Skip the queue at Schiphol? You can, but it will cost a little

A check-in counter at your front door, it’s lifted from Amsterdam software startup Luggo. A FedEx courier will pick up your luggage, check it in at the front door and bring it to Schiphol. That way, you should be able to travel relaxed and without a suitcase, so you can also skip that queue at the check-in counter, says co-founder Rico Briedjal.

“Your suitcase is immediately registered in the airline’s systems and enters the baggage claim on arrival at the airport,” says Briedjal. At that moment, the owner of the suitcase receives an app. The Luggo system communicates with the airline for this, says the entrepreneur.

Corendon and Transavia on board

The company has been working with Corendon for a few months, who purchased the service. Transavia should be added from June. After the chaos at Schiphol, the traffic to his website has grown enormously, says Briedjal. According to him, the number of travelers who like the extra service is also increasing: “In the beginning we got ten bookings a day, now there are three hundred.”

Travelers order the suitcase service directly from Luggo or in the airline’s booking system. What does it cost? For two suitcases it is possible from 35 euros, depending on how far you live from Schiphol. For each extra suitcase there is a ten extra.

If it continues like this in the coming months, it will pay off quickly, Briedjal says.

‘Less risk’

With a price tag of a few tens, travelers and airlines need to be appeased. It is quite expensive to fly and the airlines are a bit old-fashioned, says Briedjal. “We have been in negotiations with KLM for two years.” Corona did not help, says the entrepreneur.

But this, he says, is the future of travel. “It provides less crowded departure halls and therefore fewer security risks. We can also plan baggage handling better and organize it at night, for example.”

More private on the coast

Briedjal is not the only private on the coast. There are several baggage services in the Netherlands, including Bagbooking, a Dutch company that started in November last year. They go a step further, says spokesman Menno Troost. Your luggage does not go to the airport, but to its destination. “It’s already there before you get there.”

This is arranged that way in hotels, if you have rented a house it will require a greater effort. “For example, we work with Villa Sud in France,” says Troost. No towing with luggage and children or hassle with roof boxes. “A day of travel is also a holiday.” For an average suitcase, you pay around 50 euros round trip, and the transport takes place with FedEx and so far only over land.

Exercise without luggage pain

Currently, Troost has made hundreds of bookings, he says. “We’re just getting started, but we’re getting a little busier,” he says. Summer is coming, more travel is happening. And will people bypass Schiphol? This is not something the entrepreneur has noticed yet.

However, he is in conversation with NS: People want to travel by train, but taking luggage with them is a barrier, says the entrepreneur. “We can take that away.”

Run with ease

Have you been on a travel trip? The number of companies in the sector does not appear to be very large. Inquiries to the Chamber of Commerce show that this type of service provider usually belongs to a larger category of airport service providers, including companies that, for example, plan flights or arrange hangars.

Within that category, there are currently about ten dealing with “passengers and their luggage”. Five years ago there were five.

Room for luxury

There seems to be room for convenience and luxury in the market, as evidenced by the enthusiasm for Schiphol’s Privium subscription. For about 150 euros a year you can park in front, quickly go through the controls and relax in a lounge. But the service received so many requests that there is no longer any privilege: it is full and no one has access to it at the moment. How long it will take is unknown.

It can always be even more crazy, says aviation reporter Doron Sajet from NH Media, he has worked in the field for years. Schiphol, for example, has a VIP service. “You are received in a room where you can check in and pass security,” he says. The place where seniors also pass. With luxury: from food to transport to the plane, even if you pay a few hundred euros for it.

VIP services: better than not

There are also companies that offer so-called VIP services separate from Schiphol and take you to the airport by limousine, for example. “I would not recommend it,” Sajet says. Not only is it expensive, these companies usually do not have their own lounges, security guards or rights to drive on flying platforms. “So you’re still addicted to the airport.”

Then it is a better option to fly with a private plane, says Sajet. “They go in peace from Schiphol East. You rarely stand in line there.” A semi-affordable private scheduled flight is increasingly becoming an option.

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