lock your baggage

Apr 11th, 2003, 07:11 PM
  #1  
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lock your baggage

Is it better to lock your checked baggage or not these days? Haven't flown in several years.
betha is offline  
Apr 11th, 2003, 07:16 PM
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It is claimed that if your luggage is locked and the scanner reveals something suspicious, the lock will be broken and your luggage searched. But if you use the plastic ties (available in any hardware store), the claim is that it will be replaced if it has to be broken. This will presumably deter opportunistic pilferers down the line.
Michael is online now  
Apr 11th, 2003, 07:20 PM
  #3  
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Thanks, Michael. We'll go with the plastic ties!
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Apr 11th, 2003, 08:19 PM
  #4  
ita
 
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Qu'est-ce que c'est plastic ties to lock your luggage-also what kind of chains do you use to secure your luggage on trains?
ita is offline  
Apr 11th, 2003, 08:30 PM
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March 22, we flew on Continental.
I did not lock my luggage. When we checked in at the airport, I asked them to x-ray it then put the plastic ties that I had gotten at the hardware store on them. They said they would do it with Continentals ties. They did. Everything was fine.
Coming back, the same. I spoke to the agent about this and they said that if something showed up on the x-ray, they would open the lock/break it and search the bag. Then they would put on a plastic tie and a sticker telling the owner of the bag that it had been searched.
Great advice that I got from here:
Take a small pair of nail clippers and put them in the checked luggage outer pocket. That way you can cut the ties, either at the airport or your hotel.
Scarlett is offline  
Apr 11th, 2003, 09:19 PM
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Just went to Hawaii out of LAX a couple weeks ago and they asked for the keys to our bags before they put them on the x-ray machine. we had to stand there before they clear. My view before flites from anywhere, tell them you have locks AND plastic ties and request to stand there while they x ray it. At least request they page you if they need to get in the bag and carry many extry plastic ties and a few extra locks in case they get cut.The big prolem is that you cannot carry scissors to cut the ties, so when you check into the hotel, have the bell people cut them WHEN you get to your room, (not before for obvious reasons!)
the bottom line is.... CARRY what is valuable and pack what you can live without.
Valuable purchases: ship insured.
Deloris is offline  
Apr 11th, 2003, 11:21 PM
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What does one do with hardside luggage that has the locks built in when one doesn't want to leave the bag unlocked for, especially, an international trip? The plastic ties and extra locks are not an option. I've never heard that you can ask the airline/security people to page you if the luggage needs to be opened.
flyaway is offline  
Apr 11th, 2003, 11:42 PM
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I recently bought the kind of security "clips" (Safety Seal by Lewis N. Clark) that you can only use once. The only way to get them off is to break it and each has a unique number imprinted on it-so I think they're probably more secure than a conventional padlock type. They come in a pack of 20 for about $5. I bought them in a luggage store (Luggage 2000 in a mall).

The only thing is I had to cut it off in the end, so you'll have to see if they'll work with your luggage.
Nidwaldner_Chris is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 05:01 AM
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It seems to me that if you can cut off a plastic tie with nail clippers, it isn't any more secure than leaving the tie off completely. Am I being obtuse?
Nikki is online now  
Apr 12th, 2003, 05:32 AM
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I travel internationally quite a bit for work, and the last few times I've flown out of Detroit, I have not been permitted to lock my bags. In fact, I left my lock attached to the zipper pull on a trip to India last month, and they cut the lock off, even though it was serving no purpose. It seems they do as they see fit, regardless of the restraint or lack thereof that you decide to use.
Frequent_Flyer is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 05:34 AM
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Re: the ties..you know the little clippers are there but no one else does. The luggage is tied shut. Makes it a lot easier to open without calling the guy at the hotel. If the airport screeners need to cut them, they have their own cutters. But then they always tape it shut again/or tie it and leave a note telling you that they did it.
Re: hardside luggage. My son has a big silver hard piece of luggage. He just went back to Japan with it. They sell these straps that you wrap around the whole thing, they close with a buckle kinda thing
after his luggage was checked, they put additional tape over the locks for him, although they were not actually locked.
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Apr 12th, 2003, 08:42 AM
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Airlines told me-- "NO WAY are we going to page you for your KEYS to your LOCKS"-- "We will break them off instead"--

Airlines have no TIME to call you for keys--

Use the PLASTIC TIES and also try to request they search your luggage IN FRONT OF YOU--

This means GET to the AIRPORT WAY WAY earlier than usual.....

You can also buy these ties at your local HOME DEPOT....and carry fingernail clippers to open them at your destination.....
andy is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 10:23 AM
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I'm with Nikki and can't fathom how a plastic tie could possibly deter a thief.

I use hard luggage with a strap but that's just to provide a little extra assistance for the other closures. The lock fell out a few years ago and I never bothered to have it repaired or replaced.

Maybe my luggage looks so tattered that no self respecting thief would bother.

jsmith is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 11:04 AM
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for jsmith: I think the idea of the plastic tie is if a thief has only a few minutes to open a bag and steal something, they are unlikely to cut a tie off a bag to get it open if there is a bag next to it without a tie. Thiefs need to work quickly and the extra 30 seconds to cut off a tie makes a difference to them.

I flew on US Air last week and they searched my bag at check in and then put plastic ties on every zipper.

Thanks for the nail clipper idea to get it off - they are impossible to break off without something sharp (which you can't take on the plane) and the nail clipper is a great solution!!
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Apr 12th, 2003, 11:13 AM
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Scarlett, it never occurred to me that thieves would look for my nail clippers to cut the plastic; it would be much easier for them to keep their own in their pockets.

A couple of years ago, I had several things stolen from my suitcase, probably at CDG airport. The next time I traveled, I locked my suitcase, as did my daughter. Both locks were gone when we picked up our bags. Nothing was missing. This was before the airport security folks told everyone not to lock their bags.

I read an article, wish I remembered where, about baggage employees at some airports (the article concentrated on Miami) going through all the bags because they are so badly paid, and they seemed to have plenty of time to do it.

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Apr 12th, 2003, 11:40 AM
  #16  
 
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An alternative to nail clippers to cut plastic ties... I bought child's round tipped scissors, avail at Target, drug stores, for about $2-$3. I kept these slipped into orig package, in outer pocket of soft sided luggage w/ no problems so far.
bitsy is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 12:53 PM
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Exactly ! bitsy,
I keep small nail clippers in the outer pockets. Theives go for the easy and fast way-they aren't going to bother with those ties, those suckers are hard to get off!
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Apr 12th, 2003, 01:41 PM
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for jsmith: I think the idea of the plastic tie is if a thief has only a few minutes to open a bag and steal something, they are unlikely to cut a tie off a bag to get it open if there is a bag next to it without a tie. Thiefs need to work quickly and the extra 30 seconds to cut off a tie makes a difference to them.

I flew on US Air last week and they searched my bag at check in and then put plastic ties on every zipper.

Thanks for the nail clipper idea to get it off - they are impossible to break off without something sharp (which you can't take on the plane) and the nail clipper is a great solution!!
kimbers is offline  
Apr 12th, 2003, 01:56 PM
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Two questions. How many have lost items from their luggage? How many have permanently lost luggage?
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Apr 12th, 2003, 02:48 PM
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Flying for 30-odd years and never lost a piece of luggage and never had it broken into
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