Wedding Trip Turned Nightmare

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Dec 15, 2017
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#81
The guy from the article on Elliott's forum got a lot more reasonable offer when his visit to his daughter seems to be a social visit. And even his claim amount reached $3300 with the expensive camera and lens. And with those items falling under the category of Contract of Carriage item that is not covered by SW, I think it is reasonable that $1,200 offer was a good amount assuming he may have nice shoes and coats in his luggage. Also, being a man, I assume that he did not need to include cosmetics in his claim also. So, the most amount of his claims could simply be just clothing items.

However, in my case, my trip was to attend a wedding. As Christina stated, no one attends a wedding wearing shabby clothes especially being a family member. I did keep my jewelries which were worth tens of thousands of dollars with me in my purse at the time of travel which I find fortunate enough that I did not lose them in the lost luggage. However, since the wedding was a 2-time events with day and night separately done at separate times, I had brought different outfits for both events and purses that go along with the outfits. So, with 3 total purses on the trip, I would not be carrying all 3 purses looking like a crazy person on the day I flew. And like I said, my clothing amount claims did not even make up to $1,200 like the guy on Eliott's forum. The amount adds up because of cosmetics and designer bags and shoes. And both bags being women's bags, we did have quite a few cosmetic items in our bags. Though cosmetics items are small, they add quite a bit of the amount. Since I kept buying one by one, I did not realize how much I had already spent on buying cosmetics and did not think the value of my bag would have gone over $3,500 value when I checked in at OAK. Also, at the time of check-in, I did not know I was required to purchase some type of insurance if the value of the contents would go over a certain amount.

So, I believe offering me a $200 voucher which is not even a round trip ticket value for each lost bag is absurd.
 
Last edited:
Feb 9, 2016
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#82
@Rachel Zheng you can put the designer bags into your carry on. that way you wont look like a crazy person carrying 3 purses. I usually put as much makeup into my carryon as possible, for the same reason that it is expensive to replace.

Good luck with it all.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#83
I do take picture's of everything in my bag now. The pictures show the bag and contents sitting next to it. I do this before I depart and when I am packing for my return. It's too easy to do this now that our phones have camera's.

If you ever rent a car, be sure to take pictures of the car before it leaves the lot. Take all angles, top and bottom and try to get an employee in the picture.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#84
I do take picture's of everything in my bag now. The pictures show the bag and contents sitting next to it. I do this before I depart and when I am packing for my return. It's too easy to do this now that our phones have camera's.

If you ever rent a car, be sure to take pictures of the car before it leaves the lot. Take all angles, top and bottom and try to get an employee in the picture.
Wise advice. And I would add to ensure that the "location" feature is turned on (for the camera and the phone itself).
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#87
I hope this eventually gets resolved to your satisfaction. Personally, my motto has always been "Pack your suitcase as though you'll never see any of those items again". Anything of value that won't fit in your carryon should be shipped commercially, fully insured. As we see here, it's far easier to be pro-active than try to fix a bad situation.
 
Dec 15, 2017
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#88
I will definitely take pictures of the items in my luggage from now on. But of course nobody would have expected this to happen and even if it does, we would not have expected to be treated this poorly especially from a highly rated Southwest. Losing one bag is acceptable, but losing two is not especially when no compensation was made.

On the update, I contacted Nicki Bell from DOT again yesterday to explain her my whole story with what happened since DOT site has words limitation when I reported them of Southwest's incident, Southwest contacted me again with an automatic reply saying they received my forwarded complaint from DOT and they are looking into the matter.

Also, even though I had left a voice mail on the Customer Advocacy Specialist's machine that I will not accept the vouchers to settle as well as leaving them a written note under my baggage claim portal on Southwest site, they still sent me a voucher with $200 for each lost bag for me and my MIL. I hope this will not close my claim because I had let them know verbally as well as in written form that I will not accept their vouchers to settle.
 
Dec 15, 2017
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#90
Neil,

All the emails Southwest sent me are from an address where I could not reply. So, the only way for me to send them a written form is through the baggage claim portal where I stated I did not want their vouchers to settle.
 
Dec 7, 2017
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#93
I’ll say this again . . . You are contractually limited in your contract claim against Southwest.

Your claim in negligence is not limited by contract. They have an arbitration clause in the agreement. Many states require companies using mandatory arb clauses to pay for the initial filing. Which can be $4-5000. If your claim is less than that, they will settle.

I’m not going to read the COC or provide legal analysis, but tort claims are not limited by contract. Otherwise, after an airline crash, they’d simply claim you just get a refund since they didn’t get you to your destination. Negligence for baggage loss is no different than negligence for crashing on take off. It’s just a matter of degree.
 
Likes: Patina
Feb 9, 2016
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#95
I’ll say this again . . . You are contractually limited in your contract claim against Southwest.

Your claim in negligence is not limited by contract. They have an arbitration clause in the agreement. Many states require companies using mandatory arb clauses to pay for the initial filing. Which can be $4-5000. If your claim is less than that, they will settle.

I’m not going to read the COC or provide legal analysis, but tort claims are not limited by contract. Otherwise, after an airline crash, they’d simply claim you just get a refund since they didn’t get you to your destination. Negligence for baggage loss is no different than negligence for crashing on take off. It’s just a matter of degree.
This is too true

Perhaps you need to suggest to Southwest that you take this into mediation?
 
Dec 15, 2017
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#97
I would like to thank Neil, Christina, Patina, Carrie, Edward, VoR61, ADM, sas80, jsn55, Its Not Me for your advice and efforts put in to helping me out with resolving my problem with Southwest Airlines.

I just got a chance to check my emails since I pretty much gave up on my claim with them. And Southwest had sent me an email on Thursday last week that they are settling my claim and a check each for both my mother-in-law and I have been mailed out. The settlement letter did not mention how much of the claim amount was given. But they mentioned depreciation as a factor in calculating the claim. After asking your advice last time, I had sent a couple emails to Nicki Bell at DOT and she had forwarded my emails to Southwest.

After that, I got Southwest CEO and VP's emails from this Elliott's Company Contact page and blasted them emails as well. Though I did not receive any reply back from them, I got a reply from the customer advocacy specialist lady saying both Gary Kelly and Jim Ruppel had received my emails. Then, after a few days later, I got another email from Southwest saying they are settling my claims and 2 checks will be mailed out and it will take about 10 days to receive.

Without all your help in this, I would have been lost and probably would have given up on the claim. So, I would like to sincerely thank you all for all your efforts and time putting into helping me out with this claim. Thank you all so very much. Even though I am not sure how much Southwest is giving me, I think any amount more than the $200 travel voucher is good for me at this point. This is physically and mentally exhausting for me and I just want to close it off and get on with my life.
 
Feb 3, 2017
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#99
Great result, hopefully. I do find it odd, admittedly, that there is no mention of the amount in the correspondence.

I have been refunded after such disputes from various companies and always received confirmation of such payouts which included the exact amounts I was to receive. If the amount is not satisfactory to you, presumably you can return these checks to them and proceed with mediation if you secure further unsatisfactory offers of settlement?
 
Dec 15, 2017
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@VoR61, I sure will. I don't mind sharing the check amount.

@LeeM, I'm not sure why they did not mention the amount of the checks also before mailing them out. But even with the depreciation, I don't think it should be less than 50% of what I claimed. A 50% depreciation amount is already a substantial amount. So, I hope it is not more than that. In addition, they still gave us $200 travel voucher to both mother-in-law and I. So, $200 will be added to the claim settlement amount for each claim. Not sure if I would have enough trust to travel with Southwest again at this point. But they still issued us the vouchers.