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Carry That Weight

May 12, 2008 By: Joe Pike Travel Agent

Why Packing the Essentials Is Essential

It was the night before my first ever Tianguis Turistico 33 in Acapulco, perhaps the most important event for a Mexico editor like myself to cover, and there I was looking like Tom Hanks from Cast Away.

Sitting in my hotel room at the Fairmont Acapulco Princess, wearing a long-sleeve black t-shirt covered in sweat from the 90-degree heat, wrinkled jeans, stubble on my face and worn-down Diesel tennis shoes, I desperately waited for that phone to ring telling me my luggage had completed its detour from Mexico City.

Unaware that I pulled off the impossible, clearing security and customs and making my connecting flight from Mexico City to Acapulco in just under 25 minutes, flight attendants pulled my now priceless luggage from the plane thinking I didn’t make the gate.

My pin-striped blazer, pink Kenneth Cole tie and white linen shirt, Mach-3 razors, Gillette shaving cream, Crest toothpaste and Axe deodorant and all of the other essentials I need to make myself presentable for some of the notable Mexico tourism officials were probably sitting alone in some room.

Around 10:30 p.m., I received my bag and exhaled. All in all, it took about four hours to get it to my hotel but I was lucky. The carrier I used had three more flights going to Acapulco that night. I’ve heard some horror stories of people not getting their luggage for two to three days.

The process was actually rather painless, too. You fill out a report, give the airline your name, number and hotel room. Then you present a copy to the concierge at your hotel.

Make sure your clients keep the confirmation number and can identify the brand name of their luggage. Tell them to hide all valuables at the bottom of the bag since it's unlikely that someone will go through all of your belongings, but pretty common for some to skim the front of your bag and swipe small items that you may not notice are missing right away.

If your clients are ever in a rush to make a flight and happen to get on board, make sure they notify the crew that they are in fact on the plane, something I wrongfully just assumed the flight crew knew.

Make sure you tell them at the very least to pack a change of clothes. And it doesn’t hurt to throw the concierge a buck or two to make sure they get your bag to you pronto.

Now, we know we aren’t telling you anything that you haven’t told your clients before, but perhaps this story will help them do what this travel writer didn’t – listen.

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