The travel industry rebounded in a big way in 2022 and the demand has been growing exponentially ever since. This massive swell has brought an increase in travel nightmares along with it – cancellations, delays, staffing shortages, lost luggage – we’ve all seen the stories. With summer right around the corner and no sign of the demand easing anytime soon, the likelihood of mishap is at an all-time high. But if there is one thing you can have control over in all of this, it’s knowing where your luggage and other stuff is. Read on to see all the reasons why we think Apple AirTags are the best solution for this.
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What Is an Apple AirTag?
An Apple AirTag is a small, disc-shaped tracking device that can be attached to, or placed inside of your belongings to help keep track of their location at all times. They’re extremely helpful if your belongings become lost which makes them perfect for travel, as you can place them in your luggage, or just about anything else you want to keep track of.
How Much Does an AirTag Cost?
Apple AirTags cost around $30 each, give or take, depending where you buy from. But for our money, the best deal is the Apple AirTag 4-pack with a list price of around $99. At the time of this writing, you can score an AirTag 4-pack on Amazon for $89. And honestly, who doesn’t have at least four things they’d like to keep track of and be able to find if lost?
How an AirTag Works
Let’s defer to Apple for the most accurate and clear explanation: “When you’ve left something far behind, like the beach or the gym, the Find My network — hundreds of millions of iPhone, iPad, and Mac devices around the world — helps track down your AirTag. And itʼs designed to protect your privacy every step of the way.”
More specifically: “Your AirTag sends out a secure Bluetooth signal that can be detected by nearby devices in the Find My network. These devices send the location of your AirTag to iCloud — then you can go to the Find My app and see it on a map. The whole process is anonymous and encrypted to protect your privacy. And itʼs efficient, so thereʼs no need to worry about battery life or data usage.”
That’s pretty amazing, right?
Necessary Accessories for AirTags
This is probably the only shortcoming we can think of: the AirTag isn’t designed with a built-in key ring hole, so you’ll need to purchase a separate accessory if you want to attach it, rather than just drop it into a pocket. The benefits of attaching it include reducing the likelihood that the tag will be removed, lost, or accidentally tossed out of your bag if TSA opens it for an inspection. There are plenty of accessory options available, such as keychain style, luggage tag style, credit card-sized holders, etc. You can even find customizable options from certain sources, like Apple.
Where to Put Your Airtag
This is totally up to you. Obviously the first consideration is any checked baggage you might have that will not always be on your person. You can place your AirTag in more obvious places, like simply tucked between clothes or in a zippered pocket inside your luggage. If you have an accessory/holder for your AirTag, especially one that can be attached, it’s advisable to attach it to a zipper pull, or something else inside your bag. This way, even if TSA rummages through it, it’s much less likely to fall out. And of course, you can also attach it to the outside, similar to a luggage tag. AirTags can also be useful in your carry-on or personal items, as there’s always a chance that a pickpocket or other unscrupulous character could snatch your backpack, purse, etc., and run.
Are AirTags Safe On Planes?
When Airtags were initially released in 2021, several airlines expressed concern over the safety of their use on flights. Those concerns have since been proven to be without cause, and can be confirmed by this statement from the FAA: “Luggage tracking devices powered by lithium metal cells that have 0.3 grams or less of lithium can be used on checked baggage. The battery in an Apple AirTag is a third of that size and poses no risk to aircraft operation.”
As for how it sends signals for location, that happens via low frequency bluetooth, similar to what phones use to connect to earbuds, which we all know is perfectly safe during flights. Since they do not connect via wifi or cellular networks, there is no threat to the operation of an aircraft while there are AirTags on board.
Other Uses for AirTags While Traveling
Inside Your Vehicle
Can’t remember where you parked? Or worse yet, your vehicle was stolen? Find it in a flash.
Inside Your Hotel
If you travel a lot and stay in a lot of different hotels, it’s not much of a stretch that you might forget the name of your current hotel, let alone its address. How easy of a solution is an Airtag in this situation?
Inside Your Wallet and Passport Holder
These are two items that, if lost or stolen, can really put a damper on your trip. Sure, there’s always a chance that they can be removed but someone who finds or steaks them, but at least you’ve got a solid shot at tracking them down, especially is you discover they’re missing pretty quickly.
Inside a Jacket Pocket, Laptop Bag, Day Bag, etc.
How often have you left a restaurant or cafe and left your stuff behind? Taxi? Rideshare? Come on, we’ve all done it at least once. Forget making phonecalls, or filing claims in-app to get your stuff back. Cut right to locating stuff so you can then do whatever you need to to get it back.
Attached to Your Keys
This is useful while traveling, especially if you are not using your personal set of keys while away, but need them when you return home. It’s all too easy to misplace them while rummaging through your suitcase during your trip. This will help ensure that you don’t lose track of such an important item.
5 Reasons Why You Need Apple AirTags Before Your Next Trip
They’re Small and Discreet
Cute as a button, they are! The button-sized AirTag is easy to attach to or stash in your belongings without being overtly noticeable. This is especially useful if you’re traveling with valuable items that might be a higher target for thieves.
AirTags Are Easy to Use
To use the AirTag, simply download the Find My app to your iPhone (yes, you have to have an iPhone, in which case you already have Find My) and attach the AirTag to your belongings. That’s it! You’re now able to track the AirTag’s location in the app.
AirTags connect to your iPhone via bluetooth and have a built-in speaker that will play a sound when you’re nearby. This makes them very easy to find, even hidden in a crowded place.
AirTags are designed to withstand being knocked around and dropped. Which, let’s face it, is a given during travel – especially when something like your luggage is at the mercy of those less invested in their safety.
The AirTag is relatively affordable, especially considering the peace of mind that comes with using them. For both travelers or simply anyone with valuable belongings, the investment is more than worthwhile.
In summary, Apple AirTags are a ridiculously easy way to keep track of your stuff. They’re small and lightweight, but carry a heavy load of security and peace of mind. Get some!
PRO TIP: Apple AirTags make a terrific gift, too!