Tips for saving luggage from being lost

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As lost baggage claims skyrocket, a veteran of the airline industry has written a book to reduce the risk of losing luggage at the airport.

Scott Mueller, author of The Empty Carousel: A Consumer’s Guide to Checked and Carry-on Luggage, said his book offers tips to stop what he says is a growing problem.

More than 10,000 bags are lost every day in the United States, and worldwide more than 240,000 suitcases are never found, said Mueller, who worked as the system manager for baggage services at one of the largest domestic airlines for five years.

Lack of identification is the number one reason for lost bags, he said.

Other tips from the book include:

  • The name on the bag must match the name of the person traveling, and the name, address and telephone number must be written clearly.
  • Name tags must be sturdy and attached firmly enough to withstand getting caught in mechanical belts and being handled by workers.
  • Include a legal-size sheet of paper with identification and itinerary into a plastic bag inside luggage so it’s visible to someone looking for identification.
  • Add a colorful and unique visual means for identifying your luggage.
  • Be sure to ask the airline during check in to check bags all the way to your destination.