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COMPLAINT: Overcharge for baggage

 
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Old Feb 15, 2019, 6:30 AM
pjinterrogator pjinterrogator is offline
 
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The following are the events of 05 December 2018, at Lufthansa Airlines Counters, Frankfurt Airport, Germany

I had a reserved seat on Lufthansa Flight 0444, Frankfurt to Atlanta, Wednesday, 05 December 2018. I arrived very early to check in.

I arrived with two bags, each weighing 24 pounds each. I placed both on the luggage belt beside the counter of the Lufthansa baggage checking agent at the Frankfurt airport. She informed me that my ticket did not include any checked baggage, so I would be liable for charges. Not a problem. I expected to pay a reasonable price of about 50E, maybe 60E per bag. I had hauled both bags around Europe for two months and wanted to unload and relax. I also recalled how many times the overhead luggage bins had been so full due to cheap customers, who wanted to avoid baggage charges, that the pilot begged passengers to submit carry-on baggage for free transportation in the cargo hold. I thought that I would do Lufthansa a favor by checking my baggage. The overhead bins would be less full, and Lufthansa could make a few more Euros by handling my bag for me. Little did I know that in a few minutes, my generosity would be betrayed by Lufthansa. Also, after I boarded, I saw that the flight was barely 25% full and that many overhead luggage bins were completely empty.

As the bags were tagged and whisked away on the conveyor belt (the bags are gone now, mind you, along with my ability to carry my own bag), I asked how much the charges would be. The baggage checking agent did not answer. She directed me to another counter to pay my unspecified bill. I proceeded to the payment counter to pay my bill for my checked baggage. The attendant there and a colleague had to look carefully at their computer screen to see precisely what to charge me. Final verdict: 50 Euros for the first bag and TWO HUNDRED EUROS FOR THE SECOND BAG!!!!!!! DUDE! If the baggage check lady downstairs had told me this price, when I asked her, then I would have gladly carried the second bag. The fact that I was a tired 65 year old man was less important than 200Euros!!!! No warning. Bait: sure, check in your bags and we will charge you an unnamed price for them. Switch: when you get upstairs you will learn that your baggage price will cost more than your seat.

When I was informed of the 250 Euro charge, I could have been recalcitrant and refused to pay. I could have demanded that the second bag be retrieved from the Lufthansa baggage system and be placed in my hand for me to carry and save 200 Euros. The airplane carried the bag from Germany to USA. The only difference was that since it was in the cargo compartment, I was required to pay 200E. If the bag had been in an otherwise empty overhead storage, it would have cost me nothing. Your airplane carried the bag either way. Can you see why I am a little, just a little, angry?

Why does one 24 pound bag cost me 50E to check and a second 24 pound bag cost me 200E to check? This is a rhetorical question, because I do not think you have a decent answer.

Later events from my home in USA
Upon my return to USA, I tried to complain online to Lufthansa and I was told that the 250E was correct. I complained a second time. The Lufthansa agent offered me a 50E consolation gift.

Events at Frankfurt Airport, on 31 January 2019
On Thursday, 31 January, 2019, I flew the return half of my ticket from Atlanta to Frankfurt. I had copies of all the bills and relevant documents with me. Upon arrival at the Frankfurt Airport, I went to the Luggage surcharge desk, where I had been relieved of 250Euros ($284.05) on 05 December 2018. I was served by Frau XXXXX. I explained the problem from the first half of my reservation. She looked into her computer and told me that I had indeed been overcharged. I should have been charged 50E for the first bag and 90E for the second bag (!!!!!!). (I still fail to see why two bags of the same weight are charged different prices. I also fail to see why the check in agent could not tell me the price.) Frau XXXXX told me that she understood my issues, but that she was unable to issue any refund at her station. She referred me to Lufthansa Customer Relations. I contacted Customer Relations. They refused to reconsider. repeatedly

Conclusion: I will never again fly Lufthansa.
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