Here’s an ongoing hiccup that LAX-bound Delta Air Lines travelers should know if they want to find their checked luggage.
Delta Needs to Get a Handle on Luggage at LAX
As part of Delta’s impressive Sky Way project at Los Angeles International Airport, Delta is operating out of fairly limited facilities. Like, condensed into two terminals, as opposed to the usual three. The massive construction project has been going on for a couple of years and likely will take a couple more. (But the end result looks pretty impressive — at least in artist renderings!)
So, a lot of Delta flights use Terminal 2. And there are only three available baggage carousels in Delta’s LAX luggage dungeon (if you’ve been there, you know why I call it that).
They’re numbered 8, 9, and 10.
Of the half-dozen or so times I’ve checked baggage during the past year, I think only once did the luggage actually arrive on the “correct” conveyor belt. That is to say, when Delta told me my bags would be arriving on claim 10, they actually showed up at 10.
Most times, Delta will say I can expect my bags at, like, claim 9. The monitors at claim 9 confirm this. Then the bags get spit out at claim 8.
The other night, I stood at carousel 10 for about 20 minutes waiting for my bag. (But, hey, free SkyMiles for a Bags on Time submission, right? Not so fast.) Then someone from my flight yelled over to us that our bags were showing up at carousel 8.
Par for the course.
Sure enough, there was my suitcase on probably its tenth or so trip on the belt. I know this the Fly Delta app showed me the bag arrived at 8:21 PM (and well within the Bags on Time 20-minute time limit. Oh, well.)
Then I heard a PA announcement from a Delta rep saying my flight’s bags could be picked up at carousel 8. Gee, thanks.
This isn’t a random incident. It happens frequently (at least, when I travel).
So if you’re flying Delta to LAX and checking bags, here are a couple of tips so you don’t waste time or patience.
Remove Your Earbuds or Headphones
The information on the monitors is generally as helpful as a screendoor on a submarine.
So, take a break from your podcast or phone call (reception is horrible in the dungeon, so you won’t be texting or calling anyone, anyway). Listen for announcements as to when and where bags will arrive.
Use the Fly Delta App’s Baggage Tracker
This is kind of hit and miss because, as I mentioned, cellular service is awful in the dungeon. But if you can safely connect to some signal, fire up the Fly Delta app and navigate to the baggage tracker. (You’ll find it on your trip’s itinerary.)
That tells you when your bag actually landed on a conveyor — and where you can find it.
A lot of people are visiting Los Angeles this weekend. There’s a big football game in town. In addition to fans attending the game, there are media, production people, PR folks, support staff, and a ton of other game weekend travelers.
Plus, people just coming to L.A. to hang out and enjoy the beautiful weather.
Even after that, the Delta construction at LAX will continue for a while. So make sure you’re prepared for what can be a frustrating experience fetching your checked bags.
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