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Check Out The Thrift Store Where All Your Unclaimed Luggage Goes!

We have almost all been there. You are coming home from a vacation or business trip and, after waiting for a while, your luggage never arrives. Most of us will receive the missing bags back. However, ever wonder what would happen if you forgot to go to pick up your suitcase? Well, we found out for you.

"it's like the majesty of Goodwills"

126 Likes, 3 Comments - Lindsay Motter (@lindsaymotter) on Instagram: ""it's like the majesty of Goodwills""

Located in Scottsboro, Alabama is a 40,000 square foot thrift store that accepts all unclaimed attire. Called the Unclaimed Baggage Center, the supersize lost-and-found store puts every lost suitcase from America on display. Customers can sift through the items in order to find some awesome treasure.

I've lived in Chattanooga for 10 years in August and I've always heard the stories of Unclaimed Baggage in Alabama but I've never made it there! Today on my way to Mississippi I passed by it and I could help but see what the fuss was. $30 treasure pile for THE WIN! Also apparently today is my "creamy Instagram photo" day! ???✨??

149 Likes, 11 Comments - JAIME SMIALEK (@our_ampersand_photo) on Instagram: "I've lived in Chattanooga for 10 years in August and I've always heard the stories of Unclaimed..."

The location has been around since the 1970s. Doyle Owens, who created the store, got the idea after purchasing unclaimed bags from a local bus station. He would them go through the items and sell them to make a couple extra bucks. Owens soon realized that he could potentially make a living off of this concept. His purchasing soon expanded to airlines and the store was created!

Oh, the things you'll find! @unclaimedbag #claimtheunclaimed #alabama #scottsboro #travel

11 Likes, 2 Comments - Quick Whit Travel (@quickwhittravel) on Instagram: "Oh, the things you'll find! @unclaimedbag #claimtheunclaimed #alabama #scottsboro #travel"

Now, do not worry. According to Thrillist “only one-half of 1% of checked bags fail to make it to baggage claim, and of those roughly 80-90% are returned within 48 hours.” Once a week goes by, the number jumps to 98%. For the next 90 days, airlines will fight hard to try and match the missing luggage up with past passengers. If they do not find the owners within that time period, the luggage will then belong to the airlines.

Newest toy. Great find at @unclaimedbag, once again. Bless her heart, @shanmo74 asked, "How many cameras does one man NEED?!?!" My reply, "At least one more...until I find another good deal on one that I want!" ?? I am hoping to make some good HD videos of some of our trips. We'll see. #canon #oldtown #grandtrunk #canoeing #camping #canoe #camp365 #camera #video

36 Likes, 3 Comments - Brad and Shannon Moore (@teardroptrippin) on Instagram: "Newest toy. Great find at @unclaimedbag, once again. Bless her heart, @shanmo74 asked, "How many..."

If you called the airline looking for your bags and they were unable to locate them, some airlines offer fair compensation. Any unclaimed bag is them moved to a warehouse. The Unclaimed Baggage Center, picks up any unclaimed merchandise and baggage and brings it to their stores.

Once the items arrive at the store, employees go through the items to see what they could sell. Thrillist states that “a third gets recycled, a third is donated to charity, and a third goes on shelves.” Some items customers can expect to see are jewelry, artwork, and even a Jim Henson Hoggle puppet used in Labyrinth.

I found Hoggle!!!

6 Likes, 1 Comments - Monica Upton Wiley (@singingzumbagirl) on Instagram: "I found Hoggle!!!"

Needless to say, this is a popular location for treasure hunters. You never know what you are going to find in another person’s bag!


Sarah Harley is a Hufflepuff living in the NYC area. When she is not talking to random animals or collecting stickers, she is a comedy writer working in television production. Tweet her at @lumpyspacederp