Summer of lost luggage. This is what the summer of 2022 is likely to be remembered for (this and suffocatingly hot weather). You have every reason to worry about checking in your luggage. Since most people wait days or even weeks to get their luggage at European, UK and US airports, it seems like the baggage conveyor loop has become tangled.
However, not all hope is lost. With the global lost baggage crisis looming over summer plans around the world, people are turning to one innovative technological solution: trackers.
Some were lucky enough to get their bags in a day or two, others found their bags thousands of miles away, and the really unlucky didn’t see their luggage for weeks. Adding a tracker to your bag can just help you know if your luggage is at its destination and help you get your bag a lot faster.
Many people have taken to Twitter, Reddit and other social media platforms to share their experiences and complain about airlines. On the other hand, airlines are understaffed and out of sorts, not only because of lost bags, but also because of the high number of calls and complaints.
The bottom line is that if you need to fly right now, we highly recommend not checking in your luggage due to the chaos at most airports. But if you really need it, don’t rely on attaching your contact details to your bag – use a tracker instead to find it.
The summer savior comes in the form of Apple AirTags. These tile-like trackers are the most reliable of all and I personally rely on them when I travel.
How to use AirTag to track your luggage
Apple’s AirTag connects to the iPhone’s built-in Find My app and is one of the best trackers available right now. It has a compact design so it can fit anywhere.
In your luggage, we recommend putting it in a bag (rather than using a key chain to leave it hanging) so it doesn’t get damaged.
Connect your AirTag to your iPhone by simply holding the AirTag close to your phone. It will then guide you through the setup using the Find My app. The AirTag will connect to your phone via Bluetooth and then ask you to name the AirTag. You will then be prompted to register AirTag with your Apple ID and you are done.
(Image credit: Adrian/Shutterstock)
Once connected, you will be able to see the location of your AirTag in the Find My app.
You can also use the precise search feature in the app, which uses the U1 ultra-wideband chip in new Apple phones, to provide more detailed instructions for finding lost items.
Battery life isn’t an issue, as the AirTag will last you over a year on a single coin-cell battery.
The AirTag’s range, advertised as 30 feet, is actually much wider – if it’s traveling alongside other iPhones and iPads. Here’s how it will work, helping you keep track of your bag. As long as the AirTag is in range (Bluetooth) of the Apple Find My network or someone else’s iPhone or iPad, it can passively communicate with it.
However, there are a lot of privacy issues with AirTags, and Apple’s AirTag harassment is still a real danger. So we’d say be careful, but if you want to track your luggage, this is a good option for around $99 for a pack of 4 AirTags, especially if you have more than one bag to keep an eye on.
How to Track Your Baggage with Tile
Tile has a range of products like Tile Pro or Tile Mate to choose from. Tile Pro (2022) is a new tracker from the company, and it’s the best key finder on our list. But it’s also extremely capable of tracking your luggage.
Connect Tile Pro to your phone using the Tile app. Like the AirTag, it will connect via Bluetooth. Most Tile devices have a physical button that can be pressed for two-way detection. So you can press the button on the device to find your phone, or you can press the Find button on the Tile app and you will see the location of your tracker. You can even play a sound to find it.
(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)
This two-way tracking is useful for finding your keys or wallet, but to find your luggage from miles away, Tile, like Apple, connects to Tile’s network and you’ll know in your app even if your bags aren’t near you.
Tile also claims to be able to connect to the phone through the floor of the plane for checked baggage. This can help determine if your luggage has made it to your connecting flight.
Even on the luggage carousel, when your bag with the tiles inside is close, the gray circle in your app will turn green to let you know when your bag is coming towards you. Tile Pro will cost you $34 and Tile Mate will cost you $24.
You can also use some of the best key finders to track your bags like SmartTag and Chipolo. Pebblebee also has new tracking accessories that integrate with Apple’s Find My app.
So if you can’t rely on airlines to reunite you with your luggage this summer, you can probably rely on these trackers to at least tell you where your bags are currently!
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