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Of: regina mittemeier

The luggage of a family from the Munich region goes missing. Sebastian W. is desperate and reports on an airplane odyssey with Eurowings, a subsidiary of Lufthansa.

Munich – They should be somewhere in Frankfurt, the W family’s suitcases. Actually, they should have been there on Sunday when they landed. Munich Airport they should arrive, but they probably didn’t fly with us. He knows the chaos of suitcases, says Sebastian W. (53). “But I’ve never experienced anything like it.” He knows where the bags should be, but not when or how he will retrieve them. Until then, his belongings and his wife Naoka (50) will remain missing, as will his son Leandro’s (7) swimsuit. So they have to buy a new one quickly for their swimming lessons.

The W. family from Freising boarded the plane in Lanzarote on Sunday. The problem started before departure because the Eurowings Discover plane picked them up too late. “The crew was also angry,” says library employee Sebastian W. The airline Eurowings Discover differs in name from Eurowings, but both belong to the Lufthansa Group. They just fly to different destinations.

The family lands at Munich airport: what follows is pure baggage chaos

In Munich, the problem continued. Only one suitcase on the baggage carousel belonged to them, there was no trace of the others. Suddenly, the carousel stopped and a screen showed: Baggage claim has ended. “Many other passengers also lost their bags,” says W. No one could help him at the scene, so he drove to his house frustrated with his family. He reported the missing pieces of luggage, asked for his location using a code, and has been waiting ever since.

There is regular baggage chaos at the Munich airport. They last saw each other there at the end of December. hundreds of abandoned suitcases stacked. One family waited for weeks, eventually fishing their bag themselves (we reported). Since then, the mountains of suitcases have dwindled, an airport spokesman says. Freezing rain had caused baggage accumulation at the time. In the meantime, most of them have recovered their bags, they say.

Munich Airport: The family from Freising could not be helped on Eurowings (symbol picture)
Munich Airport: The family from Freising could not receive help at Eurowings (symbol picture). © IMAGO/Manfred Segerer

Munich Airport: Who is responsible if luggage is lost?

Ultimately though, use the airlines Make sure travelers get their luggage back, says a Flightright spokesperson. The company is suing the passengers for compensation for the delay. Airports aren’t responsible for checked baggage, he tells himself.

When asked, a spokeswoman for Eurowings Discover: Due to the wind conditions, the plane had to take off in a different way, in a northerly direction instead of the usual southerly direction. For this reason, it is said, suitcases were also left to lighten the plane and guarantee safety.

Even before leaving, Sebastian W. knew that luggage would be a problem. “It was said that we would start later due to problems with the load,” he says. But shortly after, the plane took off without further information for the travelers. Sebastian W. doubts the explanation, but mostly he feels alone. Why was he not informed of the whereabouts of the bags on the day of the flight? And why doesn’t he know when he’ll get them back? The airline’s spokeswoman is silent on the matter, noting that passengers should report lost luggage themselves.

The W. family from Freising received a suitcase after landing at the Munich airport;  the rest of the luggage is missing
The W. family from Freising received a suitcase after landing at the Munich airport; the rest of the luggage is missing. © FKN

Lost luggage: Chaos year 2022 – what are those affected entitled to

2022 was a year of chaos for some air travelers, because many pieces of luggage were lost. This is not only due to poor organisation, reports Claudia Brosche, Flightright’s passenger rights expert, but also due to a lack of staff. Airports and companies would try to train and hire new colleagues.

However, it could be months before processes have normalized. Anyone who has had to wait for a bag should report the damage in writing as soon as possible. A period of 21 days is applied from the arrival of the luggage at the destination. If you do not recover a lost suitcase, you are entitled to compensation. Those affected receive up to 1675 euros.

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