As the holiday travel season comes to a close, many parents of children with autism are relieved that it’s over. As we’ve documented in the past
, traveling with a child with autism can be a major challenge, with airports and airplanes providing a multitude of sensory challenges for those with special needs. Adding to these issues for parents is the burden of hauling heavy bags around the airport, all while simultaneously tending to their children.
What many may not be aware of is the emergence of luggage forwarding services in recent years. These are provided by companies that offer convenient door-to-door luggage shipping services for a fee. Companies will pick up bags at your home or office and ship them to just about any destination of choice. Your bags will be there upon arrival and the process is then repeated for the return trip home, eliminating the issue of hauling heavy bags around during family vacations or business trips. Prices vary based on destination, bag size/weight and urgency of delivery.
This is definitely a luxury service and not for everyone, but with rising baggage fees that are being implemented by airlines, parents of children with autism and other special needs may want to check out some of the companies below to see if this type of service is a good fit for them.
Luggage Free – Headquartered in New York City and is one of the more established luggage shipping companies around. Utilizes a multitude of carriers to get the best rates, which average between $2-$4 per pound for 2 to 5 day deliveries. http://www.luggagefree.com 1-800-361-6871.
– New Jersey-based company that offers shipment on just about any item you may have, which includes wheelchairs, computers, golf clubs, bicycles, diving gear, surfboards and business items. Average cost is $75 (one way) for a 45 lb. bag. Offers an affiliate program for referrers. http://www.luggageahead.com
– One of the largest luggage shipping carriers around. In 2009, Luggage Forward acquired five other companies in a consolidation strategy to become a major player in the industry. Offers bag pickup by phone or online through an Automated Routing Control System. Average price is $99 (one way) for a 50 lb. bag. http://www.luggageforward.com
The Luggage Club
– Offers a member area on its website, including a section for special needs travelers. Pricing averages around $109 (one way) for a 50 lb. bag. Targets both business and leisure travelers. http://www.theluggageclub.com
– Based in New York City, LugLess is one of the newer, but more competitively priced luggage shipping companies in the industry. Pricing averages around $39 (one way) for a standard carry on bag and $59 (one way) for a standard 50 lb. bag. http://www.lugless.com