Air India / stolen items from checked baggage
This email concerns two (2) recent instances of mishandled baggage occuring on: 1) Air India Flight from New York JFK to New Delhi in late December; and 2) Air India Flight Number from Calcutta to New Delhi to New York JFK in early January.
In the first instance, one piece of checked baggage was lost for nearly 10 days on a direct flight from JFK to New Delhi. The baggage contained shoes, toileteries, and eye wear (contact lenses). The quality of Air India's customer service was inconsiderate and incompetent. For several days I telephoned local New Delhi Air India phone numbers I was given. The numbers were nearly always busy or had no answer. If by chance I got through to a person, I was instantly transferred to a number with no answer. On December 27, I hired a taxi to go back to New Delhi International Airport to try to learn any new information concerning my bag. After 3 hours of waiting, I was told there was no record of my bag.
Only with the help of American Express's global assist program was this baggage eventually located. It was located in Calcutta and re-routed to New Delhi to the Hyatt Regency. Why the Delhi-bound bag was re-routed to Calcutta is beyond me. American Express provided me with daily updates concerning the status of my bag. I received the bag in New Delhi at the Hyatt Regency hotel on January 4th. As a result, I spent 10 days in India without contact lenses.
As if the above experience was not bad enough, on my return flight home to New York JFK another piece of my baggage was lost. This piece of lost baggage was delivered to my home address in New York 2 days later. However, when I opened the baggage, I found four items missing and the remaining items inside in dissarray.
The missing items included a custom made shirt I wore at my wedding. It appears that someone rummaged through the baggage and removed several items.
The missing items are:
1). Custom white tuxedo shirt (bergdorff goodman) with initials JJR on left cuff. Value = $650 USD.
2). Ermenegildo Zegna men's white dress shirt. Value = $250 USD
3). Purple striped men's dress shirt. Value = $100 USD.
4). Special "China" edition swiss army knife. Value = $100 USD.
My sister in law, who was on the same flight with her family, had 3 lost bags that were eventually delivered all with missing/stolen items.
I am desperately trying to determine the best way to handle this matter. Air India corporate does not provide any help other than a local airport number at JFK baggage services, which no one answers and which has a full voice mailbox. I have sent emails and faxes and am hoping I get some response. There is no corporate department that handles such claims.
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