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the magical world of airsickness bags

Welcome. This is what my wife calls "a bunch of stupid jokes and pictures of paper bags." She's right about the jokes. She's wrong about the bags: some of them are plastic.

What the critics say: "Utterly unnotable" (Wikipedia editor). "Ridiculous collections #4" (Buzzfeed). Other comments: "As complete wastes of time go, it's a very high quality complete waste of time... An entirely dispensable source of inane comments about a truly trivial subject... A monument to the planet's worst corporate design... An unwelcome reminder of some of the more unpleasant moments in our lives."

Donations (unused, please) of bags not represented in the bag gallery are welcomed -- please mail to this address, and I'll credit you on this site! I am happy to trade any extras that I have. Check out the links to other bag sites, find out how you can use your spare bags, and explore the fascinating world of bag manufacturers

Highlights: The design features page reveals the secrets of professional baggery, and the logos page analyses the enigma of airline corporate identities. Search for your favourite bag, browse the bag gallery by country and airline, and check out the biggest, best and worst bags!


Bagsite of the Month, November/December 2006

A long overdue recognition of one of the finest sites in the bag firmament: the Bagsite of the Month Award for November and December 2006 goes to Graham Curran's Vomitorium.

One of the earliest bagsites to be published on the web, the Vomitorium remains among the most admired sources of information on bags. Along with the normal gallery and swaps pages we have come to expect from any serious bagsite, the Vomitorium offers a host of other valuable information. It has pages on bag construction, collecting, a Bob the Barfbag soap opera, other names for bags, bags that have starred in movies, and even how Graham manages his site.

The Vomitorium has won a host of awards and has been featured in newspapers and the broadcast media. itself owes a great deal of inspiration to Graham's pioneering work to bring baggery to the masses.

Monday, November 20, 2006 

African bagart

Do animals understand art?

I don't know - but this Kenyan warthog was definitely interested in my Travelling Green Bag.

The Green Bag also accompanied me to Lesotho, South Africa and Zimbabwe. Check out the photos shortly to be posted on Reiner Schulz's Vertissage site

Come to think of it, does anyone understand Reiner's Vertissage art project? Except for Reiner himself, maybe? Recent initiatives include painting statues of naked cherubs green, and placing a life-sized green plastic cow on top of a garage. Check out Reiner's site for more.

Monday, November 20, 2006 

Air Zimbabwe uses bags to fight debt

Inflation in Zimbabwe running at 3000% (that's 17% a week), economic collapse, widespread hunger throughout the country. Air Zimbabwe has cancelled flights to London for fear its aircraft will be impounded to pay for unpaid debts. The company's far-sighted response? Issue new barfbags with a ritzy new green logo.

In view of the upcoming shortage of this fine item when AirZim goes belly-up, I stole as many bags as I could from my flight from Johannesburg to Harare. I ended up with 27 in all. Anyone interested?

Monday, November 20, 2006 

Bags in Guinness 2007

Welcome publicity for world baggery: Niek Vermeulen's collection of 5034 bags features in the 2007 Guinness Book of World Records.

There's an interview with Niek, along with a shot of him relaxing at Gatwick after what appears to have been a successful raid on seat pockets.

If you can't afford the price of the book, you can click on the picture to read the article.

Monday, November 20, 2006 

The Clemens eBay Report for October 2006

It was a quite interesting month as an American barf bag collector put his collection on sale.

Some very rare bags were offered, and even the runners up had a good chance to get hold of some nice bags.

As in the month before Capital Airlines was top ranked. This month the bag was more than €130 cheaper than in September, but it was still US$ 82 which is about €65.

Runner up came from Air Madagascar, an old one at a price of €58.79.

Aero Condor a plastic bag from Peru seems to be very attractive. In Oktober last offer was at €53.80, and this bag is also on sale in November. As this airline, which started operation in 1975, provides just domestic schedules and charter flights, it is not easy to get these bags and the high prices are a proof of this.

Air Senegal International offers a bag which demonstrates how to relax during the flight. Price of this bag came up to €42.50.

A bag from Deutsche Lufthansa was on sale several times and came always in at prices of more than €40. In October final bid was at €41.60. In the past most of us believed that this bag came from West Germany. But it seems that this is not the case, the bag comes from former East Germany. One indication for this assumption is the fact that the expression “For Air Sickness” is written in 4 languages and the second one is Russian. It is hard to believe that a West German bag from the 1950s would include Russian.

It made sense to verify this indication, and I am pleased to inform you about a typical East-West story:

In February 1956 GDR started with scheduled flights under the name Deutsche Lufthansa. But far earlier, in 1954, Deutsche Lufthansa West had bought the name and the logo of the old Deutsche Lufthansa at a very reasonable price of DM 30,000 and wanted to use this name too. Hence they went to court to find out who has the right to use the name Deutsche Lufthansa.

In 1958 a court in London settled the case in favour of Deutsche Lufthansa West.

The regime in GDR decided to found another airline under the name Interflug. In 1963 Deutsche Lufthansa East was liquidated and the business was carried on under the name Interflug. I hope you agree that I put this bag under East Germany now.

Much to my surprise an old bag from Air France came in as # 6. Producer of this bag was Papeterie Normande, a very old (no longer existing?) company in the northern part of France. So price was high, namely €35.32.

Now we can find a series of Malaysian Airline System bags in green and red. # 7 and #13 is a green one at 34.96 and 24.60 respectively, and one with red and yellow stripes was at €29.33 and €28.70.

Rank # 10 is an old bag from TUK which means Transport United Kingdom, which was sold at €26.05. Just 2 bidders fought for this bag.

An old bag from Thai Airways, which was printed in red on brown kraft paper, came in as # 11 at a price of €25.23.

Another example from the closing of mentioned collection was a bag from the late 70’ namely Japan Air Lines at €24.79 at # 12 and again at # 17 with a price of €20.

BOAC from the 70’ was sold at €20.65.

Most of us know the original airsickness bag also named sic-sac, which is in blue. One was offered with a special label of Kenmore Air Harbour. This was enough to bring price up to €20.60.

A generic bag with very strange language offered as Turkey or Yugoslavia barf trash bag was finally recognized as a bag from Iceland. Price was €16.11.

Airblue is a private airline from Pakistan which was founded in 2003 and started operations in 2004. At the beginning they just ran 8 planes for domestic destinations but now they want to expand internationally. They now serve Dubai. Hence this airline is not too much for Western ers, resulting in few bags being available to collectors. Last year bags from airblue came in at prices of about €35 and 25. In October 2006 price has come down, but still at €18.75 and for the runner up at €18.25 which are ranked # 18 and # 20.

In between we find Greenlandair, which is the flag carrier of Greenland based in Nuuk. This airline was founded in 1960 and services domestic destinations plus Kopenhavn and Baltimore. Their name has changed to Air Greenland now. Price of the bag was €18.01.

A promotional bag from Saab came in as # 21 at a price of €15.51.

A nice bag from TWA in orange with a lovely dog was gained at €15.07.

Shaheen Air International is the second national airline in Pakistan. They started operation in 1993. From their main bases Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad they operate between the main cities in Pakistan and to the Gulf. Bags from this airline are still very rare which let to a price of €14.09.

The predecessor of Royal Jordanian Airline was alia, and such a bag was bought at €13.76.

GOL from Brazil takes much advantage out of the financial collapse of Varig. Their plastic bags show some varieties and such an almost orange bag was sold at €12.77 which is # 25.

China Airlines from Taiwan is the next one at a price of €12.72.

A large paper bag with a red logo for Tunis Air and a stamp on the back came in as # 27 at a price of €12.57.

Sun Express is a Turkish carrier which used to have generic bags. But now they improved their marketing and they are proud to have their own deep blue bag now. The price was €12.50.

One red and white bag was offered as an Indian bag, but it was a bag from the Indonesian flag carrier Garuda. The price for this old piece was reasonable at €12.29.

An old bag from the 70’ from Delta came in as # 30 at a price of €11.33.

Out of the collection some old and slightly different TWA bags were on sale. They came in as # 31, 32 and 35 at prices of €11.16, €11.10 and €10.47.

Another USA carrier is Northwest Orient. Their bags are normally in blue but this one on sale in October was printed in red. Price came up to €11.07.

Hemus is a carrier in Bulgaria. They change the design of the bags regularly. The newest edition in light green and red was bought at €11.00.

Air Astana is the flag carrier of Kazakhstan. Their newest bag has lateral tab so price was €10.51 which is rank # 35.

Ariana from Afghanistan is also equipped with a lateral tab now. And this new bag was bought at €10.35.

And on rank #38 there is a “doggy bag” from Continental Airlines at a price of €10.00.

Last but not least I would like to inform you about a funny event on ebay.

A nice-looking Lufthansa bag in blue with 2 white stripes was offered in a direct sale auction. The requested price was just €10,000,000.00, which sounds reasonable for such a wonderful bag.

But postage should be another €4.44, far too high for Germany. Maybe out of this reason nobody was prepared to take advantage of this good offer.

For details to this auction have a look under ebay # 130037886321. If you are lucky the seller is still prepared to make you this offer again.

This is all for October I could find. If I missed some auction please give me information.

Kind regards and with best wishes from Germany

Gerd Clemens

Tuesday, November 07, 2006 


What do Latvia, Liberia and Lesotho have in common? Yes, they all start with an L. What else? They're all missing from my barfbag collection.

What's the biggest country not represented? Chad. In terms of population? Burkina Faso. Other prominent absentees (coloured red in the map): Georgia and Rwanda. 

Major underrepresented portions of the globe are a swathe of Africa and chunks of Central Asia and Central America.

Donations from these areas especially welcome!

Centres of megabagdiversity are the USA (though many US bags are distressingly plain), China, the UK, Canada, Germany, Brazil and Indonesia. 

Click here for details.

For new baggists only


New to the world of bag collecting? Want to get a head start on your collection? Then send me an email, and I'll send you a randomly selected free starter pack from my surplus bag stock. There won't be anything rare, and you may end up with some duplicates, but at least you'll be able to show your friends a few more of these lovely cultural artefacts. Make sure you include your mailing address in your email. Offer good as long as stocks last.

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