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Tips to Avoid Lost Luggage

Old Aug 25th, 2006, 11:00 AM
  #1  
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Tips to Avoid Lost Luggage

I know that I have read suggestions for labeling your luggage to help ensure it makes it to your destination and ideas in case it gets lost that show where you'll be staying. Can't seem to find any posts on this using the search function. So I'm looking for ideas. Mostly packing just the restricted items and everything else will be carry on. I will be sure the luggage is tagged properly when checking in, will put the first 3-4 nights hotel names, phone numbers and addresses inside my suitcase. What other ideas do you all have? Obviously I'm someone who never checked luggage and really want to do whatever I can to ensure it arrives at my destination. thanks!
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 11:09 AM
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I don't know what else you can do. As long as it's tagged properly, the rest is kind of up to fate, I think. I do always put contact info on a paper inside (basically, a copy of my itinerary), also, but that's in case it does go astray for them to contact you.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 11:19 AM
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Several on-line travel supppliers sell a luggage tag that has room inside it for information on your destination. Might be a good idea.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 11:35 AM
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Always leave plenty of time for connections.

My theory is that most lost luggage occurs when the bag can't make it across the airport in time.

I always check my bag (being too short to reach the overhead bins), and I've only lost 1 bag in 25 years, and that was the reason -- 2 minutes between flights due to weather (adjacent gates) and the bag couldn't keep up.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 12:39 PM
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Assumong the plane arrives on time, there are two hours until the connecting flight. Hopefully that is enough time.
Underhill, would u happen to know on which sites I might find those luggage tags? thanks
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 12:42 PM
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Make sure they tag it for the correct airport and that any plane changes have adequate time. I don't see how you can do any more than that.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 01:39 PM
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TravelSmith and Magellans.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 01:45 PM
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Years ago, people used to have address labels on thier luggage, as well as the airline tags. Nowadays, I notice that very few have separate luggage tags. We always attach our own tags, giving our name, flight no, and destination. then on the way home, we use the reverse to give same, plus home address. So far, so good. [touch wood]
I'm not sure about the availability of such tags; we tried to buy some in Germany but failed completely - our German friends hadn't even got a word for them!
I like the idea of posting my itinerary inside - but not sure how this works if you have used a decent padlock?
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 02:30 PM
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1. Be sure to get to the airport early and allow plenty of time between flights.

2. When checking your bags, doublecheck the airport code on the tag attached to your bags before they're whisked off.

3. Spend a few days at your arrival city, allowing for your bags to catch up. (I remember a queue of us reporting lost luggage at the Venice airport. The guy in front of me was leaving that same day on a cruise. Wonder when he got his bags? Ours arrived the next evening.)
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 02:36 PM
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As others have said - make sure your name and destination address is inside the bag. That way if your eternal luggage tag disappears, your bag still has identification.

On our way back from Germany last month, our luggage didn't make our connecting flight. We were pretty sure it hadn't since we barely made the connection - LOL. The airline delivered it the next day, no problems. If that happens on your way to your vacation, you can just have the airline bring the bag to your hotel when it arrives. I always make sure I have a couple changes of clothing in my carry-on. In the past I also carried on my toiletries, but I guess now I would just make a quick stop at the store for a few things to tide me over - LOL.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 02:36 PM
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annhig, padlock? i don't think that's allowed.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 04:51 PM
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Until very recently I would have said carry on everything whenever possible. But due to the recent turn of events, that advice no longer applies.

I have had lost luggage 7 times. Several of those times were due to short layovers, but not always. Once I had a 4 hour layover and my bag still missed the flight. Another time there was no layover involved, but my bag stayed on the plane and got a free trip to Seattle, while I got off the plane in Tulsa.

On the bright side, I always got my stuff back within a couple of days. So instead of giving tips for not losing luggage, let me give you some tips to make sure you get it back, straight from the Queen of Lost Luggage (that's me )

1. When you check in your luggage you are given a claim ticket. Be sure to keep that with you until you see your suitcase again. If your luggage gets misdirected, that claim tag can be a great help to track your bag.

2. I agree with Mirmar's advice about spending a day or so at your arrival city if you are going on a cruise. If not, then your bag will be delivered to wherever you are going, but of course, that will involve more travel time for the bag.

3. The airline will ask for a description of your bag. If it's a black or navy bag, then the airline employee picking it up for you will have a heck of a time spotting in on the carousel. So get a suitcase that isn't so generic looking.

4. When you reach your arrival city, don't waste any time getting to the baggage carousel. Most airports do not check claim tags, so anyone can walk off with your bag, either by accident or on purpose. This is yet another reason to follow my tip #3.

5. Of course, make sure you have address tags not just on the outside of your bag but inside as well. The outer tag can come off, so have a tag they can readily find if they need to open your bag.
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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 05:10 PM
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Don't just put a piece of paper inside your suitcase but put a luggage tag attached to a zipper. A paper can fall out. A luggage tag inside will be securely fastened.



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Old Aug 25th, 2006, 05:22 PM
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Don;t check in late - there's a much greater chance your luggage will go missing.

Don;t use any short connection times (ditto)

Make sure the airline puts the correct (final) desination tag on the luggage.

Put your entire itinerary inside your luggage - under the strap that holds the clothes down - so it can't be blown away if the luggage opens accidentally

Make your luggage look differnt (use either one of those muti-colored elastic straps and/or neon name tags etc) - so you and everyone else can ID it immediately
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 05:42 AM
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I've never heard that it's not allowed to lock your case, either with keys provided[ inevitably lost] or with a padlock as sold for the purpose at many airports. Why wouldn't it be allowed?
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 05:55 AM
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We use a bright (rainbow) luggage strap each. Easy to spot, particularly on the baggage belt. TIP: In case a bag goes missing we split our clothes up so that I get half of my wife's and vice versa. I just hope I don't get searched - "Err, I can explain those frilly knickers officer"
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 06:00 AM
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we have straps with our name on - purchased years ago through one of those "innovations " catelogues we all used to be plagued with. Also we try to divide up our clothes - be careful with the shoes though!
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 07:47 AM
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annhig, in the US TSA must be able to open your bag. We used to close our bags with cable ties. (Remember to leave some scissors in an outer pocket so you can cut the cable ties at your destination.) But my bag was always opened and inspected. (I think it's the books.) So we bought combination TSA locks, which can be opened by a special TSA key.
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 08:14 AM
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Sorry, yes I guess that must be only for domestic travel within the U.S. TSA can/will cut off padlocks to inspect bags for security reasons. So I use plastic cable ties or kitchen wire twist ties to hold zipper closed instead. I am used to the idea that my bag is not locked and pack accordingly (no valuables).
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Old Aug 26th, 2006, 08:23 AM
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I love my Magellen Retreiver tags, with space for itinerary and ID and they are also big and bright yellow and easy to spot coming off the carousel

http://magellans.co.uk/store/Holiday..._25LA311?Args=
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