Last Updated: January 18, 2021

The Difference Between Luggage and Baggage

There’s baggage claim, and there’s luggage trolley. You carry a lot of baggage, and you fit everything in your luggage. Which do you use when, and does it even matter?

Quick answer: no.

Baggage Vs. Luggage

Baggage and/or Luggage

Baggage and luggage mean the same thing – those bags and containers you have that hold all your things. There are very subtle differences in terms of the words’ history, but mainly it depends where you are in the world. The US uses baggage more often while the UK uses luggage. In essence, these words are synonymous.

The word “baggage” is an older word that came from France in the 1400s. Originally, this also meant army equipment. The word “luggage” is derived from Middle English and comes from a Scandinavian word that, interestingly, means “to pull by the hair”.

Aside from this quick history lesson, baggage can also be used as a figurative term pertaining to one’s emotions. It can mean someone’s personal burden, but not something you can use with “luggage”.

Either way, if you’re confused, don’t fret. When traveling, it doesn’t matter if you prefer “baggage” over “luggage” or the other way around. The point is you have what you need and you enjoy the trip.

About the Author Roger Timbrook

Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!

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