Apple AirTags: A Travel Essential (No, Seriously!)

Apple AirTags: A Travel Essential (No, Seriously!)

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I have a confession to make, and I’m really embarrassed. Let me just blurt it out — we don’t have any Apple AirTags in our household, and we now have a delayed checked bag, and we don’t know where it is.

I’ve made a living providing travel advice on the internet for over 15 years now, I’ve written stories about Apple AirTags saving the day for travelers many times, yet… somehow I didn’t actually buy Apple AirTags myself. If you decide after reading this post that I’m so incompetent that you should no longer read this blog, I understand. But my hope is that by sharing my idiocy, at least one other person won’t make the same mistake.

Apple AirTags are a must for travelers who check bags

Before I share our recent experience, let’s briefly talk about these travel essentials. Apple AirTags have become incredibly popular for travelers, especially those who check bags.

Apple AirTags are devices that make it easy to track virtually any belongings. They almost look like big coins (they have a diameter of 1.26 inches), and the idea is that you can place them in a checked bag, and then you can always remotely track the location of your bag.

Apple AirTags are so beyond handy, especially with how bad many airlines have gotten at handling checked bags. While some airlines will let you track your bags through their apps, that only gives you so much information — it might tell you if your bag has been loaded or offloaded, but nothing beyond that.

With Apple AirTags, you can constantly track the location of your bag, whether it’s on the plane, at baggage claim, or somewhere in between.

The most value from Apple AirTags comes when there are irregular operations. When your bag is delayed or lost, Apple AirTags will help you with always knowing where your bag is. This can be handy because airlines often have limited information on your bag’s location whether it’s at an airport or on a delivery truck to your destination.

There are uses for Apple AirTags even beyond that. They’re generally sold in sets of four, so you can always just throw one in a carry-on bag, or anything else you’re carrying, just in case it’s stolen or misplaced.

Apple AirTags are a must for travelers

I wish I had bought Apple AirTags sooner!

Let me say that I’ve finally purchased Apple AirTags, though go figure it was done after a checked bag has been delayed.

I’m not going to try to justify my horrible judgment in not buying Apple AirTags sooner. I’m not sure why I didn’t do it. To be honest, I’ve been intending to buy them for a long time, but for whatever reason, it was just never top-of-mind. I haven’t taken a trip in quite some time with a checked bag, so it just slipped my mind.

Well, Ford just took a trip to Europe on Lufthansa, and he had a checked bag. On the return portion of the trip to the United States, he had a two hour layover in Frankfurt. Even though both of his flights were on-time, somehow the bag didn’t make the connecting flight, and has been “delayed.”

Funny enough, a year ago we also had a delayed bag experience with Lufthansa, which should have been the push we needed to buy Apple AirTags. It was really only by luck that we got our bag back, because Lufthansa’s delayed baggage handling was terrible.

Hopefully the checked bag arrives at our home sooner rather than later. The issue with delayed bags isn’t even that they’re delayed, but rather the anxiety of wondering if they’ll ever be returned — will they just end up in a pile of 10,000 bags in Frankfurt, will the bag delivery person just drive it around in their van for weeks, or what? Apple AirTags alleviate all of those concerns.

Lufthansa isn’t great with checked bags, apparently!

Bottom line

If you travel with any frequency, and especially if you ever check bags, you need to have Apple AirTags. As airlines have become less reliable (in terms of irregular operations and delayed and lost bags), using Apple AirTags is the best thing you can do to manage any checked bags.

Stupidly I hadn’t actually purchased them up until now, though after having a checked bag delayed (or something) yet again, I’m seriously kicking myself for that, and immediately ordered them.

My hope is that others can learn from my mistake. If you’ve been thinking “oh Apple AirTags sound useful and I should get them,” just rip the band-aid off and do it, especially if you have upcoming summer travel plans.

Can anyone make me feel better by admitting that they see the value in Apple AirTags but haven’t purchased them up until now, for whatever reason? Or am I truly the last person? 😉

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  1. iamhere Guest

    Does it require an apple device though?

  2. Adrian Guest

    I might confess to being even worse than the author. I bought a set of four AirTags at least six months ago - and they are still residing in their box in my travel backpack waiting for me to actually stuff them into the two bags I am always checking in.

  3. Alan Guest

    First off - they're Apple-only so not much use for the majority of us that use Android. Secondly - how does it actually help on a practical level, surely the airlines will only go with their systems and not what you've got on your Airtag app?

    1. Adrian Guest

      How useful is it to be able to tell the airline that says it doesn’t know where you baggage is, exactly where it is.
      Or be able to tell them that their systems are wrong (which may well be why you and your bag have not arrived in the same place at the same time)?
      And even once they have found your bag, and they are going to deliver it to your hotel....

      How useful is it to be able to tell the airline that says it doesn’t know where you baggage is, exactly where it is.
      Or be able to tell them that their systems are wrong (which may well be why you and your bag have not arrived in the same place at the same time)?
      And even once they have found your bag, and they are going to deliver it to your hotel. Very helpful to know when it’s on the van and on the way - so you can still do your work or be a tourist while you’re waiting.
      Plenty of good, and helpful reasons to know.

  4. Kim Guest

    Saved the day when Delta insisted my bags were in Paris and I knew they were in Atlanta. I had to have a friend of a friend go to the airport with air tag photos to get my luggage home to Portland.

  5. Douglas Berry Guest

    I created what is known as “Air Tag” in 2004. My invention was stolen by Davison in Pittsburgh and Paul Puskarich (his neighbor) is credited with the invention and Davison has a deal running the Apple Apps store. Apple and Davison are both guilty of trade secret misappropriation

  6. T- Guest

    What a great advertisement for Apple Air Tags. You’ll be just fine having gone without the tags all this time. Really.

  7. LAXJeff Guest

    $AAPL, own it; don’t trade it. Get them AirTags.

  8. simmonad Guest

    Unfortunately, for Airtags to be useful you need an Apple phone! In Europe, roughly two thirds of phones are Android. It looks like Google is moving in the Airtag direction with Tile, though.

  9. Melanie G Guest

    Luckily have not had delayed bag since I got the tags but I am with the commenter that knowing it is there vs. not there is a great relief. Recently had international connecting through Dulles where you have to get your bags and re check them before passing through passport control. There was a massive problem with the offloading of our luggage (we were not the only ones hanging around forever) but I knew they...

    Luckily have not had delayed bag since I got the tags but I am with the commenter that knowing it is there vs. not there is a great relief. Recently had international connecting through Dulles where you have to get your bags and re check them before passing through passport control. There was a massive problem with the offloading of our luggage (we were not the only ones hanging around forever) but I knew they were at Dulles and the ground staff said there was a belt issue. SO...we waited it out vs. just assuming they were lost. i.e. had we not known they were on the ground in DC we might have assumed 'delayed' headed to passport control and our bags would have been left in purgatory in DC because we didn't claim them in DC. ALSO - do love having one in my purse and my passport wallet. Just in case.

  10. josqdan New Member

    They saved me in March when we got back to DFW. Had fun watching BA move the bags all over LHR before they finally sent them on an AA flight 6 days later. Luckily since it was an AA awards ticket on BA we got a free hotel and breakfast since we were late out of AMS and misdeed our AA flight. BA even paid for essential items while we waited on the bags.

  11. Carrie Gold

    I concur with those who applaud the advent of the AirTag - never leave home without them in my luggage, checked or otherwise.

    But more importantly, the advent of the AirTag has led to the advent of the 'go-to' gift. From teenagers through to the more mature members of the world, this small token has become the most appreciated present and can be accessorised with a Hermès Keyring for the love of your life or...

    I concur with those who applaud the advent of the AirTag - never leave home without them in my luggage, checked or otherwise.

    But more importantly, the advent of the AirTag has led to the advent of the 'go-to' gift. From teenagers through to the more mature members of the world, this small token has become the most appreciated present and can be accessorised with a Hermès Keyring for the love of your life or a simple holder for the less appreciated person. For this reason alone, I love the AirTag and the range of non-Apple iterations for elevating me in the gift giving stakes!

  12. Santastico Diamond

    Bought 8 of them when they launched (got them all imprinted with numbers from 1 to 8) and never looked back. They are a huge peace of mind when you know where your bags are. Just keep in mind that some batteries won’t work with AirTags so make sure you buy the right ones when they die.

  13. CPH-Flyer Gold

    I check luggage on virtually all of my trips, 2-3 trips per month. I have never had use for airtags, last time I had a delayed luggage was in 2005. And to be fair, that was in the old Don Muang Bangkok airport where a delay meant 40 minutes between flights.

    On my trip this weekend there was even a nice handwritten card from the check in staff attached to my bag. Tanabata greeting...

    I check luggage on virtually all of my trips, 2-3 trips per month. I have never had use for airtags, last time I had a delayed luggage was in 2005. And to be fair, that was in the old Don Muang Bangkok airport where a delay meant 40 minutes between flights.

    On my trip this weekend there was even a nice handwritten card from the check in staff attached to my bag. Tanabata greeting on a Japan domestic flight.

    I see airtags more as Apple inventing a problem, to make a product they can sell to solve it.

  14. RobPHX Guest

    how long do the batteries last on these things? are they rechargeable?

  15. Randy Diamond

    I have several. I put two in a checked bag. They work by someone near by with a iPhone picking up the signal and transmitting the location. I believe the transmission is on a cycle - not full time - and you don't always someone with an iPhone nearby.

    Location can be several minutes back - even a half hour. With two you have better chance of getting the signal identified. You will see to...

    I have several. I put two in a checked bag. They work by someone near by with a iPhone picking up the signal and transmitting the location. I believe the transmission is on a cycle - not full time - and you don't always someone with an iPhone nearby.

    Location can be several minutes back - even a half hour. With two you have better chance of getting the signal identified. You will see to different locations for the tags many times. It is the more recent time that counts.

    I use in carryons and tote bags as well. I put them in all my cars, and on the car keys as well.

  16. JC1 Guest

    I'm not sure if it helped me get my bags bag quicker or not on a recent flight where British Airways didn't deliver our bags upon arrival in Portugal. When we filed a claim with the agent in Lisbon, he said we would be lucky if we had the luggage bag in 5 days as British Airways had so many missing bags stuck in London. However, our luggage arrived the same night at around 9:00...

    I'm not sure if it helped me get my bags bag quicker or not on a recent flight where British Airways didn't deliver our bags upon arrival in Portugal. When we filed a claim with the agent in Lisbon, he said we would be lucky if we had the luggage bag in 5 days as British Airways had so many missing bags stuck in London. However, our luggage arrived the same night at around 9:00 pm so about 10 hours after we landed. Also, the AirTags saved me time by not having to wait at the baggage claim for more than 30 minutes while bags for various flights were coming out commingled on the same baggage belt.

  17. SC Guest

    Airtags need to go away until Apple can provide adequate protection for those that use them to stalk people. Cops don't really help you much in these cases, not does Apple (all in the name of "privacy"). Speaking from experience as a guy who had to move apartments twice to get away from an abusive ex.

  18. Chris Guest

    We used Gego trackers on our trip through France last month. Yes, we paid $20 for one month of tracking but the peace of mind was absolutely worth it. We knew exactly when the bags moved from check-in to airside and when the plane backed up from the gate, as well as the arrival while we were taxiing to the gate. They're not always precise; when we got home one showed the bag was at our house and one showed the bag was next door.

  19. sbams Guest

    Are you sponsored by Apple, or are you sponsoring Apple? Why the constant refence to "Apple Air Tags". Any other (let's say Samsung Android for example) work just as well and in exactly the same way. And you are right, essentials these days ...

    1. henare Diamond

      because there is no real equivalent for Android. the Samsung tags only work with Samsung phones (just like air tags only work with fruit phones)

      There are third party tags but none are as entrenched as the air tags are.

  20. Steven Guest

    I have the tags but was told that tge battery that they use is flammable and therefore shoukd not be used on checked luggage. Is this true???

  21. linglingfool Guest

    I'm surprised there was no mention of the fact that the LH Group tried to recently ban Airbags before the Luftfahrt-Bundesamt called BS on them being a safety hazard. The more cynical among us believe they tried to sneak that one by so as to leave customers less-equipped to push back on baggage delays.

  22. Howard Blitz Guest

    I use air tags and find them helpful. Can also cause anxiety. Depending on where your bag is the tag may or may not transmit where it is. It needs to be near other apple products to send location. I have had instances where I have seen my bag supposedly sitting in the same spot for an hour, during a connection. As it got closer to the flight departure I literally ran to the area...

    I use air tags and find them helpful. Can also cause anxiety. Depending on where your bag is the tag may or may not transmit where it is. It needs to be near other apple products to send location. I have had instances where I have seen my bag supposedly sitting in the same spot for an hour, during a connection. As it got closer to the flight departure I literally ran to the area where bag showed. Ran back to gate thru security etc only to find that while I am already seated in the plane the bay still showing a distance from the plane and then miraculously it immediately appeared on the plane. So yes they are good but not a panacea

  23. Roger Guest

    I have four Apple AirTags. On my recent return trip from Switzerland to Australia my bags arrived on time. I boarded the airport shuttle for the two hour trip to my house. Halfway through the trip a passenger retrieved the wrong bag from the back of the van. About a block later AirTag alerted me on my phone that my bag had been left behind and gave me the exact address where it was. I...

    I have four Apple AirTags. On my recent return trip from Switzerland to Australia my bags arrived on time. I boarded the airport shuttle for the two hour trip to my house. Halfway through the trip a passenger retrieved the wrong bag from the back of the van. About a block later AirTag alerted me on my phone that my bag had been left behind and gave me the exact address where it was. I alerted the driver and we turned around and got it back. Needless to say, I’m a big fan of Air Tags.

  24. Zach Guest

    You should also mention the Samsug Tags that do exactly the same job for those odd people who do not have iPhones. (70-80% of the population)

  25. T Arthur Guest

    Another associated tip that will help you get your lost bag located and returned: In addition to the Apple Airtag, keep a picture of the bag on your phone show you can show/send it to the baggage claim person.

  26. Andrew Diamond

    I've had them for years, my only lament there isn't an 100% Android equivalent. I will still read this blog, of course.

  27. Jack Guest

    Recently arrived at PHL and got a message from AA as soon as I arrived that my bag is delayed and asked me to provide an address for the bags to be delivered. Thanks to the AirTags I knew the bags were at PHL and just waited at the baggage claim carousel and picked it up. If I didn't have it I would have running back and forth trying to locate my bag. It gave me the peace of mind and saved me a lot of energy.

  28. Timothy Higgins Guest

    I also hide one in my car.

  29. Ann Guest

    Samsung/Android tags are far more useful outside the US.

    1. Mark Guest

      There are hundreds of millions of iPhones outside the US, all of which will have the Find My app installed as standard. Unlike the optional Tile app for Android. My AirTag has been perfectly useful in Europe.

    2. simmonad Guest

      There are indeed plenty of iPhones in Europe but Android dominates here.

  30. kylehotchkiss New Member

    I left an AirTag in my car while traveling so I could determine if it got towed (or stolen).

    A month later; while I was at home, my car was stolen. The AirTag helped me find it (and informed the police, I didn’t “Texas” the car to get it back).

    Throw one in your glove box and lock it. It’ll make a bunch of noice everytime somebody gets in the car. Bonus points: the most reliable “where did I park” functionality ever

  31. Jon Smith Guest

    I don't understand...why the push for an Apple product? Tile tracking devices work just as well, if not better, and work with all phones, unlock Apple products, which are.created purely to rope people into spending money in the company ecosystem?

    1. David Diamond

      Like it or not, there are a LOT more AirTags and Apple products out there than Tile users, so while in theory they're the same, the real life coverage you get out of AirTags would be way bigger.

      This is coming from a Tile user who switched to AirTags as soon as they came out.

    2. Chris_ Gold

      Depends on where you are traveling - there are more android devices in most parts of the world.

    3. Kyle Guest

      True, but Tile only pings for devices that have the Tile App installed. Apple AirTags will ping for whatever Apple device is near, and when it comes down to it, it’s a lot more likely that someone nearby has an iPhone vs having the Tile App installed and running.

    4. Jimjar Guest

      I had Tiles for years, to be honest they were hit and miss, the AirTags I have have been super reliable, all over the world. I have since thrown away all my Tiles. Like it or not AirTags are the way to go.

    5. David Diamond

      That's faulty reasoning. Almost all Apple devices are "beacons" for AirTags, while only an Android device with Tile installed acts as a beacon for Tile devices (i.e. a small fraction of all Android devices).

    6. David Diamond

      @Chris_ A quick look at the Play Store shows 5 million+ installs for Android, so even assuming every single install is a separate device and all installs are currently active on a device, you're looking at no more than a few million (and these are extremely generous, and basically impossible to be true assumptions). There are more than a billion iPhone users. The number of Tile users are a rounding error compared to iPhone users.

  32. Foxlore New Member

    I’d planned to get them for a long time, but procrastinated due to our limited travel during Covid. I finally pulled the trigger when my daughter went on her school’s safety-patrol trip to Washington D.C. We put one in her checked luggage and one in her day-to-day backpack and have used them for other travel since.

  33. Clem Diamond

    Well you're not the last person to get AirTags simply because not everyone is using an iphone ;). I'd be curious to know if there is a solution for people like us with better phones like the Google Pixel . And more importantly, in many parts of the world iPhones are not a thing since they are way too expensive for most people, so your AirTag will be essentially useless there.

    1. Stan Ferris Guest

      Clem
      Samsung Galaxy Smart Tag, this is an android device I have been using for two years and they perform in the same manner as the fruit company's version.

    2. Clem Diamond

      Will look into both of these, thank you!

  34. Bill Guest

    Was this post sponsored by Apple? It’s the least authentic of your (many) posts I’ve ever read

  35. Donna Diamond

    Knowledge is power. Currently my car is 6834 miles away in a garage in California according to the AirTag inside. I don’t often check a bag but I’d trust the AirTag more than the airline on its status. The notion that insurance will cover you, is laughable. Has anyone ever recovered and made whole by an insurance loss? Need a second job? Chase down insurance and airline baggage delays/loss for fun.

  36. Patti Guest

    We use a non apple version for our international travel. Small peace of mind.

  37. PTO Guest

    Research suggests that "you can locate an AirTag that's hundreds of miles away or even internationally, providing it is within Bluetooth range of someone's iPhone. If you leave an AirTag in a coffee shop on the other side of the world, you are more likely to be able to see it because it's close to so many other people's iPhones. If you lose an AirTag in a remote-but-nearby place like the woods behind your house,...

    Research suggests that "you can locate an AirTag that's hundreds of miles away or even internationally, providing it is within Bluetooth range of someone's iPhone. If you leave an AirTag in a coffee shop on the other side of the world, you are more likely to be able to see it because it's close to so many other people's iPhones. If you lose an AirTag in a remote-but-nearby place like the woods behind your house, however, you won't be able to find it unless someone with an iPhone walks into its Bluetooth range".

    This may explain the location limitations. It would help if baggage workers use iPhones with data turned on (too expensive for many!) as until your tag is in Find My Network or Bluetooth range it will report the last location seen, which could be where you first completed check-in, not where it is currently located. That could also explain the hesitation of airline employees to accept screenshots as proof of current location.

    1. Michael C Guest

      For Tile to work, the baggage workers need to have the Tile app on their phone (Android or iOS). BTW, data is very cheap in many parts of the world. Unlike the Find My app on iPhones, the Tile app is not pre-installed on any phone. Although in certain parts of the world iPhones may be too expensive and not widely used, how many Android users have the Tile app installed? I have used both...

      For Tile to work, the baggage workers need to have the Tile app on their phone (Android or iOS). BTW, data is very cheap in many parts of the world. Unlike the Find My app on iPhones, the Tile app is not pre-installed on any phone. Although in certain parts of the world iPhones may be too expensive and not widely used, how many Android users have the Tile app installed? I have used both and find AirTags to be far superior - faster to locate the tracker, better software, better location precision, no subscription needed for "premium" services. When the batteries die on my Tile trackers, they are going into the drawer (or trash).

  38. Never In Doubt Guest

    Two amazing revelations read in OMAAT:

    Ben didn’t have AirTags.

    Ben didn’t freeze his credit reports.

  39. Aaron Guest

    On a recent flight from SGN to PNH, AirTags gave me a mini heart attack. I tracked my bag to next to the plane I was in. But while taxiing to the runway, I got a notification that the luggage was left behind! It wasn’t until it showed up at the reclaim belt that the location updated to being at my destination! Lol!

  40. Deltahater Guest

    While I agree with airtags (or tile), it does not mean that you get your bags sooner. AA lost 5 bags over Christmas for us and even though we could let AA customer service know where the bags are, AA was unable to rely that info to baggage services. But knowing where they are does give you peace of mind, a bit.

  41. Mlp New Member

    Respectfully to those who say the airlines don’t/won’t care what “your little phone” shows: last year in Marseille our luggage did not show up on the carousel. The AF rep told us to wait for the next flight from Paris, but I was able to show her that our luggage had in fact arrived and was at the other terminal at MRS.

    On basis of what my AirTags showed on my “little phone,” AF took...

    Respectfully to those who say the airlines don’t/won’t care what “your little phone” shows: last year in Marseille our luggage did not show up on the carousel. The AF rep told us to wait for the next flight from Paris, but I was able to show her that our luggage had in fact arrived and was at the other terminal at MRS.

    On basis of what my AirTags showed on my “little phone,” AF took me to a back room in the other terminal and I was reunited with my luggage.

    Had we listened to the airline, we would have had to wait a few hours and delayed our long drive to our rental in eastern Provence. I never travel without AirTags - even for carry ons.

  42. Bb Tt Guest

    Yeah, no, airlines won't care what your little phone shows. Especially since someone could easily give them a false information of where their bag is. Photoshop and video editing are quite easy to get your hands on these days.
    It's just a matter of time when most carriers ban the AirTags and I can't wait for that day.

    1. Matt Guest

      Why would someone make a fake photo or video showing where their bag is? How does any of that effort help them get their bag back? Weird take, indeed.

  43. HeathrowGuy Guest

    No, AirTags are not a travel essential, not now nor anytime soon.

    For starters, it's the airline's responsibility to track the whereabouts of luggage, not mine.

    Second, knowing a delayed bag is in XYZ won't necessarily make it arrive any faster, and badgering already overworked bag service agents about what you're seeing on an app will likely add to the friction of the experience.

    Most importantly, smart travelers carry good insurance that covers...

    No, AirTags are not a travel essential, not now nor anytime soon.

    For starters, it's the airline's responsibility to track the whereabouts of luggage, not mine.

    Second, knowing a delayed bag is in XYZ won't necessarily make it arrive any faster, and badgering already overworked bag service agents about what you're seeing on an app will likely add to the friction of the experience.

    Most importantly, smart travelers carry good insurance that covers delayed baggage and possess the funds for interim clothing/toiletry expenses. This is the point that should be emphasized to flyers, not buying AirTags.

    1. Never In Doubt Guest

      Or you could spend $25 and get one.

    2. Matt Guest

      For starters, you make assumptions that it won't help and will add friction but with zero personal experience.

      Second, while travelers should have some type of insurance coverage, that won't help get back those mementos and gifts you purchased abroad that were in your lost luggage. Or that one shirt you loved that fit perfectly. And I'm sure that insurance claim process is super fast and easy, much easier than showing an agent in the...

      For starters, you make assumptions that it won't help and will add friction but with zero personal experience.

      Second, while travelers should have some type of insurance coverage, that won't help get back those mementos and gifts you purchased abroad that were in your lost luggage. Or that one shirt you loved that fit perfectly. And I'm sure that insurance claim process is super fast and easy, much easier than showing an agent in the moment exactly where your bag is...

    3. Michael C Guest

      Why not do both? Carry travel insurance or charge your tickets on a credit card that offers delayed baggage compensation, AND put an AirTag into your suitcase.

    4. AD Diamond

      And my bag is invariably lost at midnight when everything is closed, so it doesn't do me any good that the airline will pay for something for me to wear or toiletries.

  44. DenB Diamond

    I've read every word in every post on OMAAT about this topic and I'm at a loss. Airtag tracking, even when when successful, provides info the airline won't respond to. I'm happier with my solution: Don't check bags. If you say "yeah but there are times I have to, because I need five pairs of shoes and my favourite shampoo comes in a big bottle" I won't argue with you. But I remain unpersuaded.

    1. Megan Guest

      No one is asking you to be persuaded. What works for you doesnt have to work for others.

    2. XPL Diamond

      "No one is asking you to be persuaded. What works for you doesnt have to work for others."

      So why do the Apple fanbois keep insisting that everyone absolutely must buy AirTags, and $1000 iPhones to use them with?

    3. Anna D Guest

      You can buy a far more functional Samsung or Android tag.
      No need to overpay for an Apple phone.

  45. Jim in Philly Guest

    So AirTags are not perfect and can actually add to travel stress. During my recent flights around Asia, I found, more often than not, the AirTag in my checked luggage would not update and would usually show my luggage still at the departing airport even when I had long layovers. This only caused unneeded stress.
    I was departing from HND and we had to take a bus to the plane, but my AirTag still...

    So AirTags are not perfect and can actually add to travel stress. During my recent flights around Asia, I found, more often than not, the AirTag in my checked luggage would not update and would usually show my luggage still at the departing airport even when I had long layovers. This only caused unneeded stress.
    I was departing from HND and we had to take a bus to the plane, but my AirTag still showed my luggage remaining behind at the terminal, not on my plane. I worried about this the whole 5 hour flight and the luggage location wasn't finally updated until minutes before I got it at baggage claim at my final destination.
    Same issue for a later TPE-ICN-FUK flight. The location remained at TPE even during my 3 hour layover at ICN.
    This was pretty how it worked the entire trip. The only time I really got any useful information was upon returning to the US and I had a long layover at IAD before flying to EWR, and the AirTag let me know that my luggage was sent to EWR on an earlier flight.

    1. Sergio Turbay Guest

      Perhaps defective one?

    2. VJ Guest

      Need more feedback from real world users on the actual accuracy of tracking especially outside the United States where apple devices are a minority.

    3. Mark Guest

      There are still huge numbers of iPhones outside of the US. Mine has always updated promptly in travels around Europe - I've yet to take it further afield so far.

    4. Stan Ferris Guest

      It is totally dependent on another iphone in close proximity to your air tag to pick up the signal. If android phones are the only phones near the air tag, too bad so sad.

  46. Hank Guest

    AirTags absolutely help you get your bag back earlier. Whatever uninformed status or misinformation the airline agent throws at you, you can show them your screen and say ‘actually my bag is airside at gate 54’, or ‘my bag never made my connection to JFK, it’s still in LHR. First hand experience, they definitely help you get your bag back and more quickly.

  47. Briggykins Guest

    Well, I don't have an iPhone. So there's that

    1. Pogonation Guest

      You can use the galaxy smarttag if you are with samsung

    2. Briggykins Guest

      Isn't the coverage not so great with those? I'm waiting for Google to release their version which I think is meant to be some time this year, should support all Androids which will be very useful.

    3. Bob Guest

      Coverage with my Galaxy tags has been good. Both domestic and international. Able to see the bag move through the airport toward the plane.

    4. Ann Guest

      Galaxy tags are great. Way more coverage than AirTags

    5. Unhoeflich Diamond

      Samsung version works well

  48. Matrix.RX1 Guest

    afaik, the issue with lost luggage post-COVID seems to be that the system of regular baggage handling (the one where you get your long stickers at check in) and the lost luggage handling are completely different. During the last EU summer, the luggages were not being registered in said lost/secondary system. This was due to a lack of overall manpower, hence the choice was made to dedicate as much as possible to the regular system...

    afaik, the issue with lost luggage post-COVID seems to be that the system of regular baggage handling (the one where you get your long stickers at check in) and the lost luggage handling are completely different. During the last EU summer, the luggages were not being registered in said lost/secondary system. This was due to a lack of overall manpower, hence the choice was made to dedicate as much as possible to the regular system which lead to the long delays of getting lost luggage retrieved.

  49. JD Guest

    Genuine question for anyone using AirTags and had misplaced luggage….. does the information you get from the AirTag help you get your luggage back any faster? Or does it just frustrate you by letting you know where the bag is that the airline has ‘lost’?

    1. Matt Guest

      Think it helps (albeit a little bit) by helping locate it faster. It’s easier for the airline to return your bag if you actually know where and what airport the bag is in. So I guess the answer to your questions is sort of.

    2. Pogonation Guest

      The main benefit to me of having air tags is knowing when I arrive that my bag didn’t make it. This means I don’t waste hours of time looking for it and trying to sort it out.

      It does help to know where it is on multi-sector itineraries because the only information they have is where it was last scanned… but sometimes scanning fails. So on a LHR-DOH-SIN for example they might think it’s...

      The main benefit to me of having air tags is knowing when I arrive that my bag didn’t make it. This means I don’t waste hours of time looking for it and trying to sort it out.

      It does help to know where it is on multi-sector itineraries because the only information they have is where it was last scanned… but sometimes scanning fails. So on a LHR-DOH-SIN for example they might think it’s in LHR and go looking there but you can know it made it to DOH and instead have them divert resources there. It generally speeds the process up.

      I wouldn’t travel without them now especially given how cheap they are.

    3. DenB Diamond

      Unless they provide information that's inaccurate, out of date, or misleading. Knowing the info may be wrong, you than have to decide what to believe, whether to press airline staff to look in the wrong place, etc.

    4. Nelson Diamond

      Actually it could. As Airlines sometimes don't know (read; don't matter) where your bag is. I once had my luggage sooner back due to those tags. They even thanked me for "helping" them.

    5. Phillip Diamond

      I had an occasion with Austrian with a very tight connection; I landed to an e-mail telling me my luggage hadn’t made it on the flight. I had a quick look for the AirTag and realised that the case had actually arrived at the airport. I went to baggage services to check what was going on and they had no idea. Had I not had the tag I would have left the airport and my bag would have been going round the carousel for a long time!

    6. brianna hoffner Diamond

      For sure. I was in Japan and my bag was "lost", but I could see it was very nearby according to the Find My app. At the counter the man insisted I go to my hotel and they would put a tracer on my bag and I'd hear from them the next day about getting it back. I put the App into that green arrow mode and handed it to him. "Please, just follow this...

      For sure. I was in Japan and my bag was "lost", but I could see it was very nearby according to the Find My app. At the counter the man insisted I go to my hotel and they would put a tracer on my bag and I'd hear from them the next day about getting it back. I put the App into that green arrow mode and handed it to him. "Please, just follow this arrow and go in the back room and look, it's so close the Bluetooth can see it". He came out 2 minutes later with my bag. It had been buried under a bunch of other bags and they just couldn't see it.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

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Matt Guest

Why would someone make a fake photo or video showing where their bag is? How does any of that effort help them get their bag back? Weird take, indeed.

7
Pogonation Guest

The main benefit to me of having air tags is knowing when I arrive that my bag didn’t make it. This means I don’t waste hours of time looking for it and trying to sort it out. It does help to know where it is on multi-sector itineraries because the only information they have is where it was last scanned… but sometimes scanning fails. So on a LHR-DOH-SIN for example they might think it’s in LHR and go looking there but you can know it made it to DOH and instead have them divert resources there. It generally speeds the process up. I wouldn’t travel without them now especially given how cheap they are.

6
Hank Guest

AirTags absolutely help you get your bag back earlier. Whatever uninformed status or misinformation the airline agent throws at you, you can show them your screen and say ‘actually my bag is airside at gate 54’, or ‘my bag never made my connection to JFK, it’s still in LHR. First hand experience, they definitely help you get your bag back and more quickly.

4
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