Delta Air Lines Inc. passengers who lost their luggage due to operational chaos at London’s Heathrow Airport got extra help in reuniting with their belongings when the carrier deployed a wide-body aircraft to bring 1,000 bags back to the U.S.
Delta’s “creative solution” came after it canceled regularly scheduled London-to-Detroit Flight 17 on July 11 because of passenger limits imposed by Heathrow, the Atlanta-based airline said Wednesday. Travelers were shifted to other flights, and Delta used the empty Airbus SE A330-200 to retrieve the lost bags.
The luggage was returned to Detroit and forwarded to customers from there, Delta said Wednesday.
“We’ve gone as far as recently we had a separate charter just to repatriate bags back to customers that have been stranded because of some of the operational issues,” Chief Executive Officer Ed Bastian said on a conference call to discuss quarterly financial results.
Heathrow has struggled to keep up with bags over the past few weeks because of understaffing and a surge in travel. The crisis has led luggage to pile up after some passengers were forced to leave the terminals without their bags.
—With assistance from Siddharth Philip.
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