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Airline travel warning

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I never thought about this before, so I thought I'd write a brief story.

Yesterday, I returned from a 3 day very formal business meeting. The meetings required clothes from full suits to sportcoats to sweaters to jeans depending on what time of day it was.

The Airline "mishandled" my luggage.

Good news is, they found it and it was delivered to me today.

BUT - what if it really was lost?

Here's what I had checked:

Custom suit - $1500
Zanella pants - $300
Luciano Barbera pants - $450
Brioni Cashmere sport coat - $4100
Brioni Cashmere sweater - $1000
Men's store label cashmere sweater -$300
3 Jantzentailor shirts - $150
Edward Green shoes - $1000
Allen Edmunds shoes - $300
casual shoes - $100
2 leather belts - $160
3 pair Pantheralla socks - $100
Electric Razor - $150
3 ties - $300
Levis vintage 501 Jeans - $200
the luggage itself - $400
TOTAL $10,810
not counting misc. toiletries, underwear, t-shirts. cell phone charger, shoe trees, shoe polish, etc.

Grand total probably hit just over $11,000

Airline liability limit - $3,000

Can you imagine how glad I am my luggage was found?

Now, the truth is that like many here, I didn't pay that much. But I did pay about $5500, and many of the items I could not replace for my original purchase price. For example - Edward Green sale shoes. Sure - I can get a different pair, but to find exactly what I lost on sale again could literally take years. I'd be forced to replace them at retail. Repeat that example for most of the items on my list.

Next time, I think I'll either buy extra coverage, travel with cheap clothing, or try to carry more on. I use a wide, rolling hardsided garmet bag style luggage though, to try to keep my clothes looking better.

Anyway - I know this was long-winded, but I'm betting many people here travel without thinking about the total replacement cost of their clothes.
post #2 of 15
I try to spread things out and keep some in my checked luggage and as much as I can in my carry on. But yeah, it would suck big time.
post #3 of 15
If you have Chubb insurance, you can be insured against loss or theft when you travel. You pay for it though.
post #4 of 15
I think the solution is either leave the Brioni cashmere and EGs at home or put them in carry-on. I'd probably vote for taking something else, but if it was a special meeting I can understand the temptation.
post #5 of 15
I carry everything on with me
post #6 of 15
You know what sucks? With all the advances the airline industry has made regarding handling, securities and all that, it seems to me that they have not really gave much consideration regarding lost luggages or pilferages as much as we the passengers want.
post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanC
I think the solution is either leave the Brioni cashmere and EGs at home or put them in carry-on. I'd probably vote for taking something else, but if it was a special meeting I can understand the temptation.
In the future I'll do that. The point was - I never even thought about the replacement cost in case my luggage were to get lost.

Oh - and the meetings included the highest level, most significant meetings of my life.
post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmatt
Oh - and the meetings included the highest level, most significant meetings of my life.


what would you have done if the bags were lost on the way to the meetings?

that is why I never check bags - I have been in meetings where somebody had to wear a cheap suit that they bought at the last minute because their bags were lost.
post #9 of 15
I carry everything on as well, unless I am limited to carry only one hand luggage at some airports; eg: Heathrow. The few times I had to check in luggage, they lost them, but fortunately they did get back to me intact after lots of hassle.
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter
what would you have done if the bags were lost on the way to the meetings?

that is why I never check bags - I have been in meetings where somebody had to wear a cheap suit that they bought at the last minute because their bags were lost.
trip there was nonstop. (and on a small regional jet with limited carry-on size rules). Trip home required plane change.

Anyway - the point is yes. I would do things differently next time. I'm hoping someone else learns from my experience and avoids the problem.

If I save just one Brioni Cashmere Jacket and pair of EG shoes, my job here is done!!!
post #11 of 15
I try to have as much carry-on as I can. I have one of those carry-on duffel bags (not strictly a suit bag) that expands to carry 2 suits, and a few outfits - that should be enough to get by for a 3-day trip by mixing it up.

I know you said your meetings required a variety of clothes, but for business trips I try to bring just enough for the trip plus a day or two extra (depending) in case a trip gets extended.
post #12 of 15
yea, i never check the expensive stuff. always carry that on.
however if you are going for a few weeks somewhere, you can always mail it to where you are going and have it insured ..i know it sounds crazy but some poeple i know do thaat
post #13 of 15
jmatt - I'm glad the luggage was found.

It's a sobering thought. I think I'm going to check my travel insurance policy carefully, to see exactly what it covers. Keeping as much as possible in carry-on is also a good idea.
post #14 of 15
Well after reading the list of contents and the values. Made me glad I was a poor librarian on a merger budget.

Glad you got the things back.

Robert
post #15 of 15
Don't fly. Take the train, take a bus, or drive (even if you have to rent a car). I know it takes longer, but, honestly, flying in "the post-9/11 world(tm)" is often more hassle than it's worth. I would only fly if: I'm only taking a carry-on, and I'm in an incredible hurry and didn't have time to plan for other options (for example, my mother's funeral 2 BIG states away).

On both the bus (Greyhound) and train (Amtrak), you can basically handle your own luggage, or at least watch it get stowed away underneath, or carry it on with you. Frankly, if I had $11K worth of things in my bags, I'd chain them to my body and not let go until I was at my destination.

Basically, I wouldn't trust others with my stuff unless it was disposable. No one will take care of your stuff like you will. Besides, riding the train, at least, is often quite nice, and you see the countryside from 100 yards instead of 40,000 feet. :-)
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