Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles
Reload this Page >

Strange Situation - lost iPad and laptop

Strange Situation - lost iPad and laptop

Old Jan 22, 23, 9:26 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: DCA/IAD
Programs: Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond, Delta/AA Gold, United Silver
Posts: 189
Strange Situation - lost iPad and laptop

I was at a conference last week in San Diego and was taking the read eye back to DCA through Atlanta on Friday night/Saturday morning. The flight from SAN-ATL was without incident though I was exhausted from the conference and the red eye.

I boarded in Atlanta (has a window seat in first) and took out my laptop sleeve with my work laptop and iPad in it and put it on the ground next to my feet in the space between the window and the seat to do some work while we were in the air. I put my wheeled briefcase in the overhead bin (it does not fit under the seats in first because of the equipment box) and feel asleep.

I have trouble sleeping on airplanes, so I woke up as we started down the runway and out my foot to hold back the sleeve from sliding and I realized it was not there. I searched with my phone flashlight, did not see it, and started panicking. After we got into the air, I went to see the flight attendants and they said they had it taken off the plane because they thought it was from the flight before even though it was in front of me a mere 2-3 inches from my feet. They said they communicated with the ground in Atlanta and let them know.

I landed in DC and went to baggage services. After explaining the situation, they did everything they could to get someone to retrieve it and put it on a later flight to DC. There are apparently lost and found lockboxes around the terminals and they expected it was in there. When the lockbox was opened, it was not and they could not find it. I was tracking my iPad with the Find My App and saw it was right in the area around the gate, but still no luck after hours of searching. I live close to the airport (DCA), so I left to see my wife kids (and not miss the Pinewood Derby tournament) and then went back mid-afternoon. While there and looking at the Find My app, I asked if they could have the jet bridge searched because it seemed to be in that vicinity. At this point, it is about 8 hours after I took off from ATL. Because my work laptop is critical and I had deadlines on Monday, I bought a ticket back to ATL that was departing at 5:30. As we were leaving the gate, the ramp manager in DC texted saying they found it. After I landed in ATL, they had it there at the gate as I deplaned. I bought another ticket back to DC for an hour later - all told about $500. It turns out, it was on the jet bridge the entire time. I am very relieved to have my work laptop back and am just grateful for that.

After I landed back in DC, the manager handed me a voucher for $200 and another for 5000 miles and I finally got home around 10:45 at night.

Do you think I should ask for more compensation? On one hand, it is inexplicable that they would take the bag off of the plane without attempting to ask it it was mine since it was right next to my feet even though I was sleeping., On the other, Delta really tried to make it right - it sounds like more than a dozen people in Atlanta and DC were working on this and they were all wonderful to deal with and very apologetic the entire time. And I did not have to buy the tickets, they would have ferried the bag if they found it - I just wanted to go and try and find it myself because of how important it was to me.

Curious what you all think?
esc2476 is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 9:42 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Programs: DL Diamond, Aeroplan Elite 75K
Posts: 2,259
I would just be relieved to have my property back and call it a lesson learned. Lots of stories on here of people who could never even reach a person to look for their property.
DLASflyer is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 9:44 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Programs: DL PM
Posts: 629
Glad you were reunited with your laptop! I think the big question is why the laptop was left on the jetbridge!?

Sounds like a frustrating situation and Delta did their best to fix what sounds like an honest mistake. You could ask for reimbursement, but I'd imagine Delta won't reimburse as they could have sent it via UPS. When I once left an iPad on a plane, I was able to reach the baggage desk at MSP who ran their lost and found and shipped it to me via UPS (I just had to get a UPS number so I got billed for the shipping)
gretchendz, becks1 and esc2476 like this.
tardyturtle is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 9:45 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 385
Sounds like staff did everything right.
Adam1222, wrldwide1 and esc2476 like this.
FabCW is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 9:46 pm
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: DCA/IAD
Programs: Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond, Delta/AA Gold, United Silver
Posts: 189
I agree (and my wife does too) with everyone's take so far. Was just curious if we were thinking about it correctly. Happy for any other feedback.
becks1 likes this.
esc2476 is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 9:47 pm
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: DCA/IAD
Programs: Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond, Delta/AA Gold, United Silver
Posts: 189
For clarity (this is not my photo), the laptop case would be against the wall next to the seat in this picture.


esc2476 is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 10:24 pm
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
Hilton Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: San Antonio
Programs: DL DM, Former AA EXP now AY Plat, AC 75K, NW Plat, Former CO Gold, Hilton Diamond, Marriott Titanium
Posts: 24,763
I would ask for a refund of the tickets you spent extra on. FA should've never removed without asking you.

I'm also curious how they removed it, much less saw it to think to remove it.
ilovemiles, mtofell and esc2476 like this.
flyerCO is offline  
Old Jan 22, 23, 10:27 pm
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: DCA/IAD
Programs: Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond, Delta/AA Gold, United Silver
Posts: 189
Originally Posted by flyerCO View Post
I would ask for a refund of the tickets you spent extra on. FA should've never removed without asking you.

I'm also curious how they removed it, much less saw it to think to remove it.
It would not have been easy. I am surprised anyone saw it too, but I have to imagine the passenger in front of me saw it when they were sitting down. They came in after me.

The thing that was so shocking to me was that they removed it without asking me (even if I was sleeping) since it was just a couple of inches from my feet.
mtofell likes this.
esc2476 is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 1:14 am
  #9  
was cakiwi
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Programs: DL, UA
Posts: 450
Think about it from another perspective.... someone before you on a previous flight mistakenly left it.... and the cleaners missed it. They later learn the FAs saw it but didn't get it off the plane before pushback and now the laptop is winging its way without its owner. They'd be upset too, the FAs didn't get it off. "How could they have seen it and done nothing".

Should they have said something? Maybe.

Hindsight is 20/20. I relate to getting in and sleeping.... but I keep my stuff with me. I normally sit on my phone and put my laptop beside my leg in the seat if I'm planning to work later.

Glad you got yours back. Sorry it was such an ordeal.
T-15.01 is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 1:31 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Programs: Delta PM, United Silver, Marriott Titanium, Hyatt Explorist
Posts: 511
If the OP had forgotten the laptop and iPad on the flight, then nothing would be owed. But for someone to remove it from their feet while they were sleeping is extraordinary. How could they assume the laptop sleeve was forgotten and not the briefcase? Or anyone else's belongings, either on the floor or in the overhead bins?

Having said that, $200 + 5,000 SkyMiles is a decent chunk of the amount paid, considering they could have sent it over to you. I empathize with the importance of the work deadlines but I doubt they will. Luckily no one took it from that ATL jet bridge.
matchbox20_is is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 2:15 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2023
Posts: 25
You are right: that is certainly a strange situation. First, they take your laptop, under the odd premise that it was not yours, and without bothering to ask you. All while creeping around your sleeping body. Then, they lose/misplace it.

Weird.

So, yes, ask for the cost of the airfare back. They created the situation, they should pay for it.

Good luck.
ilovemiles and MrAndy1369 like this.
Ant13 is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 2:47 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Tacoma, WA
Programs: UA Mileage Plus, Alaska Mileage Plan, Marriott Bonvoy
Posts: 74
Just looking at from a possible alternative perspective. Could the pax in front of you noticed what they may have thought was a left behind bag and handed it to the FA? FA would not have known it was tucked in next to your leg. At the end of the day I feel you did well to get some cash and some miles, plus a good story to tell.
Gabdawg is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 3:23 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: Top Tier with all 3 alliances
Posts: 9,488
Leaving it there it also makes it an unsecured projectile during takeoff, but I am surprised they did not ask you about it. Minimally, you should have been touching it with your foot for some safety and security that it does not slip or taken, before you use it.

Last edited by nk15; Jan 23, 23 at 7:28 am
nk15 is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 3:55 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Programs: DL DM, SPG Plat 100/LT Gold, Marriott Plat, National Executive Elite
Posts: 2,979
Originally Posted by esc2476 View Post
I agree (and my wife does too) with everyone's take so far. Was just curious if we were thinking about it correctly. Happy for any other feedback.
Really? Why would you think you owe Delta money for wasting hours of your time?

Its obvious the FAs were using their best judgment - but they still made a mistake. They have to be accountable. It is unacceptable for them to remove property - especially something like a laptop or iPad - without asking those in the vicinity if it is theirs first.

The $200 voucher and 5K miles barely compensated for the time you wasted flying to ATL and back.

Delta owns the jets and $500 RT DCA-ATL-DCA doesnt sound like a full flight.

I would actually file a DOT complaint; removing someones personal property like this is a serious transgression. I would not mention the compensation in DC and simply say, you went to the bag office, you were tracking your items, and if DL staff could find your items where they were tracked, you happily would have waited.

Except they couldnt find them and you didnt want them to get lost. It was critical so you had to fly back, where you eventually found it. You should bill them for your time on those planes; but absent that, they should absolutely refund your airfare for the flights to ATL and back. And they will. Write in.
btonkid12345 is offline  
Old Jan 23, 23, 7:19 am
  #15  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Watchlisted by the prejudiced, en route to purgatory
Programs: Just Say No to Fleecing and Blacklisting
Posts: 99,943
When sort of important items are found on a plane full of passengers, some crew members will make an announcement asking if anyone has lost the item and if so alert the FA so they can verify ownership and otherwise reunite the lost/forgotten/misplaced item with its owner.

Seen it done for eye glasses, electronics and other things over the years.
obscure2k likes this.
GUWonder is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread