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Has anyone ever told you that you’d lose your head if it wasn’t attached? Then you might want to put an Apple AirTag on your Christmas wish list.
If you’re not familiar with the gadget, an Apple AirTag is a small device you attach to an item you’d like to track. AirTags are made to be compatible with products using Apple’s iOS operating system (iPhones, iPads, Apple watches, etc.).
Basically, when you lose an item with an AirTag attached to it, you can go into the Find My app on your Apple device and track down your missing item. On your Mac computer, you can go to icloud.com/find and follow the online directions from there. AirTags send out secure Bluetooth signals and use the extensive network of Apple devices nearby to triangulate its location and send it to you so you can view it on a map.
While most people use Apple AirTag to keep tabs on laptops and phones, there are tons of creative uses as well. If you want to make your life a bit simpler (and commonly lost items easier to find), here’s how to use an Apple AirTag.
1. Keep Tabs on Your Luggage
People lose their luggage all the time while traveling between airports. In fact, you’ve probably lost your luggage at least once, right? That’s where an AirTag comes into play.
Slip an Airtag into one of the compartments or beneath the zippered lining of your suitcase. Then, if your bag goes missing between the time you dropped it off and your final destination, you’ll know right where it is (although you may need some airport personnel to help you access it).
Even if you’re not particularly worried about lost luggage, the AirTag still allows you to track your belongings as they travel through airport security, giving you additional peace of mind while you travel.
2. Rescue Your TV Remote
Arguably the most easily lost items in your home are your remote controls, whether they’re controlling a TV, a Roku device, DVD player, or audio system. Today’s remotes are small, and as such, they can be easily lost when you wander into the kitchen to keep track of dinner or when your kids go to the bathroom during a break. Then, hours later, you’re on the hunt for a remote that has mysteriously disappeared.
If you also tend to lose your remote, an Apple AirTag can help you find it. Now, if you’ve used an AirTag before, you already know it’s not a flat disk and it has no sticky surfaces. To attach it to a remote, you’ll probably need to purchase an adhesive of some kind, like these hook-and-loop Velcro-style dots. The good news, though, is that if you’ve got a streaming device, you can buy brand-specific remote cases that have spaces designed for AirTag placement.
3. Never Lose Your Wallet or Keys Again
The most commonly forgotten items left in the back of ride-share cars are phones, wallets and keys. If this does happen to you, you can save yourself the hassle of tracking them down. Simply swap out your keychain for one that will do double duty — carry your keys and help find them when lost.
There are lots of stylish options for key chains made specifically for Apple AirTags. The Eusty Air Tag Keychain is scratch-proof and sweat-proof, and you can also attach it to a child’s backpack or a dog leash.
4. Attach It to Your Drone
Drones are super cool. They’re also very expensive, and they travel far away from you by design. Unfortunately, you can easily lose your drone in bad weather or if you’re new to flying it. One way to make sure you’ll get it back (as long as it doesn’t fly out of Bluetooth range) is to have an AirTag on board.
You can buy an AirTag Holder Tracker Mount that’s designed with a rubber band to wrap around your drone and hold the AirTag in place. Don’t worry — it’s light enough that it won’t affect your drone’s performance in the air!
5. Track Down Your Free-Range Child
Do you have children who like to roam? Learning how to be independent is part of growing up, and you may love that they’re riding bikes around the neighborhood or walking to school on their own. But you’d feel even better if you knew you could find always find them.
Attaching an AirTag to their clothes or backpack can give you some peace of mind when they are outside of your supervision. As long as they are within Bluetooth distance, they’ll never be too far from the safety of their parents.
6. Find Missing Medication
Not being able to find your keys while you’re trying to get out of the house can be an inconvenience that makes you late. But misplacing your pill bottle while traveling — with medications that need to be taken regularly — can lead to a health emergency.
The Medications feature on Apple’s Health app can remind you when to take it, but an AirTag can help you get to it fast when you’re not sure what luggage pocket it’s in or where you set it in your hotel room. Simply use a Velcro-style dot to attach the AirTag to the pill container, and you won’t lose your meds while traveling.
7. Find Your Lost Dog
Microchipping your pet is a great idea. But if your dog or cat does run away, you’ll have to wait for someone to bring them to a vet to scan the chip and track you down. Most of us would rather take a proactive approach to getting our fur babies home safe.
GPS collars for pets can cost hundreds of dollars, but attaching an AirTag to your pet’s collar is a more affordable solution. And you can buy an AirTag pet collar holder in a range of cute colors! Made of eco-friendly silicone, these holders from Swincho can be woven through any collar. They are scratch-resistant and washable.
8. Recover a Lost Phone Swiftly
With all the personal information you keep on your phone these days, misplacing that phone can feel like a code-red emergency. Suddenly, everything from your banking information to your medical records could be exposed to the next person who picks it up.
One way to avoid this scary situation is to attach an AirTag to your phone. Instead of waiting for someone to drop your phone into the lost and found or retracing your steps since the last time you remember using it, you can track it down yourself instantly.
9. Find Your Parked Car Fast
Securing an AirTag to your car can help you find it if it gets stolen. It can also help with that less terrible (but much more common) situation: You’re standing in a vast lot, searching for where you parked your car.
If you’ve ever forgotten where you parked in a garage with several levels that all look the same, you don’t want to repeat the experience. Instead, attach an AirTag to your car and hone in on it quickly.
10. Incorporate It Into a Fun Family Game of Hide-and-Seek
If you’re looking for a high-tech family game that gets everyone off the couch, you might play AirTag hide and seek. Stash the AirTag somewhere in the house, and let the kids use your iPhone to try to find it. If you have an iPhone 11 or higher, directional arrows (Precision Finding) will show them the way.
This game doesn’t have to be limited to kids, either. You might have a scavenger hunt party and invite guests to find several AirTags that you’ve hidden around the house — with clues attached to each one.
Apple Air Tag Alternatives
Apple isn’t the only company making Bluetooth trackers. If you have a different brand of smartphone, you might want to buy one of these three alternatives instead:
Not an iPhone user? The Tile tracker is compatible with both Apple and Android operating systems.
It’s similarly priced to the Apple AirTag and works just as well. It comes in a larger variety of designs for different devices, several of which have a built-in key ring. (So, less stuff to buy.) There’s even a version for your cat.
If you have a Samsung phone, then the Samsung SmartGalaxy is the better option for you. Just keep in mind that it relies on Samsung phones for its network, and they’re less plentiful than iPhones. If someone with a non-Samsung Android phone wanders by, it won’t ping the phone, and you won’t be able to find the tracker.
Though it’s technically called a key finder, you can attach the Nutale device to anything you’d attach AirTags to. It works through Bluetooth, via the Findthing app. And if you buy a four-pack, it’s the most affordable tracker on the market at less than $10 each.