Mum furious after Virgin luggage mishap 'ruins holiday'

A mum claims her Easter long weekend was ruined after Virgin lost her family’s baggage, which included a baby’s pram and formula.

Danni Hewitt was travelling from Melbourne to Queenstown, New Zealand on a Virgin flight on Good Friday when she claims the mishap occurred.

In a complaint posted to the airline’s Facebook page, Ms Hewitt said they really only got to enjoy one day of their holiday.

After arriving in Queenstown at 2.30pm, the family discovered their baggage was missing and had no clue when it would arrive in the New Zealand city.

“I’m not sure if you understand how stressful this is with a baby,” she wrote on Facebook.

“We had no clothes for her, no formula, no sleeping bag, limited number of nappies, nothing to wash her – and it was Good Friday – so hardly anything was open.

Danni Hewitt said she could only enjoy one day of her trip to New Zealand. Source: Facebook
Danni Hewitt said she could only enjoy one day of her trip to New Zealand. Source: Facebook

“We were finally able to leave the airport at 4.30pm to rush to go shopping – we found what we could – a different formula to what she has at home and the limited amount of baby clothes they have there.”

Ms Hewitt claims the family was told they would receive an email with a reference number for their bags within 30 minutes.

She said they never received the email and by time they arrived at their accommodation at 7pm, the first day of the holiday was gone.

At 11am the next morning Ms Hewitt said she called the airline. She said she discovered the form they had filled in and gave to customs was never submitted and the airline had no record their bags had not reached Queenstown.

“After 30 minutes on the phone I was told they were arriving on a flight from Sydney at 3.40pm and later told to be at our accommodation to wait for the bags between 6 and 9pm,” she wrote.

The woman claims she lost her baggage on a flight from Melbourne to Queenstown on Good Friday. Source: AAP
The woman claims she lost her baggage on a flight from Melbourne to Queenstown on Good Friday. Source: AAP

“Second day of our holiday gone – and dinner plans had to be cancelled. We went and bought a change of clothes for ourselves and more formula for our daughter – still a different one.”

Due to the change in baby formula, Ms Hewitt said her seven-month-old daughter was sick all over their clothes.

Ms Hewitt said she had to change into her partner’s T-shirt and the baby was wrapped in a blanket before their bags arrived at 8pm.

The mother claimed the pram arrived missing a part and they only had one day left of their holiday to enjoy.

Virgin makes contact

What made the mother more furious was an email from Virgin asking her to fill out a statutory declaration and send itinerary, receipts, bank details and passport.

Ms Hewitt said she was “livid” as she had already given the airline all those details.

The mother said she has since received a phone call from the airline’s premium guest experiences manager, who will get back to her within two days.

“She was very empathetic and asked me loads of questions and called me on her mobile and said to call her direct if I had anything else to tell her,” Ms Hewitt said.

A Virgin Australia spokesperson said it took considerable care when transporting guests’ bags.

“We are sorry to hear of this guest’s experience and inconvenience caused. We’ve investigated this incident and provided a resolution to the guest,” the spokesperson said.

Virgin Australia said the guest’s claim was handled within the required timeframe, which is seven days as stated on the Virgin Australia website.

“The guest’s claim has now been finalised and all expenses claimed will be reimbursed,” the spokesperson said.

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