Is luggage rental useful? We review Cargo, a new suitcase hire service

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We were recently approached by a new luggage rental concept called Cargo to review their offering.  I was a little confused. How on earth does renting luggage work? And why would you hire luggage? But after trialling the service and actually needing to hire some luggage, I’m actually a bit of a convert!

Cargo works like this:

You visit the Cargo website, select the dates you are travelling, choose the luggage you need and book it

The luggage is delivered to your home or a DPD drop point (you are given an approximate delivery time the day before, which is helpful)

You use the luggage as you wish and then it is picked up by DPD when you return from your trip

Cargo luggage rental
Initially, I wasn’t sure how I’d use this service.  This was until I realised I was going to need an extra suitcase to take on a trip to the Catskill Mountains in midwinter three days before departure.

Ski wear is not packing efficient. A couple of ski jackets, trousers and pairs of warm boots can take the majority of a suitcase, so you find you’ve got to take an extra suitcase to fit a week’s worth of non-ski wear, toiletries, books and so on. If you have an extra suitcase lying about, great, but if not, buying a decent suitcase starts at about £200.

By contrast, renting a large suitcase with Cargo for a week is £43 and it’s less if you need smaller carry-on luggage.

Cargo luggage rental

I trialled the service and found everything to go very smoothly and the luggage I was given was in immaculate condition.

We recognise this isn’t going to be a service for a prolific traveller with every shape and size luggage imaginable.  However for anyone that needs an extra suitcase last minute (suitcases can be delivered within 48 hours) it is an option to consider. You can visit the Cargo website here.

Cargo very kindly gave me a free trial of their service.  We have not been paid to promote them and all opinions (as always) are our own.

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  1. Agree with most of the above. But also, using a suitcase that has been used by a stranger? Ewww. Bedbugs can travel in suitcases, and can live for five months without feeding.

    But if I needed an extra suitcase temporarily, I would borrow one from friends or family.

  2. stevenhp1987 says:

    £200 for a suitcase?

    Been using my £30-£70 suitcases just fine!

    If it’s such an emergency couldn’t you just prime (next day delivery!) An Amazon Basics suitcase (or similar). They are surprisingly decent quality.

    Would be roughly the same price as the hire, but you can use it to store bedsheets or similar the rest of the year when not in use.

  3. I could see this being useful if I needed a suitcase in one direction only. I sometimes take work files or presentation materials on a business trip. If I could leave the case for collection at my destination, that might be handy.

  4. Henry Young says:

    Luggage in decent condition is available at my local council dump upcycling shop for £1. U upgraded the wheels on one I bought there and have been using it for 2 years (I fly 10+ times annually). Excellent value ! One rarely needs to buy anything new these days.

  5. Stephen Reid says:

    I’m amazed someone can make a business out of this.
    You can buy a Dakine 110L bag for under £140 with a lifetime warranty, designed for going ski-ing, although I’ve used mine to travel all over the world.
    The hygeine aspect would bother me, certainly bedbugs as has been mentioned in another comment, but do you want to put your clean clothes in a case previously used to carry someones dirty clothes back. Cargo do say they clean the cases but to what standard?

  6. Luggage rental has been big business in Japan for a very long time. That’s more to do with space constraints than anything else. In the early 90’s I regularly shipped luggage around Japan via services offered at most 7-11. Even today in Britain there is no similar service.

    This luggage rental is however ludicrous and like others don’t know where you plucked £200 for bag from. TKMax do branded luggage for very little money and as others have said £50 will get you a bag that will last more than a week.!

  7. Sinead asked in the headline
    “Is luggage rental useful” she thought so (but then she got it for free)
    HFP readers have answered pretty emphatically NO its not useful

    • Most HFP readers don’t comment in the articles (not that I’m suggesting that this is a good idea that will take off)

      • No but out of the ones that do comment there seems to be a high percentage that think this service is *overpriced*.

        If commentators increased I think you would find similar views based on a percentage, not commenting doesn’t mean that the person is part of the royals…

  8. People obviously have nothing better to do with their Saturday than be outraged by an article that’s of no use to them. They’ll presumably be demanding a refund of their subscription fees

    • Haha well said! I think these people literally have nothing else in their lives. Sad really.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      F-99 Whereas commenting on COMMENTS about an article is a highly effective use of time :D.

      The world is full of products I think are stupid and would never buy (the entire “luxury” watch market for a start), but those companies don’t need to care as they have found a market and make plenty of money whether I call them stupid or not. Maye this could do the same.

  9. Yes to a degree on the face of it this is a ridiculous concept (but then again people thought that about mobile phones when they first appeared) and I agree with some of the comments about that. Also that you can buy perfectly good suitcases for a lot less than £200.

    I bought my current ones from Sports Direct for less than £40 (one was £20 in a sale) and both perfectly servicable and meet my needs.

    But for some people this is a useful service especially the very infrequent traveller or in this instance where you just need an extra case for the trip and don’t need one long term.

    And for some people storage is a real issue so please don’t be sniffy about that. Not every one lives ina house with a garage or loft with masses of spare space for storage,

    This is very much a niche product and not suited to everyone. Just like Airportr is not for everyone but works for some (just wish they would extend their range to Brighton)

    One improvement I would make though is to put the case sizes on the landing page. rather than on a page after you’ve clocked on a particular case. Small / Medium / Large is a bit too vague.

  10. In a city where apartment storage space is at such a premium that some people pay for somewhere to store their air conditioning units over the winter (NYC) this could do well..

    On the other hand….bed bugs.

    • I’m confused why people think that some who will pay £40+ to rent luggage will stay somewhere that is likely to have bed bugs?

      • Mr(s) Entitled says:

        Bed bugs do not form a economic divide. We had them on the fixed income trading floor at JPMorgan in New York. In terms of wealth, that is a location with a very high concentration. It was not a barrier to the bugs.

  11. The comments on this article are hilarious, most of them in indignation to the idea. I don’t think it is something I will be taking up any time soon but I do wish the company good luck and I do hope they make money from it.

    The one issue that strikes me is who gets the refund from BA when the rented luggage doesn’t arrive with you at your destination? That’s an insurance claim horror story waiting to be told.

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