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BA & Lost Bags: Worse Than US  
User currently offlineVikingA346 From Sweden, joined Oct 2006, 515 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 3180 times:

The Wall Street Journal published an article today entitled "London Calling: Your Luggage is Missing". It describes how bad the operation at LHR has been in terms of losing bags and getting bags back to people. There is an example in the article where a man travelling to Israel from Texas on June 29 was a victim of lost baggage and BA ended up sending his bags to him via FedEx 15 DAYS AFTER HIS TRIP ENDED, on AUGUST 1. Now I know this is an extreme case, but that is simply unbelievable. How can an airline lose your baggage for over a month?? To top it off, when his baggage was delivered, it was so waterlogged that there was mold growing in his suitcase.

All in all, the article blames the problems on the fact that BAA at Heathrow has had problems with baggage handlers and the equipment malfunctioned twice this summer, stacking bags up to the roof. The solution: Terminal 5 at Heathrow, due to Open in March of 2008.

Any insight on lost bags and/or British Airways? Seems like it's all temporary until T-5 opens next year. Apparently 90% of all operations at LHR (BA ops) will be in T-5 and things will run much smoother.

VikingA346 @ PHL


...you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you shall return
28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAirandy727-200 From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (7 years 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 3151 times:

BA lost my bags last September on ORD-LHR. Still haven't seen them yet...

User currently offlineSemsem From Israel, joined Jul 2005, 1779 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (7 years 4 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3108 times:

A co - worker who was flying BA from JFK to GVA via LHR did not receive her suitcase though they had 2 hours to connect. She waited 1 hour for the arrival of the next flight and the bag was there. On the way to JFK she had 6 hours to connect in London. She asked to take an earlier flight and was advised that it was impossible as they had no way of tracking down her baggage.

User currently offlineIkramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21583 posts, RR: 59
Reply 3, posted (7 years 4 months 4 days ago) and read 3103 times:

Why is your thread title written as it is? "Worse than US." Is that worse than US Airways, or worse than the USA?

Either way, BA, as well as many other airlines and airports in the EU are worse than any USA airline, US or otherwise. There was another thread about this.



Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlineBongodog1964 From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2006, 3684 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3052 times:

Quoting VikingA346 (Thread starter):
and the equipment malfunctioned twice this summer

Equipment malfunctioning at LHR (particularly the belt between T4 & T1) is far more often than twice this summer; I believe that BA quoted 8 times in one month.
We have had really awful weather lately, this has caused flight delays resulting in more bags missing connections. LHR is so short of space, much of the mislaid baggage is sitting on the apron steadily absorbing water; due to their being no where else for it to sit.


User currently offlineAlanUK From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3034 times:

Just wanted to say I get a bit tired of hearing of LOST bags. 98% of "lost" bags are re-united with their owner eventually. It's not lost, it is misplaced, delayed or mishandled!

It's no excuse for BA's poor performance though.

Can I mention that Virgin and bmi both refused to have their figures published for this study?!


User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6845 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3019 times:

What amazed me is that bags are then auctioned off after 3 months

http://travel.timesonline.co.uk/tol/...avel/essentials/article2277055.ece

The AUC points out that 85% of bags are reunited with their owners within 48 hours. But what happens to the remaining 15%? If, after three months, the airline hasn’t traced the owner, they come to auction houses such as Greasby’s, in Tooting, south London. About 1,000 unclaimed items pour into Greasby’s each month. Shoes, electricals, valuables and accessories are removed from the cases and sold separately; the cases themselves are sold sealed, containing only the clothes.


Surely it is now time to have a suitcase chip, just like you can have a dog chip. Something implanted in the handle, or somewhere protected that definitely identifies the bag - maybe linked to the ticket/baggage tag - so any missing bag can be scanned and its identity known immediately.



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineAlanUK From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3009 times:

The bags that are auctionned are bags that the customers have not claimed dispite being contacted by the airline, or bags that cannot be tracked due to customers not giving enough information on their identity. Surely, having these bags sold off is better for the enivonrment than simply destroying them. Plus some (and sometimes all) of the money goes to different charities.

85% of "lost" bags are reunited with their owner within 48 hours
98% of "lost" bags are reunited with their owner within 3 months

I do like the idea of suitcase GPS chips though!


User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6845 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2997 times:

Quoting AlanUK (Reply 7):
I do like the idea of suitcase GPS chips though!

RFID chips. Dirt cheap, no battery.

http://www.securityfocus.com/columnists/169 (article written in 2003)

They want to used them on pax at the airport, why not on the baggage as well?

Some uses, especially those related to security, seem like a great idea. For instance, Delta is testing RFID on some flights, tagging 40,000 customer bags in order to reduce baggage loss and make it easier to route bags if customers change their flight plans.



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineJcavinato From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 520 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2995 times:

Technically, a Radio Frequency Identification Device (RFID) would probably work better than a GPS. GPS would have to have sky visibility. An RFID tag would turn on whenever anyone turned on the device in a large room and basically say to the hand held device, "Hey, here I am. I'm the one you're looking for." These tags are now in the $0.10 each price range. They are being used extensively in discount store warehouses to track inventories. No reason why they couldn't be used in the airline industry.

User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21866 posts, RR: 55
Reply 10, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2973 times:

Quoting VikingA346 (Thread starter):
There is an example in the article where a man travelling to Israel from Texas on June 29 was a victim of lost baggage and BA ended up sending his bags to him via FedEx 15 DAYS AFTER HIS TRIP ENDED, on AUGUST 1



Quoting Airandy727-200 (Reply 1):
BA lost my bags last September on ORD-LHR. Still haven't seen them yet...

And I thought I had it bad when BA lost my bags and finally delivered them six days after my flight.

Quoting AlanUK (Reply 5):
Just wanted to say I get a bit tired of hearing of LOST bags. 98% of "lost" bags are re-united with their owner eventually. It's not lost, it is misplaced, delayed or mishandled!

I'm sorry, but when you call up an airline to try and find your bag and they say "we don't know where it is", that's lost. Temporarily lost, but still lost.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineJonnyWishbone From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2007, 143 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2957 times:

I'm interested to know who pays for this?

Whilst BAA are actually the culprits, NOT BA/VS/BMI etc, do THEY pay for all the couriers etc, or do the airline pay?

I do find it incredulous that as LHR's biggest tennant, BA seem to roll over and let BAA treat them like dirt, causing nothing but bad press for the BA brand, bizarre!

My advice: Only put your bag through to LHR, pick it up and re-check it in... They aren't as bad at point to point, it's the whole transfer thing they seem to be unable to do!


User currently offline777236ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2892 times:

BA made their own bed when they became so LHR-centric, despite knowing full well how terrible the infrastructure is. They should lie in it and accept the consequences, one of many being that they have an absolutely terrible luggage record that the authorities should do something about.

User currently offlineElite From Hong Kong, joined Jun 2006, 2876 posts, RR: 10
Reply 13, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2882 times:

Even though the bags were missing for over a month, at least they managed to retrieve it and FedEx'd it to him as soon as possible.

I think HKG uses the chip technology? All checked luggage gets this yellow HKIA sticker on it with a very small chip in the center. Anyone know what that is?


User currently offlineHelvknight From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2866 times:

LHR is going to trial RFID technology

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/07/06/heathrow_rfid/


User currently offlineHelvknight From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2846 times:

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 3):
Why is your thread title written as it is? "Worse than US." Is that worse than US Airways, or worse than the USA?

Either way, BA, as well as many other airlines and airports in the EU are worse than any USA airline, US or otherwise. There was another thread about this.

He's quoting a US newspaper so they are going to write it from a US perspective. The problem isn't BA but, as noted above BAA, especially LHR due to dilapidated technology.

T5 should help this a lot as most of the bags on the T4-T1 belt (which causes most of the problems) are coming from BA long haul in T4 to BA short haul in T1. VS are mainly in T3 while BD are in T1 so they aren't as affected by this.

It is usually the airport that misplaces the bag, usually through misrouting. My bag got misplaced between ORD and ZRH last week, got it back after 2 days - problem was probably a careless check clerk at YEG - she put the tag on and covered up the ZRH part so it showed ORD - ZRH on one side and ORD on the other, a bag handler saw ORD and presumably pitched it out onto the collection belt. I was lucky, as ORD's carousels are outside the secure area it could easily have been nicked.

US airports certainly aren't immune to this kind of thing, remember what DEN used to be like? I was in the US at the time of the OJ trial and there were quite a few jokes about the bag with the bloody glove going round the bag system at DEN  Smile


User currently offlineNorcal773 From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 1451 posts, RR: 12
Reply 16, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2823 times:

BA 'mishandled' my luggage 7 out of 11 times that I've flown them. Maybe it's just my luck but out of all my years of flying, only one other airline (UA) has misplaced my luggage and they delivered it the next day.


If you're going through hell, keep going
User currently offlineJonnyWishbone From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2007, 143 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2802 times:

Quoting Helvknight (Reply 14):
LHR is going to trial RFID technology

How about 'trialing' Getting enough baggage handlers to cope with the amount of bags!!!! A great idea, but it'll never catch on!

 Big grin


User currently offlineElite From Hong Kong, joined Jun 2006, 2876 posts, RR: 10
Reply 18, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2797 times:

Quoting Norcal773 (Reply 16):
BA 'mishandled' my luggage 7 out of 11 times that I've flown them.

I've read somewhere that on LHR's worst days, they lose 1 baggage for every 5 checked in.


User currently offlineNorcal773 From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 1451 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2794 times:

Quoting Elite (Reply 18):
I've read somewhere that on LHR's worst days, they lose 1 baggage for every 5 checked in.

You mean 'good days'?  duck 



If you're going through hell, keep going
User currently offlineVikingA346 From Sweden, joined Oct 2006, 515 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2752 times:

Quoting Helvknight (Reply 15):
Why is your thread title written as it is? "Worse than US." Is that worse than US Airways, or worse than the USA?

Either way, BA, as well as many other airlines and airports in the EU are worse than any USA airline, US or otherwise. There was another thread about this.

He's quoting a US newspaper so they are going to write it from a US perspective. The problem isn't BA but, as noted above BAA, especially LHR due to dilapidated technology.

It's funny because in the article they write "worse than even U.S. Airlines", then later in the article they write that "[BA[ mishandled 28 per 1,000 pax bags in the second quarter this ear, a rate that is twice as bad as the worst U.S. major airline, US Airways Group"

So, it's both U.S. airlines in general, as well as U.S. Airways that they're referring to.



...you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you shall return
User currently offlineHelvknight From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2731 times:

Quoting VikingA346 (Reply 20):

Actually there was a bit of a misquote there, the 1st 2 paras came from Ikamerica.


User currently offlineCol From Malaysia, joined Nov 2003, 2129 posts, RR: 22
Reply 22, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2709 times:

BA Baggage issue is not new, it has been going on for many years, 10 or more. After the third time for me, I gave up using them and LHR, there are many safer options. Blaming weather, baggage carousel, capacity and a plague of locusts wears a little thin after soooo many years. Can't wait for T5, then all their woes will be over!!!!

User currently offlineJonnyWishbone From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2007, 143 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2650 times:

Quoting Col (Reply 22):
Can't wait for T5, then all their woes will be over!!!!

So you believe all the PR hype then???? I think if you are T5 to T5 you've got a chance, but if you one of the poor souls who is transfering one of the T3 flights or a One World connection, you are screwed!!!


User currently offlineUadc8contrail From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1782 posts, RR: 9
Reply 24, posted (7 years 4 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2627 times:

august of 2004 my family and i were flying BA lhr-jfk after trying to get on ua.....our bags were gate checked as there was no other room on board....ours along with 3 cans of bags were not loaded on the flight....in jfk we were told that BA was going to send a 777 just with bags to jfk because of the back log of bags at lhr but we still did not get our bags for 5 days after they arrived at jfk...i have never seen a line of pax so long in my life as i witnessed at jfk just for the BA lost baggge office


bus driver.......move that bus:)
25 Col : No, just used a little sarcasm, and I won't be in a rush to use them or their new Terminal.
26 JonnyWishbone : It's going to be great... Like a whole new beginning, just like T4 was!!! I am back from JNB to MAN thru T5 on April 2nd next year... You can expect a
27 Phoenixflyer : When I went to Africa over the winter, BA lost the bags of one of the guys in the group. We only spent a few days in Nairobi before we continued on to
28 GDB : 777-236ER, BA became so 'LHR Centric' since they had a great enabler to do so. That being, the only way to make money. I'll not deny that BA is far fr
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