Storage Lockers

If you are new to travel, you may never have considered using Storage Lockers at various points during your trip.  Storage Lockers are a convenient, inexpensive, safe and secure way to store your belongings at various locations during your trip helping to avoid carrying around you backpack or luggage as you go off exploring.  In fact, many locations will not allow you entry if you are carrying large bags or backpacks, so lockers are a must in certain situations.

If you are traveling by train from on location to another but want to make an intermediate stop prior to your final destination, using storage lockers is a convenient way to go.

On a trip through Switzerland, we arrived in Thun via train from Bern on our way to Interlaken.  We wanted to explore Thun and a couple of nearby castles in the morning before taking a boat across Thun Lake to Spiez and then on to Interlaken.  It was very convenient to place our backpacks in a Thun rail station storage locker while we were out exploring.  When we returned, we collected our bags, boarded our boat to Spiez where we walked around the castle area before taking a train on the Interlaken and our hotel.

Using storage lockers can be an important part of your trip planning.  They give you alternatives to store your bags allowing you to go off and explore places you may otherwise not be able to.

Hotel Drop Off

If you are arriving early at one of your destinations where you will be staying for the night, it may be more convenient to use a locker rather than dropping off your bags at your hotel for safe keeping.  Depending on the rail station location, hotel location and planned activities we have utilized hotel drop off as well as storage lockers.

Although we are talking about using storage lockers, we want to mention that in most situations, you should be able to drop off your bags at your hotel if it's convenient to do so.  Even if your room is not yet ready and you have arrived hours prior to the check in time, it's a common practice for European hotels to allow you to drop off your bags at no charge.

Locker Usage

You will find that the lockers work in various different ways.

We have found that most are simply coin operated such as the blue ones below.  You place your items inside any open locker, hold the door shut and insert the required amount of coins then remove the key.

Some lockers may have indicator lights telling you the ones that are available and the ones that are not.  Lights may also indicate when the correct amount of change has been deposited and you can remove the key to secure your belongings.

The daily cost for a locker is minimal, around 5-8 Euros/Day (or local currency) depending on the size you have selected.

The red lockers below worked slightly different.  After inserting your items into an empty locker and closing the door, it will immediately lock.  You then go to the control panel where the locker number can be selected and you then insert your coins.  It will print a coded receipt that you take with you; not a key.  When you return, you simply scan your receipt and it will unlock the locker.

Locker Sizes

Another advantage of traveling light with only a backpack sized to meet airline restrictions is that it should easily fit into most storage lockers, even the smaller ones.

We have been able to easily fit two 40 Liter sized backpacks into a single small sized locker at most locations.

Locker Availability

Most rail stations will have storage lockers, especially in high profile tourist areas.  Keep in mind that obtaining a locker is not a guarantee.  If you are traveling during peak season, there may not always be an available locker.  As we tend to travel during Shoulder Seasons, we have not had an issue find lockers during those times of the year.   

Do some research ahead of time.  If you plan on using lockers at specific locations, make sure they are actually available.

Train Station Storage Lockers
Thun Switzerland Grindelwald Switzerland Zermatt Switzerland