Last Updated on June 22, 2020 by Amanda Stancati
*Updated April 2015
What happens to my luggage on a connecting flight?
In travel lingo, some airlines have “interline agreements” which means they agree to be “friends” to facilitate travel for their passengers who require different airlines to reach their destination. When this agreement exists and you book a prepackaged vacation, your checked luggage will automatically be put through and the airlines will work together. This is the case with chartered airlines; with a packaged vacation, many people on your flight are in the same situation, travelling to the same destination with the same connecting flight.
If there is no interline agreement, the passenger must go through the process of retrieving their luggage and re-checking it in at the counter with a new airline before going through security again. In this case, there needs to be sufficient time to do so, depending on the size of the airport.
If you book online with two airlines that do not have an agreement, our ticketing department will contact you as soon as the booking comes through and advise you of the opportunity to re-book with an agent before they issue the ticket. Our department can recommend another flight to book or explain the connection process.
If your flights do not interline, you risk losing the value of your second flight if they disconnect and delay because of factors such as weather. It is the responsibility of the client to purchase another ticket and carry onward. This is why it’s always a good idea to consult a travel agent.
What do I do if I lose my luggage?
If you lose your luggage, don’t leave the baggage claim area until you fill out the required forms.
If they end up finding your luggage, they will send it on the next flight. However, if it is slow season and flights are not frequent, you may be waiting a while or only retrieve it when you return home. In these cases, you get a phone number and claim ID to track its whereabouts.
If the airline completely loses or damages your luggage, there is a small amount they have to compensate. This amount is legislated so it is approximately the same for all airlines (it is based on weight, not luggage content, approximately $5 per kilo). Usually, you pay for necessities out of pocket and submit proof and receipts upon your return for reimbursement.
It is important to purchase travel insurance that covers baggage delay or loss to offset costs if this were to happen. Our Transat Holidays travel insurance covers a lot more than the airline and reimburses so much per day for delays.
Remember to put your name, address, phone number inside your bag if it gets ripped open. On the outside, your baggage tag should have a contact from your destination and your cell phone number if you’re taking it with you.