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Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:22 am

I have a mystery that I hope someone can solve. Actually it's probably just a stupid question. Sometimes when I fly with AS, some of my bags arrive at the destination with a sticker on them in addition to the barcoded tag. This sticker has a barcode on it (which encodes a single number) and the number it encodes is spelled out on it. (i.e. "seven" or "thirteen") I was just curious as to the purpose of this sticker and why it doesn't show up on all my bags.
Semper ubi sub ubi.
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:25 am

It may be a special security label given if one of your bags is randomly searched by the security detail within the loading areas of the airport. You know how they 'randomly' search passengers before boarding? They do the same thing with baggage and it sounds like that might be the security officer's ID number, sort of like getting a t-shirt with the little inspector's number label in the inside.

I don't know if I'm right about this or not...just a rough guess, but I hope it helps!  Big thumbs up

Crye me a river
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:33 am

Probably nothing to do with TSA. If the TSA searched your bag, they place a note inside saying the fact that it was searched.
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:39 am

a TSA searched bag is also (re)sealed with a blue plastic tie, holding the zipper handles together.

I travel w/tools and have amassed an amazing collection of those things (and the little notes) as they seem to hand-inspect the toolbag every single flight.

Can't blame 'em though ... all the wires and metal tool parts must be darned near impossible to interpret on a scanner screen.

- litz
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Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2004 4:49 pm

RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:47 am

Like I said, I'm probably incorrect on my previous guess!  Big thumbs up

I'm trying to figure it out myself now as well. If it has nothing to do with TSA or the airline's own security screeners, then I can only guess that it is some sort of code that the airline uses to sort your baggage...although with this they would probably put it on each of your bags instead of just one.

Could it be something along the lines of an overweight bag or something that may be close to overweight? I could see them placing a label stating how much overweight or how close to the limit the bag is. Outside of that, I really have no clue.

Crye me a river
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:51 am

Its probably a sequence number, giving your bag a number when it's checked. That way, should you decided not to fly or fail to board, the ramp can locate your bag quickly, remove it, and not take a delay. Usually grouping checked bags in certain cargo compartments - example: the first 40 seq'd bags are loaded in the forward bin, the next 50 seq'd bags in the next bin, etc. On your boarding pass, there should be a matching #. They're able to locate the bag more quickly instead of having to hunt through an entire a/c full of luggage. Your boarding pass says you have 3 checked bags, seq# 13, you can narrow them down to a group of 20 or 30 bags instead of 150....

Thats my guess. [Grin]
"Sucka, I'm gonna send you out on Knuckle Airlines. Fist Class!!" ~ Mr. T
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:53 am

My guess would be a tag that directs the bag to a curtain baggage pier for loading. In EWR, sometimes bags are not read properly the first time and sent to a overflow pier. The bag is then resent with the tag properly up so the computer can read it or a new tag placed on it that just sends it to a certain pier.
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 5:57 am

I think I might have an idea of what that sticker is. In IAH when your bag goes down in the bagroom they put a sticker on your bag to correspond to what pier it goes to. In IAH they have roughly 20 piers. The bag will go down to the bagroom and the scanners then read that barcode and send it to the correct pier. Also if your a connecting passenger and have a long layover the bag runners will put it on a belt outside and send your bag also to the bagroom. This is just to keep it inside out of the elements. Plus makes it easier on the runner. So is AS uses that same sort of system that would be my best guess. Hope this helps a little bit.
p.s. This is what CO uses in IAH, EWR and CLE. With the volume of bags it makes it easier to sort bags. It is similar to what FedEx uses to sort their packages, if that clears it up for you.
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RE: Mysterious Baggage Sticker

Wed Feb 04, 2004 6:19 am

It's my understanding that some airports (LAX, for instance) have a common baggage system and these labels (usually applied to one side of your checked article at check-in) are used to keep items separated by airline (and perhaps flight?). Anyone lurking who works baggage at a larger airport to set up straight?


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