3 Great Reasons to Use a Travel Luggage Scale

Every time my husband and I travel, especially to visit our children, we tend to pack excessively. Depending on the duration of our trip, we pack lots of food items and gifts from home in addition to the clothes and other items we need for our travels. Nowadays, many airlines charge for check-in bags or passengers are limited in quantities and weight of check-in bags. Plus, the rates for check-in luggage are sometimes outrageous!

By now, you have probably figured that it’s quite difficult for me and my husband to stay within the weight limit. So, one of the best travel investments we have ever made is a travel luggage scale. It is the greatest thing ever to use while you pack for your trip. Here I will share with you 3 Great Reasons to Use a Travel Luggage Scale.

#1 Luggage Scales Save Time

I have been at check-in counters at airports and see people having to open up their luggage to try to adjust their packing just so that they can stay within the weight limits of the airlines. This is such a stressful and time-consuming process. So, the first great reason to use a travel luggage scale is that it definitely saves time. You can start packing your luggage at home and when you think that you are done you can easily weigh it. You will know if you are either over or under weight and you can adjust your packing at home rather than waiting at the airport check-in counter only to be told that your luggage is overweight or you could have packed a little more because you are underweight.

#2 Luggage Scales Save Money

The second great reason to use a travel luggage scale is that it will save money. It takes getting used to even being charged for a first check-in bag which costs anywhere from $25 – $50 while second bags cost upwards of $40 and so on and so forth. Overweight bags are another story. It can cost passengers hundreds of dollars for one piece of baggage to be overweight even by a pound. Luggage scales can save people the financial stress of checking in their bags.

#3 Luggage Scales Are Portable

Travels are normally round trips. So, not only do you have to weigh your luggage before you leave but you have to weigh them on the way back to where you originated from. No need to fret because the third great reason to use a travel luggage scale is that they are portable. Luggage scales are small enough to put into your luggage so that you can have it readily available when you are ready to head back.

How Do They Work?

Travel luggage scales are really simple to use.

  1. Pack your bags.
  2. Calibrate your travel luggage scale to zero.
  3. Hook the scale to or wrap the strap around the luggage handle.
  4. Lift your luggage with the scale.
  5. Check the weight.

Voila! That is it.

Digital or Non-DigitalBy Simon A. Eugster - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7830298

The most popular travel luggage scales are the digital kind. I mean, we do live in a digital world so that’s no surprise. It’s extra simple to use. Lift your bags and read the digital number that shows up on the screen.

The luggage scale that I personally use is the non-digital one. We’ve been using it for many years and it hasn’t failed us and it’s actually pretty accurate. It may be off by a pound when we place our bags on the scales at the airport depending on the calibration. Unlike the digital kind, you will have to work a little harder to read the weight as the little hand points to the numbers but there is a marker that sticks to the actual weight. The advantage to the non-digital scale is that it requires no batteries.

This is it

If there is ever one item that every world traveler should get this is it! A travel luggage scale is the most useful item you could have when you’re packing for that long vacation. It saves time and money and it’s portable. When you get one for yourself, it would be a wonderful idea to get another one as a gift for a fellow jet-setter. Or better yet, put it on your wish list for your next birthday or holiday gift.

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21 Replies to “3 Great Reasons to Use a Travel Luggage Scale”

  1. Yes I agree with you here, luggage scales are an essential travel item. With more and more weight regulations at travel ports it is great to know that your luggage weight meets the standard requirements.

    Simple to use, quick and easy to do and you are sure that you won’t get delays because of over weight bags. The charges for over weight bags can be quite high so yes, save money by using one.

    I do like the digital one, small enough to pack and take with you as more often than not you are bringing more home than you packed in the first place. 

    Thank you

  2. Thank you Geri! This is certainly one of the times when I say, “Why the heck didn’t I think of that!” I think it is necessary and so I will be ordering one soon. I will be going with the digital version though….from what I am seeing they would be much easier for me to read.


  3. My wife and I have always enjoyed travel.  We traveling more now as retirement approaches. What to pack and how much to pack is now a real issue.  Your article is timely for us.  We just returned from a short trip in which we were charged $30 for an overweight bag. We guesstimated the weight of the bag incorrectly.  The analog scale seems to be adequate, but the digital model will take less space and is more accurate.   Thanks for letting us know about this simple device.  It will add piece of mind to our travel preparations.

  4. totally agree! This type of balance can help us save in many ways!
    I learned it the first day I travel with overweight. I thought it was the total weight of all the bags I could carry, and that I could distribute that in any way I wanted in each of the bags. It turned out that you couldn’t, of course.

    So there were my wife and I, taking out the clothes (in everyone’s sight, of course, nothing humiliating) and passing the clothes from one suitcase to the other, without really knowing how much each one weighed!

    We had to do it one more time … until finally the bags weighed the allowed weight.

    So upon arrival at the destination airport … we bought a luggage scale! Since that day, we have never exceeded the allowed weight.

    Thanks for your post!

  5. Some international airlines do not allow battery-operated devices, so I think a non-digital travel luggage scale works better for that reason. Also, I used to have an old non-digital scale before and it lasted for many years so it is probably more durable. But I know the digital ones are far more convenient to use. Geri, is the digital one you are referring to good for durability, will it last  a few years of usage?

    1. Hi Padma!

      I, too, personally use the non-digital scale. But, I am sure the digital ones are pretty durable at least until the batteries run out.

      Thank you for that question.

  6. When I was traveling with my sister and her daughter, we bought a lot of local foods that we rarely get a chance to eat. We want to bring those back to the city and we put those in a big box. We did not know the actual weight. We just estimated it.

    At the airport while checking-in, we were told by the pretty lady at the counter that we have exceeded our allowed luggage allowance. It was terrible because the excess luggage fee per kilogram is so expensive. 

    The cost of that additional fee is almost as expensive as the contents of the box we bought. It was a terrible. We have to decide whether to leave the items with our other relatives who brought us to the airport or pay the additional fee. We decided to pay. We should have had a luggage scale like this one. How long does the battery last for a digital scale?

    1. My husband and I do the same thing but instead of using a box we just use an extra large luggage to pack the foods.

      I, personally, use the non-digital luggage scale. But, the batteries on a digital luggage scale should last for a few months. I would definitely recommend taking out the batteries when your luggage scale is not in use though.

      Safe travels….

  7. How much is the weight in grams or kilogram of those travel luggage scale? I ask this because I’d like to take them with me as I travel and put them inside the luggage. If the weight is something heavier than expected, then there’s no point carrying them with you as you travel. And which of them weigh heavier, the digital one or the non-digital?

    1. Great questions…

      The scales that I have are very light-weight, less than a kilo. We pack them in our luggage as well.

      Everyone here says the digital luggage scale is smaller and more convenient to take along.

      Try it out! Safe travels to you…

  8. Great post! I was on a work contract travelling to Portugal every week and I used to always see people having to mess around with their luggage to stay under the weight limit which as you say can be stressful and you can feel the pressure of people behind you. I used to travel with just cabin luggage but even these have to be under a certain weight. years ago coming back from a holiday in Turkey, I was charged for overweight luggage and it’s not nice and costs a fortune. These scales are a must have for anyone travelling!

  9. This is a great post. It has happened to me on several occasions when I’m checking in at the airline counter and they tell me my luggage is overweight. It really gets me stressed out because I either have to pay the fee for the extra baggage weight or I I have take out some of the things from the luggage to make it lighter and that is kind of embarrassing to do in front of others.

    The scales that you mention are portable and I like that there are digital ones also because they make it easier to read the weight fast. This is definitely something that I’ll be looking get for my travels. Thank you for sharing this information. I know it will be very helpful to me.

  10. Hi, Geri,

    I’m glad I came across your blog. I have a travel blog too. It’s always nice to meet other travel bloggers.
    About your article, I really liked it and you’re totally right. There’s nothing worse than getting to the airport just to be told that you’ve passed the weight limit. It almost happened to me once and that’s when I decided to get my portable scale. I always use it to make sure the weight is right. It’s so small I can put it in my suitcase or backpack.
    Good stuff. I look forward to reading more from you. Thanks for sharing.

  11. My wife always uses a luggage scale because her bags tend to be overweight. I don’t usually even need it since I like to travel light. Sometimes if I have more stuff I use it. We have a digital scale that has been working fine so far.

  12. Hi there, I definitely consider a luggage scale to be a must given how I pack and how I shop when I travel lol. It certainly decreases the hassles and stresses at baggage drop. One additional benefit is that it saves time for your fellow passengers who aren’t stuck waiting in the queue for you to get your case within weight so they can have their turn at the counter.

  13. I don’t understand why there are people who don’t have these kinds of scales! They are super practical and as you said, they will save you money! Nothing as horrible as being at the check in-counter to find out that you have to pay 20 euros per extra kilo you are carrying. It’s a bit of a scam from the airlines as well, I feel, but nothing to do about that. Another piece of advice. Accidentally I configured the scale to weigh in pounds instead of kilos. It took me two hours to figure this out and an almost empty bag :D!

  14. This is a great idea, I never knew this even existed lol. Everytime I go to the counter at the airport, Im sweating bullets hoping that I meet the weight requirements.
    It causes my anxiety to go haywire in anticipation while my luggage is on the sale.
    This is great to have to alleviate those pre flight jitters! Thank you!

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