Lost and found is a major problem in our lives! We think it isn’t going to happen to us until it does. The cost to replace items and the time it takes to replace lost items is incredible. If you go to your local Craigslist page you will see hundreds and hundreds of items. What’s really amazing is the amount of FOUND posts. Think about that for a second… Someone found something cool, valuable, or expensive and could have kept it but they didn’t want to. They wanted to get it back to the owner. Look at the amount of effort they are putting forth to get these items home. The old adage “Finders Keepers” doesn’t really have the traction most people might think. PLEASE, make it easy for finders to get your gear returned. We are Karmik Outdoors and we are the most trusted name in outdoor gear recovery. We make it easy for the finder to return gear so your items are returned fast. If you don’t use our simple – efficient – reward included service, please use these 5 tips to ensure your gear can get back to you.
Here are 5 ways to ensure your gear finds its way back to your loving arms:
1) Phone Number. This is the fastest and easiest way to get your stuff back. Check it often to make sure it’s still legible, hasn’t rubbed off and for goodness sakes, put your area code on there. Make sure the number is active. Know that sharpie fades over time and your contact info written on your stuff makes your gear more difficult to sell.
2) Offer a Reward. Even if someone wants to get your gear back to you they might forget. It also acts as motivation for a faster return. Offering a reward incentivizes someone who might want to keep your gear to get it back to you.
3) Nail Polish. How many times have you been rafting/fishing/climbing/skiing and noticed someone has the exact same piece of gear as you? Clearly they have good style. Using nail polish to mark your gear is a great way to ensure you get your skis from the rack or your climbing gear. Someone who has mistakenly taken your gear still won’t know who it is though. At least they will know it is not theirs and if they take it to a lost and found counter you can identify it.
4) Address… Although it seems like a good idea, and it can be, you should not put your address on your gear. I have moved more times than I’ve changed my phone number, I bet you’re the same. Plus, do you really want someone to drop off your gear at your front porch? Put the address of a business or place you frequent very often.
5) Make it noticeable. If you have a cooler with 100 rad fishing stickers put your information where someone will see it. Maybe inside the lid. Same with your favorite coffee mug or fly box or snowboard. Put your info where someone is going to see it. Make it stand out.
6) Extra. Avoid putting your name on your gear. I was rafting with a guy and he wrote his name in sharpie on everything he owned. I said “what is someone going to do if they find your gear?” He replied “look me up.” Really dude!? I’m supposed to walk around town and ask, “are you John?” “Are you John?” “Hey, are you John?” It also makes your gear unsellable. Your name is of no use to someone trying to get your gear back.
Our lost and found decals help with all of the above. They are extremely durable and won’t ever rub off or fade. We offer a lifetime guarantee. We offer various shapes and styles but all of them are designed to be visible and stand out on your gear. Your personal information is not visible, rather it is stored in a secure database. If you move or change your phone number, login and update your information, instantly, all of your registered items are updated. Plus our decals help with resale value instead of hurting it with personalization. You can login to your account, deregister your gear, sell your gear, then the new owner can register for free. In fact, it’s now a selling feature rather than a hindrance. And finally, we offer a multi-point return incentive on your behalf. It’s a $250 reward program built into the service for you.
If you use our decals or not, please ensure the items you value the most are returnable. People want to do the right thing, give them the opportunity and make it easy for them.