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Car service- Suitcase & hand luggage

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Since I usually travel by myself and travel light, I 've always selected the saloon car, although have gotten everything from SUV to a van. This trip I'm taking family and a bit baffled my luggage terms. Can I assume that a suitcase means a checked bag over the usual 22"/ 23" requirement for carry-on and that hand luggage refers to carry-on bag size which would be less than 23"?

There will be eight of us and have not convinced everyone that carry-on is the way to go. I'm looking at reserving two cars with 4 passengers each. My daughter and son-in-law will be taking larger bags ( about 26" ) my grandsons ...thanks to their clever Granna who purchased carry on size luggage for their Christmas will be fine ( under 23" ) each person will have a backpack (day size). My son, daughter- in-law and granddaughter are more travel savvy and each has a carry on size bag ( less than 23" ) and each will have a day pack. However, they will have a bag of climbing gear just under 50 lbs. and about 36"x24"x 9" or 10" .

Guess after all this verbosity, I'm simply asking if the day packs will be counted or not since they can be held in lap or on the floor. Several years ago I had a driver very upset with me because I had a tote bag which easily sat on my lap but had not been included with other luggage ( traveling with husband). He insisted that I owed him more for the 'extra' bag. After a long trip I was not in the mood to argue, so I paid but was not happy about it. This time I just don't want any hassles in the first 24 hours. ;)

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