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Checkin baggage quantity "Embargo" -- Why?, What routes?, When? [Consolidated]

Checkin baggage quantity "Embargo" -- Why?, What routes?, When? [Consolidated]

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Old Dec 27, 19, 5:19 am   -   Wikipost
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For the present baggage embargos check UA's Excess baggage embargo
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Old Jun 19, 14, 8:05 pm
  #1  
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Checkin baggage quantity "Embargo" -- Why?, What routes?, When? [Consolidated]

Need help clarifying guidelines after terrible airport experience today with mom flying a mileage award using my miles and therefore my 1K status.

SAL has a baggage embargo as of Jun 4th, not sure when put in place, that states no excess baggage permitted.

What exactly does excess baggage mean in this case? Using the baggage calculator online and all of the reservation emails show 3 bags at 70lbs maximum. Mom checks in online, selects 3 checked bags (as was offered) and no problem or warning, etc. She gets to IAH to be told from the check-in agent that the max is 2 bags at 50lbs because of the embargo and that elite baggage allowances do not apply.

Calls to the 1K desk led to them saying 3 bags/70lbs was okay, notes going into the PNR. Airport agents at one point were going to allow the bags and then changed minds and denied the baggage. The manager told my mom if I had been there they would have allowed it, but that my 1K (although she was using my mileage awards) didn't apply to her.

How is a passenger supposed to know for sure what is and isn't permitted? Calls to 1K desk after and customer care led to dead ends with the agents saying airport has final say but that they were also confused.

Has this happened to anyone else?

Last edited by laramos46; Jun 19, 14 at 8:51 pm
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Old Jun 19, 14, 11:43 pm
  #2  
 
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File a DOT complaint on behalf of your mom and wait for corporate to deal with it.

http://www.dot.gov/airconsumer/air-t...t-comment-form
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Old Jun 20, 14, 2:54 am
  #3  
 
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http://www.united.com/web/en-US/cont...e/embargo.aspx

To the OP: what did mom do with the bags?
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Old Jun 20, 14, 7:22 am
  #4  
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I agree with the complaint but to 1K as well. Your benefits transferred. That should be it. Unless you or someone put her FF back in.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 7:27 am
  #5  
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Originally Posted by aacharya View Post
I agree with the complaint but to 1K as well. Your benefits transferred. That should be it. Unless you or someone put her FF back in.
I disagree. The benefits do not transfer, it's not a policy, it's a bug.

It works sometimes, which is great for the passenger. But it doesn't always work and cannot be counted on. Using that rationale will weaken the argument.

I would suggest the ONLY rationale to use is that United accepted the 3 bags at checkin, and then denied them at the counter. That will be more difficult for them to contest -- their own website took to the bags, and the agent went rogue and overrode what the system already allowed. Had the site not accepted the bags, you would have packed differently. Make a stink that the agent's job is to only tag the bag and make sure they're within the weight and count specified in the machine, not to impose additional rules after bag fees (if applicable) have been paid.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 7:41 am
  #6  
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What did the e-ticket receipt specify for a baggage allowance? That is what DOT looks at.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 12:21 pm
  #7  
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I'm surprised they were going to allow the 1K status to trump the embargo. Historically that was not always the case.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 1:25 pm
  #8  
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DOT complaint is a great idea.

Originally Posted by kettle1 View Post
To the OP: what did mom do with the bags?
After much back and forth, she ended up going home to repack and fly today. Agents rebooked her.

Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
What did the e-ticket receipt specify for a baggage allowance? That is what DOT looks at.
E-ticket specified 2 bags at 70lbs with 3rd bag allowed. Plugging in the rez into the United baggage calculator resulted in the same answer. Totally understand (after much FT reading) that the benefits applying is a glitch not a right, which did not know based on previous experiences of doing this exact same thing. My biggest beef is that all of the information we had prior to arriving at the airport gave a different interpretation of the rules. Nor was there a specific message or warning ever sent detailing a baggage embargo for this destination. If it had been me flying, I would have had the same thing happen.

Here are excerpts from the receipt and baggage calculator.



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Old Jun 20, 14, 2:35 pm
  #9  
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I still agree it is a benefit. I get that it is unintended. They wouldn't have given you personally any grief.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 2:51 pm
  #10  
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People are confusing 1K baggage allowance with the SAL specific restriction currently in place. UA does a poor job communicating this limitation. CM by contrast is quite explicit.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 4:09 pm
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Whether or not the award travel benefit is a real one or not, the baggage fee thing is a DOT sticking point, I think, and UA should be honoring what's showing on the reservation, valid or not.

The embargo is a different story.
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Old Jun 20, 14, 5:05 pm
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
People are confusing 1K baggage allowance with the SAL specific restriction currently in place. UA does a poor job communicating this limitation. CM by contrast is quite explicit.
I see the difference. But the 1k allowance is not excess baggage. So the embargo should not as written above impact it.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; May 22, 16 at 12:57 pm
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Old Jul 5, 15, 8:55 pm
  #13  
 
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EMBARGO on number of bags to be checked - anyone heard of this one?

I was scheduled for flights to Lima from IAH Today. Routing was IAH - EWR and EWR - LIM. As a 1K, I understood, I was allowed to check 3 bags at no charge. That is what I was checking in with one of them having liquids (shampoo, cough medicine, etc.) but only two bag tags were printed at IAH. I was told by the agent, try adding one more bag on the automated machine, I did that - still no tag. After about 30 minutes of agents looking at my record, playing with the machine, one of the supervisor determined that 'Govt. of Peru has embargo on the bags coming in and is limiting the customers to only two checked bags.' I told her that I am working in Peru right now and I do not believe that Govt. of Peru would restrict passengers to two checked bags. It may be a United restriction.' Of course, she became very defensive and insisted it is NOT United but Govt. of Peru. She wanted me to take the liquids out of one bag and put it in checked bag and make one bag as carry on.
I politely asked to speak to a supervisor who came out after about 10 minutes and told me she usually works the Lima direct flight and lately all the flight to Lima are packed full with people checking too many bags. United also carries cargo sometimes on these planes and is restricting how many bags one can check in.
When I tried to check in on-line the day before and inputted in the system that I would be checking bags in, I was never informed of 'embargo' on number of bags checked it. Even when I checked in at the counter, the systems never told me that there was a restriction on number of bags that can be checked in - it just did not print out the third bag tag.
While she was researching on-line, I found three other connecting flights from IAH to LIM (one through MEX, one through SAL and one through PTY). I suggested that she check availability through PTY as it got in about an hour early. She booked me on IAH - PTY on UA and PTY - LIM on COPA. Checked all three bags.
So after telling this story, my question is has anyone heard of this embargo on bags by United.
Also, why is United not informing customers of this 'embargo' before they get to the airport? Just like they send emails reminding people about flight times, gate changes, etc. would it not make sense to let people know of this restriction so people do not take three bags or more to the airport but consolidate before getting there?
Thanks for listening.
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Old Jul 5, 15, 9:01 pm
  #14  
 
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On UA, cargo is apparently more important than passengers and their checked bags. Even for 1Ks.

Short answer is the flight is apparently weight restricted and UA has chosen to limit checked bags as the way to stay within weight limits on the plane.

Another symptom of the new United.
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Old Jul 5, 15, 9:10 pm
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What bothers me is the institutional lying.
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