It's been 1 full year since I started using DUFL as my virtual closet and full time travel wardrobe hack. I've had ample time to test out their customer service, delivery times and value for price paid. When people learn that I have been using a virtual closet for the past 12 months, they always ask: “Is it really worth the cost?” I knew I had to write a DUFL review blog to explore this in more detail.
My quick answer to that is:
Oh hell yeah!
In this review post I am going to break down all of the costs of using DUFL, plus how I use the service in day to day life. Yes, I am an ambassador of the service, but don't think for a second I would still be one after a year if it was subpar. (Or if it didn't dramatically make my life easier.) DUFL has become as essential to me as a wifi connection on a workday… I need it to be the most streamlined and productive version of myself.
When I was considering using DUFL I searched the internet for reviews so I could better understand what tasks and frustrations it would solve. I am hoping to give as much detailed information in this DUFL review blog so that you can decide if it's right for you!
DUFL Review - How it Works:
You likely stumbled across this blog because you have already been researching how DUFL works, but just incase you don't know what DUFL is…
DUFL is a premium travel service that helps primarily with clothing. It's been coined as a ‘business travelers' service, but it has so many more applications I don't want to pigeon hole it.
In a nut shell, here is how it works:
This service was created to help people who travel a lot for work or pleasure to NOT have to stress about hauling things from point A to point B. It cuts down packing time, saves money on checked baggage and dry cleaning. Not to mention not having to fly home to get new clothes or buy more on location. It's a closet, travel and life hack all rolled into one.
The concept still blows my mind!
Like every normal person, I immediately thought a virtual closet and personal valet service like this must be flipping pricey! However, after using it for a full year and realizing what my other options would have cost me, I am 100% convinced DUFL actually pays for itself.
This video is an ‘over my shoulder' look at how the app works and what clothes I have in it:
The COST of DUFL in the USA
DUFL costs $99 for each 'round trip', meaning sending you a bag of all your stuff to your hotel, picking it back up, cleaning/folding everything and re-storing it into your app.
That price is for trips within the USA.
Here is why this price is phenomenal:
Checking a bag at the airport is going to be at least $50 roundtrip. Dry cleaning a weeks worth of business attire is going to run anywhere from $50 to $150 all on it's own. Right there DUFL pays for itself but that doesn't even take into consideration the time saved of not packing and the frustration saved of not lugging around extra weight. It's easy and it's freeing.
Cost of using DUFL Internationally
As a full time traveler, I'm more often on an international flight than a domestic one, so understanding the cost of using DUFL worldwide was important to me. Although the price can vary depending on how big your delivery is, time you need it and to specific country, here is an estimate based on where I have used it.
Approx ROUND TRIP International Prices:
- Canada: $199
- The UK: $325
- Asia: $450
Even if those numbers gave you sticker shock, I'm still saving by using DUFL on International trips. Here is the total breakdown of calculations on using DUFL over the last year, both domestically and internationally.
savings for not having to dry clean
Hate is a strong word, but I hate having dry cleaning on my to-do list. It's super annoying to drop off/pick up and I usually forget about it, which causes issues when I want to wear something that is dirty.
The average price per 1 item of dry cleaning is just over $10 (seems low to me!) DUFL has sent me around 100 items this year and taken care of dry cleaning/laundering for me, which normally would have cost me $1000.
Not having to check a 2nd bag
Some pro road warriors travel with only a carry-on, but that is NOT my reality. I carry everything I own with me full time, so there is no way it's fitting into a tiny piece of luggage. I can make it all fit into 1 checked bag, but before DUFL I was checking TWO bags (the horror!).
The round trip cost of checking a 2nd bag ranges from $35 to $100 depending on the airline. Looking back at the non-business class flights I took where I would have been charged for a 2nd bag, it would have totalled around $350 in extra baggage fees.
If you are a super frequent flyer, the cost of checking a bag or a 2nd bag could be much higher!
Not having to fly home to get clothes
Does this seem high maintenance? Well it might be, but it's what happens when you are a travelling woman. Climates change, plans change, and then my clothes need to change. I have done the whole “I'll just fly home quick on a cheap red-eye to grab what I need” and it never works out well!
This can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars and isn't worth the hassle.
Not having to keep a storage unit, or a condo back home.
Early 2017 I sold my house and 90% of my things to travel full time. This means, I don't have a closet at home, I don't even have a real permanent home at all!
There was a small part of me that wanted to keep my storage unit that cost $2000 a year, or even a small condo that would cost $10,000 a year to hold my STUFF. Insanity!
DUFL holds my stuff for me for $9.99 a month, which is a FRACTION of what the storage unit or condo would cost.
Not having to shop in a new country
Minimalism is something that has given me the kind of freedom I can't describe. The last thing in the world I want to do is start shopping, consuming and accumulating crap I don't need.
The clothes I have with DUFL are a fine tuned capsule waredrobe and I don't NEED anything new. I know what happens when I don't have easy access to my clothes… I make excuses to shop for new stuff and then down the road I have WAY TOO MUCH CRAP.
I'm saying NO to buying new clothes and shoes I don't need.
In my past life I would easily say things like “I will just buy a coat IF we go to a cold country!”
And then I get to the cold country.
Then I buy a $500 coat, new boots, 3 sweaters, thicker jeans, leather gloves and a scarf.
I just spent $3000 on clothes that DUFL could have sent me for 10% the cost.
The things you can't put a price on:
There is no monetary price I can put on things like sticking to my philosophy that ‘less is more' or not having arguments about who carries the 3rd checked bag. DUFL has allowed me to travel lighter, faster, easier and with less worries/guilt. I'm more organized, more efficient and generally happier. Sounds like a bunch of woo-woo crap to say a service can help with quality of life, but just think of what gave you anxiety the last time you travelled. I bet it was having too much stuff in your hands, wasting time at luggage carousels, and stressing about over-packing.
Countries I have used DUFL in
Over the last year I have personally used DUFL in:
- All over the US
Later this year I'll have the opportunity to use them throughout more countries in Asia, like Japan.
DUFL Shipping Times
In the USA, 3 business days is standard shipping. That means if you want your DUFL to be in your hotel room for Monday morning, spend 30 seconds ‘packing' on the app Wednesday.
If you have a quick last minute trip, they can do a super fast delivery for $49 extra.
While there's no specific rule of thumb for international shipments, this has been my experience:
For the normal and included shipping I have seen my bag arrive in Canada in 4 business days and Scotland/England in 5 business days. This won't always be the case, like in Indonesia where it took weeks because of customs.
All in all, their shipping and delivery times are impressively fast!
DUFL Customer Service Review
No matter what, there will be issues. Just like an airline can lose your luggage, DUFL can experience hold up's at customs.
I don't care about the actual problem happening as much as I care about how a company handles it.
I'll be honest… my Indonesia trip was kind of a nightmare. I was going from COLD Belgium in December to the HOT island of Bali. My bag was held up at customs and all I had with me were jeans, sweaters, wool coats. Pretty much the worst situation EVER.
However what made my sweaty, over-dressed mess better was their customer service team. They gave me an allowance to pick up some much needed items (like flip flops and shorts! Hallelujah!) while they worked tirelessly with grumpy customs on getting my bag released.
Because they had a procedure in place, I was able to get new clothes same day and start enjoying my time in Canggu, sans wool.
Who should use DUFL
Anyone who travels for business, is on the road more than home, or likes to have their stuff in ‘the cloud'. Equally DUFL is perfect for individuals who loathe dry cleaning and are chronic over-packers.
Listen, DUFL will even let you store your surf boards and golf clubs with them so they can ship them to your destination for you. In every way they are the ideal service for people who can't be bothered dragging around their stuff.
I have seen people use DUFL for a few trips here and there and I have seen people use it as a weekly service. If you want to travel more lightly and efficiently then you should absolutely give it a try!
My Favorite DUFL Hacks & Perks
Each time my DUFL is sent to me they always include a free gift from another company, called ‘DUFL BITS'. I have gotten skincare from Somme Institute, body wash from Das Boom and a much needed hangover cure from Blowfish. It's always a surprise and it's a part of opening my DUFL I really look forward to.
HOW IT FEELS TO OPEN IT
You know that feeling when you get a new Apple product and unpacking it gives you that dopamine high? I get the same sort of satisfaction from unpacking my DUFL. Everything is so neatly folded, lined with blue cloth and secured with a silver emblem sticker. My clothes are wrinkle free, clean and packaged around white tissue paper. It literally feels like getting new clothes every time! Not to mention how considerate they are when they pack an umbrella for me if the weather calls for rain.
TO ORDER/STOCK UP ON FAV ITEMS
I am not even sure if this is a perk they want advertised, but it's one of my favorite uses for DUFL! I have specific products I know and love and sometimes getting them while travelling is a pain in the butt! So, I simply have things like clothes, makeup and accessories shipped to my DUFL warehouse address so I always have my go-to's in stock.
PLANNING FOR EVENTS
It is much easier to look through a catalogued app then to try and imagine what might be hanging in the depths of my closet. I love using the app to help me plan outfits for events or photoshoots because I can save ‘packing' lists, which is just like ‘favouriting' items.
DUFL Promo Code
You will never know if DUFL is going to make your life easier unless you try it.
Since I love the service so much I asked DUFL if I could have a coupon code to give out to readers.
All you need to do is use code “KASHLEE” and you will get your first trip completely FREE (100% off!!), plus a free welcome kit for you to send them some of your clothes.
Sign up for DUFL right on their site.