How It Works

The Journey from Baggage Carousel to Our Store

Where Do the Bags Come From?

Airline passengers waiting for their bags upon arrival are almost certain to see them riding atop the bag carousel. That’s because airlines use sophisticated tracking technology to reunite over 99.5% of bags with their owners right away. If a bag is truly lost, airlines pay out a claim to the passenger. It’s only after an extensive three-month search that an unclaimed bag is deemed truly orphaned, a fate realized by less than 0.03% of all checked luggage! That’s where we come in.

Unclaimed Baggage has purchasing agreements for unclaimed items with all domestic airlines and other travel and transportation companies. With five decades of experience processing large volumes of one-of-a-kind items, we maximize each item’s potential for a second life.

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Turning lost items into treasured finds

Only about 1/3 of all unclaimed items we receive can be sold. After these items go through our rigorous readiness process, we determine selling prices based on estimated retail values and conditions.

We stock approximately 7,000 unique, heavily discounted items each day in our retail store, and thousands more online, where they are discovered and “reclaimed” by new owners.

Shop Online


Providing valuable supplies to communities around the world

On average, for every item sold, we donate an additional item to someone in need. From the earliest days, our goal has been to find a purpose for any item possible. Over the past five decades, we have established partnerships with dozens of local, national, and global charity organizations so leftover items can be reclaimed for good.

Reclaimed For Good


Promoting environmental stewardship and sustainability

We strive to minimize waste through reuse. But, inevitably, some items have to be discarded, particularly used personal products and paper. In these cases, all personal information is shredded and the items are responsibly recycled.

Our History
Our History

How It All Started

It began with a borrowed pickup truck and a $300 loan. In 1970, Doyle Owens headed out to Washington, D.C. to purchase his first load of unclaimed baggage. Fifty years and quite a few bags later, we've got quite the story to tell.