and help your business run smoother.

For more information about lightning fast, reliable international courier service, contact us today. Focus on your business and let us take care of the shipping. It couldn’t be any easier!

Why Your Shipments Need an Insulated Warehouse

insulated warehouse

Wondering if an insulated warehouse is worth the cost?

When you’re shipping goods, insulation can make a huge difference in ensuring they arrive safely. If your courier service doesn’t have an insulated warehouse, you could run into problems down the road.

This guide will show you everything you need to know about why shipments should have an insulated warehouse so you can make the right decision. Keep reading to learn more!

What Does Insulation Do?

Insulated warehouses have two important benefits: they have stable interior temperatures, and they don’t allow moisture to get inside and collect. This can go a long way toward protecting valuable goods from damage.

Many warehouses are made of materials like metal that offer little to no insulation at all. This allows for huge swings in temperature and damage from water, leading to mold and other issues.

Without insulation, buildings made of metal and many other materials can’t keep heat in during winter or keep the heat out during summer. When the temperature inside varies, moisture is more likely to collect as condensation. This leads to corrosion, rust, and all kinds of other problems in the building.

How Does Insulation Work?

Insulation controls the flow of heat into and out of the building. It also prevents moisture and condensation from forming on the goods stored inside. An insulated warehouse doesn’t allow heat to move as quickly from outside to inside and vice versa, so they’re more energy efficient, as well as better for storage.

Many kinds of insulation contain a vapor retarder that keeps water vapor from passing through, so condensation can’t form inside or on the insulation itself.

A few key terms related to insulation are:

  • U-Value
  • R-Value
  • Vapor Retarder

U-value refers to the thermal performance of the insulation around a building, depending on the materials it’s made out of.

The R-value measures the effectiveness of the insulation, also known as how much thermal resistance it has. A high R-value means the resistance to heat is high, while a low R-value means the resistance is low and the insulation won’t work as well.

Vapor retarder is a fairly self-explanatory term. Vapor retarders prevent or reduce the amount of moisture that can get through the insulation. Vapor retarders often have fire retardant properties, too, making this a great choice for keeping your belongings safe.

Insulation Types

Now, let’s take a look at the different kinds of insulation used for an insulated warehouse.

1. Loose Fill

Loose fill insulation is made with loose fibers or pellets that are projected into the cavities of a building, sort of like water spraying from a hose. This insulation tends to be more expensive than other varieties, but it’s useful for difficult to reach corners that need to be insulated.

2. Batt and Blanket

Batt and blanket insulation is made of fiberglass or rock wool mineral fibers. This is an inexpensive option, but it won’t work unless it’s installed properly.

For metal buildings, batt and blanket insulation with radiant barrier backing are ideal to help control the flow of heat.

This kind of insulation comes in rolls, which can be measured and cut to properly fit the building.

3. Spray Foam

Spray foam insulation is comparable to loose fill insulation since it’s also sprayed into place. This insulation is in liquid form, and contains both an agent to create foaming and a polymer, such as polyurethane.

This type of insulation is easy to spray into the ceiling, floor, walls, or anywhere else insulation is needed. It will automatically expand to fill the space and harden into plastic containing air cells.

If a building has corners that can’t be reached with other insulation types, spray foam insulation can get those spaces completely airtight. Many people use spray foam for buildings with an odd shape or spaces that have obstructions in the way.

Although it costs more than batt and blanket insulation, it also insulates better against air flow.

4. Fiberglass

Fiberglass is one of the cheapest ways to insulate a building. Many homeowners also use fiberglass insulation.

This insulation comes in rolls that are easy to install, even by people who aren’t professionals, although a mask must be worn to prevent the inhalation of dangerous particles. Fiberglass also sheds little fibers, so it shouldn’t be touched with bare hands.

One issue with fiberglass insulation is that it’s soft enough to be penetrated by rodents, birds, and insects looking for a place to nest. It’s also prone to absorbing moisture, so it usually needs a vapor barrier or another protective barrier.

5. Reflective Foil

Reflective foil insulation, also known as foil bubble, is a great choice for waterproofing. Although it’s expensive, it’s easy to install.

6. Rigid Board

Rigid boards made of foam are effective insulators no matter what the climate is. This insulation can be made of a variety of materials, including fiberglass, polyurethane, and polystyrene.

Rigid board insulation comes in a number of different performance ratings, so it can be very effective against moisture and heat when it’s at a high rating. The thickness of the board often determines how effective it is.

7. Insulated Panels

Insulated panels use a core of insulating foam, between two panels made of metal. This is one of the most expensive options, but it offers some of the best insulation out there and is quick to install.

Why Use an Insulated Warehouse?

With so many different insulation options out there, companies can easily insulate a warehouse. If they don’t, it’s a sign that they don’t really care about what’s stored inside.

Insulation helps protect your goods from damage thanks to heat, cold, pests, mildew, and many other problems. Many types of insulation also help protect from fires, leaks, and other more serious issues.

If you’re shipping goods, you need to seek out an insulated warehouse to make sure they arrive at their destination safely. Otherwise, you run the risk of losing a lot of money in the process.

Looking for the best courier service to protect your goods? ASAP Courier & Logistics can help – check out the contact page now to get started.