It’s one of the worst-case scenarios when travelling: you’ve arrived at your destination, and your suitcase hasn’t. Sadly, it’s an increasingly common occurence for frequent flyers, with the latest Air Consumer Travel Report from the Department of Transportation showing that nearly 238,000 bags were mishandled in May 2023, up about 45 per cent from the same period last year.
But don’t panic just yet. There are ways to lessen the stress, including investing in a luggage tracker. These little devices work via Bluetooth, or less frequently GPS, connecting to your phone so you can always see your case’s location. It won’t prevent the airline from misplacing your suitcase in the first instance, but by knowing exactly where it is when you land, you’ll be able to help the airline assist you as swiftly as possible.
For example, when our writer Rachel Chang lost her luggage, the airline’s baggage tracking app assured her it had reached her Heathrow destination. It was, in fact, still halfway across the world in New Jersey, ultimately leaving her luggage-free for three days before they were reunited. So, by investing in an Apple AirTag or similar tracker, you can potentially avoid spending the beginning of your holiday repeatedly calling the airline for updates; something everyone can surely appreciate.
These trackers have other uses, too. You could keep one in your car’s glovebox before you fly so that you can find it in the car park immediately upon your return. Most can be attached to a keyring, so you can say goodbye to misplacing your keys, and they’re small enough to slip inside a purse or wallet, too. Just check the tag works with your phone’s operating system before you buy – some are Android only, and others just for iOS.
Here are our top luggage tracker recommendations to buy in 2023, some with discounts of up to 30 per cent over the Black Friday period. We’ve also rounded up the chicest baggage tags for your case, too.
The best luggage trackers to buy in 2023
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