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South African Airways / bad service

1 Zambia Review updated:
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We were booked on the SAA 424 flight from Port Elizabeth to Johannesburg then on KLM 592 to Amsterdam and Aer Lingus 605 to Dublin.

The thing that wrecked the end of our holiday was the disappearance of our bags. We made the mistake of putting our bags straight through to Dublin rather than take them off in Johannesburg to put them on the KLM flight to Amsterdam ourselves.

One of the bags turned up a week and a half later with things stolen out of it and clothes it it that were not ours and the other one is still lost 2 and a half weeks later as I am writing this. At no point in time was the last carrier, which is made responsible, able to tell us where our bags were. In fact what irony that the system they swear by is the one that had the lady from baggage saying both our bags were still listed as missing and location unknown when the Aer Lingus van turned up outside our house with the first bag.

Three days ago was 2 weeks since we landed and three days after the first bag turned up. I had written to my father, who lives in Pretoria, asking him if he would go to JHB to look for the bag that was still missing and untraceable. It took him 10 minutes to find the bag there amongst of a flood of other bags condemned to the same fate as mine was. It had been opened, things had been stolen, the name tag had been ripped off as well as the label bearing the flights it was supposed to be on, gone. He then proceeded to get the bag put on the next KLM flight to Amsterdam. It has now been 3 days since then and Aer Lingus is still incapable of telling me where my bag is with their system that �¢ï¿½ï¿½works�¢ï¿½ï¿½.

Special thanks would go first and foremost to the South African baggage handlers who helped themselves to Christmas presents in people's bags and then leave the bags to rot. Secondly I would also love to thank the South African airways managers for not having these criminals put in jail never mind fired. And then also special thanks goes out to the airport authorities all over the world, KLM and Aer Lingus in this case, that are incapable of enforcing some kind of retrieval operation when they clearly know where the bags went missing and why.

What I would recommend for anyone flying to South Africa:

1)If you can avoid JHB and fly to CT, do it.

2)If you have to fly through JHB, make sure to take your bag off the flight you are on and see to it personally that it goes on the next flight.

3)If you can survive with a large hand luggage do it even if it means posting stuff yourself you buy on holiday.

4)Attach a name tag containing your phone number with international prefix to your bag that is very difficult to remove.

5)When the person at check-in puts the label on your bag make sure it goes on in such a way that would not be ripped open if someone were to search through your bag for valuables.

6)Don't trust anyone when they say that are doing everything possible to get your bag back because they are doing nothing other than waiting for it to turn up.

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  • Ri
      22nd of Aug, 2016
    0 Votes
    SAA - We lost your bag - sorry for you
    United States

    I had a flight from JHB to CPT on the 19th of Aug 09 (flight number SA375). On arrival in CPT, 1 of my bags was not on the conveyer belt.. 3 of our 4 bags checked in did arrive but the 4th one with all my clothes, toiletries and presentation material was missing. I did report the bag as missing and explained to the SAL employee that I have a urgent presentation that I need to do tomorrow morning for which I will need to be well presented (how do you do that without clean clothes etc). The response from the lady was that I can phone them at 05:00 in the am to find out if they found my bag and that I'm not allowed to purchase any goods without authorisation from her manager. I phoned the baggage enquiries centre at around 08:00 on the 20th to find out if they did find my bag on which they responded yes and assured me that the bag will be delivered to my hotel within an hour (as my presentation starts at 09:00). Needless to say - at around 12:00 the bag has still not arrived at the hotel. I had to do a presentation in dirty clothes and was not able to clean myself as all my toiletries was in the missing bag. Bag arrived at about 14:00 without any apology or nothing. Not even a sorry.

  • Ge
      24th of Aug, 2016
    0 Votes
    SAA - Booking of flights
    South Africa

    I am not happy with the level of customer service i received on the S.A.A and they couldn't even get me on an earlier flight to London, after all it was my mothers 50th Birthday and i would have really liked to have been there. Not only did i never make it for her Birthday but i lost a whole weeks holiday that i payed for, and all i got offered was another flight a week later then my original flight was booked. How on earth do you keep your customers happy with a poor excuse of service like this. Its almost not worth me going over to London anymore because of the time i have already lost. Its not their Flaunt, but neither is it mine. but i spent a lot of money and this is all they can do for me.

    Well Thanks for a perfect start to a Dec Holiday.

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