Ben Squires

Travel Tips

The real reason your luggage is lost in transit

The real reason your luggage is lost in transit

There’s nothing worse than that moment of realisation you get when, standing at an empty luggage carousel, you realise your bags are anywhere in the world but here.  

SITA, a company specialising in air transport, has published a study revealing the most common reasons bags are misplaced in transit and tips on how to avoid it.

2015 it turns out was a historically good year for luggage retention, with the total number of mishandled bags diminishing about 50 per cent from 2007 to 2015. Worldwide, out of every 1000 passengers only around six bags are being misplaced.

But it still wasn’t perfect, and 23 million bags were still misplaced.  

SITA has outlined the top reasons luggage doesn’t make it to where it’s supposed to be, as well as some tips to help make sure your bags makes the trip safely.

Reasons for lost luggage:

  • Lost during a transfer – This was the major reason for luggage being misplaced and the cause of over half the reported misplaced luggage occurrences.
  • Ticketing errors, bag switches or security issues – Around 19 per cent of lost bags fell into this category, suggesting that human error still plays a role.
  • Delayed due to airport, customs, and weather or space/weight restrictions – This broad category accounted for almost 16 per cent of the lost luggage.
  • Failure to load the bag or mishandling at arrival station – This was the reason behind four per cent of the bags that were mishandled.
  • Tagging Error – With significant advancements in bag handling technology tagging errors accounted for only four per cent of lost luggage.
SITA also offered some advice for making sure your bag makes it all the way to the desired destination, suggesting air passengers take the following precautions:

  • Avoid short connections.
  • Put a form of identification on the bag.
  • Double check the destination tag.
  • Pack luggage carefully avoiding restricted items.
  • Consider purchasing a personal luggage tracking device.
Have you ever been unlucky enough to lose luggage when making a connection, and if so what did you do? What advice would you give for people who have?

Share your thoughts in the comments.

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