According to SITA, an IT vendor, about 21.8 millions of bags were mishandled last year. The reasons: low airline budget, airport congestion, shorter flight time interval, and stricter security. Airline defended that most of the bags were not delayed. Airport personnel are able to return the bags on average of 31 hours after it was reported missing. But even though it was only for slightly more than a day—or even if they were handed over earlier, the fact that your bag did not arrive at your expected time of arrival can be upsetting.
Susan Foster, the woman who wrote “Smart Packing for Today’s Traveler,” recommends these actions to avoid losing your luggage while on travel.
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Use a durable ID tag
Attach a tag on your bag containing your name, phone number, or e-mail address. Make sure that you use a sturdy strap and cover for the tag so it won’t easily come off. Choose also a tag that has cover to hide your contact information for privacy purposes.
Put another identification tag inside the bag
Aside from attaching tag outside your bag, you also insert another one on the outside pocket of your bag so that if the outside tag is accidentally removed while in transit, the airline can trace you in the event that your bag is delayed or misrouted.
Mark your bags in unique ways
You are not the only traveler using a black bag. Aside from the tag you’ve attached on it, you need another marking that would allow you to immediately identify your bag. Try tying bright ribbons or cloth onto the handles or huge pendant with your initials or colored stick-on letters on all sides of the bag. Then take a picture of the bag so in case it gets misplaced, just show the photo including the share, color, brand, and the markings on the bag to the airline officers for easier identification and recovery of your luggage.
Discard any old baggage claim tags
Remove old claim tags from your luggage to avoid confusion.
Check in earlier
Airlines advise passengers to check in at least 90 minutes ahead of the departure time (two hours if you’re traveling international). But if you are traveling during peak seasons, be at the check-in counter 30 minutes earlier because there is a chance that last-minute checked bags may not be screened on time and not make it onto your plane.
Double check your bag’s destination
Before leaving the check-in area, make sure that the ticket attached to your bag has the correct information such as the destination and flight number.