Our Lufthansa Delayed Bag Experience

We checked a couple of bags on our recent trip from Sylt to Dusseldorf via Frankfurt, and they ended up being delayed. That’s a bigger risk right now than in the past, given all the travel chaos, so I figured it would be useful to recap my experience.

Why we checked bags on this trip

Many frequent travelers would never check a bag, and I totally get that. However, I’ve increasingly warmed up to the idea, so let me provide some background:

  • We were traveling for six weeks, and realistically it’s just not that easy to pack enough stuff in a carry-on for a trip that long (especially with European airlines often being stricter about carry-on size)
  • While Ford doesn’t enjoy checking bags, he does like having more than one “look” on a trip, and I like being married (most days), so “happy husband, happy life,” or something
  • Ford has taught me the importance of always wearing sunscreen, and we go through a lot of it, especially in sunny destinations (of which there were plenty on this trip); it’s better and more economical to just bring your own, and that requires checking a bag
  • If you’re flying an airline like Alaska or Delta (with a 20-minute bag guarantee), or are flying within Europe, generally checked bags come out quite fast, and you don’t end up waiting that long; at least that was the case before the summer travel chaos erupted
  • I’ve kind of started to enjoy traveling light through the airport, not having my bag stopped at the checkpoint for liquids, etc.; so when Ford checks his bag, I’ll check my carry-on too, because it’s just easier

Lufthansa didn’t get our bag to Dusseldorf in time

We were flying from Sylt to Frankfurt to Dusseldorf with an 80 minute connection (the minimum connection time at the airport is 45 minutes, don’t ask me how). When we landed in Dusseldorf, we received an email from Lufthansa stating that our bags didn’t make it on that flight.

Notice from Lufthansa about our delayed bag

Let me state that for the remainder of the summer I absolutely wouldn’t book an 80 minute connection in Frankfurt and expect my bag to make it. However, we were traveling in mid-June, and this was right when travel went from normal busy to insanely busy.

Prior to flying that day, we found travel to still be quite orderly and calm, and we had connected at several hubs in Europe. But it was during that very connection in Frankfurt where we both commented to one another how the real summer rush had started.

Having delayed bags is a hopeless feeling

The email we received from Lufthansa about our bags being delayed mentioned that our bags had already been “rebooked” on LH82, the flight later that afternoon. We were initially scheduled to arrive at 2:05PM, and the other flight was scheduled to get in at 5:05PM. Great, that’s not too bad.

Rather than waiting at the baggage office to file a claim, the email from Lufthansa said to visit the carrier’s website to provide an address for delivery, and/or contact details. So we quickly filled that out, and I chose the option to pick up the bags at the airport myself, since I figured that was the safest and quickest option.

Our bags didn’t make it to baggage claim


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