Baggage Carousel Etiquette

(photo above: Sometimes I get angry)

It seems more and more these days people are having bigger pet peeves about fellow travelers and different parts of air travel; something that was once almost a privileged and not as easily accessible to everyone like it is today. You hear it all, from the annoying person in the window seat next to you with an apparent bladder problem, the loud snorer, leans on your shoulder sleeper, the bad body odor person, the doesn’t fit in their seat, stealing the armrest guy, the kid that kicks the back of your chair, the crying baby, the people who stand up to soon after landing,  the steals the storage bin space kind of people. I know I have pet peeves with some of them…. not that I’m a perfect flier though but I would like to think I try to make the experience as best as possible and I am conscientious of others.

You don’t however hear that much about the types of people you get in the baggage claim area, but this is where on more than one occasion I have almost, to eloquently put it “lost my shit”. Also part of the reason I try to travel with a carry-on only now. The following is my list of “Baggage Claim Etiquette” rules that all travelers should be forced to read before getting off the plane… not before, getting on… wait actually it should be before they even are allowed to book their ticket.

STAND BACK FROM THE LUGGAGE CAROUSEL SO WE CAN ALL SEE!!!!!!!!!!!

That’s it. Those are my tips.

 

 

Well I guess I could also elaborate and add a few more:

  • Stand at least 3 feet back from the luggage carousel so everyone can see the luggage going by.
  • Do not stand in front of and block the other people patiently standing a few feet back from the conveyor belt.
  • Do not approach the luggage carousel until you 100% confirm that you see your bag and it is “seconds” away from going past you and not a 5 minute slow-chug-of-the-conveyor-belt away from you.
  • Clearly mark your bags! Everyone’s suitcase looks the same these days, get multi-colored straps or luggage tags, ribbons, buy the ugliest luggage you can find (that way also no one will steal it either). Whatever you do, MARK YOUR BAG. That way you won’t be the guy who I saw pick up FIVE black bags checking to see if it was his or not only to then finally pick up a bright blue bag and walk away….seriously. So you should also REMEMBER WHAT YOUR BAG LOOKS LIKE.
  • Keep your kids away from the luggage carousel so when I swing my big bag off of it that I don’t whack them in the face.
  • Once you have your bag, vamoose!

 

I think that is all for now. What else would you add? Do you have any other flying pet peeves? Please share them below!

~Cailin


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21 Comments

  • Reply
    Joe Shmo
    January 27, 2021 at 12:54 pm

    “STAND BACK FROM THE LUGGAGE CAROUSEL SO WE CAN ALL SEE!!!!!!!!!!!” – I find this issue most often in Mexico (and maybe Latin America in general?). Travelers in the USA – not as much. Also in the USA we have a system in the escalator where the left side is for passing, whereas it’s not the case in certain Latin American countries. Don’t get me wrong, I love people of Mexico but they don’t seem to be great in herds. And it’s not just my imagination.

  • Reply
    Andrew
    January 20, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    I admit I tend to be one of those nervous people around the carrousel. I often just want to get on my way and have lost enough luggage over the years to be worrisome. I do however tend to stay back a bit.
    The rule I would add is to put those damn luggage carts far away from the carrousel. I understand that you HAD to pack 22.5kilos of crap in your bags, but really can carry it 20 feet. There is no need to take up the room of 5 people who could be looking for bags NEAR the belt with your dumb cart. Nor is there reason to run my toes over with it. I just got off a long flight thank you.

    • Reply
      Cailin
      February 6, 2012 at 1:39 am

      hahaha I’m totally with you Andrew! Also when you are hit with them in the back of the leg they hit right about where the Achilles are, ouch!

  • Reply
    Kim
    January 14, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    My biggest pet peeve as a traveler is when the person in front of me reclines their seat back without first looking to see if the person behind them is using a laptop on their tray table. Once the seat in front of me came flying back and literally pinched my laptop (made worse when she kept pushing on the seat because it wouldn’t recline all the way). Had to tell her to raise her seat back up so I could get my laptop loose. Wish people would just glance between the seats and see what’s up in back of them before slamming their seats back . . .

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 14, 2012 at 5:22 pm

      oh wow! she totally could of broken your computer! Not cool!

  • Reply
    Jeff B
    January 14, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    I do not check bags so I have not had this problem in a long time. If I did still check bags than it would probably drive me crazy. My biggest pet peeve when traveling is when people want you to trade seats with them. I make sure that I get an aisle seat and there is no way I am going to trade for a middle seat so that the person can sit with your friend/wife/husband/etc. (I will move so kids and parents can sit together.)

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 14, 2012 at 5:23 pm

      @Jeff I’m totally with you on that one! I hate when people ask me to trade seats especially when its on a flight like EasyJet where you aren’t assigned seats the seats are first come first serve, when I made sure I was on the plane quick enough to get the seat I wanted but they weren’t.

  • Reply
    Bret @ Green Global Travel
    January 14, 2012 at 10:06 am

    Can I just repost this on GGT and add my own title? I’d call it “10 Great Reasons Why I NEVER Check My Luggage”. LOL

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 14, 2012 at 5:26 pm

      @Bret haha nooooo but sometimes its hard to not check luggage like if you are going on a really long trip or you were just away and bought too many things for your bag not to be checked.

  • Reply
    Glampacker
    January 14, 2012 at 7:44 am

    I love the scene in Friends with Benefits where Mila Kunis starts handing out people’s bags whilst running on top of the baggage carousel. I also think airports should make it easier for passengers by having larger empty areas around the carousel, it doesn’t help when the collection area is tiny!

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 14, 2012 at 5:25 pm

      Oh I totally forgot about that scene, that was pretty funny :) I’m sure there definitely could be a better way to help people get their bags easier, but what they do works now so why fix it? haha

  • Reply
    Nikki Wynn
    January 13, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Perfect! I am now going to share this everywhere possible. This drives me crazy as well! You should consider making a video that the airlines can play right after the safety video, or before!

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 13, 2012 at 9:54 pm

      Thanks Nikki!
      That would be a perfect video! haha :)

  • Reply
    Average Traveller
    January 13, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    Remembering what your bag looks like is important. I once stood at a carousel with some work friends watching the same bags circle for 45 minutes. I was just about to file a lost bag claim when I realized that I had used my wife’s suitcase on that trip. Whoops.

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 13, 2012 at 9:10 pm

      Thats pretty funny actually, at least you figured it out :)

  • Reply
    Sarah
    January 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    Big fan of the baggage carousel etiquette…and buying ugly luggage.

    If everyone would just CALM DOWN when they get to the carousel, things would be a lot less nerve-wracking. The pacing, the crowding, it’s all just too intense for me.

    Sometimes I’m forced to check my backpack as over-sized luggage because it has so many straps. This makes me scream with joy because usually, I just pick it up at another counter and avoid the carousel all together. Win-win.

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 13, 2012 at 9:10 pm

      That is a pretty smart idea with the backpack. It is pretty crazy how intense people can get, I have even seen people like run from the plane to get to the carousel just to wait like the rest of us… haha

  • Reply
    Kim
    January 13, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    OMG I hate when people stand right in front of the carousel!! I’m really short (like 5 nothing) so I hate when people stand in front of places and block them in general. So rude. Some people are just completely selfish and in their own little world, completely oblivious to the people around them and I don’t get it. Great post!

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 13, 2012 at 9:07 pm

      thanks Kim! It does amaze me how more and more oblivious people seem to be these days, its crazy! haha

  • Reply
    Leah
    January 13, 2012 at 10:43 am

    How about those people who knock you down trying to get their bag? The belt goes in a circle, people. It doesn’t disappear into the great unknown if you don’t get it the first time! It’ll come back around.

    • Reply
      Cailin
      January 13, 2012 at 9:06 pm

      @Leah I’m waiting for the day when I see someone jump on it as their bag disappears behind the wall haha

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