Do Carry-On Bags Need Tags

For many travelers, it is important to keep all luggage properly accounted for to prevent losses. Securing luggage tags is a great method. However, you might wonder if you should also tag carry-on bags. We've looked into this topic and we've got the answers to some of your questions.

Traveling with a carry-on means that it should be kept safe and secure all the time. While it isn't an airline or TSA requirement to put tags on your carry-ons, it definitely is a good idea. A luggage tag on your carry-on can make it easier for you to locate your belongings in case you lose your bag.

Keeping tags on a carry-on is unnecessary for some, but many have experienced the hassle of losing their bags due to other travelers mistakenly picking them up. Keep reading because, in this post, we'll be sharing with you tips on getting the best tags for your travels, as well as keeping your items secure.

Luggage tag and white hat on pink suitcase, Do Carry-On Bags Need Tags

Do Carry-On Bags Need Tags?

Close-up of a black leather luggage tag - white background

If you are going on a flight for a quick vacation or even a short business trip, the best way to go about packing your items is by bringing a carry-on with you. Carry-on bags are easy to bring and handle because you don't have to check in your bags at the terminal.

For many travelers, carry-on bags do not need luggage tags on them. While this is true, some people have experienced the hassle of other travelers picking up their bags because they mistook them for their own. This typically happens with bags of the same color, shape, or brand.

Some travelers also end up misplacing their bags when they leave them on their seats because they need to go to the bathroom or they needed to grab a cup of coffee. While it isn't deliberate, losing carry-on bags is a pretty common problem in airports daily.

To prevent the hassle of misplaced or missing bags, it is a good idea to put luggage tags on a carry-on. This is not required by the airlines or the TSA, but luggage tags are great ways to secure and account for your belongings. It is easy to put on and it doesn't require much effort every time you travel.

What Do I Put On Luggage Tags?

Most luggage tags will come with a card that has all the necessary information you need. However, a lot of people worry about the information they put on these tags, with issues of robbery and identity theft looming on the horizon.

Fortunately, you can keep your identity safe by simply keeping all pertinent information at a minimum. For luggage tags, all you need to put on is your name and contact info like an email address and a mobile number. Avoid listing your home address to prevent being targeted by would-be robbers.

However, if you are traveling and you prefer to have an address where your lost or missing luggage can be sent, consider putting your work address. This way, your items can still be sent back to you without publishing private information.

Make sure to write all the information in your luggage tags legibly. If you think your handwriting is bad, consider asking someone with better handwriting to write it for you, or print it out from your computer. There is nothing worse than having a luggage tag but you can't read what is written on it.

What Luggage Tags Are Best?

black leather label on a black suitcase

Picking a luggage tag should be simple, but there are certain things that you should consider when purchasing them. These luggage tags will be the identifiers to your carry-on and checked luggage so you should get something that you will easily recognize.

Easy to See

When attaching luggage tags to your bags, they should be easy to see. Some bags blend in because they have similar colors, so luggage tags should be bright and easily seen in any circumstance.

Check out these neon tags on Amazon.


Luggage tags need to have the contact information printed well on them. They should be easy-to-read, so look for tags that have big enough windows where you can read the text easily. Consider getting luggage tags with covers on them so that people won't be able to scan your information very easily.

Get these PU Leather tags on Amazon.


Airports are known to send your bags into a roller coaster ride of sorts, and your luggage tag should be durable enough to withstand these. The best materials for luggage tags are typically made of faux leather, silicon, or plastic because they won't easily get torn off even if they get tossed around.

See these faux leather luggage tags on Amazon.


Make sure that when you get luggage tags for your bags, the material for the tag attachment must be secure. This is to make sure that it won't easily break off the handle and risk losing your information. Try looking for luggage tags with stainless steel loops or buckled leather attachments.

Get these luggage tags with stainless steel loops on Amazon.


In a sea of boring black bags, a unique luggage tag will stand out and showcase your personality really well. There are many different kinds of luggage tags available on the market, so choose one that matches your personality. They can be different colors for different members of the family too.

Check out these designed luggage tags on Amazon.

How Do I Secure My Bags?

Securing your bags doesn't end with you just labeling your bags. You should always secure your bags by properly locking all the zippers and pockets so you don't lose your items. For checked bags, it's also a good idea to keep certain items to make sure that your bags are well-secured.

Use Approved TSA Locks

TSA accepted lock on luggage bag or suitcase (Transportation Security Administration of US)

Keep your belongings safe by making sure that your luggage, whether they are checked or hand-carried, are locked properly. Use approved TSA locks so that you won't get held up during inspection. There are different kinds of locks for different zippers, so make sure to choose the right one for you.

Get these TSA approved locks on Amazon.

Bring Zip Ties

A man is holding white cable ties against a red background.

Zip ties aren't just meant to secure the cables around your house, but they can help secure your bags during travel too. While they aren't meant to replace TSA-approved zipper locks, zip ties are quite useful for making sure that your bags are not tampered with.

After going through all the security checks, you can secure your bag locks with a zip tie to make sure that you have sealed them properly. If your luggage arrives with the zip tie missing, don't touch the bag and you should call security to let them know that your bags might have been tampered with.

Check out these zip ties on Amazon.

Belt Your Bags

Loading baggage to the airplane

If you are planning to check in your bag, a great way to secure them is by using luggage straps. These colorful straps help keep your luggage intact, plus they are also wonderful identifiers to an otherwise common-looking suitcase.

See these luggage straps on Amazon.

Keep Your Bags Close

Secure your bags, especially your carry-ons by keeping them close to you. Always make sure to put your carry-on bags in the overhead bin right above your seat, or as close as possible to you so you can keep an eye on them.

Also, remember to carry your own bags to prevent other people from tampering with your belongings.

Final Thoughts

Preventing the loss of your carry-on bags can easily be fixed by making sure to put bold, identifying marks on your belongings. A luggage tag is a great way to do this since it will definitely be unique and it will have your important contact information.

Don't forget to keep these on your bags at all times and you won't have to worry about losing your carry-on again.