opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

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opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Straightveg » Sun May 20, 2012 3:46 pm

If the stars align and the gods smile and I pray/manifest/hope hard enough I might get a ticket for this year. To that end I'm looking at my options for getting stuff where it needs to go so I have it at the burn. The options as I understand them are:

1) Traditional airline luggage- it is an option, but its going to get expensive fast with a tent that weighs 68 lbs on its own. I also don't exactly trust my stuff to arrive undamaged.
2)I've read in another thread I'm too lazy to track down about shipping stuff to yourself via the Reno UPS store http://www.theupsstorelocal.com/3120/mailboxes.htm but it looks like they don't have any personal mailboxes available now and the smallest increments you can buy for are 3 months. It'd be $87 for setup+3 months of service for a small business box, before you figure in the cost of the actual shipping.
3)Some hotels will accept packages for you from what I've read, but it sounds like it varies by hotel.
4)Fly in with the bare minimum and shop at Wallyworld on your way out of town.
5)The last option that I haven't seen mentioned anywhere on the boards (and yes, I did search) is a service I found while trying to keep occupied at work http://www.lugless.com/ their prices look better than using the airline or shipping stuff to myself, and they offer a $500 on time delivery guarantee, which sounds great.
6)Rent/buy a truck with friends and drive it across the country. Would work great, but I haven't met a single burner in defaultia yet, and I've heard a few too many stories of virgins getting screwed by trusting folks with their stuff

Have any of you used these methods before or any others I haven't heard of yet? How'd they work for you? Anything you'd do differently next time?
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby lemur » Sun May 20, 2012 3:56 pm

dont bring a 68 pound tent.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby lemur » Sun May 20, 2012 4:10 pm

less is more.

i bring two bags 65 pounds total between them...not including camera gear (camera bag is closed up in the top of the backpack.. about 5-7 pounds)..

this is everything i need for the burn save for food and water:
(edit: i borrow a mallet/sledge for pounding my stakes)

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Image

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stuff from inside of the black bag: tent, tent poles, sleeping bag, blanket, sleeping pad, rug, melodica, towel, stakes, light stand/tripod, extra shoes, solarpowered drink bottle, cooler filled with burner stuff

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all the stuff from the cooler: bag of toiletries(wet wipes, earplugs, lotion, sunblock..etc), bag of electronics (am/fm radio, set of headphones, alarm clock, phone charger.etc), batteries, umbrella, camp stove, fuel and pan, cutlery, dinnerplate, two bowls, 3 kinds of tape, superglue, floral wire, extra carabiners, two headlamps, work gloves, 2 head coverings, bandana for dust, water spray bottle, multitool, 3 water containers, goggles, notebook.. small fold up backpack

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you get to see my underpants.. I bring two hoodies, 2 thick pairs of pants, 10+ socks, 3 longsleeve shirts, one tshirt.. 6 boxers.. 2 'pajama' pants..

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camera junk.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Sham » Sun May 20, 2012 4:31 pm

Lemur, must we look at your underwear?

I pack 2 50 lb. suitcases, load up a large carry bag, then ship a large box or two to the hotel that I stay in in Reno for the first night. Hotels are really very accommodating to their guests.

I have also filled my water jugs at the hotel and dump my trash in the dumpster on the way out (with their permission).

That 68 lb. tent is rather excessive to be dragging both ways. I think mine is about 5 lbs. and has held up very well over the past 10+ years.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby lemur » Sun May 20, 2012 4:37 pm

Shambala wrote:Lemur, must we look at your underwear?


yes.

i aint no fuckin shirtcocker
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby jkisha » Sun May 20, 2012 7:44 pm

Another option is to ship it to the closest US Post office General Delivery.

https://www.usps.com/manage/research-de ... ptions.htm and then click on the general delivery tab.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby 5280MeV » Mon May 21, 2012 7:03 am

I pack an airline bag to 45 lbs and weigh it with myself on the scale, as the limit is 50 lbs for the airline that I typically fly.

I once saw the guy in front of me in the check-in line get dinged $200 because his bag was something like 55 lbs. If you go over it is worth it to simply step out of the line, rebalance your load, and then start over.

If you do fly with a 68 lb tent, it would very likely be worthwhile to try to split it into two bags that add up to 100 lbs with other gear and then try to get away with as much heavy stuff as possible on the carry on bag (~15-20 lbs). Check your airline's luggage policy very carefully, print out the terms, and call to confirm.

I also like the standard issue US army duffel bags because they are inexpensive, you can get a lot of soft stuff in, and the bag itself does not contribute much to the overall weight.

If you do get into a luggage charge dispute, be extremely polite, friendly, and stubborn as a mule. If you get mad they can get rid of you very easily - airport security. If you are all smiles and civility then they are stuck with you for a long time, and they may even cut you a break - but don't count too much on it.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby lemur » Mon May 21, 2012 7:17 am

my guess is they have a canvas tent like a springbar ..those things weigh a ton... im not sure if that load can be broken up.. even the lightest one springbar offers is 22 pounds... the one ive seen most often on the playa is this one:

Image

at 62 pounds
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby some seeing eye » Mon May 21, 2012 9:16 am

I am sure many international burners and those flying from places in the US and Canada are asking the same question. The times I flew in I used large nylon duffel bags. Suggest starting with your packing/needing list. Take off the things you can purchase or obtain in Reno. Then separate items you could loose if the baggage/shipment is lost and do without/replace. If you have traveled internationally you know the drill.

Divide up your packing list into those categories, figure the weight/shipping-luggage options and weigh the risk of loss.

If you ship items by box, decide how to get them to the playa. Duffels pack in duffels easily. Don't get duffels with cheap zippers, based on experience. You can luggage lock duffels, but they are not very secure. But who is going to steal a tutu?

Keep in mind your duffels will be covered in dust for your return trip, unless you do wash in Reno outgoing. That's the other advantage of duffels, they can be thrown in a washing machine.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon May 21, 2012 9:22 am

Straightveg wrote:2)I've read in another thread I'm too lazy to track down

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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Drawingablank » Mon May 21, 2012 12:40 pm

jkisha wrote:Another option is to ship it to the closest US Post office General Delivery.

https://www.usps.com/manage/research-de ... ptions.htm and then click on the general delivery tab.


UPS also has a hold for pickup option at any of their places, however they are only open for pickup on weekdays if I recall correctly. Generally I find that for any package over a few pounds, UPS is much less expensive than mailing - especially if you are shipping to a non residential location (such as a UPS terminal). UPS now accepts packages up to 150 pounds and 165 inches combined length plus girth.

Our plan for the big and / or heavy stuff is to UPS it to our hotel, along with preprinted labels and spare packing tape so going home we just have to put it back in the cartons, slap the labels on, and drop them at a UPS place.

Just a tip for UPS shipping though - use a UPS company owned location for the best price. Non UPS owned - "UPS authorized shippers" can charge substantially higher prices the last time I checked.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Straightveg » Mon May 21, 2012 5:34 pm

lemur wrote:my guess is they have a canvas tent like a springbar ..those things weigh a ton... im not sure if that load can be broken up.. even the lightest one springbar offers is 22 pounds... the one ive seen most often on the playa is this one:

Image

at 62 pounds


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5280MeV wrote:If you do fly with a 68 lb tent, it would very likely be worthwhile to try to split it into two bags that add up to 100 lbs with other gear and then try to get away with as much heavy stuff as possible on the carry on bag (~15-20 lbs). Check your airline's luggage policy very carefully, print out the terms, and call to confirm.

I also like the standard issue US army duffel bags because they are inexpensive, you can get a lot of soft stuff in, and the bag itself does not contribute much to the overall weight.

Brilliant advice. Why didn't I think of separating the two duffel bags? (one has stakes and poles, the other canvas) I might leave the stakes out (6 pounds!) and pick up and candycane some rebar when I hit Reno.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Savannah » Mon May 21, 2012 5:44 pm

Leaving your bag 5 lbs lighter than necessary is smart. For whatever reason, a bag that is 50 lbs at home is 55 in public. :oops:

If you're cutting it close, have a really clear vision of one or two small things per bag that are not projectile shaped, and might be shoved into your carry-on if need be.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby dragonpilot » Wed May 23, 2012 1:15 pm

I have nothing but admiration and awe for those flying in from afar challenged with luggage and packing issues. Knowing what I know about playa life, I don't think I could do it...

Come visit...I will give you a cold drink! (May be camping at Stag Camp over near F-G and 7:00 - 7:30).
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby FeetOfClay » Wed May 23, 2012 3:31 pm

Leaving your bag 5 lbs lighter than necessary is smart. For whatever reason, a bag that is 50 lbs at home is 55 in public.


"for whatever reason"...must be the same reason that i weigh 10 lbs. more on my doctor's scale than i do on mine at home :)

looks like i may end up flying this year too (if i get a step ticket), and i am already wondering how i can get all my stuff on the plane with me :(
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby trilobyte » Wed May 23, 2012 3:52 pm

Depending on the extra bag charges or freight costs, it'd probably be cheaper to leave the 68 pound tent behind and buy something lighter. You may also want to lean on Twin City Surplus (Reno area hardware store/outfitter) for gear you don't already have, they offer an in-store pickup option that will save you shipping on the purchase plus hassle flying it back to Reno. Then when you leave, make plans to spend a night in Reno so you can both get a shower coming off the playa and shake out/pack up your gear to ship home. Parcel post takes a long time to get to you (but post-Burning Man that shouldn't be a problem), but the rates are a lot less painful than other ship methods.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Savannah » Wed May 23, 2012 4:15 pm

FeetOfClay wrote:
Leaving your bag 5 lbs lighter than necessary is smart. For whatever reason, a bag that is 50 lbs at home is 55 in public.


"for whatever reason"...must be the same reason that i weigh 10 lbs. more on my doctor's scale than i do on mine at home :)

looks like i may end up flying this year too (if i get a step ticket), and i am already wondering how i can get all my stuff on the plane with me :(


Hehe. I decided to say "for whatever reason" because it literally happened to me at Amtrak a couple of years ago. My digital scale at home read 48 lbs. The scale at Amtrak said 5 lbs heavier. Whoops! It was the first time I'd ever traveled with so much luggage by train, so I'd been a bit naive. Anyway, they found a Staples cardboard box for me, and I unloaded some dense objects into the box and we taped it shut and labelled it with my name in sharpie. The people at my local Amtrak are total sweethearts. I can't say that's true for all Amtrak staff, so I haven't cut it so close since, but all my encounters with them have been positive.

If the plane it must be: wear your playa coat onto the plane, fold it double and sit on it. Wear your boots. Buy goggles before you leave, so that they fit. Shopping quickly may not be your idea of fun, but if you make a really good list ahead of time, and print some maps of Reno stores, you can do it. The heaviest stuff you will need on the playa: Water. Food. Rebar. Batteries. Alcohol. (Okay, so some might say the latter is not a NEED). And those items are also the easiest to shop for.
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby Canoe » Sun May 27, 2012 10:13 pm

Drawingablank wrote:... UPS also has a hold for pickup option at any of their places, however they are only open for pickup on weekdays if I recall correctly...


UPS will accept deliveries from any shipper, not just UPS. So ship with whoever gives you the best rate.
Many, but not all, online retail companies will give you the lower shipping costs as it's shipping to a business (UPS Store) address, not a residential address.

I've had online purchases shipped to a UPS store in Reno, including a huge wheeled cooler. Costs $5 receiving fee per package to pickup.
The North West store (10580 North MCCARRAN BLVD http://www.theupsstorelocal.com/3120/) was Burner Friendly (even had BM notices on their site - not there now... may mean nothing as I see not BM notices on any now) and have lots of parking.
Currently, they're open 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. 9-5 on Sat., 10 to 5 on Sun.. Hours may change for summer.

Just give your shipping address as:
Your Name
10580 N MCCARRAN BLVD, STE 115
RENO, NV 89503
(775) 746-3988

Haven't use them, but listed at http://www.burningman.com/preparation/t ... rkway.html is http://www.theupsstorelocal.com/4290/
59 DAMONTE RANCH PKWY, STE B
RENO, NV 89521
(775) 852-3777
currently listing same hours as McCarran


The Keystone UPS store is more central, and the SaveMart there is Burner Friendly, and usually a BM Ride Share location, recycle, water, etc.., but will likely be a zoo.
http://theupsstorelocal.com/0949/ (http://www.burningman.com/preparation/t ... stone.html)
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Re: opinions wanted on luggage options for those flying in

Postby graidawg » Sun May 27, 2012 11:49 pm

there is "pound n play camp" last years it was going to be international burner camp.
Tom servo has mentioned it around somewhere- he has quite a bit of stuff he collected last year for this very reason and i was going to take advantage of this great offer, but got very lucky and mydearfriend offerred her very prepared camp in exchange for keeping her awake on the drive from vegas.
I havent been very active on here this year but i bet if you looked around you would find some super cool and friendly burner who has spare camping equipment and is kind enough to lend it you. Not to put it up or anything just lend.

the general smart advice (savannas) is to bring the stuff that has to fit and be good and get the rest in reno. If you are coming from the uk bottlegreen elderflower cordial will make you very popular and does make the water much nicer. ymmv other flavors and brands are available
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