Lufthansa incorrectly charged me and is ignoring my messages!

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Oct 25, 2017
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#1
On October 4th, 2017 I was departing from Barcelona airport to go to Tokyo with a layover in Frankfurt and Munich. The first two flights to Frankfurt and Munich were through Lufthansa with the last leg of the flight from Munich to Tokyo being ANA. I booked this flight through United.com using my award miles.

Before checking in and arriving at the airport, I confirmed with United who informed me that I would be able to check in two bags for free. I arrived to the Barcelona airport with three checked bags with one being overweight. I would be required to pay 195 euros. This was also confirmed via my United.com account baggage fee calculator.

However, upon checking in at the airport, I was charged 400 euros due to the Lufthansa agents lack of knowledge in their own policies. According to their own websites baggage policy it clearly states the following:

"When booking a journey with several airlines the free baggage regulations of the airline which flies the most significant route of the journey (usually the longest route geographically) under whose flight number this route has been booked apply. "

I was charged double my expected costs and ridiculed by two of the Lufthansa agents. It was an extremely poor experience and I have yet to receive a refund for the extra baggage costs. I have contacted their support numerous times with no help.

I have sent Lufthansa three emails with no responses at the following date and times:

October 6th, 2017 - 12:49 PM
October 11th, 2017 - 12:22 PM
October 12th, 2017 - 11:14 PM

I have also called Lufthansa numerous times at their Customer Relation line at the following date and time:

October 6th, 2017 - 7:10 PM Japan Standard Time
October 12th, 2017 - 11:15 PM Japan Standard Time
October 17th, 2017 - 6:16 PM Japan Standard Time

I have contacted my credit card company a few days ago to start the chargeback process and they are currently investigating it. Although I do not have much hope. What do you suggest I do now?
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#2
For some reason, I cannot edit my first post so I will create a new one here to breakdown the charges.

I was originally expecting to pay 195 euros - one extra checked bag for 150 euros and one overweight bag for 45 euros.

However, I was charged 400 euros from Lufthansa because I was told that I would only be able to receive one checked bag for free and that I would have to pay out of pocket for the two extra checked bags with one of them being over weight.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#3
Lufthansa can take up to a month to respond to an email sent to the general address. The volume is high. Is that where it was sent?

I am perplexed you had this problem because Lufthansa states on their web page that passengers get 2 23k bags to Japan.

It looks like the charge was extra bag basic for 150 and extra bag heavy for 250.

I am not sure where you get the overweight at 45 euros -- LH has intercontinental overweight at 100 euros for the free baggage but extra bag that is heavier is 250

Where did the 45 euros overweight come from? United charges more than that for an overweight domestic bag ($100).

It looks like the overcharge was 150 euro for the 2nd normal bag. Or one could play around and have extra bag as normal weight but it still comes up to 250 for extra bag (150) and overweight free bag (100)

Once a chargeback has been started the airline will not deal with the customer as they are dealing with the bank.

Unfortunately some of the people at check in at smaller European airports are subcontractors and they do not know the rules well as you found out.

I am afraid that I have little advice once a chargeback has been started perhaps an advocate will be more helpful
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#4
Thank you for your message. As stated above, the first two legs of the flight were with Lufthansa while the last and most significant leg was through ANA. According to Lufthansa's own baggage policy, since ANA was the most significant route, the baggage prices should have been ANA's price.

So with that in mind, ANA's policy is 150 euros for the extra bag and 45 euros for the overweight bag. These numbers were confirmed by United.com's baggage calculator after my confirmation number was inputted.

For Lufthansa, they charged me the baggage prices for their own domestic intra-Europe baggage prices which was only one checked bag for free.... so 150 euros x 2 for the 2 extra bags plus 100 euros for the overweight bag.

Yes, the email was sent to Lufthansa's Customer Relation email along with me calling their Customer Relations phone number multiple times as stated in the original message.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#6
Lufthansa definitely messed up. Thank you Dwayne.

I have had problems with some of the check in staff in smaller airports in the past. At one point I brought print outs and asked for a supervisor.
The staff were not Lufthansa employees but were subcontractors from another company that provides airport staff. It was maddening. They did not know the rules at all.

I do think the OP deserves a refund of the overcharge and some goodwill points to UA account
 
Likes: jsn55

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,609
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www.promalvacations.com
#7
We would normally say to write to Lufthansa but once a chargeback is started they may not respond.

We have company contacts on our page - you can write to them using our contacts. You have the information from the responses here on what you need to say.

Write to the customer service email address. State the info you posted here along with the name of the person you spoke to that extended the rental.

Give them a week to reply. If they don't respond or refuse to help, write to the first executive shown. Tell him/her that Customer Service wasn't able to help or didn't reply. Give the executive a week to reply. If necessary, repeat weekly going up the chain of Executives one at a time. If you get all the Executives with no help, come back here and let us know and we'll
Tell you the next step. Make sure you keep all the emails as you'll need to forward them to the writers if they need to get involved.

Good luck and let us know what happens
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#8
Seems as though you do have a case for a refund of the baggage fees. Can you cancel the CC dispute? If it is ongoing, your direct communication with LH is nil. If you can stop the dispute, I definitely agree with my colleagues. Start with customer service (I'd allow them two weeks) then move on up the executive beanstalk, allowing a week between each submission. Pretty soon someone will read your (very polite) request and get you a refund.
 
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Oct 25, 2017
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#9
Seems as though you do have a case for a refund of the baggage fees. Can you cancel the CC dispute? If it is ongoing, your direct communication with LH is nil. If you can stop the dispute, I definitely agree with my colleagues. Start with customer service (I'd allow them two weeks) then move on up the executive beanstalk, allowing a week between each submission. Pretty soon someone will read your (very polite) request and get you a refund.
I do not want to cancel the CC dispute because if I cancel it, I have nothing to fall back on. I feel that I have provided Lufthansa with enough time to respond. I was even promised by the Lufthansa Customer Service Agent over the phone that they will start the refund process and email me within 48 hours but they didn't. This was before I started the CC dispute process.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,609
11,975
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#10
I do not want to cancel the CC dispute because if I cancel it, I have nothing to fall back on. I feel that I have provided Lufthansa with enough time to respond. I was even promised by the Lufthansa Customer Service Agent over the phone that they will start the refund process and email me within 48 hours but they didn't. This was before I started the CC dispute process.
In view of your conversation with Lufthansa and a promise of payment - I wouldn't cancel it either. But there is probably nothing else we can do to assist. Have you sent your cc company the picture in Dwaynes post? Send as much as you can to prove your case.
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#11
Yes I sent the CC company the picture but to be honest when I spoke to them over the phone I didn't receive much reassurance that they would help me get my money back. So I guess I'll see what happens. I also emailed United a day after this incident happened to clarify their baggage policy and I didn't receive any response from them.
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#13
The last post in this thread was over a month ago on October 27th, 2017. I wanted to post here again that I have an update regarding this situation.

I have yet to hear back from my bank regarding the chargeback but I received a response today from the Lufthansa's refund department.

"Dear Customer,

Charge was done due to an extra piece of baggage and third heavier piece.
Charges were correctly applied.
We appreciate this may not be the response you were anticipating; however our position in this instance is clear from our side; for
further doubts you may have please contact our customer relations department at customer.relations@lufthansa.com

Best regards."


As we have all agreed, the charge was NOT done correctly. I have sent them another response for what seems like the 10th time that they are not correct.

I am now worried that my chargeback that I initiated with my credit card company will not go through because Lufthansa still has failed to recognize that they made a mistake. In addition, I feel that my case is slightly more complicated than what my bank would be inclined to investigate.... What should I do?
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
6,264
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San Francisco
#14
I don't think you can do much until the CC company makes a decision on the dispute.

What I'm coming away with re-reading this thread is that Lufthansa charged you incorrectly but they don't feel you've proven them wrong. They're being very stubborn and hoping you'll go away. They probably receive hundreds of complaints like this every quarter and will look to you to prove your case. I would advise that you start working on written proof that they're wrong, so that you are ready with it once the CC dispute is settled. Unless you've 'proven' that you're right with your CC company, they'll probably investigate and rule on Lufthansa's side. Then you can go after Lufthansa again with clear-cut organized proof that you are correct and have followed their policies properly.
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#15
I don't think you can do much until the CC company makes a decision on the dispute.

What I'm coming away with re-reading this thread is that Lufthansa charged you incorrectly but they don't feel you've proven them wrong. They're being very stubborn and hoping you'll go away. They probably receive hundreds of complaints like this every quarter and will look to you to prove your case. I would advise that you start working on written proof that they're wrong, so that you are ready with it once the CC dispute is settled. Unless you've 'proven' that you're right with your CC company, they'll probably investigate and rule on Lufthansa's side. Then you can go after Lufthansa again with clear-cut organized proof that you are correct and have followed their policies properly.
Thank you for your response. I have actually made it very clear to not only the Customer service agent but through email to Lufthansa multiple times. I have shown them proof by sending them the receipt along with the United.com baggage fee calculator to show them clearly that they incorrectly charged me.

It has been two months now without any progress in the case except, again, Lufthansa telling me that I am wrong. This is very frustrating and I really hope my CC company sides in my favor because otherwise I really don't see Lufthansa refunding me my money.
 
Oct 25, 2017
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#18
It's been almost a month since I last updated this thread and I have a new update. I just received another response from Lufthansa. (See above for the last response I received earlier this month.

The latest response that I just received is the following:

"We were sorry to note that our previous correspondence did not meet your expectations.

At the same time, please let me explain you that Most Significant Carrier rule applies on each portion of an itinerary where baggage is through checked (from where a passenger checks a bag to the point the passenger collects the bag). Baggage rules of the Most Significant Carrier are applicable from the point of "baggage check-in" until the next stop-over. In this case, your baggage was checked from Barcelona to Tokyo.

In case LH determines the Free Baggage Allowance (FBA) of a journey, the Piece Concept of LH applies per checked portion of the baggage (Note: exceptions may apply to/from the U.S. and Canada).

The FBA shall always be handled as shown on the respective ticket or the passenger receipt.

A passenger may carry some baggage free of charge, subject to LH conditions and limitations which are mentioned in the ticket and according to the terms of Lufthansa. The weight of each piece of baggage must not exceed 32 kg.

We appreciate this may not be the response you were anticipating; however our position in this instance is clear."


I'm sorry but am I missing something here? I have sent them the receipt and how they incorrectly charged me but it seems like they are still confused? Do they not understand this was a Award Ticket purchased through United and even the Lufthansa agent at the check in counter was confused? This is really frustrating.... 400 euros is a lot of money and they have held it from me for 3 months now!