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Transport / Airline sends staff to airports to recover missing baggage

Loganair managing director Jonathan Hinkles.
Loganair chief executive Jonathan Hinkles.

LOGANAIR has announced a targeted “baggage task force” to tackle ongoing issues with suitcases being left behind at airports on the mainland.

The group of dedicated employees will work to find the luggage belonging to customers affected by recent travel disruption, in which customers have arrived at their Loganair destination to find that their bags have not travelled with them.

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Most of the baggage issues affecting Loganair have been caused by staffing and baggage system overloads at hub airports, which are said to have come to the fore as demand for air travel surges back this summer.

Loganair said the airline itself has a “strong track record in terms of baggage handling and recovery”, especially at airports where it carries out its own baggage handling in the Highlands and Islands.

Chief executive Jonathan Hinkles said: “Loganair flies lifeline routes and offers essential connectivity across the UK.

“With that in mind, we couldn’t sit back and watch airport disruption in recent weeks without getting stuck in to find solutions ourselves.

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“Our baggage task force has already driven to the hub airports most affected, working through hundreds of bags in secure storage until we locate those belonging to Loganair customers – which we then repatriate to its owner.

“Although we are the UK’s largest regional airline, we’re small enough to be able to do this and it’s important to us that we can support our customers in this way.

“Having been told that there were only three bags belonging to Loganair customers awaiting delivery at one airport, the physical search by our task force at that airport found over 100 more – and each and every one of those bags is now on its way back to its owner.”

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Thanks to the efforts of the task force, Loganair is now seeing a marked reduction in baggage issues and complaints in recent days, and expects the situation to further improve over the coming weeks.

The airline is also seeking assistance from its customers, as it has become apparent through work of the task force that several missing baggage cases have arisen because customers on many connecting itineraries are not aware of where they need to collect their bags and re-check them.

For example, if connecting from an international flight to a Loganair domestic flight at Manchester, customers must collect their baggage and return to the bag drop desks once they have cleared customs.

Loganair has also now launched a new webpage setting out information for transfer customers as to whether their bags can be checked through or whether bags need to be reclaimed at the hub airport to clear immigration formalities.

Hinkles added: “As ever, we are grateful to our customers for their continued patience at this time and we are confident that our new task force will help solve challenges currently faced across the travel sector.”

Meanwhile Loganair has also introduced a new initiative that asks tourists to respect and protect the country’s unique island destinations by creating a new “visitor pledge”.

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