Dear Editor, My wife and I flew from Naples to Birmingham Airport on May 28 arriving at 9.08pm. Entering the baggage reclaim hall we noticed passengers from a Mahon flight waiting at another belt for their bags. No other flight passengers were coming through the hall.
We waited without any announcement of any possible delay for more than 45 minutes before the first bags arrived, for the next 20-30-plus minutes bags arrived one at a time, i.e. with considerable space between each bag. My wife’s bag came round at least 10 minutes before mine appeared.
Earlier I noticed a large notice hanging unlighted from the ceiling making a rather shame-faced announcement/excuse that baggage is handled by “agents” – not by “the airport”. It indicated that the “last bag” on a B767 should be through within 45 minutes of flight arrival at the gate.
Many passengers became very vocal during our enforced wait – some like myself were experienced international business travellers and unfavourable comparisons with other airports worldwide were made.
I have travelled from BHX for over 20 years before recent semi-retirement. I frequently noticed the inexplicable delays to collect bags at BHX, often from smaller planes as well.
Nowhere in the developing world, Europe, or the USA have I experienced such delays as those at BHX.
It was embarrassing as a Midlander to witness overseas visitors waiting and becoming concerned while their bags did not arrive promptly. What a first impression they gain of the City of Birmingham.
It was noticeable last Friday that not a single official at the airport was in sight to whom questions could be referred.
It is now time for Birmingham Airport to investigate and remedy this issue. Is it a result of the airport being severely under-resourced or is it a culture of bloody mindedness (union problems)?
The buck stops with the top management of the airport. Others at our belt commented it couldn’t be truly called “international” with the present level of poor service.
George Colman (by email)