Black luggage matters

Tiny - Posted on 15 March 2016

Rommie Whittaker

Most poor folks generally don't have the privilege or luxury of traveling by air but more often than not it is most likely because a close family member or other loved one is seriously ill or dead.

In such cases we often either have to dig into our own savings if we even have any or borrow the funds from somebody else.

When such events occur we shouldn't have the added burden of having our check-in luggage lost, damaged or stolen.

Recently while traveling back east to attend the funeral of a loved on and returning on American Airlines my check-in bag was severely damaged and I found out the hard way that they generally don't do anything if you don't report it within 3 hours.

Of course they didn't mention this when they charged me $25 to check my bag in nor did I find this out via the automated recording .

By the time I realized how badly my bag was damaged I was already home and ready to climb in my bed after a week of sleeping on floorsand chairs in what was projected to be the blizzard of the century but instead turned out to be one of the most mild winters in Boston in recent years.

(But it was still a lot more snow than I've seen in the past 11 years).

But getting back to the story.

A week had passed before I had an opportunity to go back to the airport and show the bag to an agent at the American Airlines baggage claim office as the automated recording instructed.

There was only one clerk at the desk when I walked in and I got that feeling that so many other poor folks get when they are ready to have their rights recognized by the way she looked at me.

When I told her what the problem was and that it occurred a week prior she sneered and "A week ago ?"

"You're probably no longer in our system!"

She typed into her computer and then said " Yeah you're no longer there, you were supposed to report it in 3 hours!"

So I asked are you telling me I have no recourse? She sneered again and said "Yes, I guess that's what I'm saying"

After exiting the office I called the number and pressed the appropriate button to speak directly with an agent.

The agent told me to go back and ask to speak with a supervisor which I did and the supervisor agreed with initial act. One again I exited the office called the number and got connected with a live agent explained the entire situation including the fact that I was grieving and the agent informed me I had a right to request a courtesy report.

When I returned to the office and did so the agent that I had dealt with in the beginning with a look of defeat and embarrassment began to make a report and application for a claim.

After reading the application though I had intended  I never bother did because I just got to busy once again but it was worth going through that much just to stand up for what is right.

If you travel by air anytime in the future look at your checked in luggage as soon as you retrieve and report an damage immediately.


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