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-   -   Forced to gate check carry-ons then hit with a $600 excess baggage fee! (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/all-nippon-airways-ana-mileage-club/1991206-forced-gate-check-carry-ons-then-hit-600-excess-baggage-fee.html)

CanadianWings Oct 14, 19 12:04 am

Forced to gate check carry-ons then hit with a $600 excess baggage fee!
 
Just want to share an unexpectedly bad experience with ANA at the gate in Vancouver.
I was travelling with three others from YYC to Manila with two stops in YVR and Tokyo. Air Canada was the carrier that brought us to Vancouver. The gate agent in YYC stopped us and forced us to gate check three of our carry-ons straight to Manila as the flight was "full". The flight then proceeded uneventfully with many overhead bins empty!
Fast forward to the gate in YVR, the ANA gate agent advised us that there would be a $600 excess baggage charge because the total free checked baggage allowance was 8 pieces for the four of us. With three carry-ons gate checked, we were informed that our total checked bags was now 11 pieces and they have to charge us $200 per excess piece that was gate-checked in YYC. We tried to explain that we didn't choose to gate check the bags and Air Canada forced us to, but she wouldn't waive the fee and was told I have to contact Air Canada for a refund or some sort of compensation.
I understand that it's not really ANA's fault as they are just following their rules but the Air Canada gate agents in YYC never told us that there was going to be a fee to pay once we reached YVR.
The onboard experience was excellent as always on ANA, but this gate experience in YVR left me feeling frustrated. Unfortunately, I am due to fly this route again soon, so I just have a few questions:

1. Can you tell the gate agent that you wish not to gate check carry-ons especially when you have a connecting flight with a different airline?
2. If the gate agents in YYC checked the carry-ons only up to YVR, would there still be an excess fee?

TA Oct 14, 19 1:36 pm

Ouch, that is unfortunate. I was going to say that I thought the first carrier determines the baggage fees of a multi-flight itinerary, so if AC didn't charge you for them, you should not have been charged subsequently.

However, it seems that there is a "most significant carrier" rule for multi-carrier journeys:
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g...ine.Trips.html
https://www.airnewzealand.com/most-significant-carrier
which would suggest that these excess pieces are charged by ANA's policy, not AC's. And there are lots of complicated exceptions, but here it seems ANA is the most significant carrier.

But anyway in this case you were involuntarily forced to check your bags. I don't know if you'll get far with asking AC, because you would be in essence requesting that they pay ANA for the baggage fees charged (not a refund of something they charged). That seems very difficult.

Has anyone had success in appealing directly to ANA via some help line on such issues?

Edit, I note there is an exception called out on NZ's page -- was AC your marketing carrier?


There are two exceptions to the MSC rule:

  • Starting or ending in the USA or Canada: If your single-ticketed journey starts or ends in the USA or Canada (this does not include journeys that only pass through the USA or Canada), the 'first marketing carrier' decides the allowance and charges that will apply for the entire journey. They can apply their airline's rules or those of the 'most significant carrier'. Where Air New Zealand is the 'first marketing carrier' we always apply the most significant carrier's rules, which may not be our own. For return trips, if you travel in a different class or have different fare products in each direction (such as Business Premier one way and Economy the other or Seat and Seat + Bag), the same carrier's rules apply but the allowances may differ as they will be based on the applicable fare types and classes of travel purchased in each direction


pewpew Oct 14, 19 1:50 pm

Sounds like it's time to complain to the CTA


Originally Posted by TA (Post 31627535)
Ouch, that is unfortunate. I was going to say that I thought the first carrier determines the baggage fees of a multi-flight itinerary, so if AC didn't charge you for them, you should not have been charged subsequently.

The first carrier is responsible for charging the fees though, so if AC didn't charge them in YYC, NH shouldn't have charged them in YVR. It's the same as if AC had charged excess baggage fees and then NH charged them again. That's been against the rules for a while

TA Oct 14, 19 2:07 pm


Originally Posted by pewpew (Post 31627591)
Sounds like it's time to complain to the CTA

...

Or alternatively, it occurred to me that this is the kind of customer-mishap case that one of the travel bloggers or travel magazine consumer advocates might be interested in taking up.

CanadianWings Oct 14, 19 2:27 pm


Has anyone had success in appealing directly to ANA via some help line on such issues?
I purchased the ticket directly from the ANA website and did send ANA an email about what happened. This was the response I got back from them:
----------
Dear Mr. xxxxx:


Thank you for your patience while we communicated with our relevant
section.


Mr. xxxxx, ANA Vancouver Airport report indicates that the total of 4
passengers including yourself traveled together from Calgary to Manila. According to the tickets, each passenger was allowed to
bring two pieces (2PC) of checked baggage each weighing no more than
23 kg per piece. Therefore, the 4 passengers had free baggage
allowance of 8 check-in bags total.


As you described, 3 extra pieces (total 11 bags) of checked
baggage were transferred from Air Canada to ANA flight. Mr. xxxxx,
we truly empathize with your situation as we read that these 3 bags
were your carry-on baggage and you had no intention to bring it as
checked baggage.


In the meantime, we ask for your genuine understanding that the
particular baggage check-in was processed by Air Canada without
providing any excess baggage ticket or coupon to the passengers who
have interline connection with another air carrier.


In good faith Mr. xxxxx, we ask for your kind support that ANA
Vancouver staff was justified to collect the excess baggage fee CAD 600.00
(CAD 200 x 3 bags) due to the check-in of additional bags, and we are
unable to meet your request to refund the charged amount.


Mr. xxxxx, it is most unfortunate that this incident marred your overall
travel experience with ANA. Please be advised that we have forwarded a
report sharing your experience with our concerned sections so they may
request Air Canada’s support to avoid such actions in the future.


While our response may differ from your expectations, we thank you for
bringing this matter to our attention and this opportunity to communicate
with you. We may only hope to restore your trust in the near future.


Sincerely,


xxxxx.
- ANA SKY WEB -
Customer Relations & Services, The Americas
----------
I have sent Air Canada an email as well regarding what happened and am still waiting for their response.

Often1 Oct 14, 19 2:33 pm

While it is terrible customer service, NH was justified in collecting the fee because AC did not (and with good reason). It is unusual for an onwards carrier to do this, but not unheard of.

Rather than NH, I would approach AC for the refund. Presuming that your carry-ons were :"legal" it was simply an unfortunate circumstance that there was no room for the bags. But, AC should have absorbed the additional cost and did not. While I would not hold my breath for AC to refund the excess baggage fees, it is AC which should have dealt with the issue and did not.

quitecryptic Oct 14, 19 3:20 pm

Well, to me AC is at fault, but I think it will be nearly impossible to get a refund. This is going to take some higher ups in the support line, AC will need to talk to ANA and figure out what's what. Sadly, I don't see a high chance of things going well unless you go to someone like the CTA as mentioned.

guv1976 Oct 14, 19 3:26 pm


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 31627770)
While it is terrible customer service, NH was justified in collecting the fee because AC did not (and with good reason). It is unusual for an onwards carrier to do this, but not unheard of.

Rather than NH, I would approach AC for the refund. Presuming that your carry-ons were :"legal" it was simply an unfortunate circumstance that there was no room for the bags. But, AC should have absorbed the additional cost and did not. While I would not hold my breath for AC to refund the excess baggage fees, it is AC which should have dealt with the issue and did not.

It seems to me that AC was at fault for checking the legal carry-ons through to the OP's final destination. Had AC merely checked the carry-ons only to YVR, the OP could have claimed them there, and then carried them on to the ANA flights. The OP should not have to pay for what seems to be an obvious error on AC's part.

That said, if time permitted, couldn't the OP have requested that AC or ANA offload the bags at YVR?

CanadianWings Oct 14, 19 3:53 pm


That said, if time permitted, couldn't the OP have requested that AC or ANA offload the bags at YVR?
My connection in YVR was only about two hours thanks to the AC flight coming in late and I did ask the ANA agent if the bag could come off the aircraft but she said it wasn't possible as the bag was already tagged to the final destination when it was gate-checked in YYC.


Sadly, I don't see a high chance of things going well unless you go to someone like the CTA as mentioned.
I did send an email to the CTA as well regarding what happened, so far nothing has been heard back yet.

gengar Oct 14, 19 9:29 pm

Consumer advocacy groups and travel bloggers should be all over this. OP's bags were involuntarily checked, end of story. NH's primary fault or not, this is a typical big corporation, 'screw-the-little-guy' move on their part and in this specific case, one of the weaknesses of NH being a typically Japanese company.

chadbag Oct 15, 19 12:25 pm

Used a credit card?
 
I assume a credit card was used to pay the fee? I’d disputed the charge. I’d print the relevant baggage allowance section and state you were in accord with that and you were forced to check and no warning was given of costs. With that info dispute the charge and let the airlines figure it out.

GrayAnderson Oct 15, 19 12:25 pm

More to the point, they were involuntarily checked even though the OP was within allowed baggage limits (i.e. per OP's comments, they weren't trying to carry extra bags into the cabin).

I know I go to this well frequently, but would a chargeback/contesting the (presumed) CC charge be worth pursuing (taking the attitude that, in a pinch, ANA should take this out of AC's hide)?

And...well, let's just say that we're back to the fact that I would very much like to see rules requiring short gate-checking/gate pickup at the end of a segment (a la "pink tagging") to be allowed. Not gonna happen, but it would be nice (especially if I'm trying to avoid dealing with a clumsy ticketing situation and/or an airport with a bad baggage terminal).

(Also, I can definitely read between the lines, but the degree cultural misconnect between the Japanese corporation's phrasing and how it would come across to a regular, irate North American traveler is impressive.)

yulred Oct 15, 19 8:10 pm


Originally Posted by CanadianWings (Post 31628037)
My connection in YVR was only about two hours thanks to the AC flight coming in late and I did ask the ANA agent if the bag could come off the aircraft but she said it wasn't possible as the bag was already tagged to the final destination when it was gate-checked in YYC.

I did send an email to the CTA as well regarding what happened, so far nothing has been heard back yet.

I wouldn’t bother with the CTA. I expect they’ll tell you that AC’s tariffs allow it to force you to check in your carry-on bags, and ANA’s tariff allows it to charge for them. Their core philosophy is that the onus is on the passenger to prove that the airlines violated their tariffs by charging you. Unless you’re getting a competent lawyer, or are one yourself, good luck. Go through their decisions to see what you’re up against.

You will be much better off going to small claims court instead. CTA is usually a waste of time and energy.

daniellam Oct 15, 19 9:48 pm

I would have flat out told ANA to "just send Air Canada an interline debit memo as it is their mistake".

TA Oct 15, 19 9:52 pm


Originally Posted by gengar (Post 31628972)
Consumer advocacy groups and travel bloggers should be all over this. OP's bags were involuntarily checked, end of story. NH's primary fault or not, this is a typical big corporation, 'screw-the-little-guy' move on their part and in this specific case, one of the weaknesses of NH being a typically Japanese company.

Reading the responses now, I agree with your last sentence.

ANA's response:


Mr. xxxxx, it is most unfortunate that this incident marred your overall
travel experience with ANA. Please be advised that we have forwarded a
report sharing your experience with our concerned sections so they may
request Air Canada’s support to avoid such actions in the future.


basically admits that the situation should not have happened.

In this case, NH wouldn't even incur any real loss by refunding the fee, as the correct situation would've been the OP carrying bags on anyway -- hence the added weight is already incurred and all that cost NH was some additional baggage handling (if even). It's not like their action "teaches someone a lesson" about baggage overage for the future.

Why not acknowledge the mistake and work to have their corporate refund the mistake, rather than put the burden on the customer?

Kneel Oct 16, 19 6:18 am

Some great lessons here:
  1. Never allow forced carry-on gate checked luggage to be tagged to final destination on another airline.
  2. In such a case, insist that carry-on luggage be returned at the arrival gate like gate-checked carry-one on small planes.
  3. Obtain written confirmation at departure gate that there will be no additional charges.

This is clearly the responsibility of the airline that gate-checked the luggage. Small claims court is another option if credit card chargeback fails.

Often1 Oct 16, 19 10:18 am


Originally Posted by Kneel (Post 31633742)
Some great lessons here:
  1. Never allow forced carry-on gate checked luggage to be tagged to final destination on another airline.
  2. In such a case, insist that carry-on luggage be returned at the arrival gate like gate-checked carry-one on small planes.
  3. Obtain written confirmation at departure gate that there will be no additional charges.

This is clearly the responsibility of the airline that gate-checked the luggage. Small claims court is another option if credit card chargeback fails.

All three interesting notional ideas. None of them practical.

1. Short-checking is a poor idea, especially on a 2-hour connection with a 60-minute bag drop deadline.
2. Arrival gate delivery on standard aircraft is only for wheelchairs & strollers. Simply not happening.
3. Written confirmation is not going to happen because it is untrue.

As noted, most carriers would simply never have charged and, if they had, would issue a refund on reviewing and agreeing with the passenger's fact version. Not these guys.

ulxima Oct 18, 19 2:55 pm

Have we got similar baggage horror stories with interline across OneWorld or SkyTeam airlines?

U!

pewpew Oct 18, 19 3:59 pm


Originally Posted by ulxima (Post 31642825)
Have we got similar baggage horror stories with interline across OneWorld or SkyTeam airlines?

U!

The only ones I've heard were interlining across separate tickets. I've never heard a story where a pax was forced to check a compliant bag and then had to pay for it to another carrier.

I know UA-HA interlines never charged for taking bags above the HA allowance but meeting the UA elite allowance (but then the pax would pay excess luggage fees on the return if checking in with HA). Similarly, when AC allowed 3x32kg for *G, I checked 3 bags on an itinerary where the last carrier was LH, and they never charged me.

alangore Oct 18, 19 7:25 pm

If there's one thing I hate, it's forced gate checks. There should be two international consumer regulations on this practice, and you would see it suddenly become extremely rare:

1. A forced gate check shall not result in any extra fees paid.
2. The carrier would be automatically liable for any valuable items in such baggage, no questions asked. Everyone knows that your cameras, jewelry, prescriptions, etc. must ride in your carry-on.

freed0m Oct 18, 19 11:40 pm

It is entirely caused by Air Canada did not pay ANA for additional checkin luggage. No way ANA would absorb it for no reason.

CanadianWings Oct 21, 19 10:46 am


The particular baggage check-in was processed by Air Canada without
providing any excess baggage ticket or coupon to the passengers who
have interline connection with another air carrier.
Has this actually ever happened to anyone with gate-checks and multi-airline itineraries? I've never heard of such a thing where a carrier would provide "proof of gate-checked bag" coupons to show to gate agents on connecting flights with other carriers.


Never allow forced carry-on gate checked luggage to be tagged to final destination on another airline.
While this is an obvious thing to do, I have seen gate agents become rude and hostile to passengers if they don't comply and gate check the bag anyway.


This is clearly the responsibility of the airline that gate-checked the luggage.

It is entirely caused by Air Canada
I do agree with this and have sent them an email about what happened. The compensation will probably be one of those "15% off base fare" codes so I'm not expecting much when they eventually reply.

jmastron Oct 22, 19 10:28 pm


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31644058)
It is entirely caused by Air Canada did not pay ANA for additional checkin luggage. No way ANA would absorb it for no reason.

ANA and Air Canada are business partners. ANA sold a single ticket from YYC to MNL, including a flight on their partner, that had an included checked baggage and carry-on baggage allowance that the OP was within. AC forced the legal carryon bags to be checked to the destination, which is not a chargeable event on any airline. ANA mistakenly charged the OP for said carryon bags. That's should be the crux of the credit card dispute, having exhausted direct attempts to resolve with the merchant and their partner.

Obviously there's some paperwork between AC and ANA that is needed, and AC may need to pay ANA (either the full amount or whatever discount is in their business contracts) but that really shouldn't be the OP's problem. ANA can and should refund and then resolve it internally with their partner.

freed0m Oct 22, 19 10:48 pm


Originally Posted by jmastron (Post 31657151)
ANA and Air Canada are business partners. ANA sold a single ticket from YYC to MNL, including a flight on their partner, that had an included checked baggage and carry-on baggage allowance that the OP was within. AC forced the legal carryon bags to be checked to the destination, which is not a chargeable event on any airline. ANA mistakenly charged the OP for said carryon bags. That's should be the crux of the credit card dispute, having exhausted direct attempts to resolve with the merchant and their partner.

Obviously there's some paperwork between AC and ANA that is needed, and AC may need to pay ANA (either the full amount or whatever discount is in their business contracts) but that really shouldn't be the OP's problem. ANA can and should refund and then resolve it internally with their partner.


ANA ticket did not include additional luggage allowance, so what's ANA's mistake charging for additional luggage? If Air Canada made a mistake, it is Air Canada's problem, not ANA's.

gengar Oct 23, 19 2:57 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31644058)
It is entirely caused by Air Canada did not pay ANA for additional checkin luggage. No way ANA would absorb it for no reason.

What exactly did ANA "absorb" here?

freed0m Oct 23, 19 3:09 am


Originally Posted by gengar (Post 31657657)
What exactly did ANA "absorb" here?

charges for additional checkin luggage, which ANA has no reason to absorb.

gengar Oct 23, 19 3:14 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31657672)
charges for additional checkin luggage, which ANA has no reason to absorb.

ANA certainly didn't absorb the baggage fee - OP would never have checked the bags in with ANA. At most, ANA absorbed some baggage handling cost, which is negligible compared to the charge they are levying on OP.

I agree that AC is the responsible party in this. But acting like ANA had to "absorb" $600 in baggage fees is absurd.

freed0m Oct 23, 19 3:59 am


Originally Posted by gengar (Post 31657683)
ANA certainly didn't absorb the baggage fee - OP would never have checked the bags in with ANA. At most, ANA absorbed some baggage handling cost, which is negligible compared to the charge they are levying on OP.

I agree that AC is the responsible party in this. But acting like ANA had to "absorb" $600 in baggage fees is absurd.

It does not matter what it costs ANA. When you buy ticket, you agree to the fare rules.

Do you mean if there is more space in the aircraft, ANA should just let everyone check in more bags?

Which airline do you run? I would like to load a lot more bags into your aircrafts.

gengar Oct 23, 19 4:44 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31657752)
It does not matter what it costs ANA. When you buy ticket, you agree to the fare rules.

Do you mean if there is more space in the aircraft, ANA should just let everyone check in more bags?

Which airline do you run? I would like to load a lot more bags into your aircrafts.

Please review the points already made by others in this thread, e.g., post 15 by TA. Again, it's simply absurd to suggest that NH "absorbed" the checked luggage fee.

freed0m Oct 23, 19 6:01 am


Originally Posted by gengar (Post 31657820)
Please review the points already made by others in this thread, e.g., post 15 by TA. Again, it's simply absurd to suggest that NH "absorbed" the checked luggage fee.

I can’t understand your question. why would NH do that? NH charged additional baggage fee.

ZKOKA Oct 26, 19 6:36 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31657200)
ANA ticket did not include additional luggage allowance, so what's ANA's mistake charging for additional luggage? If Air Canada made a mistake, it is Air Canada's problem, not ANA's.

The mistake is not the charging for additional baggage per se, but collecting the charge from the passenger, instead of from Air Canada. Clearly ANA need to collect whatever amount from AC, not the passengers, who are evidently not at fault in a forced gate check situation. What should they have done? Insist on immediate delivery of their hand baggage to the gate or baggage re-claim?

freed0m Oct 26, 19 6:43 am


Originally Posted by ZKOKA (Post 31667837)
The mistake is not the charging for additional baggage per se, but collecting the charge from the passenger, instead of from Air Canada. Clearly ANA need to collect whatever amount from AC, not the passengers, who are evidently not at fault in a forced gate check situation. What should they have done? Insist on immediate delivery of their hand baggage to the gate or baggage re-claim?


What proof does the passenger have that Air Canada forced gate check luggage? If the passenger thinks he/she has the right, he/she can claim from Air Canada. Certainly ANA does not have right to charge Air Canada for hearsay.

daniellam Oct 26, 19 8:44 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31667854)
What proof does the passenger have that Air Canada forced gate check luggage? If the passenger thinks he/she has the right, he/she can claim from Air Canada. Certainly ANA does not have right to charge Air Canada for hearsay.

Just remember something.

Did Air Canada issue the baggage tag as a “Limited Release” tag with “Item inadmissible to cabin” as the reason code? or did they issue a standard tag?

It looks like that if the tag was issued as a Limited Release then it should be proof the OP was forced to gate check the item.

pewpew Oct 26, 19 8:46 am


Originally Posted by freed0m (Post 31667854)
What proof does the passenger have that Air Canada forced gate check luggage? If the passenger thinks he/she has the right, he/she can claim from Air Canada. Certainly ANA does not have right to charge Air Canada for hearsay.

The time printed on the baggage tag would likely be <T-45 (the domestic check-in cut-off for which AC, unlike UA, makes 0 exceptions).

freed0m Oct 26, 19 9:27 am


Originally Posted by pewpew (Post 31668090)
The time printed on the baggage tag would likely be <T-45 (the domestic check-in cut-off for which AC, unlike UA, makes 0 exceptions).

Maybe the luggage is not allowed as carry-on. How could ANA verify?

If the passenger has right to claim, he/she can always file claim with Air Canada. It is between the passenger and Air Canada. ANA certainly has right to charge for additional baggage.

MSPeconomist Oct 26, 19 9:49 am

The OP also said that there was room in the bins, but GA still insisted that the bags be checked at the gate. Airlines are starting to go crazy with this, believing that it will save time boarding if they can force gate checks without bothering to verify whether there really is bin space or not.

AllanJ Oct 27, 19 7:49 pm

If ANA had known that the 3 additional bags were gate checked at the previous airporr by AC, would ANA have charged the fees anyway?

In what form (credit card, etc.) were the extra $600. in fees collected and by whom?

What would have happend if the passenger did not hand over a credit card or other payment method after explaining the situation?

How would a company travel supervisor have handled this if it were business travel?

If the problem cannot be resolved amicably in the room where passengers proceed to the airline gates and is not resolved satisfactorily in the airline board rooms then that is what courtrooms are for.

roberto99 Oct 30, 19 7:11 am

Perhaps the 3 bags were actually oversize for cabin rules and the AC agent was correct in checking them?

Maybe we don't have all of the facts....

Often1 Oct 30, 19 11:08 am

Taking OP's statement at face value, the report is that the bags were gate-checked because the flight was "full" with no reference to the size or number of bags. Perhaps there were other factors, but that is pure speculation and it is more likely that OP would have reported being told his bags were oversized.

Nonetheless, this does not change the onwards carrier's decision to charge its tariff for the bags exceeding the allowance, even if AC did not.

It is odd, unusual, and rare. But, it is within the tariff.

As to what happens if one refused to make payment at SFO, the answer is simple. The bags would have been pulled and not travelled.

Without specific additional facts from OP, this is a dead letter unless AC is willing to do something as a customer service gesture.

sethb Oct 30, 19 3:17 pm


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 31682240)
As to what happens if one refused to make payment at SFO, the answer is simple. The bags would have been pulled and not travelled.

But if the bags were pulled, OP could have gotten them and carried them on. OP asked for them to be pulled, and was refused.


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