More gate-checked bags means more valuables stolen

The New York Times ran a collection of stories from recent airline travelers who complain that they've been losing valuables out of their carry-on bags. The problem isn't so much with checked bags, but with gate-checked ones, which are the bags the airline asks to take off your hands at the gate, and then returns to you at the gate of your arrival city. Gate-checking almost always happens because of space constraints.

The airplane may not be big enough for much more than a coat or a purse (Delta Connection's small planes are notorious for this--gate-checked bags are "pink-tagged" on those), or the flight is too booked.

One guy told the Times about losing a video camera (plus all the footage of a ceremony honoring his son). Another lost a small GPS unit. A third said that he even lost a few dimes that he used as golf tees. The passengers had these things as they passed through security, and up until the moment they boarded the plane. But when they got off and were handed their bags, they'd been robbed.