Bag Drops for Races

I can’t say we have this whole race thing down to a science, but we’ve been around the block once or twice, and we’ve learned a thing or two. There are so many things that come into play on race day, and where runners can store their things at bag drops is something you might not think of when you’re checking off your to-do list.


First of all, this is the most pertinent for longer races. Think marathons: runners sometimes arrive to the race site hours before go-time, and bring layers of clothes, tons of food and everything else in between

At most of the events we help organize, we offer two different types of runner storage. One is the honor system, and the other, a more secure, yet more expensive alternative, The Mobile Locker Co.

Bag Drops with the Honor System

In all likelihood, this is probably a great choice for your race. What we typically do is set up a barricaded area near day-of registration/packet pick up. Each bib is printed with a tear off tag to attach to a bag, i.e., runner 262 detaches the tag from their bib, and ties it onto their bag. We set up a small barricaded area for people to drop their bags pre-race, and pick them up after. Of all the races we’ve done, we’ve never heard complaints of anything being stolen. Good for runners… and honest group!

Bag Drops with the Volunteers 

Another option employs the technique for the honor system, but adds a few volunteers to the process. At one race we did last spring, we had about 2,500 people, and a larger space for the barricades, so we did the set up a little differently. The key here was having 4-5 volunteers work on organizing the bags numerically upon the initial dropoff. When a runner showed up after the race, they presented their bib to the volunteers, and someone would grab their bag. Easy peasy, and pretty secure! This would probably be the middle ground of the options,

The Mobile Locker Co

I’m sure there are more similar companies to this, but we’ve worked with a company located in Boston, called the Mobile Locker Co. You might have seen them at such events like the Falmouth Road Race, Ironman races, Spartan races, etc. Check out their website here. The Mobile Locker Co sends a truck to be staffed by their employees race day. Runners can lock up their valuables in a secure spot for the duration of the race, and pick them up whenever they’re ready. Runners pay for this service, making it an affordable option for you!