The Port Authority Bus Terminal is the largest bus station in the Western Hemisphere. It is made up of two multilevel terminal wings. And, seeing as it offers travelers connecting bus services to almost any location you can think of within the United States, it should come as no surprise to learn that this bus terminal is the busiest in the world: It caters to more than 225,000 individuals daily, offering them more than 8,000 buses to the destination of their choosing.
As a result, many people using this terminal can find themselves in need of luggage storage services, especially if they have a few hours before their bus departs. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the storage options available:
Storing luggage at the Port Authority itself
After the terrorist attacks of 9/11, almost all major stations and terminals, including the Port Authority, had all on-site luggage storage options cut. This was done as a security measure. So, if you are at the Port Authority, not only will you be unable to find any storage lockers to use, but you will also be unable to find any storage facilities of any kind.
The only exception is for people traveling with Greyhound, which offers its customers a left luggage service. This service allows you to store one bag for free, and if you want to store any more luggage, you’ll have to pay $15 per additional bag.
Storing luggage a la Airbnb
Given the lack of storage facilities in most stations and terminals, several companies have tried to fill this gap in the market. Some companies, like Stasher, LuggageHero, and BagBnB, rely on the sharing economy, which is the same business model used by Airbnb.
What Stasher does is that notifies you of nearby locations where you can store your luggage safely. This location can be anything from a convenience or grocery store to a gift shop or hotel. Additionally, if you go with their service, they will insure your bag against theft or damage, reimbursing you in the event of either for up to $1000.
Also, compared to other services, Stasher offerings are cheap. They will enable you to store your luggage for a whole day for the small price of $6. On the other hand, some companies, like LuggageHero, will charge you by the hour, making you pay for the time you use only.
If you are interested trying Stasher’s services, you can reach them through their website, or you can book a location through their mobile application.
Going for a more convenient option
Despite the fact that Vertoe is cheap, it is not the most convenient option for many people. After all, you have to go drop off your bags, and when you need the, you will have to go and pick them up. For some, this can be tedious, especially if their bags are heavy or they are just juggling way too many bags.
Fortunately, if you are looking for a more convenient option and are indifferent about the price, you might want to check out My Bag Check. If Vertoe was the Airbnb of luggage storage, then My Bag Check would be the Uber.
My Bag Check works in a very simple way: A driver will arrive at any location you set. They will pick up your bags and store them for you. And, when you want your bags back, the driver will drop them off anywhere you want.
You are probably aware that My Bag Check is pricier than a service like Vertoe; what you may not know is just how pricier. You see, in addition to charging you for storage, My Bag Check charges you for transportation as well, and depending on where you set the pick-up and drop-off points, the transportation charges can range from $30 all the way to $100 or even $120. What’s more, this still doesn’t take into account the storage fees, which can be around $15 per day. So, all in all, My Bag Check can be extremely convenient but a little more expensive than other available options.
Relying on an office to help
Some companies offer you storage facilities in their offices. For instance, Schwartz Travel will provide you with an office that is open 24/7 to store your luggage. What’s even better is that companies like Schwartz Travel will offer special deals for business storage and large groups.
Native New Yorker. Travel addict. Hardcore thinker. Analyst. Pop culture fanatic. I live in Queens with my wife Linda and our dog Clemenza.