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US Airways sucks *ss.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

This is the height of incompetence. Last night, my brother dropped us off in Philly to catch the 10:35 flight to RDU. This airport was DEAD. Hardly anyone there. More workers than passengers.

They lost not just one checked bag, but two.

The likely problem, though it's no excuse since we arrived so early, is that we checked in at the US Airways terminal (B), but our flight ended up leaving from terminal F. We checked them in and hiked the long way to F, and still had more than an hour before the flight left -- plenty of time for any sleepy US Airways drone to get the bags to F.

When we arrived at RDU around midnight, we watched ominously as each person came and retrieved their bag, and we sat there bleary eyed tired as the bags stopped coming out. We filed a claim -- the attendant said the bags would arrive on the next flight and they would deliver the bags, so we went home.

It's 1PM, and several flights have come in from Philly and still no email or phone call, so Kate went online in an online chat for an impersonal. completely useless dialogue with the customer service rep, who she mistakenly thinks can actually look up the last location of the bags. "I am unable to look the bags up. Please visit the web site and call our phone number. Thank you for flying US Airways." As automated as the answers were, she's doubting that this was even a human being in the chat.

Braving voicemail hell, Kate calls the number and the process was efficient yet unhelpful. She didn't stay on hold long, but there was no possibility of interacting with a human being. The voice recognition software was ass. Eventually the bot on the other end said "We cannot locate your bags at this time. Thank you for flying US Airways."

I guess the small consolation is that the bags were lost coming home as opposed to on the way to Delaware.

If you read the fine print on a baggage claim, the airlines do whatever they can to avoid reimbursing you for their screwups. US Airways is no exception. You have to produce original receipts for anything over $100, and get the claim notarized. It can take months for a reimbursement. Not exactly a barrel of fun if you've arrived and have nothing, particularly with the restrictions regarding carry-on baggage these days.

Related:
* Your rights if your bags are delayed
* US Airways baggage delay policy