Will be flying with easy jet and was wondering for retuning flights the old luggage tag we have on are suitcase. should we take them off before arriving at the airport to return home or leave it as the person will do it for us anyways? Im guessing even at self check in they will have someone who will make sure that old tags are taken off and that the new one is correctly done etc?

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5 Answers 5


Why not just take the tags off? They are for a previous flight, and have a different destination written on them. You don't want your luggage to be accidentally sent to the wrong location, be delayed because of something like this, do you?

Most likely if they are still on there, the agent who accepts your luggage will remove them. But there is the possibility that they miss it and it causes delays for your bags. Why take the risk?

There does not seem to be much "official" information on this topic, which is probably why you asked the question. I did find this blog post from KLM, which recommends removing the old tags if you don't want your luggage to be delayed.

Do you travel a lot and leave all sorts of labels and baggage stickers attached to your suitcase? That may look cool, but it isn’t a great idea. It can confuse the baggage sorting system, because it doesn’t know which label to read. That’s why we advise that you remove all labels and stickers from previous trips. Why not head out with a neat and tidy, hassle-free suitcase?

  • would the old luggage tag bar code not be active anyways unlike the retuning new one would be
    – user67204
    Oct 19, 2017 at 9:28
  • 1
    I'm not 100% sure how those machines work, but it seems to me that if it reads the inactive bar code instead of the active one, the bag gets flagged for human intervention. Now it gets pulled and a person has to figure out what's going on. In the meantime, your flight takes off with you but without your bag.Small airport may not have automatic routing at all, but the handlers decide where to send bags. Think of small, regional airports that only handle a few flights a day. Oct 19, 2017 at 12:49
  • I remove my tags from my bags as soon as I arrive at the destination and I know my bags survived without damage. The codes on the tags are useful if you need to file a damage claim or the bag goes missing, but afterward have no utility at all. Just pitch them. If you forget to remove them and they don't catch that at the next flight, your bag could cause significant confusion. Oct 19, 2017 at 13:16
  • thats what i was planning on doing. Then when going back home at the airport put the new one on. First time going on holiday so just wasn’t sure hahah
    – user67204
    Oct 19, 2017 at 23:12

The old tag needs to be removed before the new one is put on. If you don't do it, the staff will.

Reasons not to remove the old one:

  • on some airlines, they add a "priority" tag into the sticker. I feel seeing my "priority" tag from the previous flight will remind them to do it again if I am entitled to it, or perhaps inspire them to upgrade me if I am not. This may not be true but it's my superstition
  • it often has your name on it which may be helpful on shuttles or other situations where your bag looks like other people's bags

Reasons to remove the old one:

  • the gate staff may be irritated at you that you have left them this menial task to do instead of cleaning up after yourself

My compromise in this is that I leave it on right until get to the checkin agent. Then when I am standing there with nothing to do while they endlessly type on their keyboard (what do they do there anyway?) I remove the tag. This ensures that it stays on as long as possible, that the checkin agent sees it, and that I am seen as a polite person. Plus it gives me something to do while waiting.


YES. Remove the tags.

There are no consequential reasons to leave them on once you leave the terminal.

  • They will be removed for you next flight, 100%. Please help the check in staff by removing them yourself. I've seen the staff ask the passenger to remove the tags or just do it them selves.
  • Spurious bar codes (such as a previous tag) can confuse the scanners risking misdirected or delayed bags.
  • Leaving them on after arrival alerts miscreants that you might be a tourist.
  • They get in the way of handling the bag.
  • 3
    This does not add new information to the earlier answers, as far as I can see.
    – Willeke
    Oct 19, 2017 at 14:56
  • @Willeke Thanks, I guess. I didn't actually read the other Answers. But now that I do, it does add more information and avoids speculation that just isn't the case.
    – Johns-305
    Oct 19, 2017 at 15:15
  • so once i arrive say at my hotel just take it the tag off and throw it away? Then when retuning for flight home at the airport put the new one on?
    – user67204
    Oct 19, 2017 at 16:54
  • @gully0923 Pretty much. The paper tags are single use. There is no reason to leave them on.
    – Johns-305
    Oct 19, 2017 at 18:04

As far as I know, the bar codes on bag tags as well as on boarding cards contain enough information (i.e., beyond what is printed on them in legible form) to reference your flight in the global travel databases that have security standards form the 1960s. In other words, old tags and boarding cards might enable someone to find out your name and home address and further travel plans and whatnot. With that in mind, they should be securely disposed of (and not in a common airport bin).

  • I should use a barcode scanner on my luggage tags next time I fly. Should be interesting.
    – Jan
    May 23 at 8:30

Keep your tags on and allow them to remove it. I flew back on my round trip flight on 5/19/2022 and didn't have to pay the luggage fee because I still had my tag on there. I flew thru United Airlines. I was about to remove my tag when she asked for my ID, she then removed my tag, typed some info in off of my tag and put a new tag on at no additional cost to me. I was surprised at this because i have always paid the luggage fee on my returning flight. So yes keep ur tag on and you'll save on additional luggage cost

  • It strikes me as highly unlikely that this will be the situation for all travelers, or that you'll ever have this happen again. Unless, of course, you've purchased a ticket that includes pre-paid luggage charges or have "status" with the airline that gives you free checked luggage.
    – FreeMan
    May 23 at 17:16

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