Under the Montreal Convention, you can claim compensation if your checked baggage fails to arrive on time or is damaged. Although, air carriers differ in their approach to offering compensation, you may be required to prove the extent of the loss, e.g. with receipts or invoices.
The Montreal Convention simply limits the air carrier’s liability to 1,131 Special Drawing Rights (SDR) per passenger (the value of the SDR is calculated on a daily basis by the International Monetary Fund, 1 SDR is approximately 1.24 EUR as of 15 December 2019) but does not provide for guidelines as per how to calculate the amount of compensation to be awarded in each individual case.
What should i do if my lugagge doesn’t arrive?
• Complete a Property Irregularity Report (PIR) at the relevant baggage claims desk, typically located in the baggage reclaim area. Provide details of your bag and keep a copy for yourself
• Keep your boarding card and the baggage tags.
• Enquire about the air carrier’s daily allowance policy, if applicable.
• Request the contact details of the baggage department and ask if there is any online tracer system available to check the status of your bag.
• Keep receipts for all necessary expenses resulting from the delay of your bag.
Timely notice of complaints For Delayed luggage you have 21 days from the date on which your bag was eventually delivered to submit a written claim for compensation. Remember to keep a copy of your letter for your records and to enclose copies of the relevant documentation, e.g. copy of the baggage tags, PIR, booking confirmation and receipts.
Unless the airline admits the loss of the checked baggage at an earlier stage, checked baggage is considered ‘lost’ if it has not arrived at the end of 21 days from the date it was supposed to have arrived. You can then write to the airline to claim compensation. You have to prove the extent of the loss, up to 1,131 SDR. In order to avoid unnecessary delays, we recommend you to enclose with your letter copies of your booking confirmation, boarding card, baggage tags, the PIR, a list of contents and supportive receipts for the items lost. Please note that under the Montreal Convention, claims must be brought within two years.
You should always read the relevant terms and conditions of carriage to ascertain the applicable baggage restrictions. Most air carriers decline responsibility for valuable items such as jewellery and electrical goods carried as checked baggage. In order to avoid disappointment if something goes wrong, you should take sensible precautions when flying (e.g. carry valuable goods in your hand luggage if at all possible or consider taking out insurance that provides for adequate cover on the specific items). You can also benefit from a higher liability limit, upon payment of the applicable fee by making a special declaration of interest in delivery. The tariff is available to passengers on request.
Under the Montreal Convention you can claim up to 1,131 SDR if your checked baggage is damaged or destroyed, although this amount is not awarded automatically and you may be required to prove the extent of the loss, e.g. receipts for damaged items.
We recommend the following steps:
• Inspect your checked baggage on collection and, if damaged, complete a Property Irregularity Report (PIR) at the relevant baggage claims desk, typically located in the baggage reclaim area. The PIR must indicate the damages observed. Please note that receipt by the person entitled to delivery of checked baggage without complaint is prima facie evidence that the same has been delivered in good condition.
• Keep your boarding card, the baggage tags and a copy of the PIR. Gather evidence of damage – e.g. take photographs, confirmation from an independent source stating that the baggage is damaged beyond repair or an estimate for repairs. Receipts for any items damaged or destroyed are also useful.
Timely notice of complaints Under the Montreal Convention you only have 7 days from the date of the receipt of the damaged luggage to submit a written claim for compensation. Remember to keep a copy of your letter for your records and to enclose copies of the relevant documentation, e.g. copy of the baggage tags, PIR, booking confirmation and receipts.