Under DOT regulations (for domestic travel) and international treaties (for international travel), airlines are required to compensate passengers if their bags are damaged, delayed, or lost.
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How much will airlines reimburse for lost luggage?

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, you are entitled to compensation for reasonable incidental expenses you incur because of your delayed baggage, up to the maximum liability limits, set by statute. For U.S. domestic flights, this is $3,800 per passenger.
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What happens if someone steals your luggage?

For stolen items, you'll need to report the theft to the police as soon as reasonably possible after it occurs, and get written evidence that you've reported it to the police such as a written police report. You'll also need a police report for lost items, unless the loss was by a third party (such as an airline).
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Can you sue an airline for stolen luggage?

Airlines must pay you when they lose your luggage. However, airlines do not always offer a fair price for losing your baggage or ruining your vacation. Some airlines might deny your claim because of a technical error or if they are suspicious of your claim. You can sue an airline for lost luggage.
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How do I get compensated for lost baggage?

Lost luggage on US flights: What To Do?
  1. Hold onto your file reference number that the airline provided you. ...
  2. Keep your receipts if you have to replace necessary items. ...
  3. Assemble a detailed list of contents for your lost bags. ...
  4. File a claim with the airline for compensation.
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Airlines have to reimburse you for 'reasonable items' in lost, delayed bags

Who pays for stolen luggage?

Once an airline determines that your bag is lost, the airline is responsible for compensating you for your bags' contents - subject to depreciation and maximum liability limits.
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What do airlines owe you if they lose your bag?

You may be entitled to compensation. Citing the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), she says airlines are responsible for up to $3800 for lost or delayed luggage on domestic flights.
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Are airlines responsible for stolen items?

Airlines all have a maximum amount that they will pay you in compensation per piece of luggage regardless of the contents. Buy insurance or check your homeowner insurance to find out whether your policy covers items lost or stolen while you are travelling.
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Which airline has the most lost luggage?

When it came to airlines that lost the most baggage, that same study found that Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines came in ninth out of 17 major airlines. “Of all national airlines, American Airlines lost the most bags in 2022, losing 850 bags per 100,000.
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How much luggage is stolen at airports?

According to the Department of Transportation, luggage theft is a common problem. U.S. airlines reported more than three mishandled bags for every thousand in March. More than 1 million bags were stolen in 2018. It resulted in $1.2 billion in missing valuables.
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How common is baggage claim theft?

Meanwhile, the theft rate per 100,000 passengers has remained steady. An SFPD spokesperson said on an average of every 100,000 passengers, roughly 0.30 filed a theft report so far this year, up from 0.28 last year.
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Does insurance cover stolen luggage?

Most comprehensive travel insurance plans include coverage for baggage loss and, if your baggage is not permanently lost or damaged, baggage delay. Some coverage may include the cost of essential items you purchase while you wait for your delayed luggage to be returned.
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Does lost luggage ever get returned?

Bags that are missing are tracked using the World Tracer system. Usually, they appear somewhere within a day or two and go on to be reunited with their owners. With most airlines, passengers qualify for compensation after their bags are lost for more than 24 hours to cover necessary expenses.
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Which airports are the worst for lost luggage?

The top 10 worst airports in the United States for lost luggage are:
  • Chicago O'Hare International Airport.
  • Harry Reid International Airport – Las Vegas.
  • San Diego International Airport.
  • Austin-Bergstrom International Airport – Austin, Texas.
  • Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
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Do airports usually find lost luggage?

In general, most luggage will end up being found, so they get classified as “delayed” and not “lost.” But in that immediate time when you're without your belongings, there should be some level of compensation, depending on the exact nature of your situation.
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What percentage of lost luggage is found?

The good news about lost luggage is that airlines worldwide eventually recover 97% of mishandled bags. That is one of 10 surprising facts about flying with luggage that came out of a new study by international air transport technology specialist SITA.
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Who is liable for lost luggage?

When hold luggage is lost, delayed or damaged airlines are liable for your losses.
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How much will Southwest reimburse for lost luggage?

According to the airline's contract of carriage, Southwest will pay for delayed bags to be delivered. The airline will compensate passengers for expenses they experience due to the loss, damage or delay of baggage, up to $3,800.
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How long do airlines keep lost bags?

Typically, airlines will pass the items over to the lost and found department at the arrival airport. The item will be kept for a 90-day holding period, after which, it will be donated to charity, or a place for sale – in some cases, the item will be destroyed if unclaimed after the holding period.
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Do I need receipts for lost luggage?

Getting Reimbursed By Your Airline

Most airlines require you to submit receipts for everything you want reimbursed. Save any receipts for expenses you think you can claim and be prepared to justify anything that might seem excessive.
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Who got fired for stealing luggage at airport?

Sam Brinton who identifies as non-binary and served as deputy assistant secretary of the Department of Energy's Office of Spent Fuel and Waste Disposition, was charged in two separate incidents of stealing suitcases from US airports. A Department of Energy spokesperson said: “Sam Brinton is no longer a DOE employee.
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Do people steal out of checked luggage?

Luggage theft is real and alarming, but fortunately, it doesn't happen to every traveler. The key thing to do is to keep a lookout for everything you're bringing all the time and take steps to ensure that your belongings are safe.
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Do TSA locks prevent theft?

These locks won't stop the thief from stealing your suitcase or bag, but they might prevent them from stealing the things you have inside. Most thieves don't really like to complicate their life and deal with lock picking. Another advantage these locks offer you is that they prevent the luggage zippers from opening.
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Can I claim lost baggage from airline and insurance?

If your luggage is lost while in the care of an airline, you should be able to claim compensation if your belongings have not been found and returned within 21 days. This is something you are legally entitled to if you checked-in your luggage to be stored in the cabin.
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