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Answered Damaged Suitcase on Qantas Domestic leg - Worth the $200 Excess for claim?

RedSMS

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Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
Hi All,

I have read a few other older posts on this but no direct comparison.

I was travelling SYD-MEL with Qantas exactly 1 week ago. This leg was the final one of my MEL-SYD-AKL-SYD-MEL trip (All with QF.) I have a Samsonite suitcase (have been to the website and can't seem to find exactly what type of samsonite it is although seems like it would be on the cheap side.) When I took this suitcase through customs after removing from the baggage carousel following disembarkation of QF144, there was no problem with the case. When I wheeled it maybe 200 metres to the Qantas domestic transfer check-in area at Sydney intl terminal there was no problem. However, when I disembarked QF 479 (and those QFF's with gripes over bags not coming off the line in a certain order will find the irony in this I hope,) My Suitcase was first off the line and damaged! I had difficulty wheeling it to the person picking me up, and when I let the bag stand by itself, I noticed that it looked like it was about to fall over. I didn't think it was such a huge deal as I thought it was a loose wheel and that I could repair it myself. I am flying up to CNS on Tuesday and was about to begin packing earlier on this evening and noticed that a section of the plastic re-enforcement inside the suitcase on the right side of the rear of the suitcase where that wheel sits (if viewing the back from the rear,) has been hit with blunt force and severely damaged beyond the point which I can repair.

The question I have is what is my best option? Should I make a claim on my TI ($200 excess?) Should I speak to QF? Should I just organise to get it repaired at a Samsonite service centre (There is one about 10Km from me?)

If I claim under TI, will they want proof of purchase (Which I don't have as it was a hand-me-down?)

It is a large suitcase, has a TSA-lock, zip lock and 3 wheels (containing numbers 0-9) which operates the zip lock.
It probably isn't part of their most expensive line, but I've been all over the world with it so there's sentimental value here, plus I have a photo of it with the relevant tags stuck to it which proves it was handled and damaged on that flight.

Or, should I be dishonest and take out TI for my QLD trip and claim it was damaged then? (I would hate to do that as it would make me feel too uncomfortable,) but it's my way of asking whether or not that would work?

I have provided 2 pics. The first picture shows the damage to the plastic re-enforcement insert on the bottom right side. (You may have to zoom in to see the true extent of the damage.)

I have added some brightness to the second image by applying a watercolour effect to it. You can match the damage from the first photo to the second one when you see the massive indent in the vicinity of the bottom left wheel ----> (Rear right wheel when the suitcase is standing upright and viewed from the back.)


1.
Suitcase damage5.jpg


2.
Suitcase damage 2.jpg

I thank all of you for your continuing support and look forward to any replies. Cheers!
 

DC3

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I would lodge a complaint with QF, keeping just to the essential facts and not long-winded. See how that goes, first.

Do Samsonite provide any sort of lifetime guarantee? If so, that may be another option.

Edit: As you have already located a Samsonite repairer, you could always get a quote in the meantime.
 

RedSMS

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Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
I would lodge a complaint with QF, keeping just to the essential facts and not long-winded. See how that goes, first.

Do Samsonite provide any sort of lifetime guarantee? If so, that may be another option.

Edit: As you have already located a Samsonite repairer, you could always get a quote in the meantime.
Thanks DC3,

I am filling out a claim with 1cover at the same time and I just got to the section where it is asking me if the travel provider has compensated me for the cost of loss. What would a claim achieve depending on how I answer this question? What would Qantas do regarding damaged baggage anyway? Would they replace it or pay for repair costs?

thanks
 

RedSMS

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
I would lodge a complaint with QF, keeping just to the essential facts and not long-winded. See how that goes, first.

Do Samsonite provide any sort of lifetime guarantee? If so, that may be another option.

Edit: As you have already located a Samsonite repairer, you could always get a quote in the meantime.
I'm not sure re lifetime guarantee but as I mentioned in OP it was purchased a while back (not less than 2 years ago.) Nevertheless, I've asked the person who have it to me and they dont have proof of purchase.
Cheers
 

MEL_Traveller

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Apr 27, 2005
Messages
21,575
Thanks DC3,

I am filling out a claim with 1cover at the same time and I just got to the section where it is asking me if the travel provider has compensated me for the cost of loss. What would a claim achieve depending on how I answer this question? What would Qantas do regarding damaged baggage anyway? Would they replace it or pay for repair costs?

thanks
This is what I was thinking reading your original post.

Travel insurance is there to cover you for expenses you are out of pocket for. If an airline damages your suitcase your first action should be to follow that up with the airline. They may repair, replace, or provide compensation for the case. If the airline doesn't come to the party, then you can put in a claim against your insurance.

Most airlines require you to contact them regarding damaged bags within a prescribed period. Check the QF website to make sure you stay in those time limits.
 

RedSMS

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Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
This is what I was thinking reading your original post.

Travel insurance is there to cover you for expenses you are out of pocket for. If an airline damages your suitcase your first action should be to follow that up with the airline. They may repair, replace, or provide compensation for the case. If the airline doesn't come to the party, then you can put in a claim against your insurance.

Most airlines require you to contact them regarding damaged bags within a prescribed period. Check the QF website to make sure you stay in those time limits.
Screen Shot 2020-03-09 at 12.45.25 am.png
INTERESTING!!

Because the limit for anything to do with international baggage (incl domestic flights with intl connections is 7 days, they won't do anything about it.

ALTHOUGH:

I booked my MEL-SYD and SYD-MEL Flights on award bookings during different transactions to that of the SYD-AKL-SYD booking (hence diff booking numbers: time limit is 21 days for domestic)

The bag was damaged when I pulled it off the belt in MEL 7days + 1 or 2 hours ago..... JUUUUST beyond the 7 day limit, but I'm going to argue that despite international transfer I still checked in my bag at Sydney FOR QF479 and when I did so, it wasn't damaged. Furthermore, I will add to the argument that this was a domestic flight with no intl connections due to the simple fact that I checked in my bag for a domestic flight! Hopefully, the fact that I had to take my bag through customs in SYD when it was not damaged just 20 minutes earlier and then re-check it for a separate domestic flight (The only difference is the check-in at the dom xfer desk instead of dom bag drop) will sway them. I would understand if my bags were interlined and checked all the way through from AKL-MEL like they were on the outbound leg departing MEL. I can only hope!
 

MEL_Traveller

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Just put the claim in and see what they say. Once you have an answer there, you can decide next steps.
 

maia200

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Put the claim in. I had a claim from BNE - SFO and it was covered easily through Qantas...they really were not that hard to deal with. Got a brand new Samsonite (mind you it was a hard cover Samsonite that was cracked all the way down the side). It was under two years old....I got a soft cover this time...just in case.
 

RedSMS

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Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
Put the claim in. I had a claim from BNE - SFO and it was covered easily through Qantas...they really were not that hard to deal with. Got a brand new Samsonite (mind you it was a hard cover Samsonite that was cracked all the way down the side). It was under two years old....I got a soft cover this time...just in case.
I like the Pun there ;)

No such luck with me. I agree with you though, very easy to deal with, just got a blanket no.

Damaged Luggage Complaint

I retrieved my suitcase at MEL after QF479 from Sydney on Sunday night. I noticed immediately that one of the wheels was slightly wobbling and off-balance, thus making it hard to wheel the bag along the ground. As my taxi was already waiting for me and thought it was minor wear and tear and not damaged, I did not report it to Qantas baggage services. I am flying to Cairns tomorrow on QF702, and last night as I started packing the same suitcase, I noticed that the case was severely damaged. The plastic re-enforcement that runs along the bottom of the inside of the lining right beneath the location of the off-balance wheel has been smashed inwards and destroyed. I only noticed this last night as I was planning to tighten the screw on the affected wheel to discover that the tightening screws are located in the inner lining of the case which is only accessible by pulling on the zip that gives repairer access. It would have been impossible for me to have known how badly damaged the case was had I not attempted to tighten what I thought was an off-balance, wobbly wheel. I have never had any reason to pull down this zip and I did it in order to see if I could tighten the wheel from the inside, as there aren’t any screws on the wheel structure on the outside of the case. The damaged plastic structure will quickly degrade and crack, disabling the wheels and causing the bag to split open. I want Qantas to supply me with a new suitcase as this is the only luggage I own. I am a Gold Frequent Flyer who exclusively travels on your airline/partners. The inability to wheel the bag around means I have to carry it. Additionally, it had a handy and secure TSA approved lock. The suitcase was not damaged in any way when I checked it in at SYD, thus it has been damaged during transit to MEL. I was unable to submit photos as files are over 1MB. Additionally, I did not receive a baggage file reference at the airport. I expect a considerate, understanding and timely response. Thank You.


Dear RedSMS,


Thanks for contacting us about your bag.


We want everything you check in with us, to arrive safely at your destination, so I was concerned to read about the damage to your 27 Expandable upright when you travelled with us, on flight QF0479 on 1st March 2020.


It is standard airline procedure that any damage sustained to checked baggage, must be reported to, and sighted by, the operating carrier’s Baggage Services staff at the time of collection. When this is done, a property irregularity report is created to substantiate and support any further claim.


We do understand damage is not always noticed immediately, so we allow our customers a further 3 days from arrival to report the damage in writing. As your report was made outside this period I regret we are unable to consider your claim.


Should your loss be recoverable through travel insurance, we would be more than happy to provide you with any additional information your insurer may require. If you wish to proceed, can you please provide your complete residential address.


I am sorry if this was not the answer you were hoping for, and thank you again for contacting us.



Kind regards,


Rochelle


Qantas Customer Care.

=======================================================================
 

MEL_Traveller

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Messages
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Oh well. There you go :) You have the offer to provide you with the necessary information for your insurer. Pretty bad form however - you were trying to save QF money by thinking it was a minor issue that could be fixed at home. And yet you get penalised.
 

RedSMS

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
Oh well. There you go :) You have the offer to provide you with the necessary information for your insurer. Pretty bad form however - you were trying to save QF money by thinking it was a minor issue that could be fixed at home. And yet you get penalised.
Interesting that you mentioned that. I decided that it would be no harm in writing back, and I did say exactly that at the end of the reply :)

I still think the next reply will be the same.

============================================================================

I thank you for your speedy reply regarding this issue. I spoke to a representative of Qantas on the phone last night before sending in the complaint (Sunday night.) He directed me to the damaged baggage page of the Qantas website, and it did not mention 3 days, or that I had to have made a complaint to Qantas baggage services at the airport. He directed me to the following link --> Baggage services | Qantas AU

On this page, the following timeline for making a claim for damaged baggage is outlined as follows :

. <-- Link


I refer to "In the case of damage to or loss of a whole item of checked baggage," It clearly states that the timeline is 21 days.

The entire suitcase is damaged. The wording of this section of your website is very ambiguous. I can't help but think that it is written this way so that Qantas can avoid having to provide an outcome that is favourable to the passenger. It is crucial for you to understand that there was no possible way that anyone would have noticed that the whole suitcase was damaged as (and you will see in the photos I have taken,) once the inside zip was opened it became immediately obvious that not only is the whole item of baggage unusable, it would be hazardous to check this item onto a flight as sharp and/or heavy items will cause the bag to fall over and injure somebody. Furthermore, the whole item is damaged as it can no longer be used for perhaps its most useful and intended purpose which is for it to be wheeled along the ground to, from or at the airport. I purchased a bag with wheels as I do not want to lug heavy items around. Whether in spite or despite the ambiguous wording of this section of your website, the fact remains is that your airline was responsible for rendering my suitcase unusable. Finally, I would like to think that this complaint would be taken on its unique merits. A suitcase can be completely damaged and unusable even if the passenger does not notice it right away as the internal structure is obscured from view even after unpacking by an inner lining with a zip for repair access (This suitcase can't be repaired.) I have to purchase another item of luggage for further travel and this is because the structure of the suitcase in question has been completely damaged. Does the entire item of luggage have to be crushed and shredded into a million pieces for Qantas to rule it as a whole item? I can not use it. It is useless to me.

Also, I think that your response was really poor and shows that Qantas can be really unforgiving to its loyal customers. Instead of reporting the damage that I knew of at the airport with the intention of seeking direct compensation from your airline, I decided to save you money by attempting (what I thought) was a minor repair at home. And the result? I get penalised!

This is a really horrible way of treating a loyal customer, and I would like you to rethink the situation. I tried to save you the cost, but I end up bearing a bigger cost. Cruel.

Please find attached photos of the damaged item of luggage.

I look forward to your reply.

Thanks,

RedSMS
 

kevrosmith

Established Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2009
Messages
2,334
I would call Samsonite. They are fantastic at customer service. I have a hard-case samsonite and the wheels kept getting ripped off by airlines, and had done at least 2 repairs (one in syd and one in Toronto). The third time was by SQ or Silkair coming back into CNS. When I spoke with our local Samonsite repair center, they suggested I call Samonsite directly as they had run out of spares anyway. They were fantastic. They sent me out a pack of 4 new wheels and I’ve gone and bought the right screwdriver tool and just travel with a spare wheel and the tool now.

I’ve also had problems with a samsonite backpack and they have replaced it twice now over a number of years.
Their follow up service is impeccable in my experience. I’d recommend calling them direct.
 

RedSMS

Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2018
Messages
106
I would call Samsonite. They are fantastic at customer service. I have a hard-case samsonite and the wheels kept getting ripped off by airlines, and had done at least 2 repairs (one in syd and one in Toronto). The third time was by SQ or Silkair coming back into CNS. When I spoke with our local Samonsite repair center, they suggested I call Samonsite directly as they had run out of spares anyway. They were fantastic. They sent me out a pack of 4 new wheels and I’ve gone and bought the right screwdriver tool and just travel with a spare wheel and the tool now.

I’ve also had problems with a samsonite backpack and they have replaced it twice now over a number of years.
Their follow up service is impeccable in my experience. I’d recommend calling them direct.
That's good to know as it looks like they will be my next port of call. Btw, did you see photo's of the damage in OP? I can't repair that!
 
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maia200

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I like the Pun there ;)

No such luck with me. I agree with you though, very easy to deal with, just got a blanket no.

Damaged Luggage Complaint

I retrieved my suitcase at MEL after QF479 from Sydney on Sunday night. I noticed immediately that one of the wheels was slightly wobbling and off-balance, thus making it hard to wheel the bag along the ground. As my taxi was already waiting for me and thought it was minor wear and tear and not damaged, I did not report it to Qantas baggage services. I am flying to Cairns tomorrow on QF702, and last night as I started packing the same suitcase, I noticed that the case was severely damaged. The plastic re-enforcement that runs along the bottom of the inside of the lining right beneath the location of the off-balance wheel has been smashed inwards and destroyed. I only noticed this last night as I was planning to tighten the screw on the affected wheel to discover that the tightening screws are located in the inner lining of the case which is only accessible by pulling on the zip that gives repairer access. It would have been impossible for me to have known how badly damaged the case was had I not attempted to tighten what I thought was an off-balance, wobbly wheel. I have never had any reason to pull down this zip and I did it in order to see if I could tighten the wheel from the inside, as there aren’t any screws on the wheel structure on the outside of the case. The damaged plastic structure will quickly degrade and crack, disabling the wheels and causing the bag to split open. I want Qantas to supply me with a new suitcase as this is the only luggage I own. I am a Gold Frequent Flyer who exclusively travels on your airline/partners. The inability to wheel the bag around means I have to carry it. Additionally, it had a handy and secure TSA approved lock. The suitcase was not damaged in any way when I checked it in at SYD, thus it has been damaged during transit to MEL. I was unable to submit photos as files are over 1MB. Additionally, I did not receive a baggage file reference at the airport. I expect a considerate, understanding and timely response. Thank You.


Dear RedSMS,


Thanks for contacting us about your bag.


We want everything you check in with us, to arrive safely at your destination, so I was concerned to read about the damage to your 27 Expandable upright when you travelled with us, on flight QF0479 on 1st March 2020.


It is standard airline procedure that any damage sustained to checked baggage, must be reported to, and sighted by, the operating carrier’s Baggage Services staff at the time of collection. When this is done, a property irregularity report is created to substantiate and support any further claim.


We do understand damage is not always noticed immediately, so we allow our customers a further 3 days from arrival to report the damage in writing. As your report was made outside this period I regret we are unable to consider your claim.


Should your loss be recoverable through travel insurance, we would be more than happy to provide you with any additional information your insurer may require. If you wish to proceed, can you please provide your complete residential address.


I am sorry if this was not the answer you were hoping for, and thank you again for contacting us.



Kind regards,


Rochelle


Qantas Customer Care.

=======================================================================
The difference is that I took it to their customer care centre as soon as I got off the plane in SFO. Sorry to hear the negative responses to you.
 

Beano

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Travelled BA to Edinburgh. Hard shell case was damaged and spotted straight away so complained to BA and given a voucher and address of a few luggage sellers . I had a chioice of any similar case, any brand. Chose a Samsonite and handed over the voucher. No question of age of case or value. No cash changed hands.

I suppose the lesson is to check your case as soon as it's off the carousell and complain straight away. Don't know how things would work with QF.
 

nutwood

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Joined
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Messages
604
I've made several claims for luggage damage with Qantas and their service has been excellent. In each instance though, I have presented myself and damaged luggage before leaving the airport in order to obtain a file number.
The only time I have not followed this procedure was when the damage was to the contents. I had a test instrument rolled up in clothing, in the centre of the bag. It went in OK, came out with the top smashed. I believe in that instance, they must have opened the bag to investigate the strange object on the X-ray and dropped it on to concrete. Either that or they hurled the whole bag from the plane prior to landing. I put those two options to them in writing and after a bit of arguing, they paid for a replacement instrument.
I would strongly recommend immediately reporting even minor damage, as it gets it on the record. In the event that a warranty claim fails, or the damage is more serious than initially realised, you are in a far stronger position if you pointed out the damage before leaving the airport.
 

bernard

Junior Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2002
Messages
14
Hi All,

I have read a few other older posts on this but no direct comparison.

I was travelling SYD-MEL with Qantas exactly 1 week ago. This leg was the final one of my MEL-SYD-AKL-SYD-MEL trip (All with QF.) I have a Samsonite suitcase (have been to the website and can't seem to find exactly what type of samsonite it is although seems like it would be on the cheap side.) When I took this suitcase through customs after removing from the baggage carousel following disembarkation of QF144, there was no problem with the case. When I wheeled it maybe 200 metres to the Qantas domestic transfer check-in area at Sydney intl terminal there was no problem. However, when I disembarked QF 479 (and those QFF's with gripes over bags not coming off the line in a certain order will find the irony in this I hope,) My Suitcase was first off the line and damaged! I had difficulty wheeling it to the person picking me up, and when I let the bag stand by itself, I noticed that it looked like it was about to fall over. I didn't think it was such a huge deal as I thought it was a loose wheel and that I could repair it myself. I am flying up to CNS on Tuesday and was about to begin packing earlier on this evening and noticed that a section of the plastic re-enforcement inside the suitcase on the right side of the rear of the suitcase where that wheel sits (if viewing the back from the rear,) has been hit with blunt force and severely damaged beyond the point which I can repair.

The question I have is what is my best option? Should I make a claim on my TI ($200 excess?) Should I speak to QF? Should I just organise to get it repaired at a Samsonite service centre (There is one about 10Km from me?)

If I claim under TI, will they want proof of purchase (Which I don't have as it was a hand-me-down?)

It is a large suitcase, has a TSA-lock, zip lock and 3 wheels (containing numbers 0-9) which operates the zip lock.
It probably isn't part of their most expensive line, but I've been all over the world with it so there's sentimental value here, plus I have a photo of it with the relevant tags stuck to it which proves it was handled and damaged on that flight.

Or, should I be dishonest and take out TI for my QLD trip and claim it was damaged then? (I would hate to do that as it would make me feel too uncomfortable,) but it's my way of asking whether or not that would work?

I have provided 2 pics. The first picture shows the damage to the plastic re-enforcement insert on the bottom right side. (You may have to zoom in to see the true extent of the damage.)

I have added some brightness to the second image by applying a watercolour effect to it. You can match the damage from the first photo to the second one when you see the massive indent in the vicinity of the bottom left wheel ----> (Rear right wheel when the suitcase is standing upright and viewed from the back.)


1.
View attachment 208634


2.
View attachment 208635

I thank all of you for your continuing support and look forward to any replies. Cheers!
When my luggage was damaged a few years ago flying Etihad from Singapore to Brisbane, I contacted the luggage handling department. They first tried to brush me off saying my bag was too heavy but decided to replace my luggage. Got my replacement after a few weeks.
 

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