You've safely made it to your destination, you're waiting in a mass of people much like a heard of cattle and the luggage carousel goes round and round and round. Lots of black luggage that all looks alike. How can you tell which one is yours? Well aside from obvious, don't buy black luggage, some of those animal print ones, or bright orange...well they show up; but then most of us do have black. Black is popular, it doesn't look like it's meant for a 10 year old girl, and it doesn't show the dirt as much.
Though this purple yarn do dad is in need of being removed...seen it's better days. Tie things on your luggage. Put something on several sides; because you know whatever you put on the front is hard to see.......they always seem to throw your suitcase on upside down with the handle part as far away from the edge of the carousel as possible. Why, I've wonder time and time again can't they put the luggage on when the handle on the side or on outside edge? It would sure save everyone hitting each other as they lunge across trying to reach it as it gets further away from you.
Back to being able to tell it's your luggage. Use bright colored luggage tags, ribbon, yarn that you can easily see from a distance. I've seen people decals also on their luggage...but I think that might only work well if you have hard sided luggage. AND....TAKE THE TIME TO LOOK AT THE LUGGAGE TAG AFTER YOU LUGGED IT FROM THE CAROUSEL........MAKE SURE IT'S YOUR LUGGAGE, DON'T ASSUME IT IS. Though I've not gone home with someone else's luggage I know too many people who's luggage went home with someone else. People are hurried, tired, and generally pretty agitated by the time they elbow their way through the crowd to crab the suitcase that "looks like" theirs.
If you're not traveling alone, send 1 person up to the carousel and have the others further back. When the person up front see's an appropriate piece of luggage and starts to grab it, the other person can come forward to get it and remove it out of the way. Nothing worse then 6 people standing there to pick up 1 or 2 pieces of luggage, keeping others from seeing what they need to see. It's also a bit dangerous...kids that can easily get hit or tramped with luggage being yanked off the carousel.
Stand a foot or two away from the carousel, that way everyone can see better. Step forward when you see yours, and again back up. When everyone pushes forward, not only can fewer people see the luggage, but there's no where to grab and put it...with people elbow to elbow. And as luck would have it, the people up front elbow to elbow are waiting while the carousel goes round a 2nd or 3rd time........why? The luggage on their belongs to people behind them who can't see their luggage. And, until you let them get their luggage there won't be room for yours to be put on their. This happens often when multiple planes are using the same carousel, and plane 1 people were there waiting........then plane 2 people get there and rush the carousel. Plane 1's luggage is coming out first.
Sadly, it's rare to see people being polite when retrieving their luggage. It's a scene that seems to bring out the worst in people. Breathe, step back, wait your turn. YOU ARE NOT, the only person who's anxious, tired, hungry or needs to go to the bathroom. By being able to identify you luggage and being polite and patient you can start and end your trip in a much more stress free way.
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