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Ways to Make Money: with Auction, Lost and Unclaimed Baggage More Tips

Updated on December 19, 2016
tobusiness profile image

Jo has been an ITU nurse at the London North West NHS Trust for 14 years. She obtained her RN at University College London Hospital.


Make money with lost luggage

Lost luggage is an excellent way to make some extra money, there are no significant expenses, all you need is the price of what you intend to buy. Once you've made your first profit, just put aside some or all of it toward your next investment and so on.

Have you ever lost a suitcase while travelling? I bet the answer to this question is a resounding yes; even if we haven't personally lost our luggage during our travels, chances are, we know someone who has.

A few years ago my husband and I took my 10-year-old nephew on holiday to the Caribbean, on arrival at St Lucia's airport we were told that both the boy's suitcases were missing. I must admit my first thought were wholly selfish; thank the Lord my case was present and correct, after all, the boys can always manage with T-shirts and shorts. For us girls, losing a suitcase could be a disaster of some magnitude, the stuff nightmares are made of, the boys, however; like the pair of troopers they were, coped admirably.

We bought some clothes locally and were later able to claim the money back from our travel insurance. But it occurred to me, that with so many suitcases lost in transit, what on earth happens to them?

Airlines lose a mountain of luggage in transit worldwide every year. The big question is, where do this luggage go?

The lost luggage seems to be disappearing like Alice down the rabbit hole, or maybe they get sucked into the proverbial black hole. Well, not exactly, the fact is, they will most probably end up at an auction house that sells them on to people like you and me.

Although less than one percent of all baggage are permanently lost by the airlines, this still adds up to more than 400,000 pieces of luggage per year as a US study suggests. However, the airlines are not always to blame, some of the luggage are often left at airports and on planes with no identifications and are never claimed.

Most airlines will hold baggage for up to 90 days or more, giving the owners time to claim them.

In the US, the Unclaimed Baggage Center in Scottsboro, Alabama gets around 800,000 visitors per year and just happens to be the state's biggest tourist attraction. The Scottsboro Unclaimed Baggage Center is in the Northern Alabama foothills of the Appalachian mountain, and function as both a salvage operation and a department store.

This company handles about 1 million items per year with 6,000 new pieces of merchandise per day; this can often include; jewellery, clothes, and even Egyptian artefacts.

Shoppers love the uniqueness of this place where they can find a diverse range of new and surprising products. You can suss this out at the company's website.
However, if you live in the UK and feel you're missing out no fear, you can also get yourself a bargain and also have a little fun while you're doing it.

The hunt for lost luggage has been described as a treasure hunt, there are no guarantees that any particular individual will be the one to find the cream of the crop, it's a matter of potluck.
British Airways sell their surplus of unclaimed baggage at auction; interested parties can go to the auction house and bid on what they believe will sell on sites like eBay for more than it cost to buy.
It is possible to get items worth more than £500 for as little as £50, the goods can be sold on for at least £200 to make a very nice little profit.

British Airways Auction
British Airways( BA), one of the world largest airlines, also one of the world biggest losers. The loser of baggage that is; BA sells its lost luggage at Greasbys in Tooting. They hold their auctions every Tuesday at 10.00am and viewing on Monday between 1.00pm and 5.00pm this will allow potential buyers time to check out the items they may wish to buy. Check the site for up to date info.. website is
Other possible auction includes
Sellers Auction in Guildford
Bristol Commercial Valuers and Auctioneers, Bristol
Hertfordshire Auctions for Luton lost
Potential buyers should check websites for next scheduled date for baggage sale, as the above mention auction houses do not have allotted airport auctions.

Police and Government Auction
Properties that are seized or handed in when the original owners could not often be found are auctioned off; bids can be had for a bargain and later sold via eBay
For police auctions of unclaimed stolen property check out Bumblebee action where deals can include bicycles, car stereos and electrical items such as TVs. Cheap cars are also sold at Bumblebeeauctions, and can also include a description of the vehicle's condition.
For details of other police auctions near you, go to and check Police Auction and Government sales.

Save money on your holiday vacation

Travel agents make money by buying package holiday in bulk from the tour operators. However, around two months before the departure date, the price of unsold holidays are often reduced to fill seats on aeroplanes and maintain hotel occupancy. Thus allowing the travel agents to recoup some of their investment. As it gets closer to the departure date, the price gets cheaper.

Make money to supplement your pension, work as a Doula

Well, this is a new one for me, and strictly for the ladies.
A doula is a woman who has experienced childbirth and can now earn money by giving comfort and support to new mums. She can do this in two ways; helping during the actual birth or the period after childbirth. To become a doula you must have had a child yourself; you should be fit, kind and sympathetic. No formal qualification or medical experience is required.
In the UK, a doula can charge £10-12 per hour for a minimum of 4 hours. A birth doula can charge around £400 per birth if experienced.
For more information check out British Doulas. this agency offers certified courses, they train doulas from all over Britain and place them with families across the country. British Doulas boasts ten years experience with the only formally certified doula course in Britain; this course can count towards a City & Guilds qualification with the opportunity to acquire practical work in the future.

Unclaimed Baggage Store welcome visitors from all over the world
Unclaimed Baggage Store welcome visitors from all over the world | Source

© 2012 Jo Alexis-Hagues


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    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      5 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Appsthatpayyou, thanks for stopping by, much appreciated. Gorgeous photo!! :).

    • Appsthatpayyou profile image


      5 years ago from London

      Excellent money making ideas!

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Michelle, It's my pleasure.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 

      6 years ago from Singapore

      Interesting, Jo. Never knew that airlines auction off lost baggage...and here we are complaining that a vacation can be so expensive when all you have to do is search for other ways to save money! Thanks for the tips!

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Snowdrops, thank you for stopping by, about the tips, I hope you're able to make use of some of them.

      Best of luck.


    • snowdrops profile image


      6 years ago from The Second Star to the Right

      thanks for these tips Jo. They're very good suggestions.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Ruchira, You are very welcome, I hope it can be useful.

      Best wishes to you.

    • Ruchira profile image


      6 years ago from United States

      interesting facts, Jo.

      Thanks for an enlightening hub!

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Thanks Lesley.

    • Movie Master profile image

      Movie Master 

      6 years ago from United Kingdom

      I would never have thought of any of these ideas, very interesting thank you and voted up

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Irish, thank you for the visit, I'm glad to hear you've recovered you luggage but many don't. Take care now.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 

      6 years ago from Upstate, New York

      I just never occurred to me to wonder where all of the lost luggage goes. Although I've had negative experienced myself with having my luggage lost I was fortunate for having it recovered as well.

      Very informative.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Vinaya, why not do some research and see what is available in your country and do a hub about it, I'm sure there are others who would like to have this information.

      Thank you for the visit and comment. Good luck and best wishes.

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 

      6 years ago from Nepal

      Very interesting ideas. Though the links you have provided are of no use to me, I will try to look into government auction in my country and see if there are any valuables to claim.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Hi Katrine, Nice to see you, the baggage auction is one of those things which seem so obvious when you think about it, so hey.... why not give it a try.

      Thanks for the visit, all my best.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      This is all new to me, never heard of any of these websites, how interesting. Thank you for this.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Lisa, yes it's similar to storage war, bids are placed but you don't know what's inside, I guess it's the luck of the draw. Thank you very much for stopping by, best wishes.

    • Rusticliving profile image

      Elizabeth Rayen 

      6 years ago from California

      I just recently saw a program on tv similar to Storage Wars, but it was about bidding on unclaimed luggage. Some people had nothing but clothing, others found expensive jewelry, cameras, and much more.

      Interesting ideas and very informative. Thumbs up! Lisa

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Hi Monica, thank you very much for the visit and comment, I hope this prove to be useful for you.

      Best of luck.

    • monicamelendez profile image


      6 years ago from Salt Lake City

      Wow I absolutely NEVER would have thought of this unique way to make money! Thanks for sharing.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Hi Max, We learn something new every day. Nice to see you, many thanks for the visit. All my best.

    • BeyondMax profile image


      6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Jo, this is just so unreal! I had no idea that lost luggage can be such a treasure hunt =) What a great find!

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Thank you Unknown, you know you're always welcome.

    • unknown spy profile image


      6 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

      Great and interesting ideas Jo. I don't wonder why I always check for for info like this on your profile :) Loved reading your tips and suggestions.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K



      You are very welcome, and thank you for the visit and comments, my best to you.

    • daisydayz profile image

      Chantele Cross-Jones 

      6 years ago from Cardiff

      I wondered where the lost luggage sales were held in the uk. Thanks for the info

    • calvarybob profile image


      6 years ago from Kansas

      Thank you for the input. I may just use this idea at my airport.

    • tobusiness profile imageAUTHOR

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      6 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Thank you billy, nice to know I can show the teacher something new :) best wished.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      6 years ago from Olympia, WA

      How very interesting! I have never heard of any of these ideas. Great hub, very original, loved it!


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