Wilba, you surprise me, if you fail to secure your suitcases your insurance company can use this as a failure on your part to comply with the "small print" and disallow any claim should you need to put one in. There are two types of securing devises which are allowed by the TSA, one is a padlock which may be operated with a key or a set of numbers and the other is a lockable suitcase recognition band which goes around the case, these need to have the red and white TSA diamond shown on it and the packaging will denote that it is authentic. Love and kisses, Lucy X.
Now didn't I know I would be in for some stick by committing that to print. Do you mean there are insurance companies that actually pay out for suitcase loss or damage? My experience is if they can't wriggle out of one rule they will do their utmost to avoid the next & by the time they've applied their 'excess' for this & 'excess' for that, it was all a waste of time anyway. There......I've had my little moan about Holiday Insurance Companies......I feel better now.....Now Lucy, about these kisses......
I can both confirm and support what you say. For a small outlay this problem can be overcome. Sometimes I wish our Customs and immigration services were as thorough, though maybe not so humourless, as our American cousins.
Thank you Richard. I do feel very sorry for those who have had cases ruined but if I can discover these things, so can everyone else.I found out about this on a US government website as I was doing my pre holiday check list and then sourced the locks over here which took some doing. They were not easy to find in the UK a few years ago. At one point after 9/11, US entry/ exit requirements changed almost monthly. It pays to check everything even when you think you have all bases covered from your last holiday experience.
I have just found your info regarding the TSA locks. We have samsonite hard cases with combination locks, do you know how we can get around this problem as we are flying into New York in April 09. Any help apprciated.
We also had Samsonite hard cases with combination locks and on our first trip after we learnt about the activities of the TSA, we looked in vain for the answer to this problem and kept the cases unlocked when transiting the airports[like Wilba, we were lucky].Our answer I'm afraid was to buy new soft sided but very durable Samsonite zip cases, which can take the TSA compliant locks, when we got back. The plus side is, surprisingly, the cases ARE very durable[we are lucky enough to fly to the US at least 3 or 4 times a year on holiday so they get some useage] and if the cases are opened, which ours have been on a couple of occasions, with a zip closure, there is a smaller risk of clothes getting trapped/damaged if the TSA folks have had a good rummage as all clothes have to be inside the case for the zip to be zipped! We got that advice from a luggage shop in California. The cases are a lot lighter too. Sorry I can't be more help on the combination locks but it WAS a few years ago that we looked so if you are willing to chance it, you could leave the cases unlocked and look for a solution when you are in the US. A point of interest,we did not use Heathrow but flew from Manchester when we had the cases unlocked. On the lock issue, I notice even Lakeland sell TSA locks now so you could get them online from them.I'm sitting here with a rotton cold hence the unearthly hour to reply. Feel free to ask anything else, delighted to help if I can. J.
Thanks very much for your answer and I think although they have been very good cases we will have to change to soft cases as we have at least 2 trips to the US this year alone but as you say, at least they are lighter which means I can pack more!
I have a confession to make. I've not locked a suitcase in the last 10 or 15 years. The only theft we had was by a slit in the side of the case with a Stanley/carpet type knife & few bits taken & the case itself was unlocked.
For anyone looking for a source of TSA approved locks in the UK, we purchased ours from Magellans mail order catalogue. Cynthia.
Most of the large stores now sell them in their luggage depts. John Lewis have quite a range.