Which Airlines are Most Likely to Lose Your Luggage?

Baby boomer travelers have been around the block enough to know that lost luggage is no walk in the park.

When your luggage doesn’t arrive with you at your destination, chances are fairly good that you will eventually reconnect with your luggage.  However, a day or two without your luggage is not the best way to start an exciting vacation.

We’ve never completely lost our luggage, but we have had our luggage misplaced by airlines a number of times.

Best advice?  Plan ahead and pack two days worth of goodies in your carry-on bag.

Some travel mavens have proclaimed that checked luggage is lost luggage.  Sounds catchy, but the actual numbers show that your chances of “mishandled luggage” lies somewhere between 0.90 and 5.68/1000 passengers, depending on the airline.

The Department of Transportation, who publishes these numbers each month, defines mishandled luggage as “the total number of reports each carrier received from passengers concerning lost, damaged, delayed or  pilfered baggage.

As you can see in the following chart, Virgin America has the best record with less than one person/thousand filing a complaint, where American Eagle Airlines bottoms the list at 5.68 folks/thousand filing a complaint.

U.S. Department of Transportation Mishandled Baggage Reports  – September 2012

Note: click report for larger view.  

As you can see in the report, roughly three people in one thousand are likely to have mishandled luggage.  While that number seems low, if you’re one of the three, life gets suddenly complicated.  Plan ahead!

Do you have a horror story about lost luggage?  Share it with us in the comments section below.

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2 Responses to “Which Airlines are Most Likely to Lose Your Luggage?”
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