Lost, Delayed and Damaged Luggage – Tips You Need to Know Before You Fly...

You have either seen it or heard about this gut wrenching experience. Your airplane arrives at your final destination – you walk down to baggage claim – and stand at the baggage carousel for what seems like eternity. You watch everyone else’s bags come down the conveyor belt. Then the carousel comes to an abrupt stop. You stand there staring at the empty baggage carousel when your head starts filling with panic about what happened to your luggage. Then the most important thought enters your mind – what should I do next and who’s responsible? Interesting statistics about luggage problems with the airlines, last year air travel increased about 5% among air travelers but complaints about baggage doubled. Roughly the airline industry mishandled about 6 out of every 1000 bags.  That’s not too bad, unless the bag that is lost belongs to you.  The airlines have a higher stake now more than ever to ensure your luggage gets to you. The amount the airline has to pay you for your lost luggage has increased over the years, which has resulted in airlines struggling to find a better way to move and track luggage, but they still have to deal the majority of the time with an outdated system. The manner in which airlines move and track luggage has stayed the same for the last ten years or so.  Except for a few airports that have placed electronic scanners throughout the baggage process, most airlines have no way to tell where your luggage is. What is on the horizon for the tracking of luggage is a new sophisticated system that tags bags with a radio transmitter that would allow the tracking of bags just like FedEx tracks a package.  United Airlines has taken the first step in deploying more than 600 hand held scanners to track luggage. But until this technology is wide spread or other improvements are made in the luggage system, travelers must understand the process in which...

Travel Scams to Avoid on Your Next Trip Overseas

The Most Common Travel Scams You Want to Avoid on Your Next Trip Read on to learn a few of the tricks that sneak thieves and con artists have waiting in store for you in. The purpose of the scams is to steal from you. The scammers want your possession or your money. You want to hold onto both. So read the below as an eye opener. Be aware and you won’t fall for the scams. Sneak Thieves (Lessons from the Peruvian Experts) You are lying down resting in a park. (This is just an invitation to thieves in any city). Your day pack is firmly under your head. Suddenly something strikes you on the leg. “Hey look out! Oh sorry!” A couple of kids nearby are playing, and their ball hit you. No problem. You lay back down. Your bag is gone! You spin around, but your bag has disappeared into thin air! You turn back and the kids are gone too. You are sitting on a bench, or leaning against a low wall, waiting for a bus, or a friend. Your bag is right beside you where you can see it; your hand is resting on it. A man in a suit walks along in front of you, stuffing something into his pocket. A 100-peso note flutters to the ground right in front of you as he walks off. You reach down and grab it, calling out to him. Forget the rest of the story, your bag is already gone! You are on the train. You have stowed your bag safely over your head and just ahead of you, where you can see it. At the next station, a few people get on. Then, just before the train pulls out, several men come running through the car shouting loudly and waving their arms. They are pushing each other around, yelling frantically, and pointing to the other side of the train. The car is in an uproar. You stand...

Tips on How to Avoid Lost Luggage

Bags get lost, stolen, opened by dishonest employees, or break open while being handled. The occurrence rate for this is low, but it does happen. Nearly 1.8 million pieces of luggage were lost, stolen, or damaged by major U.S. airlines in 2012—and that’s just on domestic flights.That is a mishandling of 3.09 bags per 1,000 passengers. These tips on how to avoid lost luggage will increase the likelihood that both you and your bag arrive at you destination Luggage is designed to carry our clothes, you should never place an item of value inside checked luggage if it is irreplaceable – especially photographs, important papers, laptops, or items of high dollar value like jewelry which would be difficult to replace. The best way to travel with valuables is to pack them in your carry-on luggage. 1. Never place anything you need within the next 24 hours in your check luggage such as medicine, or business presentation materials. 2. Fly non-stop whenever possible; arrive at the airport early to make sure your luggage has enough time to be properly placed on board. 3. Attach your contact information on your luggage, use a sturdy luggage tag that won’t rip off. And place a copy of your itinerary inside your bag if it needs to be opened to determine ownership or destination include a cell phone number or email address. 4. Only use TSA accepted luggage locks. These new type of locks allow only you and the TSA ( with a special override tool to open them) Non-TSA locks will be cut off leaving your bags vulnerable. 5. Ship your luggage ahead to your destination, with a services like FedEx, Luggage Concierge or Virtual Bellhop. It  saves you hours of time. No need to stand in line checking luggage, or waiting for it upon landing. Hotel will accept and hold your luggage until you arrive. Shipping fees can be less than the airlines’ fees for overweight or over-sized (think sports gear) luggage. (Side note always...

New Smartphone App Checks the Status of Your Luggage and Where it is...

Ever been sitting on the plane and wondering whether your bags are too? With the new Delta app feature you can even track your bags while in flight. Delta passengers can download a free smartphone app that features, among other things, a way to for travelers to track their bags, even while in flight.  Whether it’s a flight across the country or across the pond, we know how important it is that your bags travel where you do.  That’s where the new Delta Baggage Tracking App can help out. Now when you download the latest update to the Delta app, you’ll be able to track your checked bag – just like you track a package. So how does it work? Once the free app is downloaded, simply enter the number on your bag receipt — or scan with the bar code with your phone — and watch your bag’s journey from departure to arrival and all points in between. Plus you’ll even know which carousel they arrive. With this app, you can enjoy other new features, like the ability to pay for your bags during mobile check-in, accessing airport maps and aircraft information and viewing a complete list of Delta Sky Club® locations so you’re never left wondering where to go. The app is available for iPhone, Windows Phone, Android and BlackBerry. Download at www.delta.com.  Here is a video on how it works: Here is an interesting video of where you luggage...

Understanding Luggage Insurance Offer by the Airlines

Airlines are required by U.S. regulations to compensate travelers for up to $3,300 in the event that checked bags are lost or damaged. But that’s only for domestic travel. For most international flights, bag liability is limited to approximately $9.07 per pound for checked bags, which is virtually nothing (a 30 lb. bag gets you $270 in coverage; note that some international airlines follow a different convention. British Airways, for example, limits bag claims to approx. $1700). For some people–those traveling with Louis Vuitton trunks, Vera Wang wedding gowns, or simply a lot of expensive clothing–$3300 simply isn’t enough coverage, and for almost everyone, $270 is way too little. That’s where something called “excess valuation” (EV) can come in handy, which is a must for international travel. Never heard of this? Well, the airline rep checking your bag at the airport isn’t likely to tell you about it unless you ask. So let us explain. Many airlines will cover an additional $1700 of your luggage and its contents beyond the Federally-mandated $3300 (they don’t call it “insurance” because they’re not insurance companies, they’re airlines) if you declare excess value when you check your bags, the cost of which varies from one airline to another–usually for just $10 per $1000 of coverage, although United charges five times what most airlines do. Depending on airline, coverage may only cover you in the event of total loss, not merely damage, to the contents and not to the bag itself. Some international airlines also sell EV coverage, but their web sites, the most readily available source of information, are either vague or woefully out of date, and good luck calling their toll free reservation numbers to get clarification. Your best bet is to inquire at the airport check in counter or a local sales office before your trip. One international carrier that is more straightforward is Taiwanese-based EVA, which sells EV for 50 cents per $100 declared up to a limit of $2500...

Luggage Handlers Caught on Video Mishandling Your Bags

Don’t pack valuables or breakables in check luggage Ever wonder what happens with your luggage when you give it to the airlines?  Most of the time…nothing…. You pick up your luggage at your final destination and you are on your way.  However, ever wonder why luggage becomes damaged when the airlines handle it….or why you should be careful about placing items of value in your luggage.  Watch the below videos to reaffirm your reasons why you never want to put any thing of value in your luggage. Note: The airlines really do an efficient job handling luggage.  These videos caught a few examples of employees handling luggage badly. This video should convince you never to put items of value in your...