Delayed Baggage, and downgrading Questions

Old Dec 13, 2022, 9:04 am
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Delayed Baggage, and downgrading Questions

I'm typing this from the CCR, where I'm spending a nice interlude in a trip to GVA which has otherwise "had its issues." For anyone interested, I just had a macchiato made at the bar by none other than Lucilla. I took the opportunity to tell Lucilla that she is famous on this forum, in a very positive way, and she blushed.

First, let me apologize for the length and wordiness of this post, but I wanted to give enough detail so that those who have experienced similar issues might give me some sage advice.

My travails with this trip began with a much delayed Alaska Airlines flight yesterday from Boise to Seattle. Owing to a slightly sub-2 hour connection to my onward BA flight, I tracked the AS airplane down to the tail number, which was on time on its routing, until it wasn't . I arrived at the Boise airport 3 hours prior to my scheduled flight to have some flexibility if things went badly. As soon as I had checked my bag, with Alaska, headed as BOI-SEA-LHR-GVA, then passed through security, I found that my BOI-SEA flight with AS was to be delayed 2 hours. The flight showed as "on time" at the time of check-in, minutes before. This obviously meant I would not make my connection. I immediately called Alaska, and asked to be put on a competitor's flight (Delta) which was leaving shortly, which would get me to Seattle in time. AS did this, although they neglected to give me a ticket number for the flight they were putting me on, which caused me to almost miss the Delta flight, were it not for a very helpful person from Delta at the gate. I was told by AS that there were no First Class seats on the DL flight, so that they were putting me in economy. I was just happy to get on the airplane, which turned out to be a 1/3 full regional jet which seemed to have multiple first class seats available, but I didn't care at this point.

An hour later, I arrived in Seattle,, where ensued even more hassle with the lounge receptionist/BA employee telling me that my LHR-GVA flight had been canceled (due to the ongoing weather events in London). She counseled me to fly back to Boise, cancel my trip, and get a voucher, which I was unwilling to do. So I called the gold line and they found me an ET seat on another GVA flight for today; apparently I was very lucky to get that. I then called Alaska's baggage dept. to try to get them to expedite getting my bag over to BA in time to accompany me on the SEA-LHR flight. There was an hour for this transfer to occur, since the original AS flight on which I was booked wasn't quite as delayed as originally stated. AS said they would try, but no guarantees.

I did put an Airtag in this bag,, and was able to watch it get to SEA, however also saw that it was hundreds of feet away from my BA jet when we departed. According to Airtag tracking, the bag is still in Seattle. I am flying onward to GVA this afternoon, and then renting a car and driving into rural France tomorrow morning. I could delay my drive to France by a few hours, however realistically it looks like there is a near zero chance that the bag would get to GVA before I definitely would need to get on the road as I have prepaid reservations in France starting tomorrow. I will then return to GVA on the 19th, then fly on to LIS for 5 days, passing through LHR with an overnight there then on to LIS.

So here are my questions, for anyone who has read this far:

(1) Unless BA does something heroic with my bag such as putting it on another carrier and routing it to GVA, it appears that I will be without my bag for 5 days and I have not packed nearly enough stuff in my carry on to make it for 5 days, hence I'll need to buy some clothing, toiletries, athletic shoes, etc. Am I entitled to any compensation from anyone for these expenses, if so how much, and from whom? AS, BA, or none of the above? I do have a cheap travel policy that I bought strictly for it's travel health insurance benefit which might pay out a few hundred dollars if I have patience enough to jump through a whole lot of hoops.

(2) I was advised by the nice agent in the CCR that it would be stupid to try to get my bag held at LHR as it would be very hard to locate when I came for it and probably entail a huge amount of wasted time. She advised filing a claim at the GVA airport and having them contact me when it comes in and probably just hold it there for 5 days until I pass through again, since I'm headed to rural France 3 hours drive away, in a rental car tomorrow morning. This sounds like good advice. I can't seem to file an online claim for the bag yet, since I haven't arrived at my destination (GVA) yet. Should I file this claim with a human in the GVA airport, or should I do it online?

(3) I will now have been downgraded on 2 of 3 flights on a paid long haul First Class itinerary on a ticket written by BA. AS arranged the flight on DL from BOI to SEA. BA involuntarily downgraded me on the LHR-GVA flight due to cancelation of my original flight. Obviously, I'd like to get the TPs and possibly monetary compensation for these downgrades, presumably from BA being as they wrote the ticket in the first place. How would you go about getting the TPs and any monetary compensation owed in this situation? I probably don't need the TPs, I should make renewal of Gold status anyway by the end of the month at the reduced levels (1125) anyway, but just barely assuming that there are no other flight disruptions on this itinerary.

Anyway, that's my tale of woe and any suggestions on how I should proceed would be much appreciated. The "original sin" in this whole thing was that when I booked the ticket 6 or 8 months ago, which was on the phone with a BAEC agent, I said that I was unhappy with the (now failed) (BOI-SEA) connection as being too tight and requested to be put on an earlier flight, which was refused by the agent for unknown reasons (he said the system would not let him book it). I then called back 2 months later with the same request and was given the same answer, that they couldn't do it and it would work out, which it obviously did not. I even called Alaska twice and asked for the same thing, and they said they could not do that on a ticket written by BA.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions on how to proceed with these various issues.
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Old Dec 13, 2022, 9:22 am
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BA's handling agent at GVA is Danata. They are very good at delivering baggage if it turns up. Normally they collect all day and ship it out at the end of the day.
Depending on where you are staying and how rural the address is they will be able to deliver.
Switzerland can be quite rural too.

(I have found the ba tracking app quite good at knowing when the bag is due to be delivered. I once had an incident with an overnight in GLA and a bike that misconnected in LHR. It arrived as promised on the first flight in GLA in time for me to check it in back to LHR and on to YUL)
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Old Dec 13, 2022, 10:22 am
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1) You can claim reasonable costs for clothes, cosmetics and so on, I usually say "imagine you would never get it refunded, what would you buy?". As it happens, BA are not in the habit of turning down claims. Just note that the limit of liability is USD 1700 (approx) and that includes if the bag is lost forever. Now this is where the airtag really helps since you can be reasonably sure that at some point you will be re-united with the bag. Take photos of the receipts and send via the usual route
ba.com/complaints

2) It really helps if you have a property irregularity report number. You can get it by telephone, but people have complained it's difficult, so it may be easier to see someone in GVA. Once you have that then you can use WorldTracer to keep in touch with it all.

3) The LHR-GVA downgrade is under the Mennens formula, see the EC261 thread, but to summarise it's probably too little to claim, so I would write to BA CR and ask for some Avios in lieu of Mennens. For the original TPs and Avios, that should be OK, see the thread on Original Routing Credit for all the details on that. For the AS downgrade, that's down to AS' policies, it's not under EC261.

You've done very well not to have these issues before.
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Old Dec 14, 2022, 12:48 am
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Originally Posted by SWISSBOBBY
BA's handling agent at GVA is Danata. They are very good at delivering baggage if it turns up. Normally they collect all day and ship it out at the end of the day.
Depending on where you are staying and how rural the address is they will be able to deliver.
Switzerland can be quite rural too.

(I have found the ba tracking app quite good at knowing when the bag is due to be delivered. I once had an incident with an overnight in GLA and a bike that misconnected in LHR. It arrived as promised on the first flight in GLA in time for me to check it in back to LHR and on to YUL)
Great information, thank you very much! I did file a claim with Danata, and impressed myself with my ability to do this entirely in French, despite the fact that I haven't used my French in 3 months, plus I was very jet lagged and almost comatose at this point in the journey :-)
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Old Dec 14, 2022, 12:50 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
1) You can claim reasonable costs for clothes, cosmetics and so on, I usually say "imagine you would never get it refunded, what would you buy?". As it happens, BA are not in the habit of turning down claims. Just note that the limit of liability is USD 1700 (approx) and that includes if the bag is lost forever. Now this is where the airtag really helps since you can be reasonably sure that at some point you will be re-united with the bag. Take photos of the receipts and send via the usual route
ba.com/complaints

2) It really helps if you have a property irregularity report number. You can get it by telephone, but people have complained it's difficult, so it may be easier to see someone in GVA. Once you have that then you can use WorldTracer to keep in touch with it all.

3) The LHR-GVA downgrade is under the Mennens formula, see the EC261 thread, but to summarise it's probably too little to claim, so I would write to BA CR and ask for some Avios in lieu of Mennens. For the original TPs and Avios, that should be OK, see the thread on Original Routing Credit for all the details on that. For the AS downgrade, that's down to AS' policies, it's not under EC261.

You've done very well not to have these issues before.

Thanks very much for the detailed response! I will proceed as you suggest and will stop off at a Decathlon in France for some essential clothing, possibly a Carrefour or similar for some underwear and essential cosmetics. BA will get off very cheaply :-)
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Old Dec 14, 2022, 4:04 am
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Originally Posted by champignon
I'm typing this from the CCR, where I'm spending a nice interlude in a trip to GVA which has otherwise "had its issues." For anyone interested, I just had a macchiato made at the bar by none other than Lucilla. I took the opportunity to tell Lucilla that she is famous on this forum, in a very positive way, and she blushed.
Famous? Searching for that name only brings up this thread
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Old Dec 14, 2022, 12:12 pm
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Originally Posted by DYKWIA
Famous? Searching for that name only brings up this thread
There's another thread in which she is mentioned in a number of posts. I tried to search for it but couldn't find it. If an occasional CCR visitor like me has heard of her and met her a number of times, plus more frequent visiting forum members have said she remembers what drinks they order, then she's a phenom, at least for this board.
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Old Dec 14, 2022, 1:05 pm
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When you report you bag is lost at GVA the Worldtracer is quite flexible to tell the system where you are. They can put addresses along your trip so the system can forward your bag to your next destination. You also have the option to update your information as well. So I would give all the details to put into the system, so if it doesn't get to GVA by the 19th December then it gets forwarded to LIS. I agree there is no way you would find it in LHR even if it's there unless you really find someone who can help and if you have many, many hours.
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Old Dec 15, 2022, 1:44 am
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Originally Posted by Krisz
When you report you bag is lost at GVA the Worldtracer is quite flexible to tell the system where you are. They can put addresses along your trip so the system can forward your bag to your next destination. You also have the option to update your information as well. So I would give all the details to put into the system, so if it doesn't get to GVA by the 19th December then it gets forwarded to LIS. I agree there is no way you would find it in LHR even if it's there unless you really find someone who can help and if you have many, many hours.
This is great information, thank you.

I will be at the same address for 4 days straight, starting in a few hours. This is the address I told Danata to send it to (at a hotel I'm a regular at). According to my Apple "Find My" app, the AirTag in the bag was at Heathrow until about 55 minutes ago which was the last tracking. I am hoping this means it got loaded on a GVA bound flight and will get there soon. If it arrives this morning there are good odds I'll get it later today or tomorrow, according to Danata staff. So, we shall see! I've limited my purchases for additional clothing and things to a small amount so far, and would prefer not to buy a whole bunch of other stuff if it's not needed.

Thanks again.
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Old Dec 15, 2022, 3:15 am
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Where the air-tags also have value is if the readings staying within the Heathrow perimeter. If they go outside then it's over to a courier company to resolve it. It sounds like BA kept the bag (though they would quite happily sent the bag on Swissair). If it gets to GVA today, someone may redirect it tomorrow, perhaps it arrives Friday or Saturday. It's also possible they would send the bag to another airport such as LYS if that made sense for the end address.
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Old Dec 15, 2022, 3:30 am
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Past experience with Danata and Swissport at GVA, they tend to collect bags till about 17:00 and then hand them over to the couriers who will deliver.
Sometimes you get a text message to say bag on its way, or that the delivery guy is near by.
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Old Dec 21, 2022, 2:38 am
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At Wits End; Suggestions? Bag Lost, Nonsense BA Texts, ORC

I've previously posted on the threads having to do with missing baggage and baggage meltdowns.

This isn't my only issue with BA at the moment, but it's a start.

My missing bag has been in a pile of bags at T5 since December 14th, a week now. They moved once inside of the building according to my AirTag in the bag, but that's it. A missing baggage report was filed at GVA with DNATA, as previously suggested. Nothing happened for 5 days while I was in Switzerland and France. I then flew to Lisbon via LHR with an overnight at LHR on 12/19. On arrival at LHR, I went to the Club/First baggage missing desk and the gentleman there filed another report (consolidating with my earlier one) with a new case number. The new instructions were to forward the bag to me at my Lisbon Hotel. I was also given a totally useless plastic wrapped combination of goods including an XL white T-Shirt (I'm an S) and a toothbrush with the smallest toothpaste container I have ever seen.

Shortly after this encounter on 12/19 at LHR, I received a series of texts, the first with the new case number, then another one with this case number worded as:

LISBA (case number) Tag Number (tag # on the bag) Subject to Conditions - Your item is located and is being sent to the deliver airport. Then there was the string of flight numbers that the bag was supposed to have been put on originally plus a link to the "WorldTracer" web page.

The next morning, yesterday, when I was to fly to Lisbon, I got two more text messages, both saying "your item is located and is being sent to the airport." What followed was the BA flight # of my upcoming flight to Lisbon (yesterday) and yesterday's date. I took this as implying that the bag was being put on my flight to Lisbon. I then walked over to the BA representative in the CCR, where I was at that time, showed her the text, and asked her opinion of what this meant. She confirmed my opinion, that this bag was going to be put on my flight to Lisbon in a few hours.

OK, so I'm on the LIS bound aircraft and it is obvious from the AirTag that it hasn't budged 6 inches since I got those texts. It's not put onto the plane, the plane takes off, I arrive in LIS and confirm that the airtag is where it was and has been for a week. I wasted a half hour with the Lisbon Airport baggage agents for BA, who told me to contact BA.

When I go to the WorldTracer app, log onto my file, it shows they are still trying to locate the item; there is no mention of having found it or sending it to me.

The AirTag shows it unmoved in the same place it has been for over a week at LHR T5.

What am I to make of this? Did they really find the bag and they are just slow in getting it out, or were those messages total nonsense, as I suspect?

On another point, I send an email to BA through the online portal, about getting ORC for two downgraded flights on this itinerary with one of them not even being on a OW carrier. That was 4 or 5 days ago and I haven't even received an acknowledgement that BA has received the email. The webpage where I submitted the email indicated that it had been sent. Not having received even an acknowledgement from BA (like an automated message) that they got my email, should I now call them and forget about trying to resolve this through an email?

Thanks for any suggestions and comments.
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Old Dec 21, 2022, 2:44 am
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Originally Posted by champignon
Thanks for any suggestions and comments.
Do nothing. Well, buy stuff, photo the receipts and keep WorldTracer updated. But if there is one consistent message this forum has given for many years now over this sort of situation is - get on with your life, your bags will get to you, there is nothing you can do. The analogy I often make to these posts is "imagine you have something lost in the post. You know it's in a huge mail-room with hundreds of thousands of other letters and parcels in some trading estate somewhere. You actually can't sensibly ring up the post office and ask them to fish out your missing letter".
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Old Dec 21, 2022, 3:45 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
Do nothing. Well, buy stuff, photo the receipts and keep WorldTracer updated. But if there is one consistent message this forum has given for many years now over this sort of situation is - get on with your life, your bags will get to you, there is nothing you can do. The analogy I often make to these posts is "imagine you have something lost in the post. You know it's in a huge mail-room with hundreds of thousands of other letters and parcels in some trading estate somewhere. You actually can't sensibly ring up the post office and ask them to fish out your missing letter".
I have learned a few things during this last week. One is that you can wear clothing an amazing number of times before anyone else notices that you've worn it for 8 days straight. I'm not talking about underwear -- that would be gross. But shirts, pants, even socks -- either no one else notices, or they're too polite to point it out to you. Same difference.
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Old Dec 21, 2022, 4:10 am
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Smile

Originally Posted by champignon
I have learned a few things during this last week. One is that you can wear clothing an amazing number of times before anyone else notices that you've worn it for 8 days straight. I'm not talking about underwear -- that would be gross. But shirts, pants, even socks -- either no one else notices, or they're too polite to point it out to you. Same difference.
That's fortunate, as you can't by "pants" in Europe, or not the ones you are thinking of, trousers are widely available though.
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