Hundreds of passengers face three-hour wait for luggage at Heathrow Airport

·2-min read
Hundreds of passengers face three-hour wait for luggage at Heathrow Airport

Hundreds of passengers were left waiting for up to three hours to retrieve their luggage at Heathrow Airport on Sunday.

Nadir Coowar, 29, told Sky News he had been left stranded in Terminal 2 with his family waiting for their baggage to arrive following a 12-hour flight from Mauritius.

“I landed at 7am and I’m still waiting for the bags over two hours later,” he told the broadcaster.

“Everyone is just waiting around patiently for their luggage and no one has explained to us what is happening.

“There’s easily 200 people here waiting for luggage.”

Heathrow Airport (REUTERS)
Heathrow Airport (REUTERS)

Mr Coowar told Sky that he had overheard one worker claim there were “staff shortages because it is a Sunday”.

He added: “Everyone is too tired to sort of argue or complain. If they’re like me, they want their suitcase or just want to know when it will arrive.”

Guillaume arrived from Los Angeles on a Virgin Atlantic flight at 1.40pm and was still waiting for his baggage nearly three hours later at Terminal 3.

He told the Standard earlier this afternoon: “There are suitcases everywhere, even some from flights as old as June 11.

“The screens said our baggage would arrive at Belt 9 but the whole plane has been waiting here for hours. Only one announcement was made at the very start to say there would be a 13-minute delay.

“Me and some other passengers went to the Virgin desk but they had absolutely no information.”

He said that staff on the desk had attempted to reach colleagues on the ground to enquire about the status of the bags using a walkie-talkie at around 3.30pm but were unable to get through.

They were later told that the bags would be taken out and brought to the belt within 15 minutes – but they did not arrive.

Virgin Atlantic was contacted for comment.

A spokeswoman for Heathrow insisted that baggage arriving at Heathrow was the responsibility of the airlines.

“It is airlines who transport your baggage from the plane to the baggage reclaim area, as they either employ their own ground staff, or outsource this process to a third party company,” she said.

“This issue is isolated and is unrelated to the technical baggage issues in T2 on Friday.”

Heathrow issued an apology after a technical glitch caused a mass of suitcases at a terminal on Friday, with witnesses describing an “enormous luggage carpet” at the airport.

Airline passengers have been hit by disruption for several months as the industry grapples with staff shortages after letting thousands of people go during the Covid pandemic.

Long queues outside airport terminals have forced many to miss flights, while passengers have also been hit by a wave of cancellations.

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