A LoyaltyLobby reader sent me an email seeking advice what to do with Airberlin checked luggage issue.
Here’s the email from the reader:
I had a flight from LAX (AB7431) to Dueseeldorf (AB6444). The flight left very late from LAX and I missed my connecting flight in Dueseeldorf to Berlin. I was told I would have a new flight booked and that my bag would make it. I was told not to worry. My new flight was AB6446 from Dueseeldorf to Berlin. When I got to Berlin my bag did not show up.
I am going to Stavanger, Norway for the next two weeks. My bag has all my clothes and belongings in it. I have absolutely nothing on me. I have submitted forms to the Lost Baggage Service at the airport, written an email, and also sent a message through the tracking site. I’ve called the phone number listed three times and every time I am on hold for 30 minutes and then it disconnects. How is this possible?
You should have filed PIR (Property Irregularity Report) for the missing bag and it should have locator in the form of BERAB12345. You need to plug this to Worldtracer to see what notes there might be regarding the bag. This is more efficient than trying to get someone at Airberlin to pick up the phone.
The reader should go and buy whatever he needs to get by until the bag arrives and then claim the expenses from Airberlin.
Airberlin may not play nice and probably will offer just a voucher like in my recent case (read more here). The reader can then file a claim with German regulator that will likely require Airberlin to pay 50% of the expenses or 100% in the case that the reader sends the purchased closed to Airberlin. I assume that Airberlin will eventually get the bag to the reader.
It is unfortunately unavoidable that checked bag is always on the same flight with you especially when irregular operations are involved. Some airlines are better at getting bags on the same flight, however.
Whenever my checked bag is delayed, I go and buy whatever I need to get by for couple of days. Based on my personal experience, delayed bag is rarely on the next flight and usually comes two to three days later.
If the reader’s delay arriving to Berlin was greater than four hours, he can also request 600 euro cash compensation from Airberlin per EC 261/2004.