Washington Dulles International - IAD Airport lost and found
Lost and Found: How to Get Back Items Left at Airport Security Checkpoints

HANOVER, MD — Jewelry, coats, toys and drivers’ licenses are left behind every day by travelers as they scurry from security checkpoints to their flights at Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport lost and found and other airports around the country, federal authorities say.

Passengers can claim their lost items by contacting the TSA lost and found office at the airport from which they departed. To get the contact information for the TSA lost and found office at the airport, visit the TSA website’s Lost and Found page. Type in the airport name or code, and the contact information will appear.

Contact information for TSA’s lost and found offices in the Washington/Baltimore region are:

Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport lost and found (BWI): 410-689-3620
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport lost and found (DCA): 703-603-2516
Washington Dulles International Airport lost and found (IAD): 703-662-2234

Fliers who left behind/lost items at an airport check-in counter, in the gate area, at restaurants, in shops, in restrooms and in other areas of the airport should contact the airport or the airline.

For items left behind at checkpoints, travelers should contact the TSA lost and found office with specifics about the item including the date of the flight, the terminal that the passenger departed from, a very detailed description of the item, and a name and contact information for follow-up. If the item was turned into a TSA lost and found office, travelers can make an appointment to pick it up or arrange for the item to be shipped home or their destination at the customer’s expense.

The most common items that people leave behind at TSA checkpoints include belts, glasses, keys, their identification (i.e.: driver’s licenses, passports), cell phones, laptops, jewelry, coats, sweaters, hats, scarves, gloves, neck pillows and umbrellas.

This are two of three full racks of coats that have been left at Reagan National Airport recently.

Here are five helpful tips to ensure travelers don’t leave their items at a checkpoint and to help ensure that lost items will be returned:

After showing the TSA officer their ID and boarding pass, travelers should put their driver’s license back in their wallet or their passport back in a carry-on bag so is isn’t left behind in a bin.
As travelers know, they must empty their pockets before they go through the checkpoint screening equipment. When emptying pockets, travelers should put those items into their carry-on bag so they are less likely to leave something in a bin when they leave the checkpoint.
Don’t remove jewelry unless it is very bulky or if, from previous experience, an individual knows it will alarm the scanner. If a traveler does remove jewelry, it is best to place it directly into a carry-on bag instead of in a bin.
Travelers should put an ID tag on their carry-on bags. Regardless of whether it’s a duffel bag, rolling suitcase, knapsack or tote bag, put an ID tag on it.
If someone is traveling with a laptop, it’s a good idea to tape a business card, return address label or hand-written name/address/contact information directly onto the laptop. TSA will contact the laptop’s owner to return it if contact information is affixed to the laptop.

This Minnie Mouse doll was found at a National Airport checkpoint recently.

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