10TV’s Kevin Landers contacted passengers to let them know their bags were in Columbus.
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Hundreds of bags of luggage continue to pile up inside Southwest Airlineswith baggage claim area. Bags are waiting to be picked up by passengers who became separated from their luggage after the airline canceled most flights during the winter storm.
Southwest said some of the bags were flown to Columbus from airports like Chicago and Denver, which were hardest hit by the storm.
In an effort to move the bags with the customers, 10TV called the owners to let them know their bags were at John Glenn Columbus International Airport.
One shopper, Jennifer Long, hasn’t seen her bags since Christmas.
“We have had no correspondence from Southwest Airlines,” Long said.
Over FaceTime, she told us how her flight to Orlando was delayed several times before the family finally had enough.
“We got in the car and drove 15 and a half hours back to Columbus,” she said.
We called her to let her know her bags were in Columbus. She said she knew the location because her bag had an AirTag.
10TV reporter Kevin Landers asked, “So this phone call was the first time you actually physically saw your bag since the trip began?”
Long responded by saying: “You got it – from 11am on Christmas Day.”
We also called John Romeo, who lives in Austin, Texas. He told us he never made it out of Texas, but his five bags did.
“It really ruined my Christmas plans,” Romeo said.
He said that, like many stranded Southwest passengers, he felt helpless because he could not make alternative plans while at the gate.
“They didn’t tell us anything except that there was no crew. We were, as it were, hostages to stay at the gate,” he said.
Both Long and Romeo said the experience changed their perception of the Southwest.
“I will never fly Southwest again because the connection was terrible. That’s the most important thing, just let me know if you’re going to cancel my flight, let me know because I could be on my way five hours earlier,” Long said.
“They’re really just a bruise on my perception. It will hurt. This will hurt a lot of families because it couldn’t happen at a worse time for Christmas. It will last a long time. Will I be flying Southwest during Christmas? Never again, said Romeo.
If you have questions about the airline, you can visit their website to get answers about your rights.
Information about disruptions can be found at Southwest Airlines here.
See Southwest CEO’s full apology here.