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AFKA ZealYouthGuy
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Discussion Starter #1
I bought new luggage today. Well correctly worded... I paid for luggage that my wife went and purchased at Wal*Mart. Now, honestly... I feel like a meth addict every time I buy cheap junk from China at WM. I do. I know buying the cheapest of everything from China can do nothing but harm me (us) in the long run, but I keep purchasing it like an addict, because I can't really afford to purchase the better stuff. Plus I am a bargain shopper to begin with. I always weigh need, quality and cost when I purchase something. And unfortunately, that usually brings me about to Wal*Mart for my "new, cheap purchases". I really wish life were simpler. I wish there was a store that sold everything made from America, that everything it sold was of the best value and that it was comparable (even if more expensive at least comparable) to the cheap junk made from overseas. Then I could just go the the "USA STORE" and purchase what I wanted and not feel like a meth addict, knowing that this pleasure that I have today will cost me in the long run.

The Need:
My luggage (which lasted FAR longer than I ever thought it would when I bought it before) was cheap junk also... and boy was it falling apart. I'll have to post up pictures. The handle is missing to carry the thing, only half of the zipper works and the plastic corners are broken down. Now everywhere that I've taken this suitcase to has been ok with me. I don't normally get too worked up over appearances and like to gauge my possessions and purchases really on NEED. I took suitcase to teen camp down in TN. Everyone who went to grabbed it said, "Hey, there isn't a handle". (Uh, thanks, I never realized that...), but those were people at my church. They know how frugal I like to be. (They also know how much they pay me so the discussion in the past has lead them to just accept me and my "lovably-worn" possessions without much argument..) But now that we are hitting the road for Lord, (Aside: Do you think God is ok with me having Willie Nelson's "On the Road Again" running through my head?) I didn't want to embarrass my wife in front of all the other people that tend to look at missionaries and preachers that come to their church like side-show freaks rolling into town with the circus.

The quality:
Let's start off by saying this: I LOVE good quality at a reasonable cost. I KNOW I don't normally get that from items from China but you have to undestand a few things about me and luggage. The first is this, I've never met a duffel bag or backpack I didn't like. Really those are my two main pieces of luggage in most instances. Luggage is something I use if I am traveling on a plane or with my wife. Otherwise even a brown paper bag would do me fine. Luggage is one of those things I buy grudgingly. In my natural state, I am an ultimate utilitarian who believes the old maxim: form follows function. That's why backpacks and duffel bags work for me. In fact I find great joy in packing a backpack... but my wife packs the luggage. When I pack a backpack, it's a challenge. I am going to be carrying that thing and the challenge is to get all that I need in there and secure it so it's tight, comfortable and accessible. All understandable for me. But LUGGAGE demands fashion and looks. Seriously, why is it that we can put a man on the moon before we put wheels on luggage? Well, of course I have a theory to that too... we didn't carry around as much JUNK when we traveled. You weren't expected to have clean clothes all week, you washed them... or you "graduated" on the smell charts.... so luggage quality is minimized in my mind by the fact that I don't fly much and most of my trips are pretty minimilistic (as far as WHAT I travel with). But this changes when you begin deputation. Normally... I don't sleep in other people's houses. Normally... I don't have to have 14 different changes of clothes. Normally... I don't have other people offering to carry my luggage for me... but alas... nothing about deputation is normal.

The cost:
So I ended up buying a "7 piece set" which is really like a 3 roller-bag set with a garment bag, a shoe bag, a toiletries and cosmetics bag and a duffel bag (well at least SOMEONE has some sense over there in Chinaland...). The cost was 69.99. I almost died. Now I KNOW that's a decent price for what we got. Believe me I looked at prices elsewhere.... but still... I have a perfectly good backpack and duffel bag at home. My suitcase... so what if the handle works or not.

The True Cost:
But I have to measure the true cost and that's the cost of traveling long miles in a broken down van with a wife that KNOWS she will be embarrassed at the next church we stop at. I may be cheap... but I ain't stupid.
 

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Site Admin's Boss
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I think you should use your old suitcase with pride!

I have a suitcase my sister-in-law got me from the airlines. She's a flight attendant. It is a high quality suitcase.

Well, the corners are worn out, it's ripped out a bit in the back and held with safety pins and scuffed all over. Everytime I got to pack, the thought goes through my head that I should get a new one. But then my pocket book kicks in.

I pull that old bag through the airport with pride. It shows that I have been places! Besides who would be tempted to run off with the thing? :rolleyes:
 

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member
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See I'm like that. I use something until it is done. I am not embarassed about it and it doesn't bother me if people use something until it is in tatters. Actually I probably would have rigged up a handle using baling twine and wrapped an old piece of cloth around it, covering it with duct tape. Brady solemnly looked at me one day and said, "You can fix anything with duct tape can't you?"

When my girls needed duffel bags to carry to camp, I made them all three one using a heavy dark blue sheet. I made drawstrings from old jump ropes, they were pretty colorful and put some applique patches on them to brighten them up. I had everything on hand and the girls still use them, they still look like brand new.
 

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plains of Colorado
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The post is great. My question is always...do I really need this? I, too, wish someone would invent the made in USA store.
 

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Yup, we're like that! You all should see our 90 ford pickup truck! Yes, it's a rust bucket! Yes, it ain't purty! BUT, it has a rig that Roger invented to lift my electric scooter into it. Again, cheap! We talk about replacing it, but, as long as it takes us from point one to point two safe, warm in winter and dry, we'll keep it!

We know that a few hoity-toity people at church look side-ways at us when we drive into the parking lot (It also needs a muffler.). They know what Roger does for a living. It don't matter to us. We're not much on looks. Heck, I buy my jewelry at Goodwill!
 

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I got a 7 piece set of hardshelled Samsonite luggage at the thrift store a year ago for $5. It looked hardly used - but it is mustard yellow. I am happy with my luggage now.

Dh likes duffel bags because he can sqeeze them in anywhere. I hate duffel bags because then I have to take an iron, and an ironing board, everywhere!
 

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AFKA ZealYouthGuy
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11,454 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
RockyGlen said:
I got a 7 piece set of hardshelled Samsonite luggage at the thrift store a year ago for $5. It looked hardly used - but it is mustard yellow. I am happy with my luggage now.

Dh likes duffel bags because he can sqeeze them in anywhere. I hate duffel bags because then I have to take an iron, and an ironing board, everywhere!
What is this thing you speak of??? "Iron" ??? :baby04:
 

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I guess I'm somewhat of a "road warrior" since I've checked in and our of about 4000 hotels/motels as an adult. I purposely buy the most economical luggage I can buy. I may buy 2-3 sets a year because we travel with so much stuff. Target has a little higher quality but despite my disdain of WalMart we still buy some sets there. If the zipper will last the trip it stays. Who is going to steal a nasty looking bag? People travel with their best stuff and put it into a designer suitcase that screams "steal me".

I have several duffel bags that have lasted for years. They just don't work as well in our current travel mode. We check into some pretty high-end hotels with our junk luggage. We stay at one in San Francisco about 30 nights a year now. The bellman makes sure he's on duty for our arrival since we would rather tip him well than spend it on luggage. He gets us room upgrades and we actually exchange Christmas gifts.

If we buy luggage at a thrift shop and it looks too good we spray paint graffiti on it. That becomes our airline luggage. For airline trips we usually take product to sell and don't need as much luggage on the return trip. $3 suitcases that we can trash work great one-way. They are also easier to spot at the baggage claim. Everyone now travels with black WalMart luggage.

Try going into a fancy hotel with junk luggage prior to the posted check in time. Tell them you'll just wait with your luggage until your room is ready. You'll get the first room so they can get your junk out of their lobby.
 

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Very Dairy
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I got a 7 piece set of hardshelled Samsonite luggage at the thrift store a year ago for $5.

There ya go!

I got a next-to-new rollaway for $4 last year ... there was a glitch in the handle, but I fixed it. :)
 

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Premium Member
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My daughter is using a WWII parachute bag that was her grandfather's. Her brother has a $5 Value Village vintage leather bag that looks well-worn, but still says quality.

Good old stuff beats new every day. You don't have to wory about that first scratch, or about filling the landfills with cheap disposable luggage. If I need disposable luggage, a sturdy cardboard box with lots of tape works for me.
 

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Is "American Tourister" luggage made in China?

I bought some for my wife last year from WM. Looked to be good quality, and I know the name has been around for many years. Probably an import. :shrug:
 

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AFKA ZealYouthGuy
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Discussion Starter #13
SteveD(TX) said:
Is "American Tourister" luggage made in China?

I bought some for my wife last year from WM. Looked to be good quality, and I know the name has been around for many years. Probably an import. :shrug:
Logically speaking, perhaps luggage from China is superior to luggage made here in the U.S.

Think about it... it's already made a trip that is thousands of miles long and survived in great shape. :baby04:
 

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Halfway, OR & Wagoner, OK
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3,306 Posts
Reminds me of a Redneck Joke:

You know they're rednecks when they show up at the airport with
6 Piggly Wiggly Bags and a styrofoam cooler, taped with duct tape.
 
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