When you first arrive to your new destination, your initial thoughts are to hit the road and go. The only problem is, if you’ve checked a bag, you’ll have to wait at baggage claim until it comes around on the carousel.

If you’re anything like me, you try your best not to check a bag, but if you MUST, here are 3 tested ways to make sure it arrives at baggage claim first.

1. Fragile Tags

When you go to the counter to check-in for your flight, ask the representative if they could attach a fragile sticker to your bag. Bags that are marked as “Fragile”, are typically loaded after all other bags are already on the plane. Plus, these bags are also usually handled with a bit more care, ensuring they don’t get damaged in transport.

2. Be the Last to Check In

Bags are loaded on the plane from front to back, so those loaded on board first will unfortunately come off of the plane last – and vice versa. But now you ask yourself, “How do I make sure I’m last to check my bag in?” Simple. If the size of your bag is teetering between carry-on and a checked bag, don’t check it at check in. Instead, when you make it to your gate, try to check it there. Typically it is free and that’s one less thing you’ll have to worry about carrying while trying to make it to your seat. This trick also works for those in later boarding groups who don’t want to have to find overhead bin space behind their seat and fight back against traffic to get their luggage once the plane lands. Simply gate check it!

3.  Book First/Business Class

While this is in fact a surefire way to ensure your luggage arrives at baggage claim first, not everyone can afford those tickets. But for those who can and are worried about checking a bag and the length of time it will take before receiving your bag at the carousel, fear not. When you check your bag, it’ll be tagged with a “Priority” sticker to ensure it comes off of the plane promptly.

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