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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!


Green bags go global

Photos of Reiner Schulz's green artbags continue to flood in from around the globe.

Recent contributions to this cutting-edge artistic project include shots of proprietor Paul Mundy holding a bag in front of the Azadi Monument in Tehran, and of French baggiste Gilles Beger brandishing a bag before the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Other new shots on Reiner's Vertissage page include Steve Silberberg's bag set adrift on a surfboard, and an equally enigmatic shot of Steve himself with the bag in front of a mirror.

Soon to come: photos of Michel Silvera's artbag in the Panama Canal Zone.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006 

Czech leader manages without bags

Czech president Václav Klaus enjoys his beer - real Czech Budweiser, not the pale American bats'-piss imitation.

But he does not use a barfbag. According to baggist Oliver Conradi, who has wangled his way into a baggist's dream job that takes him on board the planes that land at Hamburg Airport, Mr Klaus's official plane does not carry bags.

Maybe he uses a beer glass instead?

Wednesday, July 26, 2006 

Churchill's Czech chunder container

New evidence has emerged of early bag collecting by prominent public figures.

Gilles Beger has unearthed a rare photo of wartime British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, deboarding a plane. An aide carries a CSA bag under his arm, clearly destined for the premier's collection.

Former action-movie star Kirk Douglas was also a baggist in his earlier days, Gilles has found. The second photo shows Mr Douglas on the tarmac, bearing a TWA gin-rummy bag as a trophy of his flight.

"I found these pictures in an old Air France magazine", says Gilles. "There is something strange: only the bags are in colour."

Wednesday, July 26, 2006 

The Clemens eBay Report for June 2006

"The higher the temperatures in Europe, the lower the activities at Ebay for barf bags", writes our bagbusiness correspondent Gerd Clemens.

"This is the impression you can get when you review last month's auctions which surpass the barrier of 10 euros. Or was this caused by the football world championship, which took place during this time?

No matter why, the slightly exaggerated situation in April and May has come to normal again; not only in number of auctions but also to the amount of final bids.

Winner for June was an airline from Sri Lanka which is Serendib Express at a final bid of €57.10.

Runner up was a bag from a defunct European Airline namly Spantax from Spain at €34.37.

Air Madagascar with a black logo was the bag of the month with at least 3 auctions and direct sales surpassing 10 Euro. We can find this bag as number 3 at €31.90, at #4 at €31.35 and as #8 at €27.80.

At rank #5 we find a scarcely plastic bag from Brazilian carrier TAM at a price of €30.60.

One of the many varieties of China Southern Airlines came in as #6 at a price of €28.72.

Yeti Airways from Nepal is available in a lot of varieties too, this time in green at a final bid of €28.60.

The regional carrier RICO operates in the Amazonas area in Brazil. Price came up to €25.60. For further information about an airline which is not too known to most of us please refer to But be sure to understand Portuguese if you want to read the information.

Number 10 goes to a collapsed UK carrier Old Court Line Aviation at a price of €23.20, followed by the newest very good-looking edition from Asian Airlines from Korea at a price of €21.38. If one of you is interested in this bag I still have 2 bags for swap.

IAT Indonesian Air Transport is based in Jakarta and runs helicopters and smaller planes, their bags are rare so price came up to €20.75.

Americana was an airline in Peru which existed from 1989-1997. The plastic bag is really unique with a lot of pictures on it. Price came up to €18.50.

Followed by another bag from Peru namely TANS Transportes Aereos Nacionales de la Selva at a price of €18.27.

An older piece from Japanese ANA All Nippon Airlines came in as #15 at a price of €17.35.

CSWA Chinese South West Airlines came in as next at €16.82.

LAP Lineas Aereas Paraguayas from South America was founded in 1962 by Paraguayan air force. Beside the military tasks the civil aviation was pushed. After the investment in new planes destinations even in Europe were served. But political turbulances and a new government destroyed all dreams for further growth. With high debts and no concept for restructuring the company was forced to cease operation in 1994. Price for this old bag was €15.90.

At the same price we find French Air Inter.

GOL Airways can be found at a price of €15.60. The plastic bags from this Brazilian carrier vary in the name of the producer and the position of website.

Place #20 goes to another edition of the Spanish carrier Spantax which ceased operation in 1988.

An older bag from Nepal Airlines came in at a price of €15.52.

KrasAir is the fourth largest carrier in Russia which serves more than 50 destinations. The airline was founded in 1993 and is based in Krasnoyarsk. Price of their bag came up to €15.51.

Very close behind we find an older bag from Chinese Shenzhen Airlines at €15.50.

African Air Tanzania, which just started a partnership with Kenya Airways, came in as #23 at a price of €15.35.

The Brazilian airline PANTANAL Linhas Aereas was #24 at €14.50, together with Indian Jet Airways.

Further rankings beginning with rank #26 are:

  • Indonesian Pelita Air Service at €13.50
  • An older bag from Thai Airways at €12.75
  • An old bag from British Overseas Airways Corporation BOAC, an airline which was merged with BEA in 1974 to form British Airways. Price of the bag was €12.62.
  • LIAT from the Carribean at €12.30.
  • At rank #30 we find Indian Air Sahara at €11.64, followed by Taiwanese U-Land Airlines at €10.75
  • LAER Linea Aereas Entre Rios based in Parana in Argentina at €10.75
  • An old bag from Israelian ElAl at €10.60
  • AERO Airlines from Finland at €10.35
  • PIA Pakistan International Airlines at €10.25
  • HeliCusco from Peru at €10.15
  • And finally at rank #37 Khalifa Airways from Algeria.

These are the results for June 2006. Despite the fact that good offers are made the price level in July is still very low.
A good time for buyers."

Tuesday, July 25, 2006 

Is it a bird? Is it a plane?

Reiner Schulz's entry in Chris Hays' bag puppet competition is a full-length feature film starring "Bagman, Saviour of the Universe".

Click here to see a clip from the movie.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006 

Bag harvesting tips

Plane full? How can you harvest bags from seat pockets other than your own?

Here are some tips:

  • Get a window seat. You can steal the bag from the aisle seat pocket as you get into the seat - or after you have landed.
  • Downgrade to economy. There are more seats in economy, so more bags to steal. Plus, business class passengers deboard first, so there's less chance to swipe bags while you're queuing to exit.
  • Get on board early. Elbow your way to the front of the queue, then remove bags from still-empty seats as you move up the aisle with your cabin baggage.
  • Wait for the right moment. On long-haul flights, wait till everyone is asleep. Get up and walk around the cabin to stretch your legs. While you are doing anti-deep-vein-thrombosis exercises, you can pilfer bags from in front of sleeping fellow-passengers.
  • Check the toilets. Some have a stack of spare bags in a special compartment.
  • Wear the right clothes. I've found that a pullover and a loosely buttoned jacket is the best combination. This enables you to stuff bags unobtrusively under your jacket during harvesting forays. You can then transfer them to under your pullover (tuck the pullover into your trousers to prevent loose bags from spilling out) or better still, into your hand luggage. There are few things more embarrassing than dropping a dozen stolen bags on the floor while rummaging for your passport at immigration control.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006 

Winpak gets out of bags

Air Canada: a typical Winpak product

Canadian bag giant Winpak is getting out of the bag business.

Andrew Moody of SickSaver, a bag supplier to sufferers of morning sickness, vertigo, carsickness and other vomit-inducing ailments, tells that the Winpak no longer sells or manufactures barfbags.

Winpak has in the past supplied bags to various, mainly North American, carriers. Most of their bags have been on the tedious side of boring: the plain white Air Canada bag is a typical example. With their withdrawal from the bagbusiness, perhaps passengers can expect an improvement in the design of the bags available in seat pockets.

Winpak was also involved in an intellectual property dispute with Arabella Enterprises of New York, over the Queezy Sack marque. Arabella seems to have disappeared without trace; with Winpak's disappearance from the bagscene, uncertainty is renewed over the future of the Queezy brand.

Friday, July 21, 2006 

Baggists welcome crass commercialism

US Airways is planning to put advertising on its barfbags, North American media outlets are reporting.

Reports have surfaced in the Toronto Globe and Mail, the Phoenix Business Journal, and Yahoo that the Tempe-based carrier is planning to sell advertising space on its seat-pocket bags.

The fifth-largest US airline hopes this will provide a significant new revenue stream.

Despite the media hype, US Airways is not the first airline to subject passengers to advertising on its bags. Alitalia and Air New Zealand have advertised various motion sickness products on their bags for years.

Bag collectors are welcoming US Airways' move. "It increases the diversity of bags in the air", said one well-known baggist. "Most American carriers currently provide plain white bags. About the only thing they are good for is to make puppets."

Another baggist speculates that bag advertising may herald the dawn of free air travel. "If the carriers sell lots of advertising on bags, they won't have to charge for tickets", he said. "Imagine: seat pockets stuffed full of lots of different sorts of bags. Collectors' paradise!"

Thursday, July 20, 2006 

Airline worth less than the bags it carries

The troubled Brazilian airline Varig has been sold to a group of investors for $24 million, the BBC reports.

That's a bargain.

Varig must have perhaps 100,000 airsickness bags in stock - enough to deal with persistent turbulence over the Matto Grosso, as well as planeloads of drunken Carnival revellers.

At the current prices of barfbags on eBay, the bags alone could be worth $1 million: or 4% of the value of the airline.

Before scrapping the planes, the investors would be well advised to strip the bags from the seat pockets on board for sale to avid bag collectors.

Thursday, July 20, 2006 

Bagsite banned in Iran

Bad news for Iranian collectors: Chris Hays's innovative bagsite is banned in the Islamic Republic.

Visit and click on any of the pages in Chris's bag gallery - and you should see a set of bag images in glorious Technicolor.

Except in Tehran, that is. There, you'll be confronted with a large warning triangle and the notice "Access to this site is denied".

Chris's Swaps list fares only a little better: some of his scans (the ones that link to images on are fine. But some of Chris's images are stored on two other servers: Photobucket and Geocities. Iran residents will have to travel to a neighbouring country in order to view these images.

Faced with such restrictions, it is small wonder that few significant Iranian collectors have emerged in recent years. It seems that the development of bagology in the Islamic Republic still has a long way to go.

The thought police have not been able to ban all baggery in Iran, though. We are pleased to report that the world's premier bagsite,, is available in Tehran and other cities.

Friday, July 14, 2006 

Another bag puppet competition entry

This bag puppet competition is really catching.

All you need is a spare plain white bag, some scrap paper, scissors, glue and marker pens, and you can make caricatures of your favourite baggists.

As ever, any similarity with real baggists is purely coincidental.

Want to try it out yourself? Get your entry in by 31 July, and you can win a prize!

Friday, July 07, 2006 

Lack of dogshit bag sparks privacy furore

The young lady in the picture learned the hard way the importance of carrying dogshit bags.

Her miniature dog deposited a do-do (in the foreground) on the floor of a Korean train carriage, then refused to clean it up. An elderly man eventually tidied up the mess instead.

A fellow passenger captured the scene for posterity, then uploaded it onto the internet.

The young woman was soon identified, labelled as gae-ttong-nyue (dogshit girl) and subjected to a barrage of abuse. She eventually was forced to make an online apology, threatening to commit suicide if the abuse did not cease.

The brouhaha in turn sparked a debate about ethics and privacy: while not cleaning up after your dog may be rude, it surely does not warrant public ridicule on the scale the young woman experienced.

Moral: always have a dogshit bag handy while travelling on public transport. It could save unpleasantness, embarrassment, and even lives.

More info here - including the mystery of which Bayreuth resident has been using dogshit as a stand for yellow George Bush flags.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006 

Bagsite of the month

Bagsite of the Month for July 2006 is David Shomper's bagsite, which is imaginatively called "David Shomper's Barfbag Site".

This brand new site was announced to the world on an auspicious date: 4 July. Actually, David announced it on 3 July, but news hit European bag headquarters only on the following morning.

After a stellar career as a rocket scientist, David clearly is continuing to dream during his second career as a leading baggist. He claims his site is the "highest on the planet": a statement bound to be challenged by other ambitious baggists vying for the prestigious Guinness World Records accolade.

The site contains a gallery of clickable thumbnails of each bag, plus a swaps list with thumbnails and a brief description so you can be sure of David's wares before you trade.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006 

Something to keep your aces in?

Virgin Atlantic is keeping passengers on the edge of their seats once more with its innovative approach to bag provision.

This latest bag combines a witty message with an advertisement for an online game run by another branch of Richard Branson's empire: VirginPoker.

Fittingly, these bags are available only on flights to that mecca of gambling, Las Vegas.

The world's baggists wait with bated breath: which other Branson fiefs will produce their own bags?

  • Virgin Trains is an obvious candidate: "We don't want you to chuck in our trains."

And how about:

Thanks to Chris Hays for this item.

Monday, July 03, 2006 


Tired of accompanying your friends on hen nights and ending up having to barf on the disco floor?

Ann Summers, a firm specializing in providing accessories for such events, has just the bag for you: a "Girls Passed Out Sick Bag".

This item comes with a range of other useful novelty articles for the spinster's final binge: sexy shaped peppermints, reserved sign, drink badges and sexy straws - enough to supply six women with an evening's worth of male-free fun. All this for for only £6.

If you're not interested in sexy straws or drink badges, though, and just want the bag, £6 seems a bit steep. I suggest you wait till wedding season, then hang around a pub entrance waiting for a gaggle of boozy women clutching sexy straws to stagger out, and see if you can charm them into parting with an unused Girls Passed Out bag.

Once you've got your bag, do keep it out of reach of children, though - as the bag itself thoughtfully reminds you.

Thanks to Steve Silberberg for this item.

Monday, July 03, 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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