Baggage handler gives zero f*cks

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Aaaand this is why I have been blowing through two suitcases a year for the last few years. I don’t check anymore; I used to pack all my conference stuff into my suitcase and check it. Now I ship that stuff and carry on my own bag. Which I hardly ever toss around. Magically, my suitcase has now lasted nearly a year, with no visible signs of wear…


Paging Boston Dynamics …


You want a nightmarish terminator death dog to carry your bags?


This (along with the obscene checked baggage fees) are why I go carry-on-only. It forces a certain discipline in packing, too.

“No, I don’t need a parka when travelling to Tampa.”


My uncle had a terminator death dog. Well … a terminator death-oodle (part poodle).


I long ago welcomed our nightmarish terminator death dog overlords, so, yes.


If I am reading the video correctly, these are gate checked items. So when the airline asks anyone to check something (or you may be forced to if overheads are full) this is what happens. You drop your items off at the end of the jetway and they pop it down to the cargo later. So even if you expect to only carry on, your luggage may still have this occur.


Welcome to modern gate-checking, a procedure no airports were designed to facilitate, but many flyers have decided is worth gambling upon rather than checking their luggage in advance. That chute was a hack, to allow the airline to move the luggage into the plane’s storage without the massive added expense of a lifter or ramp for each gate, which would be far gentler on the bags. If you want better bag-handling, check your luggage, so it moves through equipment designed to move it around without an ad-hoc 30 foot drop, and carry-on only what you truly need during the flight (along with one emergency change of clothes, just in case. One small backpack will do it). Regular checking isn’t tender, but it’s far less risky than asking the airline to stuff your stuff somewhere below at the last possible instant.


I believe the breed is called Terminoodle


WTF, really? Facebook login restricted video on the front page? Screwdat.


On my international return flight last week my checked hardshell suitcase came through with an entire corner crumpled. I suppose I should have filed a complaint since I will need to buy a replacement but I was so tired I didn’t want to do anything to delay getting home. The other interesting thing was that the internal membrane that separates the two halves of the suitcase was partially unzipped. But there was no official note inside saying my baggage had been opened for inspection. Makes me wish my suitcase had a small video camera that could record whenever it’s moved or opened.


As a former baggage handler, this scene drives me nuts. There’s no excuse for tossing bags like that; it’s pure lazy behavior. She should be written-up for that.


Came to say the same thing. Those are gate checked bags. So if you are in group 4 or higher to board (United) or traveling on an RJ (this video was taken from a larger plane), that’s how your gate-checked bags are being treated. This is why I have soft luggage (Patagonia MLC) rather than a wheely bag, and why I stick to one airline where I get early boarding privileges.


I’ve seen one of these nice 80’s bodyless electric guitars that had been through that treatment just a few months ago. Didn’t look nice at all.


This happened to me once. I was travelling with a couple pieces of artwork for a show. I thought the safest way (safer than fed ex, UPS or god forbid USPS) would be to put the pieces, carefully packed, into a carry on and keep it with me at all times. When I was boarding , the gate worker informed me that the overhead bins were completely full and all further carry ons would need to be gate checked. This was weird because the flight was probably only 1/3 boarded at this time. I pleaded with him, told him that I was carrying artwork. He didn’t budge. I said this bag can’t be thrown, he said “Sir, we do not ‘THROW’ people’s bags.” He gave me the choice of checking the bag or not flying that day, so I finally gave in. The last thing I saw before I got on the plane was a baggage handler throwing my bag down the 25 feet from the plane to the tarmac. No slide as is shown here. Needless to say, the pieces were destroyed. Then followed a very fun, drawn out fight with the airline about covering the damage. You see, in the fine print of their baggage damage policy, it specifically excludes ARTWORK. They did end up paying for it eventually, after a public shaming. My broken sculptures ended up at a luggage repair facility in Texas, never to be seen again. Fuck United.


Oh and the real kicker to the story, when I got to my seat, the ENTIRE BACK HALF OF THE PLANE had 100% empty overhead bins. It was insane. The gate attendant simply lied. The flight had arrived late, and I think the required gate check was done just to speed up boarding a tiny bit. FUCK UNITED.


Jesus. I’ll stop whining about my thrift-store suitcases, right about now. :frowning:


But these bags had to be gate-checked because they won’t fit in the overhead bins. This is not coming out of the luggage compartment but from the top of the jet bridge, meaning the owners were trying to bring them onboard.

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I know - I realized that later looking at the video again. :frowning: I will say that most of the time my gate-checked luggage gets returned via the jetway, but that might only be for connecting flights.

The takeaway here is, they’ll find a way to fuck you over,* regardless.

*…especially if it’s United.