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Luggage tags (attach before or after flight?)

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We have always attached our cruise luggage tags before taking a flight to the port. We have those plastic sleeves so the tags won’t rip and I always print up extras. A few years ago we flew into Orlando a day before a Disney Cruise. One piece of luggage was sent by mistake to a Disney ship that was departing that day. Fortunately it was intercepted and it was returned to the airport a few hours later. Now I hesitate in flying with the cruise tags attached. We are flying into LAX in a few weeks. Has anyone had a related problem? What do you do when you fly to a cruise?

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Attach after your flight if going directly to Port or if staying over one night, then at the hotel before you leave for the port the next morning. I have attached mine usually in the evening, at the hotel. This avoids them getting damaged by the airport. I also attach my tag holders with the small zip lock ties instead of the plastic ones that come with it.I would keep your tag & holders with you in a carry on or purse.

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We attach one tag per suitcase before our flight. Print several copies of the tags and put them in your carry on luggage. If they get lost, which has happened to us, they still may get them to the ship. In fact that very thing happened to us. Airline lost them, and we had the hotel, insurance and princess on the lookout for them. We assumed we’d have to wait until the first port, but they appeared in our cabin the first night after dinner.

 

Once we get to our pre cruise hotel, we attach more tags, then drop them at the pier.

 

 

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If you have always been in the habit of attaching the ship luggage tags when flying in the day before you are lucky that your bags being inadvertently sent directly to the port has only happened once.

 

Even the one time I flew in the morning of the cruise (yes, I know, shame on me) I left the tags off until getting to the baggage claim and using the cruise line rep's stapler--which you are free to do even if not using the ship's transfer.

 

Since you have plastic tag holders there is absolutely no reason to put them on your bags any sooner then right before checking out of the hotel. Yes there is the argument that having the ship's tags on your bags from the moment you leave home could be helpful if your airline loses a bag and does not recover it until after you sailed, and thus will forward it to the ship at the next port. But I say you bag has less of a chance of getting lost without tags that are extraneous to the airline. And the idea that bags could easily find you mid-cruise has proven usually untrue.

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We attach them before going to port, either getting on airport’s baggage claim or from hotel.

 

 

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....

 

Even the one time I flew in the morning of the cruise (yes, I know, shame on me) I left the tags off until getting to the baggage claim and using the cruise line rep's stapler--which you are free to do even if not using the ship's transfer.

 

....

 

We plan to fly in the morning of our next cruise as the day before is Mother's Day in the US. We're arriving early and also using EZ-Air so not really worried. It will be the first time in a long time we have done this but did plan to apply cruise tags to our luggage at the baggage claim.

 

What I'm interested in, Fishywood, in the quoted statement, do you mean that the cruise line rep will accept your luggage even if you're not using the ship's transfer or did you mean you can just borrow the stapler? If Princess will take the luggage there that would be wonderful to not have to move all that stuff to the faster shuttle we intend to use.

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I was only saying that the rep will let you use their stapler.

 

However if you lay back and observe the rep simply instructing those passengers with Princess transfers to "just toss your bags onto that large trolley over there"--what's to stop you?

 

...other than your sailing from a port where the porters demand everyone on the bus identify their bags as they come off--for the sole purpose of extorting a tip. Your bags may end up going for a swim in that case.

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I was only saying that the rep will let you use their stapler.

 

However if you lay back and observe the rep simply instructing those passengers with Princess transfers to "just toss your bags onto that large trolley over there"--what's to stop you?

 

...other than your sailing from a port where the porters demand everyone on the bus identify their bags as they come off--for the sole purpose of extorting a tip. Your bags may end up going for a swim in that case.

 

Ah rats. I think we won't risk that and just schlep them to our own shuttle ... thanks for replying!

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My mother in law is a stickler for detail. For her cruise, I helped her tag her bags. The Princess instructions explicitly state to attach the tags before getting to/into the plane. This is what we did, even though it is literally a piece of folded paper stapled around the bag's handle. Everything went just as it should have!!

 

I did print a second tag and put it in an exterior pocket of the bag, just in case the first one ripped off during the flight.

 

If I we're going myself, I would use a plastic bag tag upon arrival at the destination airport. This may be a bit paranoid, but past experience has led me to this. Which means it may not be paranoia!

 

OTOH, could there be a situation where one leaves the airport before their bag's arrival, and it only makes it to the ship because it is pre-tagged?

 

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I print the luggage tags, then my wife folds them and covers them with a clear, packing tape - staple to luggage - done

 

and a couple of extras, of course

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Personal preference, I guess! I put mine on after I arrive at my destination, but I like to fly in a day or two early. I use the plastic holders, just more convenient.

 

I have luggage tag holders on my suitcase and I put my destination hotel plus the ship in case my luggage goes astray as I always take connecting flights.

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We always attach ours after we arrive at the destination airport. I don't need all of those people handling my bags to know where I'm going and how long I'll be gone from home. For me, it's a matter of security.

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The key is to attach the tags at your last "stop" before going to the ship. If you are flying in on the day of the cruise--home airport to destination airport to ship--you can put them on before leaving home or at the destination airport. If you are flying in a day or more early and going to a hotel, doing other stuff before the cruise, or whatever, we place the cruise tags on at the last stop before the ship. Usually this is a hotel.

 

Disney's instructions are very different from Princess'. DCL makes the point that you should apply them as I explained above. Princess just says to apply them before leaving home.

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The key is to attach the tags at your last "stop" before going to the ship. If you are flying in on the day of the cruise--home airport to destination airport to ship--you can put them on before leaving home or at the destination airport. If you are flying in a day or more early and going to a hotel' date=' doing other stuff before the cruise, or whatever, we place the cruise tags on at the last stop before the ship. Usually this is a hotel.

 

Disney's instructions are very different from Princess'. DCL makes the point that you should apply them as I explained above. Princess just says to apply them before leaving home.[/quote']

Thank you so much for pointing out the policy differences. It clarifies what happened on our last Disney Cruise and makes me more comfortable in attaching the tags at home.

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Only have AIRLINE tags on your bags for the flights....the airlines have enough trouble with their OWN tags....don't confuse them! Put your ship's tags on AFTER the flights...and remove the airline tags!

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I don't see any good reason to put cruise tags on a bag that is being checked with an airline. What's the rush? Place the tag in and inside pocket and after arriving at destination, rip off the airline tag and apply the cruise tag. Seems simple enough.

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Everyone has their own approach.

 

We just wait till we claim our luggage and we attach it when we go to the port. If from airport to port we attach it after claiming luggage and if from hotel to port on the morning of embarkation we attach them at the hotel.

 

Keith

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Oh my goodness, after flying! All of the cruiselines we’ve sailed specifically say that. Putting them on before is asking for a baggage mishandling at the airports.

 

 

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I laminate our tags and then hole punch the ends. I bring a few small zip ties to attach them to the bags.

 

 

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Everyone has their own approach.

 

We just wait till we claim our luggage and we attach it when we go to the port. If from airport to port we attach it after claiming luggage and if from hotel to port on the morning of embarkation we attach them at the hotel.

 

Keith

We do the same! Love the plastic tag holders.

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If you have the Cruise + Aircraft package, the labels should be placed when leaving the house, if you only have only the cruise, put them after the airport. A recommendation remove all old labels.

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I may be paranoid but, always after flight. Two tags per luggage and one printed in first pocket which also has all flight and cruise info. Also plastic holders with stainless steel cables. Why all this? Well when you see your wife in tears at the start of a 75 day cruise you will understand.

 

 

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Thank you so much for pointing out the policy differences. It clarifies what happened on our last Disney Cruise and makes me more comfortable in attaching the tags at home.

 

 

In an age of automated/scanned baggage handling (subject to human error as well), the last thing you want on luggage about to be loaded onto an airplane is multiple "destination" tags (real or mistaken/unintentional).

Our preferred cruise line sends us the same type of sturdy self-adhering embarkation tags as are used by airlines. We put them on just prior to leaving for the port from the pre-cruise hotel.

All that is on the exterior of our airline checked luggage is the airline's destination tag (plus the two small duplicate bar code stickers most airlines affix as backups) AND one nearly-indestructible ID tag with name, cellular telephone number (including country code) and email address (NO bar codes/scan icons).

Since we use Travelpro luggage, the same ID info is on a card in a holder built into the exterior wall of the bag itself. And, of course, there is a sheet of paper with the same contact info (never a home address) and key itinerary details (pre-cruise hotel name/dates/contact info and ship name/embarkation date/location/telephone [cruise line and/or port agent]) immediately visible should a misdirected bag be opened in an attempt to locate the owner.

 

Also worth mentioning/repeating is how important it is to fly-in to an embarkation port at least a day ahead (preferably two or more given the challenges/limitations of contemporary air travel) and scheduling international connecting flight buffers of 3+ hours (2 hrs on domestic). As essential as is trip delay/interruption insurance, a missed connection or misplaced bag can really "rain on your (cruise) parade."

 

 

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Only have AIRLINE tags on your bags for the flights....the airlines have enough trouble with their OWN tags....don't confuse them! Put your ship's tags on AFTER the flights...and remove the airline tags!

 

As a frequent flyer I'm in this camp.

 

I have good name tags on the bags (with my cell phone #) and a business card tucked into a front pocket. Once we retrieve bags from baggage claim we remove the airline tags. When we get to the port we let the porters attach the cruise line tags (we fold them to make it efficient for the porters) and tip reasonably generously for their "extra effort".

 

My thinking, less tags to confuse the baggage handlers; if the airline loses my bag they've got my contact info to try to get my bag to me before the cruise departs. Travel Insurance will also kick in if my baggage gets lost for the duration of the vacation.

 

 

That's my strategy and I'm sticking too it.

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Definitely in the "don't do anything to confuse the airlines" camp. I either attach the tags just before the final mode of transportation to the port (taxi, shuttle, etc), or upon arrival at the port. However, I've never used the cruise line transfers which might require a different strategy...... Of course I would never fly in the day of departure so I guess I won't need that alternate strategy after all.

 

Attaching the tags before your flight and carrying along extra tags because you're afraid they will be damaged or lost? Huh?:confused:

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IF flying (not our usual practice) we usually go several days earlier. We attach our ship luggage tags the morning of departure, after flying. No need to confuse the issue with the airline luggage handlers.

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Oh my goodness, after flying! All of the cruiselines we’ve sailed specifically say that. Putting them on before is asking for a baggage mishandling at the airports.

 

 

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Princess, perhaps because she had booked air and transfers through them, did specifically indicate the tags should be placed on the bags before boarding the flight.

 

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I always attach our luggage tags before boarding the ship and after arriving by air into the port. We always arrive at least the night before if not earlier so it is easy to do. That way the airline does not know where we are going and tries to send the luggage to the wrong ship. Also it protects our luggage tags from the airline baggage loading gorillas. To protect the ship luggage tags from the pier gorillas, I use the plastic holders with a wire attachment to the luggage. Even with this on our last cruise they managed to destroy one of them when unloading the ship.

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Lately we have been cruising with one or two other couples. We always place on our luggage tags at the airport. One time when we were flying SW (we fly out of a smaller airport) and try to be the first flight out the day of the cruise. On one flight we were to have a 2 hour layover, but when we finally landed we had less than a hour. Before we landed in Florida we were going to make plans to see if we could get our luggage at the first port. However, to our surprise we found all our luggage coming out. When I checked in for our return flight I thanked the gal from SW for their service. She replied that our airport personnel notice we were on a cruise and made sure they were the last ones on so they would be the first ones off. So we now always put them on first and carry a couple extras for spares.

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Lately we have been cruising with one or two other couples. We always place on our luggage tags at the airport. One time when we were flying SW (we fly out of a smaller airport) and try to be the first flight out the day of the cruise. On one flight we were to have a 2 hour layover, but when we finally landed we had less than a hour. Before we landed in Florida we were going to make plans to see if we could get our luggage at the first port. However, to our surprise we found all our luggage coming out. When I checked in for our return flight I thanked the gal from SW for their service. She replied that our airport personnel notice we were on a cruise and made sure they were the last ones on so they would be the first ones off. So we now always put them on first and carry a couple extras for spares.

That's amazing!

 

 

 

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That's amazing!

 

 

 

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Perhaps a touch too amazing: a staffer in Miami knew the actions of employees at a different airport days or weeks prior?

 

 

 

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Perhaps a touch too amazing: a staffer in Miami knew the actions of employees at a different airport days or weeks prior?

...

 

It could just be a company-wide policy so yes, the staffer in Miami could have made a valid comment...

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That's amazing!

 

What's amazing about having your luggage make it to your destination:confused:?

The comment by a SW staffer? Yes, a little too amazing.

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It could just be a company-wide policy so yes, the staffer in Miami could have made a valid comment...

 

 

 

With all due respect: fly much?

If not, just watch any of the many many utube videos of all airline baggage handlers.

 

 

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With all due respect: fly much?

If not, just watch any of the many many utube videos of all airline baggage handlers.

 

 

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Or look out the window and see one using a customers baggage as a step stool to reach the hold of a plane.

 

 

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I don't see any good reason to put cruise tags on a bag that is being checked with an airline. What's the rush? Place the tag in and inside pocket and after arriving at destination, rip off the airline tag and apply the cruise tag. Seems simple enough.

My friend and I were leaving from EWR to FLL to board the Crown. We always put the cruise tags on before flying. We both checked our bags with the SkyCap and off we went. When we arrived in FLL, my friends bag came down the carousel no problem. When my suitcase did not appear, I went to the United office. They scanned my luggage receipt and guess what? My bag was still sitting in EWR.

They were going to try and get it on a Delta flight that would arrive before our departure.

 

United told me it was a good thing I had the cruise tag on the bag, as it would help identify it and get it to the proper location.

 

In case my bag did not arrive in time, United got a limo to take me to the mall and gave me $500 to get some clothing and toiletries. I got my bag 3 days later in Grand Cayman. I don't think it would have found me, if not for the cruise tag.

Have you folks seen an airline tag? It looks nothing like a cruise tag. Put the cruise tag on a side handle if you think the airlines are that dumb. ;)

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