How to tell if someone stole from your checked bag

Categories Travel Advice

When flying, people are usually worried about the safety of the plane, rough landings, upset stomachs, delays, and turbulence. To me, it’s all about my checked bags. It can be hard to tell if something is missing from bags that weigh 23kg (I always get close to the weight limit). But once I discovered you can use the luggage scale to actually tell if something has been stolen from your bag. It’s nothing complicated but many people seem to miss it and I can’t believe it didn’t occur to me earlier. All I do is weight my bags before checking them and then compare the weight of the bag when it reaches its destination.

Keep in mind that with this kind of scales there’s no margin of error, you’ll know what I’m talking about when you get one if you don’t have one already. At the end of your flight, your luggage should weight the same as it did in the beginning. A 200-gram difference certainly tells me something is missing. If that’s the case then I usually check if the items I wasn’t quite sure I could bring with me are still there, if any of that is missing then it’s no big deal since I knew from the beginning I might not have been able to take the stuff with me.If everything’s there, on the other hand,  I then proceed to look for the valuables. Don’t get me wrong, my DSLR, laptops, e-readers and fancy headphones always fly with me, it is well known you shouldn’t put any of those in checked bags plus carrying lithium-ion batteries in them is not allowed. I’m talking here about small stuff like wallets, cologne bottles and the such. Up to this day, there was only one time my bag was lighter at the end of my trip, it was a difference of about one pound. Being quite honest with you, I never really found out what was missing but I suspect it might have been chocolate since I was carrying tons of chocolate that time.

Using a luggage scale can also be really useful if you are concerned about something illegal being put in your bags. In that case, you should check if you bags are heavier than they were when you first checked them. If that’s the case then you could report it directly to customs before any of your fingerprints are on the suspicious package. You don’t want to go to jail over smuggled Kinder Eggs.

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