Losing or misplacing a bag leaves one with a bad taste at the end of a journey. It robs you of the excitement when one is getting back home to a family with goodies.
According to the data released by regulator DGCA, missed baggage continues to be among the top three complaints of fliers in India. In fact, mishandled baggage is one of the biggest issues in the aviation industry worldwide costing billions of dollars each year.
This guide explains what you should do if your baggage is lost during travel or at the airport.
Baggage Lost At Indian Airport During Departure
In spite of all the technological advancements, airlines are still handled by humans and mistakes do happen.
Your baggage might have been sent on the wrong flight or may have been left out at the departure airport. There might also be other reasons like a loose packing, wrong label or a suspicious item.
If you cannot find your baggage at the baggage claim area even after a considerable amount of time, try not to panic.
If you are sure that all pieces of baggage have arrived and yours is not there, contact your airline representative inside the airport. The airline representative will get you to the lost luggage desk.
Most airports have has a ‘Lost and Found’ section to deal with misplaced and lost baggage. If a passenger has missed or lost the baggage on the onward journey he can report the matter to this department and a fast response can be expected.
You will be asked to complete a Lost Baggage Claim form with a description of the lost item as well as your contact information.
- The airlines typically have ways to track them, and the vast majority of all misplaced luggage is returned eventually. If your bags are on the next flight, you could have them within a few hours.
- If they’ve been sent to the wrong airport, it could take a couple of days or more.
- Many airlines will reimburse any unexpected expenses caused by the loss or delay. Refer to your airline’s policy about this compensation.
Baggage Lost At Arrival Airport
Sometimes, it is the passengers who absent-mindedly leave behind their valuables at security counters, restrooms, etc. In some cases, another passenger may have taken your baggage by mistake and may have left it somewhere after realising his mistake.
In such a scenario you can look them up on the Airport Authority of India (AAI) website or the Central Industrial Security Forces (CISF) website.
Tracking Lost Baggage Online
Option 1: Through the AAI Website
Airport Authority of India (AAI) has a dedicated page on their website for tracking lost and found items. You can access the link here.
You can filter this page by selecting your airport and date of travel from the drop-down lists.
Once you find your item, note the item code and call or email using the contact details available on the page.
Option 2: Through the CISF Website
The CISF which is in charge of airport security at all commercial airports in India also has a section on their website called the “Lost & Found”, which helps travellers to trace the baggage that they missed from an airport.
Here is how you can check it online:
- Visit the CISF website (www.cisf.gov.in)
- Click on the “Lost & Found at Airport & Delhi Metro” link (On the lower right side of the website)
- On the next page, click on “Airports”
- On the next page, select your Airport from the drop-down list
- Select your Date of Travel and click on “Go”
- A list of all Lost & Found items will be shown as well as contact details to collect the item
Claiming Lost Baggage
The lost and found item may be claimed by the owner and should be in possession of the following documents:
- Copy of Boarding pass/proof of journey
- Copy of Passport / ID card issued by any Government Unit
- Details of the items being claimed.
If the owner cannot be present, an authorised person can claim with a Letter of authorisation from the owner, a copy of the boarding pass/proof of journey, the photo ID of the owner and the photo ID of the authorised person.
NOTE: Some airports have different procedures for claiming baggage. Please check your airport website for the exact procedure.
As a general rule, passengers are advised not to carry valuables such as jewellery, negotiable papers and currency in their checked baggage.
Your airline is not liable for loss, damage to or delay in the delivery of fragile or perishable articles or items of value or importance such as money, jewellery, cameras, electronics, video/computer or photographic equipment, negotiable papers, securities, heirlooms, antiques, work of art, irreplaceable books or publications, manuscripts, business documents, precious metals and other similar valuables or commercial effects.
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