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Mar 07 2013

FinderCodes

I spent a bit of time at the Travel Goods Association trade show and came away with some good contacts and saw some interesting new products and ideas.

One of the most interesting was a company called FinderCodes.

Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 10.51.35 AM

There are several companies out there that have products for tracking your luggage via GPS, various cellular networks or other needlessly complex systems. While it is comforting to get a text message when you land that your luggage is actually in the plane that you are, there is a significant cost attached to this approach. Of course, my advice on this?

Your luggage, that is!

Your luggage, that is!

I am very optimistic about an airlines ability to send my luggage to Bora-Bora, when I am going to Cleveland. Shame it is never the other way around.

But, I am also pretty confident in my ability to get off a train without my luggage, leave my Kindle in a seat back pocket (thank you United for tracking me down!) or set my phone down at the bar at Starbucks and walk off with two coffees…and no phone.

That is where FinderCodes comes in. They have a QR code based system that is geared toward helping you get your stuff back via the technology of human kindness.

The system is very simple. You buy one of their packages, sign up for an account on their website and tag your losables (wow, I can make anything a noun!) with the included tag. If (OK, when) you leave it somewhere, a kind stranger scans the tag, you get a message and they drop it off at a Fedex location. Voila, you get your valuables back! You can even post a reward to, ahem, “motivate” that outpouring of human kindness!

When the person scans the QR code on their phone they see something like this:

photo

Here is the beautiful part. FinderCodes buffers all the communication between you and your rescuer so, let’s just say hypothetically it is the Craig’s List Killer who finds your stuff, he doesn’t have access to any of your info. I feel better already!

When they drop it off at Fedex, you get the choice of how fast you want the stuff back. Smartphone lost. Priority overnight. Luggage left. Three day economy please.

You can even tag your pets!

However, if you read my blog (don’t you have anything better to do?) the package that makes the most sense is the Travel Lost and Found Kit.

In the box are two big luggage tags, a smaller tag and 4 stickers for random bits of stuff that you are likely to set down and walk off without. Like my Kindle. Crap…I need this!

The whole package is available in various forms at $24.95 from them, or Office Depot, and soon to be some other big box retailers. The main variations in the kits are the form and number of tags that are included.

The beauty of the systems is that it is a one time charge and they take care of all the details of connecting the dots. No ongoing charges, just some peace of mind.

Now, where did I put my iPad?

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