Tarriss TSA Lock
For securing your luggage
TSA locks can't prevent a thief from entering your luggage if they're motivated, but it'll slow them down or deter typical thieves who prefer easier targets (which applies to any lock, including your front door). We recommend this Tarriss lock mainly because we know they work as they should, cables are a bit more versatile than bars, its search indicator changes colors which is easier to notice than others, and it has a lifetime warranty.
Zip ties are also a simple alternative if you don't want a lock.
Swisste Luggage Scale w/ Tape Measure
To avoid overweight baggage fees
To lure more customers with lower base prices, more and more airlines are charging for checked bags and becoming strict on any weight/size overages including for carry ons. Invest in a luggage scale to avoid any hefty fee nightmares, since you can't know you're over the weight limit if you don't measure it.
This one from Swisste is our favorite: it's well made with helpful features like a backlight and a tape measure to ensure your luggage fits within their size requirements. It's also one of the few in this category with a lifetime warranty, always a plus.
Make sure you don't lose your luggage
With this tiny Bluetooth tracker, you can know where your luggage is at all times through your smartphone. It's technically better for your carry on vs. your checked luggage since the tracker needs to be within a certain range of your smartphone. However, it still helps because if you mark your checked luggage as lost the entire Tile community will automatically look for your luggage like a global lost and found. Also, once it's within Bluetooth range your phone will show it so you can at least know it arrived. Finally, the Tile can play a ringing sound if you know it's nearby but can't find it.
Note: We link to the 4 pack because at $70 for 4, it's a much better deal than $25 for 1 and you can then attach it to your keys and other bags.
Shacke Luggage Tags
For providing critical info and helping identify luggage
Luggage tags help you spot your luggage more easily and provide critical identifying information to airlines in case you, gasp, lose your luggage. We recommend this one by Shacke: the rubber material holds up better than metal and leather, it has a flap for more privacy, and its stainless steel loop is secure as it gets.
For a sturdy leather option, we like these from British Belt Company.
BlueCosto Luggage Straps
For securing and helping identify your luggage
Luggage straps keep your luggage closed and secure while in transit especially as your luggage gets older and zippers start to break down. They also act as an additional identifier when your luggage is a plain black or gray. Some say it provides an additional strap for baggage handlers to hold onto too, which may lower the chances of them throwing your luggage carelessly.
We recommend this sturdy and well reviewed one by BlueCost, although you'd honestly be okay with almost any you find as it's a straighforward product. For a bit more security, they offer a lock version.