|Subject: Re: Locking Luggage|
What I find particularly disturbing about this whole issue is that the first question I normally get asked when arriving at the check-in counter is whether I have packed the luggage myself and whether it has been left unattended anywhere. If I don't lock the bags, once they are out of my hands, how can I honestly answer the latter question no upon checking in at the next airport on my journey.
I see no reason my checked luggage needs to be searched out of my presence, when it is supposed to be x-rayed prior to being placed on the airplane. Leaving it unlocked is an invitation to less than honest airline employees, and maybe some people don't care if their clothing is stolen, but I would certainly care. And if you have ever travelled through Minneapolis with Northwest, and been held up in customs while your bags are sitting openly in the unsecured baggage area just beyond customs, you would be doubly concerned about leaving them unlocked.
My gut reaction at this point (if the no locks on luggage rule really is in place) is to boycott travel to or through the U.S. until someone down there comes to their senses. Random searches of checked bags in the presence of the owners, along with the usual x-ray screening, is what is done elsewhere, including Heathrow, where they are always very security conscious.