Swiss Flight To Spain Left All Passenger Luggage Behind

Empty baggage carousel

Passengers waited by the empty carousel for two hours. Credit: HelloDavidPeradoPerucha/Freepik

The thought of arriving for a holiday with all of your worldly possessions just in your hands would send shivers down anybody’s spine.

But this is what happened over the weekend, when a flight departing from Zurich to Spain landed without any checked luggage on board, catching passengers by surprise.

The incident took place on Saturday evening when passengers on the Swiss Airlines flight bound for Bilbao in northern Spain waited at the baggage carousel for their belongings for over two hours, in vain, as reported by Blick.

A spokesperson for Swiss Airlines, Kavin Ampalam, acknowledged that the plane, operated by Swiss on behalf of Edelweiss Airlines, had departed with 111 passengers but without any checked baggage.

The airline attributed this unusual situation to a shortage of ground staff. Initially, the crew had waited for the issue to be resolved.

However, after an hour and sixteen minutes, with no resolution in sight and operational constraints due to the need to transport passengers to Bilbao and return to Zurich before the airport closure, the decision was made to proceed without the luggage.

The airline expressed regret for the inconvenience caused to passengers and explained that the primary concern was making sure the passengers arrived in Bilbao and the airline adhered to the flight schedule.

Passengers, however, were reportedly not informed of the decision to fly without the baggage in Zurich, and their frustration grew when they waited for their luggage for more than two hours in Bilbao.

On Sunday evening, Swissair explained that a quick solution had now been worked out with the responsible luggage contractor.

“The first part of the luggage will be transported to Bilbao before midnight on Sunday evening.” The second part will then take place 24 hours later, the spokesman explained. “Of course, this situation is very annoying for the passengers, we understand that. That’s why we’re working flat out to ensure that all passengers get their luggage back as quickly as possible.”

Swiss Airlines is currently investigating the incident to determine what exactly occurred and how to prevent such situations in the future, emphasising that such circumstances should not take place.

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Written by

Jo Pugh

Jo Pugh is a journalist based in the Costa Blanca North. Originally from London, she has been involved in journalism and photography for 20 years. She has lived in Spain for 12 years, and is a dedicated and passionate writer.


    • Swiss Stud

      12 September 2023 • 16:44

      But each passenger was given one Lindt chocolate and a yodel.

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