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[2006] TSA Luggage Locks?

wheaties

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Has anyone used the new TSA-approved luggage locks? Are they worth using? Can they be used going out of the country (i.e. Mexico)? Our son had items stolen from his luggage and thought this may help. Any feedback's appreciated!
 

lvhmbh

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I hate to say this but there have been a number of reports of items stolen from luggage by TSA AGENTS! We just try not to put anything important in our luggage and put the important stuff in our carry-on. Linda
 

w.bob

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We have used them for a couple of years now. We never had anything stolen and I am not sure if the locks would help. Using the TSA locks only puts my mind at ease knowing that I can have my luggage locked and know that the lock will not be cut off. I always carry on my important papers and other items of value.
 

ouaifer

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The TSA locks are fine in the US...the folks we have talked to at TSA have indicated that they all have the keys...however they are only good in the US. They will difinitely be breached in another country...if they want to get into your luggage, the TSA locks will be cut off.
 

davhu1

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Waste of money. Some TSA are so poorly trained, they do not know what a TSA lock is. I got 2 cut by them. One on a ski bag going to Colorado. The other one was cut on a suitcase with snorkel gears coming back from Hawaii. Cheaper and easier to put on a plastic electrical wire tie.
 
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Keitht

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I also use cable ties. They are reasonably secure but can be cut off easily if the security people want to get in. We used them on 6 flights in the US and they were not removed once.
I put a pair of nail clippers in the side pocket of one of the cases so that I could cut them off at our destination.
 

JoAnn

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I lost one on a flight (or somewhere) from Bariloche Argentina to Buenos Aires.

When DH & DS went hunting last October, DH had to unlock the TSA lock for the TSA person to look in his luggage :rolleyes: Apparently the TSA agent had no idea how to open it! On the return trip, there was a paper in the luggage stating they had looked inside. (nothing was missing).

At least with the locks in place the zipper can't slip open.
 

ZCar

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Hey Keitht,
We do exactly the same thing as you. No problems and a lot less money!
(Even when we flew to London).
 

dougp26364

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I've been using the TSA locks since last October. So far, no problems. I purchased them because we were going out of the county and I wanted to be able to lock my bags. The twist ties aren't much of a deterent to criminal hands. Granted any luggage lock won't keep a determined thief out of your luggage but it will deter the simple sneak thiefs if there's easier pickings around.

We also cruise once or twice a year and it makes us feel better about setting our luggage out in the hallways for pick up on the last night of the cruise.

There is no lock that will protect your possesions in transit but it might deter them enough to pick on another bag. Perhaps one that only has a twist tie or nothing at all. NEVER put anything of value in checked luggage unless you don't mind having it stolen.
 

ZCar

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Doug,
Keitht and I are talking about the plastic tie-wraps, not twist-ties. One would usually need snips or a finger nail clipper to cut them. They come in various widths (and colors) and the bigger, the tougher to cut.
 

kter

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cable locks

cable ties is a good idea.... they lock down and must be cut to remove. To me, this is a much better and less expensive alternative to the TSA locks. At least you know when your bags have been snooped. You can pick up about 100 tie downs for $10.00 :cool:
 

cotraveller

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We have TSA locks and have used them on both domestic and international flights. There was one case where they were definitely opened by TSA since we could tell that the contents of the suitcases had been rearranged. The locks are about $6 from AAA or $10 for ones that indicate if they have been opened. I don't consider the locks much of a theft deterrent. I see them mainly as preventing the suitcase from opening accidently for whatever reason.
 

2hokies

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My brother used a TSA lock and his bag was searched. No biggie. Unfortunately, they did NOT replace the lock on his bag, nor did they put it inside the bag :mad: . I think I'll stick with the cable ties.
 

jimbiggs

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You can't stop a thief, but a lock will help keep the honest people honest. The locks are inexpensive. I bought several, but have not used them. We're still using our old non-TSA approved locks. In the last three trips, they have not been cut. Once they get cut off, I'll start using the TSA approved locks.
 

dougp26364

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The problem with ties is when the TSA cuts them off, they don't always replace them or replace them with less expensive ties.

It is a correct statment that the tougher it is to get off, the lower the chances your bag with be broken into. The TSA locks are tougher than any cable tie I know of. It takes more than nail clippers or small scissors to cut off a TSA lock.

Unfortunately, depsite the fact they've been around for some time, some TSA employee's haven't seemed to get the message. George Carlin said it best once when he complained about people with double digit IQ's and triple digit incomes rooting around in his bags. Most TSA employee's I've come in contact with have been fine but there are just enough of them without the good common sense that God gave to a goose to make you cringe every time you have to navigate airport security.
 

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We've used both TSA and wire ties with no problems and sometimes we get notes that the bag(s) was inspected. As far as cheaper wire ties, I don't reuse them anyway once they're cut. Biggest problem I've had with them is figuring out how to cut them upon arrival when I couldn't carry a pocket knife or nail clippers, etc. :eek:
 

Keitht

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At Las Vegas airport the security people were actually checking locks as we handed our cases in. They asked one person to remove the lock (non TSA) or risk it being broken off. Security was the cable ties we had used and said they were a good idea.
 

Elli

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Keitht said:
I also use cable ties. They are reasonably secure but can be cut off easily if the security people want to get in. We used them on 6 flights in the US and they were not removed once.
I put a pair of nail clippers in the side pocket of one of the cases so that I could cut them off at our destination.
Dave, here is your answer how to cut the cable ties.
 

ZCar

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If you pull the cable ties really tight, even pointed snips have a problem cutting them. I usually leave a small loop to give the nail clipper edge a bit of a grip. Why spend dollars for locks?
 

Htoo0

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Yeah, I figured both the above points out at my timeshare the 1st time I used ties. :D But I was so used to having my Swiss knife with me I just didn't think about it. Now I have my knife or clippers in one of the bags with a TSA lock.
 

Jim C

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No Problem w/TSA locks

We've been using them since they were first authorized; both for domestic and international travel. The last two times we flew back from PV, one bag was opened for inspection. It was relocked(??) with the red alert button displayed. Nothing missing. As stated above, if nothing else the locks secure the bags against casual pilfering or thefts. Someone mentioned dishonest TSA employees as being a major problem. Don't know about that, but have the baggage handlers all of a sudden become honest and trustworthy??
 

sultan_sfo

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Make Searching Easy for TSA

Just a personal observation:
Imagine the TSA inspector opening your bags and then not being able to close it because you had packed it so tightly. My guess is some of your items will not get back when your bags are closed! On the cruise boards, there is always a discussion of using the large (2-gal to 3 gal) ziplock bags to place items and a separate zip lock bag for "suspicious" items such as clocks, chargers, extension cords, etc. The easier you make it for the TSA inspector to go through your luggage, the less likely your luggage will be damaged. /Sultan
 

Keitht

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ZCar said:
If you pull the cable ties really tight, even pointed snips have a problem cutting them. I usually leave a small loop to give the nail clipper edge a bit of a grip. Why spend dollars for locks?
Agreed. I pulled one a bit tight and it took me about 5 minutes of snipping a tiny section at a time to get it unlocked :(
 

Dollie

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TSA Locks: Left with 4, Arrived with 1

Conclusion: The locks are a waste of money.

We had four locks on our suitcases. At checkin at the airport, the counter person asked us to unlock them to make it easier for TSA. We did. TSA is right behind the counter. It should have been easy for TSA, all they had to do was lock them when they were done. When we picked our luggage up in Hawai`i, only one lock was on the suitcases. The other 3 were totally gone.
 

dougp26364

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Dollie said:
Conclusion: The locks are a waste of money.

We had four locks on our suitcases. At checkin at the airport, the counter person asked us to unlock them to make it easier for TSA. We did. TSA is right behind the counter. It should have been easy for TSA, all they had to do was lock them when they were done. When we picked our luggage up in Hawai`i, only one lock was on the suitcases. The other 3 were totally gone.

In this case, I'd say it was the TSA that was worthless and not the locks.
 
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