SQ damaged my laptop, is this offer fair?

Old Jul 14, 08, 4:43 pm
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SQ damaged my laptop, is this offer fair?

I was transiting through SIN on SQ recently. When I arrived at the hotel in SIN, I discovered one of my two laptops had a cracked and thus unuseable, LCD screen when it was placed inside the checked luggage. I typically carry two laptops with me and that one was inadvertently placed in the checked bag. In the past, when I did that, there was no damage. But I will make sure I avoid doing that going forward.

In any case, so I went back to the SIN airport, I told SQ what happened. I thought SQ took care of it graciously. The lady at the First Class check-in counter actually closed her station, tell pax on the queue to use the Business Class check-in right besides and she personally took me through airport security to inside of the SIN's luggage claim office after the secured area where the luggage belts are located. She waited there while her colleagues assist me in filling out a luggage claim form & report. The whole process was very smooth and they were very apologetic about the incident and at the end, I was giving a file and a claim report. They ask me to repair the laptop and send them the bill since I am about to leave SIN. I was really impressed with SQ's customer service.

When I came back to the U.S., I sent that laptop for repair, the bill was just above $620 USD to fix the LCD. The money is enough to buy a brand new laptop...which I thought was outrageously expensive. So I sent the bill to SQ and filled out all the necessary forms. A few weeks later, aka, yesterday, SQ sent me an e-mail and tell me they are willing to reimburse me $434 USD and they also make it clear that SQ is normally discharged of responsbility in damaged goods while in transport and they are doing it as a customer service gesture.

I am just a little surprise that SQ actually wants to haggle on the repair cost. Granted, the repair price is somewhat outrageous but it's not as if I get to name a price. I can't say I am unhappy about the whole experience because SQ did show some excellent customer service throughout the whole process but I am just a little surprised they close this with a haggle. I sense they obviously want to negotiate/haggle. What should I tell them? By the way, I don't have any status with SQ although I am a Star Gold and usually fly SQ in First and Business class. I wonder if I should tell them: "That's fine, I'll take the $434 payment from you and you save some $186, but next time when I fly SQ A380 First Suites to Japan, I will make sure I book it under NH Codeshare instead of SQ. See, I can meet you at halfway too, just not sure they are of equal value though, can you tell?" Or maybe I should just drop it, take the $434 payment and shut up? Whatever it is, I want to keep this friendly. SQ has treated me well, the haggle is unfortunate, but no need to make a federal case out of this.

What do you think/suggest?
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Old Jul 14, 08, 4:58 pm
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Take the money they offered you.

TG last year lost one of our checked luggage. After 6 months, they reimbursed us $400. The bag alone cost $600 and the contents more than double.

I think it was very gracious of SQ.
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Old Jul 14, 08, 5:18 pm
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Unless SQ is the sole exception to every other Carrier out there, grab it and run!! No other carrier would have even offered you a single $1, they all have disclaimers as do the CCs that Electronics among other itmes are NOT their responsibilty = no coverage ship at Your own risk.

I agree with SQ, you must have purchased this time and in the past some very expensive Full Fare tkts in F or C. So SQ sees it simply as a CS jesture that had you been in coach or on afree tkt they never would have offered you 1 cent yet $434.

SQ sees it as a means to keep your biz.

SQ is correct, unfortunately and realize that no other Carrier would have offered you anything. SQ values your Biz, its not easy but you should Value SQs choice in sending you the $434, believe no else would have.

Its not what you wanted to hear, but you really are $434 ahead then if you had flown with anyone else. I wouldnt think twice about booking with SQ again if I was You, SQ did a very noble thing when they very easily could have quoted the line # where it states they arent responsible for cameras,$$$, computers etc etc that are transported in checked bags.

SQ also took you at your word that it was in working condition and didnt hit you with 'How do we know 100% for sure it wasnt like that before it was checked with us?', which Im sure most other carriers would have hit you with besides showing you where they arent responsible.

SQ did a very noble thing to what they see as a very valuable Customer
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Old Jul 14, 08, 5:40 pm
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I'm very impressed that you got payment from SQ for a laptop packed in checked luggage! I would graciously take the money and count my blessings.

Your story has a (semi) happy ending, but it serves as a good reminder: If you would be distraught about losing it or breaking it, don't check it! Carry it on or have it shipped.
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Old Jul 14, 08, 5:58 pm
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Cool

You've been lucky.
Notebooks (unless the durable near military type) need to be carried on, NOT in checked luggage.
As they have gotten lighter & more powerful, they have typically gotten less durable.
If you're paranoid enough to bring two, why not ship one, and carry on the other ?

Airlines don't owe you anything for electronics.
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Old Jul 14, 08, 6:31 pm
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Well, I have to say I'm impressed that SQ offered any form of reimbursement. I know that you are a high yield pax, so of course that helps, but normal circumstances where items in checked luggage get busted usually recevies very little consideration for compensation.

As they sang in the song: "Go on, take the money and run."
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Old Jul 14, 08, 9:06 pm
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I was going to suggest inquiring with your travel insurance company but they're likely to deny any claim given that you had packed the laptop in your checked luggage.

As others have responded, take what's being offered to you by SQ and think yourself lucky.
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Old Jul 15, 08, 6:59 am
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SQ probably double-checked with a local repair company about the price and are offering you fair market reimbursement.

I also think you made a critical error in checking the laptop, so it's fair that you share some of the liability.
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Old Jul 15, 08, 10:13 am
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Had almost the exact same situation except it was a broken LCD screen in my laptop carried in a softsided briefcase in the cabin. I was in 1B and put my case in the bottom of the closet right next to my seat. Well just after take-off a blue girl came rushing up and opened the closet and dropped a large bag of headsets into the closet (and on top of my bag) without looking. She was too fast and I hesitated a moment as I didnt see the headset bag she was dropping until too late. I chastised her (not too strongly but definitely firmly) -- she was very flushed with embarrasment (she knew she shouldnt be up in F to start with) and she literally ran away. Got the CSD over tout de suite and he was beside himself with apologies In true SQ fashion had the blue girl paraded up to me and made her literally get down on her knees and apologise to me. That was deeply embarrassing for me! Couple years ago I was in WhY and I asked to skip breakfast and just bring me a coffee when they had a chance. Well, they did seem to take more than 10 mins and I stopped a passing leading stewardess and she marched up 2 blue girls and had them grovel an apology to me for forgetting my coffee. I was just *G back then not PPS.

Get back to HKG where I live and send email to my PPS coordinator here and she said same thing you got ... "just have it repaired and send us the bill". Guess the Sony repair shop in HKG is a little cheaper as my screen came in around $375 USD. Got my cheque in the mail from SQ along with another grovelling letter about 10 days later.

I was impressed .. didnt expect anything .. well maybe an extra bottle of wine for my birthday (they still do that out of the HK PPS office) so good on SQ for customer recovery (at least their front cabin customers).
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Old Jul 15, 08, 11:37 am
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Originally Posted by Guava View Post
...
I am just a little surprise that SQ actually wants to haggle on the repair cost. Granted, the repair price is somewhat outrageous but it's not as if I get to name a price. I can't say I am unhappy about the whole experience because SQ did show some excellent customer service throughout the whole process but I am just a little surprised they close this with a haggle. I sense they obviously want to negotiate/haggle. What should I tell them? By the way, I don't have any status with SQ although I am a Star Gold and usually fly SQ in First and Business class. I wonder if I should tell them: "That's fine, I'll take the $434 payment from you and you save some $186, but next time when I fly SQ A380 First Suites to Japan, I will make sure I book it under NH Codeshare instead of SQ. See, I can meet you at halfway too, just not sure they are of equal value though, can you tell?" Or maybe I should just drop it, take the $434 payment and shut up? Whatever it is, I want to keep this friendly. SQ has treated me well, the haggle is unfortunate, but no need to make a federal case out of this.

What do you think/suggest?
Take the money and be glad of it.

But basically it is your fault for checking in a computer in checked luggage anyway. Even with "Fragile" stickers all over the bag, airlines cannot guarantee that nothing will break. American Airlines will not even put Fragile stickers on because of that.

As for your threat. If I was SQ, I'd say go ahead. Cos you can't book R class on NH codeshare on the A380 flight anyway. You can't even book C class. Even if you do, SQ will still get the money eventually and at a higher revenue return than if you book it with SQ directly.

And when they send you cheque, try to "Pass to Forward" and donate a sum to charity. That'll calm the karma!
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Old Jul 15, 08, 11:51 am
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Originally Posted by Guy Betsy View Post
As for your threat. If I was SQ, I'd say go ahead. Cos you can't book R class on NH codeshare on the A380 flight anyway. You can't even book C class. Even if you do, SQ will still get the money eventually and at a higher revenue return than if you book it with SQ directly.
Really, somehow I think you are wrong again.

Singapore, Singapore to Tokyo, Japan: 3327 miles 6 hrs 50 min

All Nippon Airways Flight NH6254 on an Airbus A380 (jet) in first class
(operated by Singapore Airlines as Flight SQ638)
Departs Singapore, Singapore (SIN) Fri, Aug 15 11:40p 6 hrs 50 min
Arrives Tokyo, Japan (NRT) Sat, Aug 16 7:30a
1 adult in booking code F, covered by fare (A1) below

Note: The flight from Singapore (SIN) to Tokyo (NRT) is overnight.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Booking details
If you want to buy this ticket, contact the airline (All Nippon Airways: 1-800-235-9262, http://svc.ana.co.jp/) or a travel agent. If you use a travel agent to buy this ticket:
If your travel agent is online and has an e-mail address, e-mail this itinerary to them
If your travel agent is not online, print out this page and fax/give it to them
It is very important to use exactly the same booking codes and fare codes that we've used on this page in order to match the price we've found.


Fare (A1): YY SINTYO F fare (rules) SGD 4405
Tax: NH YQ surcharge $183.20
Tax: Singapore Passenger Service Charge SGD 21

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Total for 1 adult passenger: $3431.60
(as of Tuesday, July 15, 2008 1:46pm; fares loaded Tuesday, July 15, 2008 12:33pm)
I guess you are again giving out incorrect information but I don't know why. Surely, since NH does not have a R class, it can't be R class. But that is just the equivalent to the F fare bucket on NH.
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Old Jul 15, 08, 6:19 pm
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Originally Posted by Guava View Post
Really, somehow I think you are wrong again.



I guess you are again giving out incorrect information but I don't know why. Surely, since NH does not have a R class, it can't be R class. But that is just the equivalent to the F fare bucket on NH.
Again? Are you keeping track?

But I guess if you want to pay S$1475 more on your NH codeshared ticket, than on a SQ coded ticket just for getting back at SQ, go right ahead. But I guess you already knew that....

Last edited by Guy Betsy; Jul 15, 08 at 7:05 pm
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Old Jul 16, 08, 8:12 pm
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My 2c (since this thread made TalkMail - only reason why I'm here):

Take the money. Of course, you shouldn't have had your laptop in checked baggage in the first place. Airlines typically won't cover you - SQ have gone out of their way here. Most, if not any, travel insurance would not cover you for a laptop in checked baggage, even if you bubble wrapped it like no tomorrow.

I can't imagine what your response might have been had SQ completely refused to give you a single cent.

Fragile luggage stickers only serve their textbook purpose about 10% of the time.

Laptops are easy to break now because of the need to make them lighter. (Yes, MacBooks included). If there is any consideration to robustness, most of the design focuses on saving the data, not the outside, and certainly not the screen. The screen is probably one of the most brittle parts of the laptop, and probably makes up a sizeable amount of the cost (which is why typically if the screen breaks, the repair cost is usually quite insidious). Even in my hand carry, my laptop always has a soft thin layer of sponge in between the keyboard and screen, and bubble wrapping all around the laptop.

Last edited by anat0l; Jul 17, 08 at 7:19 pm Reason: Added some clarifications, since I realised my disposition was slightly contradicting...
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Old Jul 16, 08, 9:39 pm
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Originally Posted by anat0l View Post
Fragile luggage stickers only serve their purpose about 10% of the time.
Here I disagree - I always thought they were 100% (or at the very least 95%) effective at serving their purpose. Don't fragile stickers exist solely to alert disgruntled baggage handlers which specific bags to drop and throw around?
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Old Jul 17, 08, 6:59 pm
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As mentioned by others, SQ is more than generous to offer some reimbursement, but that is SQ of course.

Even in cases when a party is liable (in this case SQ is doing that of of good gesture only, not liability), the limit is always the lowest of the tangible value of the item at the time of the damage, the cost of fixing, and the cost of replacement. So USD434 is already very good. The balance, I would suggest, be the cost of a lesson that you will not be doing that again.
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