Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lost & Found in Dubai


Losing one's baggage during travel can be a harrowing experience. Once gone, the biggest problem is to list down things that you lost with the baggage.


Misplaced baggage or Mumbai-destined baggage going off to some other exotic location is common and airlines have over the years perfected their processes to get your baggage back to scheduled destination with a good efficiency.


BUT what happens when you lose your baggage?


Well, the mistake is yours and you have no one to blame nor do you have anyone who will take the responsibility of tracing the bag for you. But then there are always Lost & Found counters at the airport and one can 'hope' that the lost baggage has found its way to the lost-n-found.


It was exactly this hope that I had when I 'lost' a bag in Dubai International Airport last month. I realized it only when I reached Mumbai that my bag had not made the journey.


Well … the trials to trace my bag began. I tried the airline, the check-in counter executive at Dubai airport and finally the Dubai airport website. After a week or more, I got a reply that my bag was with the Dubai police – Lost and Found Department at the airport.


When I travelled back to Dubai, I approached the Lost and Found Department who asked me several questions about the contents of my bag. They not only gave me back the bag but also asked me about credit cards, cash and mobile phones I might have in the bag. I wasn't sure so I gave them description of my spare mobile phone. They retrieved a phone and a card from two different sections of the department


They verified the card number from me before handing it over and the same with mobile phone. I had to describe it to convince them it was mine.


Finally … the cash …


They did not give it to me. They informed me that cash was found and it was with a different department. And I could collect it only during the working days and working hours of 8 to 1. A minor inconvenience considering I was getting all my belongings back without any loss of valuables. Guess they have created processes/procedures to remove the 'valuable' items and cash from lost baggage (which is open) and store them separately to avoid any incident of damage or theft within their premises.


I would say the whole thing left me with a pleasant experience. Dubai International Airport truly deserves the 'best airport' award it gets. And that is not just for the 'lost and found' incident. I have been travelling thro Dubai International Airport since the past 3-4 years and the experiences have ranged from ok to good to very good. Never bad. Not that I remember. 

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