Have you lost your luggage?
Having probably had the privilege of paying to check your baggage into the hold at the start of your flight, not everyone is fortunate to meet with it upon arrival. Waiting at the carousel can turn into a frustrating experience, particularly when your new bag emerges in a somewhat sorry state, but even worst when it doesn’t arrive at all.
What do you do?
Firstly take a deep breath and then locate the Handling Agent who is looking after your airline. You will need to complete a PIR (Property Irregularity Report) with all your details. Vitally important will be the barcode number taken from the luggage tag you have probably stuck to your boarding pass, when you checked in. This uniquely identifies your bag to you.
Don’t panic - the vast majority of bags are returned and airlines typically have a well rehearsed procedure in place to start tracking them. If your bag is on the next flight you should be in receipt of it within the next few hours. However if it has gone to a different airport it will naturally take longer to reunite you. When it does arrive, the airline will deliver to your hotel.
According to The Montreal Convention a bag is actually termed as “delayed” for a period of 21 days. After that period you can claim your bag is lost. At this point you can start to claim for compensation. Airlines will normally state that they are bound by the Montreal Convention in paying travelers around $1500 per person in compensation. It is also likely that you will be asked to claim via your travel insurance.
- Travel as light as possible. Remember many airlines have increased the weight/size of the hand luggage you take on board – Just be mindful of the rules relating to what can actually be taken as hand luggage
- Put your name on the outside and inside of your bags
- Pack valuables in your carry-on bags
- Be wise at check-in – make sure your bag is tagged with the correct destination label and ensure you keep your barcode number sticker that normally gets tagged to your boarding pass. This is uniquely matching you to your bag
- Remember travel insurance