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My baggage is lost. What should I do?

Step 1. Find the airport’s Baggage Service Office

Smaller airports may not have one of these stands. In this case, speak with an airline representative or the airport administration.

Step 2. Fill out a special form

It’s called a Property Irregularity Report (PIR). The report must be filled out in block letters and in English. It’s used in the global baggage tracing system. Usually an airport staff member will fill out the form and include the passenger’s details and a description of the lost baggage. Ask for a copy of the report, as it may be useful if you plan to file a claim with the airline.

Step 3. Wait for the results

They could be the following:
  1. Your baggage is found within 21 days and intact.
  2. Your baggage is found within 21 days, but damaged.
  3. Your baggage doesn’t get found, it’s lost – in this case the airline is obliged to compensate the passenger. Apart from the cost of the bag itself, you’re entitled to claim compensation for non-pecuniary losses. For international flights you have 18 months from the arrival date in which to make a claim.
Baggage is considered delayed when missing for up to 21 days, after which it’s considered lost. If your baggage is found after 21 days, the airline should have it delivered to the owner at the specified address. In practice, however, this doesn’t always happen – sometimes you’re expected to go to the airport and collect your baggage yourself.

Step 4. File a claim with the airline

It should be submitted in written form along with any relevant documents. The claim can be written in free form, but it’s important to include the following details: the claimant’s full name and address, airline name, circumstances surrounding the incident, claims against the airline, claim amounts and their reasonable calculations, banking details.
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