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What Are the Pros and Cons of Buying Used Luggage?

By K. K. Lowen
Updated May 23, 2024
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Buying used luggage has many advantages and disadvantages. Second-hand luggage can be less expensive than new luggage, and purchasing used items may be the best course of action for those on strict budgets. It is important, however, to carefully inspect each piece of luggage for damage.

For people who travel often it may be preferable to purchase a luggage set, and the decreased cost of purchasing used items may allow people to buy an entire set for the price of a single new piece of baggage. When purchasing used luggage sets, it is a good idea to examine each individual piece of luggage. The luggage set’s previous owner may have used some pieces more than others, resulting in varying stages of wear.

Designer and other high-end luggage can be expensive. One advantage of second-hand luggage is the potential to purchase certain brands and types of luggage that otherwise would be out of a person’s price range. If buying used, high-end merchandise, it is important to look at labels carefully, because the wear on used luggage may help disguise an imitation as true designer or brand name baggage.

It also may be possible to find vintage items while searching for used luggage. Prices for vintage baggage may vary, depending on condition and age. Some people like the visual appeal of vintage luggage and may be able to find designs that have not been replicated in recent years. When purchasing vintage luggage, it is important to make sure that the items are in good enough condition for general use. For airplane travel, vintage luggage may not be appropriate because of the sometimes rough handling of baggage.

Inspecting baggage before making a purchase is important because heavily used luggage may be damaged. Thoroughly examining the exterior and interior of the luggage can reveal damage, unpleasant odors, or defects. Badly fraying fabric around the zippers could be particularly troublesome. People should look for damage that the seller has attempted to mend or conceal as well. It may not be worth the purchase price if the used luggage is not in good enough condition to survive regular use.

When buying used luggage, it is best to purchase the merchandise from a reputable seller. If purchasing luggage from an individual or second-hand store, the buyer has the advantage of looking over the items before paying. When purchasing used luggage online, the buyer should do his or her best to make certain that the seller has a good reputation. It also appropriate to request detailed photographs of the luggage’s interior and exterior, and ask as many questions as necessary about the item’s condition. Inquiring about a refund policy for unsatisfactory items is a good idea as well.

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