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You've got to be kidding!

Discussion in 'Vacation Travel Information' started by rboesl, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. rboesl

    rboesl TUG Member

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    Just returned from a week in Punta Cana. Our first stop in the US was at the Atlanta airport. Wife & I always check our bags. We made it thru passport control quickly enough. Then before going through security again we had to pick up our checked bags, walk them to another section of the floor, only to hand them off to other baggage handlers so they made it onto our connecting domestic flight.

    HUH? You mean to tell me that baggage handlers couldn't do that? Was there something magical that happened when we picked the bags off the carousel that baggage handlers can't do? They didn't ask to search the bags. They didn't question us about their contents. But certainly gave us the opportunity to either remove or add something to the contents.

    I kinda understand the security check in Atlanta. I mean, who knows what kind of criminal element I may have encountered between security scans in Punta Cana and security scans in Atlanta! All that really says is that you don't trust security measures put in place in other airports. I get it. There's no global security measures. But, if that's your concern, why give me an opportunity to put something I may have been given by said criminal elements between security scans. And we did see people opening their checked luggage between pick up and delivery.
     
  2. silentg

    silentg TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    Did you have a nice time?
     
    Egret1986 likes this.
  3. dioxide45

    dioxide45 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    You need to be in possession of your bags as you pass through customs. That is why you picked them up and dropped them off again. They could have asked to search them.
     
  4. Passepartout

    Passepartout TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    It's the LAW! and gives you the opportunity to put duty-free items in checked bags that you would not be allowed to carry on- or through -security. Sorry you were inconvenienced, but that's the way it is - and has been since 9-11-01.

    Jim
     
  5. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Absolutely! Actually, it had been that way even before 9/11/2001. I travelled extensively internationally in the mid 90s and it was that way already.
     
  6. Jimster

    Jimster TUG Member

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    You always pick up your bags at your point of entry. Obviously, you don’t travel internationally much.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  7. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I've read that for travel to EU-Schengen countries, they don't require customs at the point of entry, just final destination (will find out this Summer).

    For those who don't want to be bothered, either way...
    You could take along a maid, valet or footman to handle the bags.
    ... Just be sure they're documented.

    .
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  8. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    They do not need to be documented yet, especially if you are flying into California. :D
     
  9. silentg

    silentg TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    Let’s not get political stay on subject!
     
    klpca likes this.
  10. rboesl

    rboesl TUG Member

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    I can't speak to whether it's the law or just something Homeland Security says has to happen. My point is: There has to be a better way. If you don't trust other airport security systems, which obviously they don't with requiring another security scan, then why require you to be "in possession" of your checked bags when you enter the country? If I could have been given something dangerous between scans then why give me the opportunity to store it elsewhere?

    Do you think universal security requirements would be beneficial? I understand the concept that if a flaw is found it's at every airport. But, that also means a consistent platform to apply a fix. This falls in line with security flaws and how they're being fixed with the browsers you use.
     
  11. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Airport security wants to ensure that the person travels with the luggage, and they figure that is the best way to do so. If the luggages get transferred automatically, then it stands a higher risk of letting a luggage (say with a bomb) to fly without the passenger.

    Separate from this topic, there was once when I was flying international, I think it was from US to Singapore, that they said someone had loaded/checked in their luggages but did not board the plane. We were on the tarmac for 5 hours while all the luggages got unloaded and we were asked to identify our own luggages.
     
  12. Jimster

    Jimster TUG Member

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    You absolutely have to travel with your luggage. It is a security concern. Frankly, I would think you would want to know that the luggage from Punta Cana made it to the USA rather than finding it out when you got to your ultimate destination. If it is lost or on another flight (which sometimes happens if the airline decides to do so), you would have a better chance of ultimately getting it. It would also help to know if something were missing and when it happened. Theft from checked baggage is a definite problem especially in some foreign countries. It is better to know at the earliest possible point. Also if you have a banned item that is found or agriculturally banned products, do you really think it would be logical to let you carry it to your US destination before dealing with it? No one else does. If you have insects that are hostile to our crops, I want them found before you take them to places like California where we grow crops.

    Furthermore, we are not the only country that does this, most countries i know of do that and I have been to over 30 countries. Frankly, you should thank your lucky stars you are NOT in those countries. When I entered China on a trip to Beijing one official got hyper and made ALL passengers (about 250) stop and open their carry-ons and he proceeded to take every item out of every bag and inspect it. It took over 3 hours. In Hong Kong, they regularly inspect every carry on upon boarding a plane. I have also had that happen in Bangkok.

    Further if you think there is a problem now, when we have just a few points of entry into the USA. Think what would happen and the cost involved of dealing with customs in Bozeman, MT. Bloomington, IL or some other small domestic airport.

    Whether they asked you anything about your bags or whether you added or took out anything is irrelevant. At the very least your bag was probably sniffed by a narcotics dog. They may well have opened them in which case they would have put in a card stating as much. They may have been x-rayed or several other security procedures. As for adding, what are you going to add? They don’t let you out of a secured environment to get any contraband. If you do get out, they will shut down the airport. Imagine the cost of doing this in a final destination in every podunk airport in the country. PLEASE! I live in Chicago (10 inches of snow now), I’d open my checked bag and take out a coat too if i were coming from the Dominican Republic.

    The policy does cause some problems. For example, my wife and I had boarded a plane and stowed our carry ons when she realized she left her I-phone in the lounge. So she left to get it. When she hadn’t gotten back by the time they wanted to close the door, they made me deplane AND take my carry-ons with me. You have to travel with your bags.

    Also if you are at the gate and want to accept a voucher for being bumped, if they can’t get your bags off- they won’t pick you. That’s why many frequent flyers will not check bags at all. How much could you possibly need to put in checked bags to be gone to Punta Cana for a week?

    My advise- pay $3 for a cart and deal with it or if you are lucky you won’t even have to pay at all for your cart. The basis for this policy is well reasoned and far exceeds what is essentially a small inconvenience that you may endure.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018
  13. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Once thing I can say for my ex... She packed light.
    We once went to Italy for 8 days with just carry-ons.
    Current wife: Between make-up and what-if clothes, its a lost cause.
    .
     
  14. Jimster

    Jimster TUG Member

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    It is not necessary to take large amounts of clothing when you travel. Many TS have a washer/dryer in the unit, so it is just a matter of throwing in a light load. In Asia, there are always places which will do your laundry for a pitence-pay by the kilo. If worse comes to worse, just buy something-it doubles as a souvenir. Today, with the miracle fabrics and specially designed travel clothes there is no need to carry around large amounts of luggage. Also large amounts of luggage are just an invitation to problems. Who wants to drag those things around? Who wants to pay extra bag fees? Certainly not me!

    Sometimes I pack my bag with old clothes and then use them when i don’t want to be a conspicuous American. Then I leave them there or give them away and use the space in my bags to fill them with new clothes or souvenirs.

    What i don’t have I buy. Of course, there are some items you don’t want to do without-your favorite shampoo, etc.
     
  15. jehb2

    jehb2 TUG Member

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    i remember having to do this way before 9/11. In fact I can't ever remember a time when i didn't collect my bags, go through customs, and then deposit them onto another conveyor belt.

    The only difference is foreign countries almost always offer free carts in the customs area (and sometimes in the whole airport--i.e. Japan). In the US some airport customs area offer free carts I think. But I've been traveling internationally with only a carry on for the past many years that i don't remember.

    i think before 9/11 it was more about drugs and not security. my husband has a ponytail and prior to 9/11 he was almost always stopped and searched. ponytail=drugs. He has never been stopped once since 9/11.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
  16. AJCts411

    AJCts411 TUG Member

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    Atlanta been like this for a long time as a few other airports. You are arriving on a international flight, and are required to go through the necessary inspections before entering the USA...in this case the domestic side of operations. Most of the times there is a dog and handler, and seems like random checks as well.
     
  17. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I once returned from a cruise with a Cuban cigar wrapped inside a U.S. cigar case.
    I was worried the dog could distinguish between Cuban tobacco and other tobacco.
    No dog.
    .
     
  18. Jimster

    Jimster TUG Member

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    Like Talent 312, I took a trip to Italy for 5 days with only the contents of my briefcase. I took 2 underwear changes, a shirt and a pair of jeans. Surpringly, other countries have washing machines and laundries.:whooopie:
     

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