Here's What Happens To Your Phone, Camera and Clothes When You Lose Them At The Airport

Photo: Getty Images.

Ever wondered what happened to that phone you accidentally left in the x-ray tray while you were passing through security at the airport?

They sell it.

Each year Sydney Airport holds an online public auction, selling off a huge range of unreserved items, from SLR cameras to game consoles, cosmetics and high-end spirits.

This is the first year it will be held online.

“The reason for the move online was because we wanted to widen the pool and attract as many people as possible,” a spokesperson for Sydney Airport said.

Some unusual items up for grabs in the auction include a surfboard, a microwave, a blender, musical instruments including ukuleles and violins, a bike and a scooter.

All data found on tech devices such as phones, cameras and laptops is wiped prior to the auction, but if you happen to spot something that you can verify belongs to you, Sydney Airport said it will endeavour to get the item back to you.

“We make every effort to return items to their rightful owners where possible,” the spokesperson said. “We keep lost property on-site for two months before placing it in storage and if it remains unclaimed, becomes eligible in our annual auctions.”

Last year’s lost property auction raised more than $130,000 for charity.

The bidding for each item will start at $1 via auction website Pickles.

There will be six different auctions, each running for one week from their start date:

Auction 1 includes SLR & digital cameras, iPods, games consoles, games and speakers.
Opens 9am Tuesday 4 November and closes 8:30pm Monday 10 November.

Auction 2 includes mobiles, smart phones, tablets and laptops.
Opens 9am Wednesday 5 November and closes 8:30pm Tuesday 11 November.

Auction 3 includes jewellery, perfume, cosmetics, handbags, clothing, sunglasses and luggage.
Opens 9am Thursday 6 November and closes 8:30pm Wednesday 12 November.

Auction 4 includes scotch, bourbon, whiskey, vodka, gin, liqueurs, wine and various tobacco.
Opens 9am Friday 7 November and closes 8:30pm Thursday 13 November.

Auction 5 includes sporting goods, art work, homewares, musical instruments, toys and tools.
Opens 9am Saturday 8 November and closes 8:30pm Friday 14 November.

Auction 6 includes kids’, women’s and men’s clothing.
Opens 9am Sunday 9 November and closes 8:30pm Saturday 15 November.

A processing fee of 16.5% (including GST) is paid in addition to the hammer price on all lots.

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