Compensation Clinic: Lufthansa Delayed Baggage, Getting Replacement Items Reimbursed

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Our weekly Compensation Clinic makes a stop at Lufthansa once again where a reader from Austria recently encountered his baggage going missing and he had to buy some emergency items.

Remember that you can always email us, send a message via Facebook or use Twitter and include photos too. We’ll try to cover a new Compensation Clinic case here once a week, every Sunday.

Lufthansa seems to have a lot of baggage irregularities recently, judging by the amount of reader questions we get which is always a good indicator of what’s going on.

This time Martin from Austria sent us an email asking about how to handle his Lufthansa case:

I recently was on a flight from MUC to L.A. with Lufthansa. My checked bag did not make and was untraceable for more than a week. I only got it back yesterday but am at home in Austria already for 3 days. I checked online and called Lufthansa daily but was forced to buy everything for the whole 6 days. As I was on a trade show I hade to spend a little over USD 1.000 for a suit, shoes, shirts, underwear, pair of pants, toiletry etc.

Any advice on how to get 100% compensated? I read Lufthansa would only compensate toiletry and underwear a 100% but the rest only 50%. Or I could send them all the cloth to get 100% compensated.

Furthermore, can I claim with Lufthansa and also with travel insurance (e.g. from credit card)? Have you ever done this? I assume when I claim with my credit card company their in turn got back to Lufthansa, don’t they?

Thanks!!!

I checked with Martin if he has Lufthansa Miles & More status and if the airline offered any reimbursement in case or gift card upon arrival in the U.S. (usually Lufthansa gives a Senator member $200-$300 when a bag is missing to prepay for emergency purchases) however in this case they didn’t hand any reimbursement out.

Usually Lufthansa reimburses outerwear (suit, shoes, jeans etc) with 50% and shirts, underwear, cosmetics with 100%. I always suggest to counter this proposal with telling the carrier they can come and pick all purchases up at the customers residence or provide a prepaid return label for a full reimbursement. Lufthansa doesn’t have these options and in response usually offers 100% refund for the items unless a customer has really gone overboard.

Martin had better luck though:

Just for your information, Lufthansa customer relation called:

They did not even bother suggesting to only compensate 50% but said they´d transfer the whole amount.

IFA was not working either on the same flight and I asked for 15k points as compensation, which they agreed to also.

Very nice!!!

Cheers, Martin

Great outcome and it wasn’t necessary to argue with Lufthansa either.

Conclusion

Lufthansa Customer Relations was quite efficient here and processed the claim of the ~ USD 1.000 quickly. The matter of the faulty Inflight Entertainment System to be compensated with 15,000 Lufthansa miles is a decent outcome as well for a flight in Business Class.

Having Miles&More status makes a lot of difference when claiming lost baggage with Lufthansa. As I wrote above you can ask for advance “on the spot” payment to purchase emergency items and the amount you receive is usually 200 Euro / US$200 equivalent as a Senator in Economy/Business and 300 EUR/USD in First Class. Pretty much all Lufthansa stations baggage handlers have cash or gift cards on hand – ask for it! Of course that doesn’t help you for large purchases but most bags arrive within 24-36 hours after they’ve been claimed lost.

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