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How Safe is your Hand Luggage?

Travelling on  holiday can be very hectic and many passengers prefer to make life a little easier so they can begin enjoying their trip as soon as possible. This is one reason many travellers now opt to take carry on luggage rather than checking in baggage to be collected when they land later that day.


Walking off the plane, bag in hand and heading straight to your transfer coach sounds ideal, no waiting around with tired, grumpy tourists desperate for the carousel to bring your bag out first. Not only is this time savvy, but also cost effective. With baggage fees on the rise, it’s a great way to save a few extra pounds and get a better deal on your flights. 
Another reason for taking hand luggage is to keep your valuables safe and not worry about them being lost, damaged or stolen. This may seem like a sensible idea at first, but what if your bag isn’t as safe as you think when you take it on board? Sportsdirect.com takes a look at the dangers and threats to your belongings when travelling 30,000ft in the air. 


Many people keep valuables such as electronic gadgets, jewellery and cash in their hand luggage to keep them safe. This may sound like a good idea, but as soon as your bag is stowed away in the overhead storage, you no longer have a clear view of your belongings. With more and more people taking hand luggage on board there is an increasing lack of over head storage room, meaning bags are either getting squashed, stowed rows away from your designated seat, or they are taken to be checked in or put in hold until the flight lands. 


Many of us are very naive and too trustworthy with fellow passengers and even staff aboard our flights. Although you shouldn’t assume everyone has bad intentions, you should still be cautious about who goes near your bag and what they are doing. Although passengers and staff may not plan to steal, a valuable item sticking  out of your bag may tempt someone to snatch it on a whim.


To help keep your valuables safe, when possible use a bag that is small enough to keep by your feet, this way you can take hand luggage on board and keep it with you at all times. If you are taking a small case, make an effort to check in early and get to the front of the queue for your flight. As over head storage works on a first come, first served basis, getting there early will ensure you can store your belongings above your own seat. 


During the flight, if someone is rummaging through their luggage in the same over head bin as yours, stand up and offer to assist them. This way, you can check your bag is safe and if the passenger did have an alternative agenda, you will deter them from tampering with any bags. You should treat your hand luggage in the same way you would with bags that get checked in, include a tag with contact details, some ribbon or other recognisable feature to easily identify your bag, and most importantly a lock! Ensure your bag is secure and bury valuables in difficult to reach areas to keep everything as safe as possible.
 

When shopping in duty free, remember to pack anything you buy securely. It is all too easy to stuff a bottle of expensive perfume, alcohol or designer sunglasses in the top of your hand luggage, but this makes you a prime target for thieves. 


Before you zip up and lock your bag, make a list of all the items you have packed and take a photo of the case before you shut it, this way you can tell straight away if anyone has been rummaging through your bag and you can then identify which items have gone missing from your list. This is a simple precaution and in the worst case scenario will enable you to report exactly what’s gone missing as soon as possible.
 

For more products that will keep your luggage safe during your flight, take a look at our travel accessories range.