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Lost luggage woes poorly handled by Virgin Australia, passengers complain

Virgin Australia passenger, Jaye, said a luggage tag (above) was the only apology she received from the airline after ...

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Virgin Australia passenger, Jaye, said a luggage tag (above) was the only apology she received from the airline after her luggage went missing for four days.

Virgin Australia passengers have complained they have been left without their baggage for days after travelling from Auckland to Melbourne.

The airline apologised after two frustrated travellers contacted Stuff about their lost baggage as “a last resort”.

Virgin Australia spokeswoman Elle Twight acknowledged there had been problems, saying it was working with its baggage services provider “to ensure that any disrupted baggage is returned to its rightful owners as quickly as possible”.

“We are offering direct assistance to all affected passengers and sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused”, she said.

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Jaye, originally from Palmerston North, and who wanted to be identified only by her first name, said she was among about 15 travellers on flight VA169 from Auckland who arrived in Melbourne on December 27 to find their bags had not been loaded.

Staff in Melbourne told her that the issues were due to Virgin changing its baggage handlers in Auckland before Christmas and that there were passengers on an earlier flight on December 22 who still did not have their bags a week later, she said.

Virgin says it is working with its baggage services provider to sort out issues.

BEVAN READ/STUFF

Virgin says it is working with its baggage services provider to sort out issues.

Jaye said that when she did finally collect her bags on New Year’s Eve, several items in her suitcase were broken.

“Virgin offered no other means of apology except for a ‘sorry card’ on my baggage. When I picked up my bag the guy was on a phone call and threw the phone down swearing and told me to basically ‘stop standing round and come get my bag’.”

Andrew Lock, who flew to Melbourne from Auckland on Friday on flight VA165, said he had yet to receive his checked-in baggage on Tuesday morning.

Lock said that after asking about compensation he was passed around on the phone between five people before being called back and then hung up on. 

“This is becoming a health and safety issue with me not being able to access my medication for the last three days. I feel that my request is simple for my bag to be found. I feel like they don’t really care about finding by suitcase.”

Lock said he called Virgin again on Tuesday morning to locate his suitcase “but got the typical response telling me to contact someone else”.

“I had to do my own investigation into the location of my suitcase which turns out to still be in Auckland however still has not been shipped.” 

Further information has been sought from Virgin Australia on the nature of the direct assistance it is providing the passengers.


 – Stuff

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