The smartphone app DUFL bills itself as capable of “changing the way the world travels.” It’s an overstatement, of course, but it can provide a unique approach for travelers who need to be business-ready at all times. DUFL is essentially a personal valet that simplifies business travel by shipping, cleaning and storing a traveler’s work attire.
And the next generation of the app will allow users to pack sports equipment.
Presently, users can take advantage of the app via their smartphones or computers to virtually “pack” and choose what will be needed for the trip. Clothing and accessories are stored in user’s personal DUFL closets and handled by DUFL’s employees, so business travelers can essentially travel without bags. The company maintains secure storage facilities with state-of-the-art tracking and inventory systems to keep travelers’ possessions safe and accounted for.
“Once you’ve scheduled your trip, you’ll travel – bag free, and your freshly cleaned and neatly packed clothing will meet you at your specified destination,” according to DUFL. “When you’re ready to head home, schedule a pick up from the hotel and we’ll clean your clothes and have them waiting in your virtual closet, ready for your next trip!”
Voted the “Best New Travel App of 2015” by USA Today, DUFL is garnering quite a bit of attention in the travel industry. It’s also planning on expanding into sporting equipment in the near future. DUFL founder and CEO Bill Rinehart recently told USA Today that the company plans to expand geographically and allow users to keep objects other than their wardrobes safe and readily available.
"We have a very robust roadmap and plan to expand our facilities throughout the U.S. and select international destinations,” said Rinehart. “We also plan to launch additional features such as DUFL Sports in 2016, which will allow users to store their skis, golf clubs, scuba gear, surf boards and other equipment that they use at other destinations and rarely use at home."
For now, business travelers interested in using the app can download it from the App Store, Google Play Store, or the company’s Web site, then simply register and order a Welcome Kit. DUFL will ship out a Welcome Kit that contains a large suitcase for travelers to fill with their business attire, then schedule a pick up and ship it back to DUFL’s warehouse to inventory and clean the items. When users are ready to take a trip, they simply login to the app, enter their destination and arrival date and choose the items they’d like to pack from their virtual closet. The bag will then be ready to meet the traveler at his or her destination.