Has Your Luggage Been Lost — Or Stolen?

Are airlines losing your bags or are airports letting thieves walk out the door with them?

Police in Phoenix said they tracked a man from the airport back to his house, where they discovered nearly 1,000 stolen bags, the Arizona Republic reports. The man and his wife were arrested and the airport is reviewing its security procedure.

“It is 1,000 bags, and we’re very concerned about it, but it’s a rare occurrence,” said Sky Harbor spokeswoman Deborah Ostreicher.

I don’t know if you can call it “rare” when nearly 1,000 bags are stolen by a couple of people. Ostreicher said the airport stopped checking baggage claim tickets years ago to cut costs. To be fair to Phoenix Sky Harbor, most airports have done the same. When was the last time someone asked to see your claim ticket when you left with your bag?

But it does occur to me that most airlines are now collecting extra revenue to carry bags, and somewhere along the chain some of that money could be spent to ensure that the bags are secure. It adds insult to injury to pay $20 to transport a suitcase only to have it walked out the door without you.

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