Just like death and taxes, it is a foregone conclusion that the airlines will eventually lose your luggage. If they haven’t lost yours yet, prepare; your day is coming! Normally, it’s not such a big deal. Sure it’s inconvenient, but they deliver your bag to your hotel for you and usually it comes on the same day so actually; you could think of it as valet service for your bags, since you didn’t have to carry them. Things don’t go quite as smoothly when they lose your luggage on the way to an international destination, however. There are several reasons for this and it pays to be prepared for this tragedy.
So why is the lost luggage issue so much different when you travel abroad? First, there are scheduling problems. If you live in
Another thing that happens frequently overseas is that the bag’s owner (that’s you), doesn’t stay in the same place! If your bag finally does make it to
Now, what can we learn from this? The first thing that comes to mind is, “Don’t leave anything important in your checked bag!” This includes keys, prescription drugs, money, cell phones, etc. The next thing that comes to mind is, “Have some spare clothes with you in your carry-on bag!” If they’re going to lose your luggage they’ll likely lose it catastrophically, so you’ll need something to wear.
Personally, I never check bags when I go overseas. The wide-body jets that fly over there have much larger capacity in the overhead bins and I take advantage of it! On a ten day trip to
One last bonus advantage of returning home with only one roller bag in tow is that the customs officer usually waives you through. The lady with the steamer trunk in tow is the one who might be smuggling contraband!
EXTRA: If you have questions for Ken regarding business travel, hotels, airplanes, etc, please send an email! Your questions will be recorded and Ken will answer the best ones in his Ask the Expert podcast show.