Luggage

Standard

July 1, 2007 Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

My first International flight longer than 4 hours.

Cholo and I were checking in at the Qatar Airways Counter bound for London. Gave our passports, our tickets and our ID’s. The girl then told us to load our bags into the weighing scale.

We went passed our baggage allowance of 20 kilos each.

Cholo asks how much would it cost for us to bring all of it to London.

$500.

We move to the side and Cholo says to me “We have to lighten our load.” I called my mom and told her to come back because she needs to bring our “extra load” back home.

Right there, in the middle of NAIA 1, Cholo and I opened our luggage and started unpacking.

2 kilos of whey powder. Shampoo. Bath Gel. Clothes. Even more clothes. Shoes. Even more shoes. Books for school… et cetera.

I felt so embarrassed! I look around and I see we are not alone. There were other OFW’s doing the same as well. Unloading danggit, bagoong, corned beef, even rice.

That sight didn’t make me feel better.

Cholo then says to me, “I forgot the fact that we have to weigh our bags before leaving.”  That remark was then filed into the back of my mind, ready for future use.

We were going to be in London for two months. Vacationing and schooling at the same time.  So, we had to bring things that we felt we needed for that whole duration. We brought too much.

We put our luggage back on the scale and it meets the baggage allowance. I then put the rest of our “excess baggage” on a cart and drive it to my mom who was waiting for me outside the entrance gate. She was laughing.

~

I would never want to pay $500 for baggage!

~

Since then, I have always weighed our luggage the night before a flight. I would always borrow my mom’s industrial weighing scale since a normal weighing scale does not do the job.

One thing I have learned from that experience is not to fill up my luggage to the brink of its baggage allowance. Example, if I have an allowance of 20 kilos, I make sure that my luggage would weigh at around 15 kilos (17 kilos max). If I am only allowed 15 kilos, I make sure my baggage weighs at 10 kilos. Why?

Here’s why:

  1. You are bound to go shopping. Shopping for memorabilia, shopping for clothes, shopping for anything. If you leave some room in your luggage, you will have more space and you won’t be overweight. Saves you the extra cash.
  2. Shampoos, soaps, and even whey protein powder can be bought in a local supermarket in any counrty.
  3. Clothes can be bought if you need more.
  4. Laundromats are available for you to wash your clothes if needed.
~

When buying luggage, I suggest purchasing one that is made of a lightweight plastic or metal material. I am not really fond of those luggage made of reinforced fabric. Those kinds of luggage are not very strong. Aside
 from the fact that they rip at the seams, they can’t really protect whatever you put inside them.
To the left is my luggage that Cholo passed on to me. He bought this in Central Chidlom in Bangkok. I tell you, it is quite durable. It’s durability was tested on our trip home from Paris. I was so shocked when I retrieved this from the conveyor belt at NAIA 1 because there was a very deep dent on the upper right hand side of the luggage!  This just comes to show how your baggage is handled. This incident broke a small plate that came with an espresso cup I bought in a flea market in Rome.
Cholo hammered the dent back to its original place.
One more important aspect that you have to consider when purchasing luggage is to  get a one with four wheels. Unlike the traditional two-wheeled luggage, a four-wheeled luggage doesn’t put as much strain on your arm and shoulders when traveling around because it doesn’t employ a pulling motion. It stands at an upright position and you just gently push.
Which reminds me.. I believe Cholo and I need to get new ones.

Stazione Ferroviaria Santa Lucia

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