Delta Airlines got inventive when 1,000 luggage became stranded at London’s Heathrow Airport, chartering an airplane to transfer those bags over the Atlantic and back to their owners in the United States.
The airline stated that owing to Heathrow’s recently implemented passenger capacity restriction, it was permitted to cancel a scheduled passenger trip, leaving it with 1,000 checked luggage from that flight and others. Delta also occurred to have an Airbus A330-200 aircraft that the airline required to return to the United States. That’s when the thought occurred to them.
“Delta teams worked a creative solution to move delayed checked bags from London-Heathrow on July 11 after a regularly scheduled flight had to be canceled given airport passenger volume restrictions at Heathrow,” a Delta spokesperson said.
“Delta flight 9888 from Heathrow to Delta’s Detroit hub flew 1,000 bags back to the U.S., where teams then forwarded the bags on to our customers.”
According to the airline, passengers who had been booked on the canceled flight were rescheduled on other airplanes. While the delayed luggage was treated as VIPs, they did not fly in the passenger cabin, but rather in the designated baggage lockers, as is customary.
Heathrow ordered airlines earlier this month to reduce summer trip sales and imposed a capacity constraint of no more than 100,000 passengers per day. Airlines throughout the world have been struggling with enormous cancellations this summer, blaming the pattern on a mix of air traffic control issues and manpower shortages, and have proactively cut summer and fall itineraries to cope.
A Tip for Travelers: A carry-on suitcase is typically the best option for travelers who wish to avoid baggage concerns, and packing wisely may work wonders.