One more reason not to check a bag

This past weekend the Mini Warrior and I met up with my sisters and their kiddos at our cousin’s house. It was the first time all 6-24-14-stuffthree babies had been together since Labor Day, and the expected chaos and awesomeness ensued. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you may have noticed—I am a huge proponent of carrying my suitcase on the plane. I never, ever check bags unless I have to, for a number of very valid reasons. Carrying on saves time, money, and hassle, plus you don’t have to worry about the airline losing your bag.

But because of the ridiculous amount of stuff that kids require (pack ‘n’ play, stroller, carseat, and high chair, plus his normal clothes and diapers) this weekend I had to check our bags. Overall, I actually had a good experience—all of our gear made it to the Little Rock airport, and was already on the luggage carousel when we got to it. Someone even helped me carry all the stuff to the rental car and load it up. Hooray for hospitality!

It wasn’t until I was unpacking at my cousin’s house that I realized something was off. I pulled my toiletry kit out and my deodorant6-24-14- Squished had been crushed. The package of diapers that was in my suitcase lid was completely squished. And when I found my glasses case, it had been squeezed and crushed so completely that the cap had detached and I almost couldn’t get my glasses out. My bag must have been at the bottom of a giant pile of luggage, and I have never seen anything like it. I’m so lucky nothing was seriously broken! Next time I will be sure to put anything remotely fragile closer to the middle if I will be checking my bag.

(One more reason: if on the off chance you are flying home and the crazy weather delays your flight three hours, and you’re lucky enough to get on an earlier flight, it’s way easier to not have to come back the next day to get your bags. On that note, flight delays with a toddler are a completely different experience from when I’m on my own. Wow.)

Readers, have you ever had your belongings damaged from checking your bag?


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  1. It’s always amazing to me that despite all the airlines’ absolute hardline requirement that “You can’t fly without your bag!” when you want to standby for an earlier flight, mis-connected bags fly without their passengers all the time and when it’s convenient for the airline, move-ups happen and passengers are told “your bags will be on the original flight.” I always respond with “but I’ve been told my bags can’t fly without me!” and get a blank start in return…

  2. I almost always check my bag and I’ve never had any major issues. Occasionally I have seen where some sort of liquid will leak but that’s rare for me and I always pack them in leak proof containers to protect my clothes.

  3. I have 3 kids and whenever we fly, we always check our luggage as it is so much easier, no fighting for overhead bin and less stuff to carry through security and the airport. We each carry a backpack and that’s all we have to carry. We never had any major issue with luggages.

  4. The only time I’ve had a major issue was when we were returning from visiting family in Portland for Christmas. We had of course, packed our presents in our bags (including new clothes). When the flight was delayed, it appeared as though our bags sat on the Tarmac waiting for the plane to arrive.

    As is common in PDX during the winter, it was pouring down rain. When our bag arrived it was wet but we didn’t think much of it until we got home and started unpacking (an hour away from the airport).

    Half of the stuff in the suitcase was damaged from getting so wet. The colors on the clothes had run, chocolates were water damaged, etc. it was a hassle to deal with but there was a significant amount of damage done so we went back to the airport.

    Now, if we ever notice something strange about our bag, we open it right there at baggage claim. (We also now only love 10 minutes from the airport so that helps.)

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