GettyLuggage tips: Cable ties will work just as well as padlocks
Holidaymakers worry about keeping valuables safe in their checked in luggage – which is why many choose to use expensive locks to secure their suitcase zips.
However, there is a much cheaper solution which works just as well, and costs just 62p from DIY stores: it’s a plastic cable tie.
A cable tie, also known as a zip tie, is most commonly used to holding electrical wires together – but works just as well as a makeshift luggage lock.
Looped through two zip pulls to tie them together, self locking cable ties prevent anyone opening up a zip to get into luggage, says advice on money saving site, Krazy Coupon Lady.
GettyLuggage tips: Cable ties provide a cheap and easy alternative
While the cable ties are technically easier to break open than locks, it will be very obvious if anyone breaks into them because the plastic would have to be cut open.
This means luggage handlers would risk their jobs if they were to break into these cases, as someone will be held to account for tampering with the cases.
The cable ties are much less expensive than luggage locks, which can cost around ten pounds for a premium brand.
It also means you don’t run the risk of getting locked out of your own suitcase, if you forget the key combination or lose the keys needed to open it.
GettyLuggage tips: Lose the key to your suitcase padlock and you're in trouble
GettyLuggage tips: Prevent anyone from breaking into your suitcase
All you need to do is snip open the plastic ties with a pair of scissors, and then you can get access to your luggage easily.
The cable ties also have another use, and this is to protect the zip pulls on your case getting broken while in stowage or on the conveyor belt.
The adjustable ties keep the pulls securely together, so they are subject to a lot less wear and tear then the cases are being thrown around.
Finally, if the Transport Security Administration (TSA) do need to break into your case for any reason (for instance, if they suspect forbidden items to be in there), cable ties are much less expensive to replace.
GettyLuggage tips: Cable ties should be fastened around your suitcase zips
Recently, a useful trick was revealed to get your luggage back first from the conveyor belt at the airport, ahead of other passengers’ suitcases.
Even better, the trick did not cost a penny – compared to other methods, which involve paying for business or first class to get priority luggage collection.
The trick was to get a “fragile” sticker put on your luggage, by telling the airport check in staff you have delicate items in your case – even if it is not true.
Because “fragile” cases are treated with more care, they are generally placed on top of all the other luggage in stowage – and as a result come on to the carousel first.