When it comes to travel, the timing of your flights isn’t always perfect. You may find yourself arriving early in the morning or departing late at night, leaving you with the question of what to do with your luggage when your hotel’s check-in and checkout times don’t align with your travel schedule.
In such situations, you might wonder if hotels are willing to accommodate your luggage storage needs. Can you drop off your bags before checking in, or will a hotel hold your luggage after you’ve checked out?
Fortunately, we have solutions that allow you to store your luggage conveniently, whether you’re a guest at the hotel or not. Let’s explore your options for hassle-free luggage storage.
Will Hotels Store Your Luggage?
Yes, most hotels will offer luggage storage services to their guests. They typically provide this service at no extra cost and have designated storage areas, such as the bell desk or a storage room. Here’s how it works:
- A bellhop will label your bags with a sticker or tag.
- They’ll record the number of pieces you’re leaving.
- You’ll receive a receipt to claim your luggage when you return.
This system ensures that your bags are matched with the right owner, even if there’s a shift change at the bell desk. However, it’s important to note that there may be restrictions on what types or sizes of luggage you can store, primarily for safety reasons. Items like explosives, poison, and flammable liquids are typically prohibited. Always check the hotel’s policy before making a reservation to avoid any surprises.
Can Hotels Store Your Luggage if You’re Not a Guest?
If you have a reservation at a hotel but arrive before the official check-in time, the hotel’s policy may not allow for luggage storage until you’re officially checked in. However, you can sometimes make an informal arrangement with a bellhop and provide a tip for their assistance. Keep in mind that if your bags are lost or damaged during this period, the hotel won’t be held responsible.
Luggage Storage at Short-Term Vacation Rentals
While some hosts of short-term vacation rentals may offer luggage storage services, it’s relatively rare to find one that does. These properties typically need to be cleaned and prepared for the next guests, making it challenging to accommodate luggage storage. In cases where someone is checking out on the same day you’re checking in, they may not have the extra space. We recommend contacting the host in advance to inquire about storage options, as they might suggest a nearby storage facility.
What to Do When Your Hotel Can’t Store Your Luggage
If your hotel cannot provide luggage storage, don’t worry; you still have several alternatives to safely store your bags while you explore the city. Here are a few options:
1. Request Early Check-In or Late Checkout
Depending on the hotel and your circumstances, you might be able to arrange early check-in or late checkout. This is especially possible during off-peak seasons or if you have elite status with the hotel. For example, Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite members are guaranteed a 4 p.m. checkout at most Marriott properties. Other hotel loyalty programs may offer similar benefits. Even if you don’t have elite status, it never hurts to ask the hotel staff for this accommodation.
2. Utilize Airport or Train Station Storage Facilities
In Europe, major train stations are often conveniently located in city centers, making them an ideal option for luggage storage while you wait to check in at your hotel. Airports also offer storage facilities, but keep in mind that you’ll need to return to the airport to retrieve your bags, which may not be convenient.
3. Explore Nearby Storage Solutions
Search online for local storage options, including electronic self-storage lockers in your area. Consider services like Nannybag or Stasher, which offer a network of temporary luggage storage locations worldwide. These services typically charge around $6 per bag per day, regardless of the bag’s size. Plus, your belongings are insured for up to approximately $1,266 (1,000 euros or British pounds).
4. Combine Sightseeing with Luggage Storage
If you’re already at your destination, consider booking a sightseeing tour that provides storage for your luggage. Many tour buses have designated storage spaces for passengers’ bags, eliminating the need for separate storage facilities. This option works well after checking out from your accommodation or before checking in, but be mindful of scheduling major activities on your arrival day in case of flight delays or exhaustion.
5. Stay Productive
If you can’t find suitable luggage storage, make the most of your free time by visiting a local cafe or coworking space. You can catch up on emails, work, or plan your next travel adventures, especially if you’re on an extended trip. While this option may not be as exciting as sightseeing, it’s a productive way to pass the time while waiting to check in at your hotel or board your flight.
In summary, most hotels offer luggage storage services, even if you’re not a guest yet. However, if you find yourself in a situation where your hotel can’t store your bags, there are several alternative solutions available to ensure your luggage is safe and secure while you enjoy your travel experiences.