What to Do When Your Airline Loses Your Luggage

Everyone has had the unfortunate experience of losing their luggage. And if you haven’t, and travel often, you will. But the truth is that this experience doesn’t have to be as painful as it might sound. There are many things that you can do to expedite the finding of your luggage and to get you back in the vacation spirit.

If an airline looses your luggage, you need to know your rights


The first thing you will want to do is head to the lost luggage area for your particular airline. This step allows the airline to take down your information as well as your current location so that luggage may be delivered there without a problem. If you don’t have a location that your luggage may be delivered to, you may need to return to the airport in the next day or two. Be sure to clearly write down any information that you need to give and to get a receipt of your information as well as a phone number to call.

But even before you start to give your information to the airline, go back and double check the luggage carousel. Are you certain that your bag isn’t there? If you have a bag that’s similar in style to other bags, is it a possibility that someone else has picked it up? Were you ever away from the carousel when the luggage was coming around? If so, you may be dealing with either theft or just someone that accidentally grabbed your suitcase. In that situation, the passenger should return the case to the airport and try to retrieve their own.

You will want to be as polite as you can to the customer service representative when you are starting the lost luggage process. They have to deal with so many other cranky passengers, that your attempt to be nice will allow you to move through the process more easily. Make sure that you write down their name and any other information to identify them if you need to refer to them again during the reclaiming process.

If you haven’t heard from the airline in twenty-four hours, you will want to call the number you have been given in order to get a status report. They should be able to give you some idea of when they will be delivering your luggage or at least an idea of when you will hear more information. Try to get them to commit to a time when they will call again and then be persistent with calling back if you don’t hear back.

In the end, your luggage might be lost forever, but with some persistence and a careful eye at the luggage claim, you will have your bag and be off on your adventure within days.