Travelers say their checked luggage is stuck at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport

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Tuesday, July 12, 2022
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Several travelers in our area have reported to Eyewitness News 7 on Your Side Investigates that they have been unable to get their luggage from Air France at Charles de Gaulle Airport. Kristin Thorne has more.

Several travelers in our area have reported to Eyewitness News 7 on Your Side Investigates that they have been unable to get their luggage from Air France at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris - a problem acknowledged by the airline and which is affecting thousands of travelers.

"I feel like I've been robbed," Susan Golden, of Plainview, told Eyewitness News.

Golden said her two suitcases have been stuck at Charles de Gaulle for the last 10 days and she can see their location from the Air Tags she has in the bags.

"I see them," she said. "They're not lost."

Golden had spent two weeks traveling through Spain and Portugal with her husband and connected through Paris on their way back to JFK.

Golden said she has tried everything possible to get Air France to deal with her bags, but they have not been responsive.

Rasha Monir of Manhattan told a similar story to Eyewitness News.

She was traveling through Paris a few days ago with her family on their way to Italy. They arrived in Italy, but all of their luggage is still stuck at Charles de Gaulle.

"I have been traveling a lot in my life," she told Eyewitness News in a Facebook message. "Never ever I have faced such negligence from an airline."

Earlier this month, airport workers at Charles de Gaulle went on strike fighting for higher wages. Around the same time, the airport's baggage sorting system had a technical malfunction leaving 1,500 pieces of luggage grounded.

The CEO of Air France recently sent an email to customers saying that the airline had been preparing for months for the busy travel season and "we were on the right track with our operational performance back at satisfactory levels in the first quarter of this year. Unfortunately, we must note that over the past two weeks, our operations have been severely degraded by external issues."

CEO Anne Rigail acknowledged that luggage that passed through Charles de Gaulle was not arriving at their final destinations.

"I would like to offer my deep and sincere apologies to those of you whose travels have been affected by this situation," she wrote. "I would also like to assure you that all of us at Air France are working tirelessly at your service to resolve each individual situation."

Eyewitness News contacted Delta Airlines - a commercial partner of Air France - about the luggage issue and what the airline is doing to resolve it for customers.

A spokesperson said, "Delta knows that personal items are of great importance. We apologize for the checked baggage delay - returning checked bags to our customers remains our focus. We will continue to be in touch with these customers as progress is made to that end."

Travelers through Charles de Gaulle aren't the only ones who are experiencing luggage headaches this summer. It has been happening at several airports in Europe, including London's Heathrow Airport, due to worker strikes, staff shortages and high travel demand.

Eyewitness News obtained a photo from a traveler who passed through Heathrow recently which shows dozens upon dozens of suitcases lined up in a baggage claim area.

Travel experts have been warning about these potential issues arising at international airports this summer.

Bottom line, if you plan on traveling internationally within the next few months, it would be best to pack in a carry-on.

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