If you’re going on a trip to an international destination soon, you’re probably pretty excited. After all, getting to see new sights and meet new people is always fantastic. However, something that you might be a little worried about is your luggage.
Yes, luggage does get broken into and items do get stolen. Unfortunately, this is something that happens more often than people would like to think. There are times where you may go to collect your luggage at the airport, just to realize it has been broken into. Then, you open it up, + and realize that many of your valuables are missing.
Now, thievery is not the only issue that we might be faced with when it comes to your luggage. Although it is a rare occurrence, some people may try to tamper with your luggage in one way or another. Some people may try to tamper with the contents or do something else that they just shouldn’t be doing.
Therefore, today, we want to talk about how you can secure your luggage for airline travel. We are going to go over a number of different tips on how to secure luggage for air travel. Our main goal is to keep you and your luggage safe, as well as the people around you. Let’s get to it and keep your luggage safe.
How to Secure Luggage for Air Travel: Top Tips
Below, we have listed what are some of the most valuable tips that you can follow when it comes to securing your luggage for air travel.
1. Getting the Right Lock Matters
One of the simplest things that you can do to keep your luggage secure for air travel is to get a good lock. The simple reality is that suitcases that have locks are far less likely to get broken into than those that do not.
Criminals who want to steal things from your luggage only have so much time to do so before they have to move on. Therefore, criminals are most likely to select luggage that is not locked. Even having the simplest and most basic of locks should be good enough to keep criminals at bay.
However, if you want to be extra safe, going for a high-quality lock is recommended. For one, this means getting a lock that is made with solid, high-quality metal. You then also want the shackle to be made out of high-quality hardened steel or braided steel. You need that lock to be tamper and pry proof.
Now, keyed locks tend to be a bit safer than combination locks, but you have to worry about losing the key. Therefore, getting a combination lock is the official recommendation here. That said, the more digits are needed for the combination, the more secure the lock is going to be. So, we do recommend going for a lock that has at least four digits in the combination.
The other thing that you need to keep in mind is that the lock in question should be TSA approved. This means that TSA agents will be able to get into your luggage with their own master key.
The right TSA-approved lock allows TSA agents to get in without having to break the lock. Therefore, this will keep your luggage safe from thieves, while also allowing TSA agents to perform their jobs as mandated.
2. Keep Your Valuables On You
Having a high-quality suitcase with the right luggage lock is going to matter. However, this is not to say that these are not going to be able to ever get into your luggage. Thieves can be pretty smart and ingenious.
Sometimes they are able to break luggage locks and steal belongings. Therefore, a good way to avoid having your valuables stolen is to not have them in your luggage in the first place.
In other words, anything that is valuable and you don’t want stolen, should be kept with your carry-on baggage. Even better is if you keep it right on your person.
The simple reality is that there are people out there who will steal right out of your carry-on luggage. And maybe you turn your back to check your ticket or to talk to somebody, and that’s when they strike.
Therefore, you also want to secure your day pack or carry-on luggage. First and foremost, you should wear a backpack that has dual straps. Dual straps are always better than one strap, as it makes it harder for a thief to rip the bag right off of your body.
You also don’t want the bag to be loose hanging off of your body, because people can easily snatch it from you.
Furthermore, you don’t want to keep your bottles in the small outside pockets, as thieves may be able to get into these. The thief may be able to open up an outside zipper without even noticing.
Therefore, you should keep your belongings in the main pockets, buried under less valuable belongings, such as clothing. You may even want to use a locked section in your backpack for this purpose.
Of course, never leave pockets open or zippers undone. There are pickpockets out there who will be more than happy to take valuables right off of your person.
3. The Right Luggage Matters Too
Although this might not be a way to secure your luggage, it is a way to keep your valuables safe. In other words, here we are talking about getting a good hard-sided piece of luggage.
Hard-sided luggage features very hard walls. This helps to protect your belongings from impacts and damage. Hard-sided luggage is also more durable than soft-sided luggage in general.
Yes, getting the right piece of luggage in the first place does matter. Keep in mind that there are pieces of luggage out there that come with TSA-approved locks integrated into them. Getting a combination suitcase and TSA-approved lock always make things easier.
4. Pack Your Own Bags – Never Let Them Out of Sight
Another thing to remember is that you always want to pack your own bags. This is one of the first things that any custom agent or airline will tell you. Never let anybody else pack your own bag. There are always unsuspecting travelers who end up carrying illegal items because some nefarious criminal ended up adding it into their suitcase.
Always carry your own things and never carry something for anybody else. At the same time, you also never want to leave your bag unattended. Never let your bag out of sight, even if you go to the bathroom.
Have the suitcase beside you or even go into a bathroom stall where you can take the suitcase with you. You never want anybody else to have access to your luggage without you being in attendance. You never want to give anybody else the opportunity to tamper with your luggage in any way.
5. Get Travel Insurance
Sometimes, no matter what you do, things go wrong. Maybe your suitcase takes a beating and your valuables get broken. Maybe thieves got into your suitcase and stole everything inside of it. Maybe thieves stole the whole suitcase.
Therefore, a good solution here is to get some good travel insurance that covers your luggage and your valuables. The simple reality is that sometimes things just go wrong, and no level of security is going to make a difference. Therefore, in the event that your values do get broken or go messy, at least you’ll be covered by insurance.
As you can see, your best defense against thieves is a good TSA approved lock and a good piece of travel luggage. If you follow the tips as listed above, securing your luggage should be possible. However, remember that sometimes there’s just nothing you can do, with travel insurance being your final line of defense.