TAMPA, Fla. - A new business opened at Tampa International Airport aimed at easing the load on parents who are traveling with their kids. Starting as soon as they land, passengers can take advantage of the new rental service, Our Little Suitcase.
The business started offering baby equipment rentals from the baggage claim area back in July. Husband and wife owners Becky and Keith Buckingham said they are confident it will be a success.
"We're going on 10 years doing this," Keith said. "That's why we knew when we opened up here, we understand the demand for what we have."
For families with young kids, packing often means bringing extra baggage: Car seats, strollers, or even a Pack ‘N’ Play. The extra gear can make for more exhausting and costly travel.
Our Little Suitcase's TPA location is focused on making travel more convenient.
"It's very stressful," Glenn Rate, a dad, said. "Obviously, we've got a lot of luggage, so we have to think about the seat, the pushchair, the bed as well."
Rate's family is heading back to Britain after spending a few weeks in Central Florida, and he said being able to leave all those extras at home would make the trip easier and more enjoyable.
"I've never heard of anything like this till today, really," Rate said. "It's certainly something we'll be looking at next time."
Our Little Suitcase offers everything from car seats and boosters, to strollers and cribs. According to TPA, it is the first service of its kind in any airport nationwide, and the Buckingham’s hope to expand to other airports in the future.
"All the things that folks are going to need on their vacations, the stuff that's going to be small, but they can put in their rental car," said Keith.
Everything is thoroughly inspected and completely sanitized after every use. Their spot at the airport means the husband and wife team can take their services directly to their customers.
"We meet them where they're getting off the plane," Keith said. "If they're coming in off on the blue side, we walk over there with the car seats."
They aim to help take some weight off parents traveling with their young kids, so they can start their vacation off right.