Damaged Bag/Bad Customer Service

Old Aug 1, 05, 2:21 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Location: CMH
Programs: OP
Posts: 18
Damaged Bag/Bad Customer Service

Arriving in Pittsburgh last week, I found a corner of my new luggage dented and the plastic support inside broken. As someone who flies often, I have experienced minor damage to my luggage before, but felt this was outside the normal wear and tear of airline travel.

After walking up to the ticketing counter (IA has no baggage office) the agent told me if I wanted to file a claim, I had to leave the luggage at the airport. She told me this was my only chance. Seeing no other option I had to place all my belongings in a clear plastic garbage bag and carry it to the hotel. The first problem is the claim form states that I had the option of simply filling out the paperwork and leaving my bag at any other IA ticket counter within 30 days. Had I known this option was avaliable I would not have left my bag at PIT. The agent also told me the station manager would contact me the next day regarding my claim.

Two days later I got sick of waiting and called the station manager's number.
It was disconnected. I spent an hour with central customer service. They finally admitted they didn't have a valid number and had no way to reach their own office in PIT! The phone agent said someone would contact me regarding the claim. 24 hours later no call, I call 1-800 again and after 30 minutes get connected to the ticket counter in PIT, who tells me they know nothing about my claim or bag. The station manager is out until Sunday.
They do, however agree to send me a temporary piece of luggage to my hotel, so I can avoid returning to the airport with the plastic garbage bag.

I get to PIT early Sunday morning so I can talk to the station manager about this, to be told simply, "we do not cover any damage to luggage." No apollogies for the inconvenience, time wasted and embarassment. By now, I'm steaming.

The damage to my bag was a minor problem, but poor customer service turned this into something much bigger. This was my first travel with IA and will probably be my last. It seems that every person I talked to gave me wrong information, or did not follow through on what they said they would (like return phone calls).

Ultimately, I'm wondering what my options, if any, are. I've accepted my damaged luggage back and returned the loaner bag. I've accepted the fact that my brand new $300 piece of luggage will only survive another few trips before it's completly destroyed.

I would also like to forward my problems to IA, not in the interest of compensation, but to keep this from happening to the next guy. Anyone have an address or contact info?
liteflyer is offline  
Old Aug 1, 05, 3:34 pm
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: WAS, FLL
Programs: AA, B6, CO, DL, FL, UA, US Gold (only took 10k miles), WN, Amtrak
Posts: 1,299
I would check DH's contract of carriage because it does not sound right that they have zero liability for damaged luggage. I know of no other airline that has a no responsibility clause in their contract, and I have read plenty of them. In terms of contacting DH it sounds like your best bet would be to contact their Director of Stations. I am not sure who it is these days but they are the ones who are responsible for this type of occurance. If you have found that they have in fact violated their contract of carriage then call their legal department.
GWU ESIA STUDENT is offline  
Old Aug 1, 05, 6:22 pm
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Nashua, NH USA
Programs: Seashore Trolley Museum "flight attendant"
Posts: 1,948
Want to try small claims court?

Travel tips:

"Businesses do the things they are supposed to do because of lawsuits."
(Radio commentator Charles Osgood, and others)
AllanJ is offline  
Old Aug 1, 05, 9:16 pm
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 8
milesking is offline  
Old Aug 13, 05, 11:09 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Location: CMH
Programs: OP
Posts: 18
Finally read the contract and cannot find any wording to support the Gate Agents claim. More bad information, more lies, more crappy customer service.
Plus I didn't get I-Club credit for this flights, because my info was not input correctly by the agents.
I don't think I'll even bother persuing this any further, because I can't see this getting any better. I'm done with this airline.
liteflyer is offline  

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