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What Are the Pros and Cons of Using Leather Luggage Tags?

B. Miller
B. Miller

It is important to always use some form of luggage tags when traveling to ensure that bags can be returned to the rightful owner if they become lost. Leather luggage tags are a more upscale option than the plastic versions that generally come with most suitcases. They are generally more durable and can often be monogrammed or otherwise customized to match the luggage. On the downside, leather luggage tags are much more expensive, and can easily be lost or stolen with a little bit of effort, so some people find it easier to just stick with the plastic versions.

The main advantages to using leather luggage tags is to give the luggage a more upscale appearance. People who purchase a nice set of designer or expensive luggage will often want tags to match. They can generally be purchased at the same time, and generally feature a leather backing and strap with a clear plastic front for a card with the owner's name and address to be displayed. The leather strap generally makes them more durable and less likely to be pulled off a suitcase if it is not handled carefully, which is a fairly common occurrence in airports.

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Woman holding a book

For people who want to invest even more money in leather luggage tags, personalized versions are another choice. These can be monogrammed with an individual's initials, for example. These generally need to be ordered online, but they can make a particularly great gift. Brides and grooms will often order monogrammed luggage tags for groomsmen as a gift.

Of course, there are some downsides to using leather luggage tags as well. Some people are not comfortable using leather products, particularly those who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet. Others find the price prohibitive, particularly since luggage tags come free with any luggage purchase, and often these free versions will work just fine. It is much more annoying if expensive leather luggage tags get lost rather than free plastic types.

In addition, people are more likely to steal leather luggage tags off of suitcases. This might not be true for monogrammed ones, but plain ones could be taken. This would virtually never be an issue with plastic luggage tags. In general, leather luggage tags make a nice gift, a good purchase for frequent travelers whose luggage takes heavy abuse, or a pleasing accessory to designer luggage, but otherwise they are a completely optional purchase.

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Discussion Comments


My grandmother made me some personalized leather luggage tags as a graduation gift. I was moving far away to attend college, and she wanted to encourage me to visit often.

She bought some ordinary brown leather tags and added flair to them. She purchased some small wooden beads and gold rhinestones from a hobby shop.

She used a lighter brown leather strip to weave the beads onto the tags. Then, she glued the rhinestones in between beads. It looked really classy, and it helped me identify my luggage in the baggage claim.

If anything ever happens to my special luggage tags, I will stick with buying leather ones. I’m somewhat abusive to my bags, and I don’t think a less durable tag could take the beating!


After having several luggage tags stolen, I now use only monogrammed luggage tags. I haven’t had any problems with thieves since I’ve started using them.

I’ve heard that there are people who actually patrol the airport looking for indistinct leather tags to steal. I just wonder how they do it without being seen.

My leather tags are monogrammed with my initials on the front and my full name on the back. My first name is on the top line, my middle on the second, and my last on a third line. No one could miss the fact that my tags have been customized.


I prefer plastic luggage tags, because the leather ones would be a waste of my precious money. However, I alter the plastic tags a bit to give them personality.

I cut the edges to make them into polygons or symbolic shapes. I leave the paper in there as I cut so that it receives the exact same treatment. Then, I glue the fresh edges back together.

Sometimes, I use a paintbrush and brightly colored paint to line the edges. If I’m feeling fancy, I will add a bit of gold leaf to the paint before it dries.


I am not one to be ordinary, so when I searched for leather luggage tags, I wanted something to set them apart from the pack. I found just what I was looking for in an airport gift shop.

I was at a large international airport when my flight was delayed. I decided that would be the perfect time to look around for tags. I breezed past the plastic ones, because those are just uninteresting to me.

I found an orange pumpkin-shaped leather tag. Though I realized that perhaps some other passengers at the same airport might have bought this tag, I considered the fact that most of them probably went the ordinary route and bought brown rectangular ones.

I use this leather tag year-round. Not too many other people have leather pumpkin tags on their luggage in spring!


If someone gave me leather luggage tags as a gift, I would probably use them. I don't travel very much though, so I don't think I would purchase something like this for myself.

I prefer to spend money on stuff I can use on a regular basis. Leather luggage tags don't fit that bill for me!


@indemnifyme - I suppose it depends on how much money you actually have. For example, I have an uncle who is fairly wealthy. He travels on business all the time and he has a very expensive set of luggage. And guess what? He has a monogrammed leather luggage tag to go with it.

For him to spend that money on luggage and a luggage tag wasn't a big deal. Also, since he travels on business, he often gets picked up at the airport by business associates or clients. He needs to look the part, even when he gets off the plane. Having a nice set of luggage helps add to his image as a professional businessman.


I guess I'm not a very "upscale" gal, because I can't imagine spending a lot of money to buy a leather luggage tag! I mean seriously-of all the things to spend your extra money on! The luggage tag that came with my suitcase works just fine anyway.

Also, if you really want to make your luggage look "unique" or whatever, you could probably make your own luggage tag. All it would take is a little imagination and some crafting skills. And not nearly as much money as it would cost to buy a leather luggage tag!


Way too often I find myself relying on the cheap paper luggage tags at the airport to write my name and address on.

These are quick and easy to use when you are in a pinch, but I prefer to have a nicer set of luggage tags.

I bought some clear plastic luggage tags that have worked well for me. They came with more than one piece of paper to write your information on. This is nice if your address changes.

The clear plastic makes it very easy to read. I have had some leather luggage tags before that were hard to read because the border around them covered some of the information.

No matter what you choose, it is important to make sure and have your identification information on the outside of your luggage. So many pieces of luggage look similar, and this is just one more way to make sure you end up with your own luggage.


My brother is one of the hardest people to buy presents for and I always have a hard time coming up with a unique gift for him.

He does travel a lot, so one year I decided to give him some monogrammed leather luggage tags for his birthday.

He loved them! I was so excited that I finally came up with a good idea for him. I liked the special touch the monogram made, and hopefully there will be much less chance of them being stolen this way.

Prior to receiving these leather luggage tags, he used some nice tags, but I don't think he would have ever thought about having them personalized.


@turkay1--The reason I don't use a leather luggage tag anymore is because my address changes a lot. The problem with leather tags and personalized tags is that they usually come with one piece of paper that you can add your contact information onto. This is fine if you always maintain the same address. But if you move often like I do, it's not possible to use the same leather tag several years in a row.

Plus, when we travel to and from somewhere, we have to put two different addresses on the tag. We write the destination address on our way there and then our home address on our way back. It's not possible to do that if you only have one paper for one address.

I tried buying those contact info papers to replace the one in my leather tag, but unfortunately it didn't fit. That's why I've stopped using a leather luggage tag altogether. I know they're not great but I just pick up the paper ones at the airport.


@ZsaZsa56-- I agree that the paper tags at the airport are not very good. It can rip very easily while being placed in the plane and when it's being take out again. If your luggage gets lost, it will be harder for people to identify it and bring it to you without a luggage tag. A leather one is good for that, it won't be damaged and will last a lot longer.


I use a leather luggage tag. But it is not because I want to look fancy or upscale. That sort of thing is actually about as far from my mind as it can get. No, I use it because it is a lot stronger than those cheap paper and plastic luggage tags that they give you at the airport.

I have had several occasions when those tags got separated from my bags and I had problems getting a hold of my luggage. A few years back someone gave me a leather luggage tag and I realized that there was almost no way it could get separated from my bag. Now I always use it just for the peace of mind.


I once had a really nice leather luggage tag that had very intricate designs pressed into the leather. It was helpful because it identified my luggage but it also added a bit of flair to what was otherwise a pretty ordinary bag.

But wouldn't you now it, someone stole the tag when I was flying overseas. I don't know what happened exactly, but when I got my bag back the tag was gone. I was actually pretty disappointed. I got that tag in a tiny leather shop in Belgium and I don't imagine it can ever be replaced.

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