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checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

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Abita Springs...
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41 posts
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checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

To everyone who has tried both- how much time did you save not checking luggage? I am of course extremely anxious to get going with our vacation as soon as we get there, so have been considering not checking luggage. But I am having trouble packing (wanted to bring some school supplies, etc), and don't know if I can really manage the no liquids thing...Also I began thinking, am I going to save time not checking luggage only to get outside and find that the transfer (haven't booked yet but thinking about Clives?) has to wait to for 10 people who DID check luggage before leaving? Is it such a small amount of time saved that it's not worth it? Thank you!

San Francisco...
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1. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

The main reason to travel with carryon only would be not risking the airlines losing your bags.

You'll still have to clear Customs and you could have your bags opened either way ....or you could end up behind people with tons of luggage.

Toronto, Canada
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2. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

how long are you going for? can you really travel with all lotions, liquids ect that you are planning on bringing in a small baggie? that's the deciding factor to me...

I could not travel for more than 3 days on a small tube of sunlotion... never mind body lotion, shampoo, ect... I'm in this dilemna this weekend... 4 nights, 5 days and I'll have to bring my large case...

depending on how many flights are arriving and what that the ground crew staffing is like when your plane arrives it could take anywhere from 10-30 minutes to get your luggage on average... If you are on a shared transport, yes, it is safe to assume that other passengers will have to collect their luggage...

also on the return, if you have a transfer, you will not be able to bring home any alcohol from duty free unless you put it in checked luggage once you land and go thru customs/security before your connection... hard to do if you don't have checked luggage....

travelling light is awesome if you can do it, but it's becoming pretty hard in this day and age....

Chelle

Winnipeg, MB
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329 posts
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3. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

Hi bcardenas:

We do carry-on all the time to Jamaica. You will save time if you are arranging your own transaportation (private taxi or TimAir flight) to the resort. If you are not, you will be waiting for the other passengers on your flight in most cases.

Also, remember that you need suntan lotion and that is too large for carry-on! We have to buy the lotion at the resort.

On average we save at least an hour by Taxi and sometimes 2 hours by flying.

Anyway, hope this helps:

mississippi
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23 reviews
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4. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

We're going to have to check one big bag...I know this. But what are some suggestions for our carry-on? Just the essentials...in case our luggage is lost.

Abita Springs...
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41 posts
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5. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

Hmm...thanks everyone. I think the deciding factor here is that we will not be arranging a private transfer...if I have to wait for other passengers I may as well not worry about it and just check :-( For anyone with a private transfer considering not checking here are some things to remember:

1) sunscreen must be divided into several 3 oz bottles...a pain, but doable. each person can bring a quart sized bag of liquids, so if you're willing to put everything in small bottles it's possible for probably up to a five or six day stay...

2)you can each still have two carry-ons, so considering that only light clothes are necessary there is plenty of room with the size of most carry-on suitcases.

3)you CAN still bring back rum, etc, just buy it at the airport, carry it on to your first destination, then put it in your carry-on and check it for the remainder of the flight. Not as necessary to save time on the way home!

I still think this would be the way to go if it weren't for my having to wait for others anyway...it's the only way to 100% assure your stuff makes it there!

Bodega, California
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6. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

Here's the thing...up until about 6 or 7 years ago, when I started staying longer than 3 weeks at a time, I did ALL carryon. It was not because of waiting on anything - it was because when I fly for business we check LOTS of luggage and I just wanted the freedom of getting off the plane, stuff in hand and not a lot of stuff at that.

Since I now stay on-island for two months this is no longer an option so checking the bags is not only not been a problem - I've never had to wait. You see - it's a nice long walk from the plane to immigration (something to think about when you are carrying an overstuffed "small" rollerboard and valpak) - then you've got a "wait" an immigration which will vary in time depending on how busy the airport is at that time. Over the last several years it's been about 50/50 - Some years my bags are out there waiting for ME to go through customs...other years I wait no more than a few minutes for the bags to be turning on the carousel. I have less of a wait consistently to pick up my checked luggage in MoBay than I do at any airport in the US.

Remember your liquids rule...staple it to your head! If you are carrying on all your stuff you don't want to be the one everyone is "teeth kissing" on the security line. Also - you don't want to be an overhead space "hog"...sure they SAY you can carry on the roller board, sure they SAY you can carry on the ValPak but certain airplanes are VERY limited in that overhead space and there is nothing more INFURIATING to those of us who only have a laptop case or camera case that needs to be stowed in overhead and everyone's Samsonite luggage is up there instead..

odessa
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35 posts
1 review
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7. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

your right you probley are anxious to get going. like they say you still gotta get in the same lines as everyone else. When you get to the airport go get you a drink, a beer or maybe a patty while you wait on your ride. and it doesnt matter if your have carry on or not you still have to wait on the other people going the same way, unless you take the private cab RELAX ENJOY !!

boston, ma
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5 reviews
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8. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

i think the general mechanics and logistics of sangster airport have improved especially of the past few years. the transition from plane to immigration, customs, baggage claim and to the taxi stand is much less effort, hassle and wait on average. IMHO anyway.

it used to be very practical to travel only with a carryon, but the various restrictions placed on that sort of thing now make it less worth it in the end, for me anyway. the checked bags give you something to bring back all the rum cream in if nothing else!

and don't worry, your vacation will get started just as fast either way - as soon as that hot, humid air hits you.

if you really want to get a jump start, getting a private transfer is going to be more value for the hassle than going with just a carryon. ;)

Abita Springs...
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41 posts
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9. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

Thanks for all the advice...I was going off a previous mention somewhere of someone waiting over an hour for bags...now that it seems things run smoother than I thought I think I'll avoid the hassle and just check my bags. I hate carrying bags anyway! :-)

odessa
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35 posts
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10. Re: checking vs not checking bags- how much time saved?

AGGREED private transfers