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Assume a passenger takes a flight with a layover. They check in a bag, which they are told they must retrieve during their layover. Is the fact that the checked bag must be retrieved during their layover indicated on the checked bag's tags/stickers, or in some other document (e.g., boarding pass)?

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  • It's certainly NOT on the boarding pass. The bar code on the sticker contains enough information for the automated bag handling system to figure out where the bag needs to go. I don't know whether a pickup requirement is hard coded on the tag or the local system decides on the fly based on the source and destination info.
    – Hilmar
    Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 11:59

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It really depends on the airport and type of connection. The rule of thumb is:

  • International - Domestic connection, you have to recheck.
  • Domestic - International, in most cases, no. Just ask at the counter.
  • Domestic - Domestic - No
  • International - International, For USA and some other countries you need to recheck. For most other countries, no need. Clarify with the counter.

Exceptions - Countries in the Schengen area are considered like one whole country as far as immigration is concerned. So, if you are going like Paris - Berlin - Frankfurt, no need to recheck.

To answer your question, usually, the boarding pass won't have any indication. Also, the above rules apply only for single ticket flights. If you purchased both legs separately, you need to recheck.

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    @FranckDernoncourt I haven't seen one yet. So, not usually. Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 6:09
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    Doesn't the airport code in bag tag mean "checked until that airport"? If the bag tag claims the destination airport, then it will be automatically routed there but if it claims some layover airport, then re-check is required? Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 6:31
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    @Athenenoctua Tags don't only list the final airport, but also all layover airports, plus the flight numbers. If they didn't, baggage handlers wouldn't know where to load the bag. I once flew Cape Town - Johannesburg - Frankfurt - Friedrichshafen. If the layover airports were not listed, how should the luggage handlers know, that the bag with "FDH" on the tag has to be loaded on the plane to Johannesburg? Still, my bag was routed all the way to Friedrichshafen, which was the first (and only) airport where I picked it up.
    – Sabine
    Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 7:14
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    This answer is only right, if it is at all, for get your luggage, walk it through customs and hand it back in. If you have a longer stop where you get your luggage to use it, like overnight, the airports beyond that stop will not be on the tags.
    – Willeke
    Commented Jun 17, 2022 at 8:16
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    For luggage (rather than passport control), what matters in Europe is the EU, not Schengen. Also all international-to-domestic (where “domestic” means intra-EU) connections do not require you to claim/recheck bags, as long as the final airport has customs. You do not need to get your luggage through customs at your port of entry into the EU. Bags will eventually be inspected at your final airport. There is an obviously visible difference in baggage tags to manage that.
    – jcaron
    Commented Jun 18, 2022 at 0:15

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