British Airways Lost Baggage Policy – Wrong

Posted in Just A Thought, Uncategorized at 1:31 pm

British Airways has a quaint notion that if they tell their clients with lost baggage that it is not their policy to address the issue they can ignore the problem. This is not legally correct since Britain is a signatory to the Montreal Convention and they certainly don’t even mention it in court when they are taken to small claims court.

BeNetSafe - Helping keep children safe onlineIf you check your baggage with Bristish Airways and they say even once that “it is not their policy to handle your claim and you need to go to some other carrier” ignore the customer service communications and take them straight to small claims court. 

Carrier liability for luggage is limited by the Montreal Treaty  which explicitly states the maximum liability based on the weight of the luggage and nullifies any claims of reduced liability.

Prepare for Potential Baggage Loss 

Most luggage is lost during service disruptions when everyone really wants to move along – don’t let yourself be rushed.  British Airways does not document for you the weight of  your baggage. You must write down the weight of each item on the correct baggage ticket. This may be on your boarding pass but don’t leave the counter until you know how much each item weighs. If your luggage is especially valuable – which it will be if there is a terrorist disruption and they force you to check your cameras, computers, IPODS, etc. – buy a special declaration of interest in delivery at destination. The airlines-issued equivalent of baggage insurance.

Also, be sure the luggage is evenly distributed amongst all the people in your party. If your luggage is lost and you need to sue, you want to go to small claims court. If they helpfully assign all the luggage of a family to one person the single claim will be above the small claim court limits.

British Airways has decided that not delivering luggage when there are massive delays and then only paying claims to those who are persistent is the most cost-effective way to deal with lost luggage. If more people are assertive maybe they will purchase corporate baggage insurance and automatically treat everyone fairly.

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