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  • Loosing your check in luggage when joining ship

    This hasn't happened to me yet (thank jesus!), but what would happen if it did? Does the company's insurance cover you? Has anyone got any stories to tell in regards to this? Should I take as much as possible in hand luggage?

    Say for instance you join the vessel on the same day as you arrive, and your luggage doesn't come with you at the other end. I could never see them managing to get it to you in time.

    So to help out a new cadet like myself, and many others, what are some sensible contingency plans?

  • #2
    Hatchorder has an interesting story about losing his hold luggage. Good question though OP.
    "Crazy like wild wolves threatened by fire, send them all to the bottom of the sea."

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    • #3
      It happened to me once. I flew from Manchester to London to Bilbao. Checked my luggage through at Manchester and when I was last one standing in Bilbao airport and the carousel turned off I walked through customs, whereupon customs gave me a hard time for only having hand luggage! I tried to explain my main luggage was lost and they got a bit ****ty and wanted to remove the film from my camera and open the unused ones. I lost it and started shouting as I was tired and pissed off! Next thing one of them was pulling his pistol and shouting in Spanish. Fortunately the Ship's agent was waiting for me and heard the commotion and talked his way into the hall and calmed us all down and explained to them why I had no luggage.

      I joined the ship with just the clothes I wore and my paperwork and a sextant! Unfortunately we did 4 or 5 ports over the next 6 or 7 days and everytime I was told my luggage was going to be with me at the next port it always seemed to arrive at the dock an hour after we sailed.

      I felt a pillock standing on the bridge for standbys with jeans and an open neck shirt on with a navy pullover with no epaulets over the top that someone had lent me. A week of washing skiddies out in the sink got to me in the end. Was able to get a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and ahampoo from the Chief Steward, and a boiler suit and rig boots from the C/O so was able to work. Just got really fed up of it.

      The company had a policy of not paying for stuff as my luggage was not actually lost but found in London, as apparently I was not able to check it through as it turns out! Because it was not lost they said I had to cope as they thought I would get it the next day. Unfortunately things conspired against me and it took a week or so to catch up.

      Since that day I always packed a spare set of clothes in my hand luggage, a small amount of washkit and a uniform shirt and trousers, but it never happened again.

      What ever you do, make sure all your documents travel with you in your hand luggage. This includes your watchkeeping certificates, coursework, Training record book and laptop, camera, memory stick etc.

      And just remember not to lose your temper with customs officials if your luggage is lost. It is not their fault, even though you want to blame someone as it is not your fault either!

      Ian
      "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
      "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

      "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ducki52 View Post
        Hatchorder has an interesting story about losing his hold luggage. Good question though OP.
        I must have been writing it as you posted! lol.
        "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
        "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

        "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

        Comment


        • #5
          Always one step ahead... No, I remember you talking about it on another thread tbh. Although I think the phrase 'Hatchorder has an interesting story about...' could be applied to, well, nigh on everything.
          "Crazy like wild wolves threatened by fire, send them all to the bottom of the sea."

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          • #6
            Originally posted by supertramp View Post
            This hasn't happened to me yet (thank jesus!), but what would happen if it did? Does the company's insurance cover you? Has anyone got any stories to tell in regards to this? Should I take as much as possible in hand luggage?

            Say for instance you join the vessel on the same day as you arrive, and your luggage doesn't come with you at the other end. I could never see them managing to get it to you in time.

            So to help out a new cadet like myself, and many others, what are some sensible contingency plans?
            Your company will not normally cover you for losses - travel insurance is for that :-)

            So far (knock on wood) it's not happened to me joining ship - happens all the time coming home - but I don't really care, the airline will eventually find it and deliver it to your house.

            Make sure you have important stuff in your hand baggage - always a good idea to have a clean change of clothes (if you have space I suppose). If it does get "miss handled" the airline will normally deliver it to your port agent when they eventually locate it - on the occasions its happened to other people joining our ships, the luggage has normally turned up within a few days and we pick it up the next time we call there (most ports its every 7 days so not too bad). If you're on month long voyages then your a bit stuffed.

            Easiest option is let the agents deal with it - if the agent hasn't met you on arrival give airline their details and then get agent to deal with it when you eventually reach the ship - worst case they'll arrange for the airline to fly it to your next port and you'll pick it up there.
            ?Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn?t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.?

            ? Mark Twain
            myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

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            • #7
              I learn't the hard way fairly early on, flew Manchester-London-Los Angeles-Miami-Santiago-Puerto Montt-Punta Arenas over 48 hours and not surprisingly arrived without luggage. After that I started carrying a full size hand carry bag with all important things and a full set of clothes in it, also discovered that most airports in the UK have a Boots airside which have full miniture sets of everything including deodorant, and now have a set of those in the plastic 1ltr bag.
              In recent years I've done shorter trips, and pretty just travel with hand carry because its easier. Having had bags mislayed three times in 10 years, they've always eventually caught up with me. But one suitcase arrived completely flattened like it had been steamrolled...

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              • #8
                Ive had this happen to me recently. After flying to [non specificed country] to visit a vessel, because of the fast connection my luggage didn't quite reach my connecting flight. Wasn't a major problem, gave them the details of the hotel I was staying at and provided the agent with the details and it came and joined me on the next flight.

                It was a bit of a bugger though as all my safety gear was in my suitcase so I couldn't go on board the vessel that day (not allowed on vessels without proper PPE as it subconciously sets a bad example to the crew) and I doubt they would be able to locate a boilersuit quite my size.

                **** happens, but the luggage will usually catch you up and no, your company will not pay for missing luggage...
                I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

                All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

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                • #9
                  Haha what a fitting thread. Recently flew from Glasgow to Amsterdam to Atlanta then finally to New Orleans to join a vessel. Was shattered by the time I went to pick up my luggage. Obviously it didn't show. Disaster! Lost my temper like Hatchorder which is understandable. Filled all the necessary paperwork, was told it would arrive the next day and the agent would pick it up so I wasn't too worried. Joined the vessel the next day, still no luggage. Got the news we were going to Nigeria to load, that's when I thought ****! As a girl there is just some things you can't get in the slopchest!! The ship's agent was very helpful a trying to locate my luggage and after bunkering and making way down the river the new pilot got onboard and with him so did my luggage...relieved would be an understatement!

                  Usually I carry all my important docs (TRB, certificates, travel docs), laptop etc in my hand luggage but now I have learnt my lesson! If you have space pack a change of clothes and toiletries...maybe some Valium to calm down from the stress of lost luggage ;-P
                  The bird is the word

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sdot View Post
                    ... finally to New Orleans to join a vessel.....
                    Did you get a night in New Orleans? Find your way to the French Quarter? Pat O'Briens in Bourbon Street? Still have my Hurricane Special Glass...... *sigh*

                    Originally posted by Sdot View Post
                    Got the news we were going to Nigeria to load, that's when I thought ****! As a girl there is just some things you can't get in the slopchest!!
                    Can't imagine Chiefy saying he had got a spare bra in his luggage you can borrow..........

                    Welllll.............

                    Not in your size anyway! (Not that I know either of you I might add!)
                    "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
                    "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

                    "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

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