shippingpackages.jpgIt’s still possible to shop out of town.

Q.  I make frequenttrips to one of my company’s out-of-state locations and purposely stay ata hotel across the street from a large mall. I find during the holidays Ican get in some shopping after my meetings are over. But now that airlineshave stricter rules around carry-on luggage and weight limits for checkedbaggage, I may end up paying more this season to the airlines than to mycredit cards.  Should I give up andjust shop at home? I really can’t figure out when I’ll have the time.

A.   Whynot ship your purchases home? There are many services available and the costsare reasonable, as long as the items aren’t too big and bulky. If you dopurchase a large quantity of items from a particular store, or buy an itemthat’s too big to ship on your own, ask if the store provides shippingout-of-state. The office supply store chains also provide shipping kiosks andsell boxes, tape, and bubble wrap at reasonable prices. You might want to callahead to inquire about options and store policies for deliveries.