Storage lockers are a useful tool for those living a location independent lifestyle, allowing for the storage of goods in strategic locations, when not needed. In this guide, I provide an overview of how they work, some interesting use cases and what my own storage strategy is.
Storage lockers and location independence
Storage lockers are typically housed in large warehouse-type buildings in suburbs and industrial parks and are used by both individuals and businesses for a variety of reasons. In the context of location independence, they are a safe, climate-controlled place where to store goods when not needed. For example, someone that goes skying in Colorado every winter could store their winter and ski gear in a storage locker near Denver’s international airport. Someone that spends half their year in Bali could store their surfboard, beach gear and motorbike in a storage unit near Denpasar airport etc.
In most cases, storage lockers are priced based on their cubic size. Small units can be very cheap, especially in “less convenient” locations, and are usually sufficient for a few bags and boxes. Month-to-month contracts are usually available, there is no need to enter into long term leases. This makes the use of a storage locker possible and practical even for short trips. For example, to store some gear while on a two weeks hike (when travelling light is key).
A useful feature of many storage lockers is the acceptance of deliveries. This allows for the delivery of goods ordered online, great if you need to order extra gear before a trip for example (it will already be in your locker by the time you land). You can also mail gear back to your storage lockers when it is no longer needed. For example, you bought a winter coat while visiting Tokyo during wintertime but then flew over to Bangkok for a few months. The coat is obviously not needed in Bangkok and so can be shipped to a locker so that you do not have to carry it around needlessly.
My own strategy
I usually travel light, and in warm climates. I do have winter gear, however, and store it in a locker in Canada, with a storage service that allows me to receive and send gear on demand. This allows me to access my winter gear even if I am not travelling to Canada. I also have storage in the UK, for my hiking gear, as I regularly hike in Scotland.