Bag tags are used by airlines to route luggage to the correct flight and destination.
They are usually printed with a barcode and matching stub which is given to the passenger.
However, if old tags are left on the bags this can confuse the technology in place which automatically sends the bag in the direction it thinks it needs to go.
While baggage handlers are instructed to double-check the dates on luggage tags, the fast-paced nature of the job means sometimes mistakes can be made.
In fact, the latest baggage report from SITA revealed that 22.7 million bags were lost or temporarily mislaid globally.
According to SITA, there are a few common reasons why luggage goes missing.
These include ticketing errors, bag switches, airport or customs restrictions, failure to load the bag or security issues.
In most instances lost luggage is a mistake and there isn’t much that can be done to avoid it, however passengers can protect themselves by purchasing all-encompassing travel insurance.