Luggage carousel at the airport

KLM Damaged Baggage Compensation

KLM damaged baggage compensation.

Are you even entitled to a compensation? What are the rules?

Sometimes baggage gets damaged. We are not talking about scratches, small dents and other signs of use on your suitcase. For this kind of minor damage, KLM is not responsible. However, KLM can be held accountable for serious damage such as broken wheels and handles and other serious problems, such as holes or even cracks.

What to do if your luggage is damaged?

What to Do If Your Luggage Is Damaged?

First things first, report the damage.

Don’t leave the baggage reclaim area (baggage hall), and try to find Baggage Service Office. It’s often located in the baggage hall right next to baggage carousels. There you can file a report for damage to your bag.

Prepare your passport and boarding pass. Bring your damaged bag. Fill in the report and you will be told what to do next. Most probably, the airline will repair your bag free of charge. If your suitcase or bag is irreparable, KLM will replace it.

If you discover the damage after leaving the airport, at home or hotel, you can send a claim to the KLM Customer Contact Centre within 7 days after arrival. Make sure you don’t miss this deadline. It is advisable to report the damage as soon as you arrive.

Euro banknotes
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KLM Damaged Baggage Compensation

What are your rights if your baggage is damaged?

Could you be entitled to KLM baggage compensation of some sort?

Damaged Baggage Compensation

If your hold baggage is damaged, you may get compensation.

KLM is liable for that, and you may get compensation of up to €1300. 

The amount of compensation will depend on the value of your damaged bag. It’s supposed to cover your expenses of purchasing a new bag of the same value. 

Don’t forget to register your KLM compensation claim.

The airline has to pay this compensation to your bank account. You don’t have to accept KLM compensation voucher, miles or coupons. Please note that it’s not advised to carry electronics, art, jewellery, etc., in your checked baggage, because KLM isn’t liable to compensate for the full value of such items, only to the extent defined by the Montreal Convention and its Conditions of Carriage.

If the damage is caused by some defect in the bag itself, you won’t be entitled to compensation. Also KLM is not accountable for minor damage such as scratches, small dents and other (normal) signs of use on your suitcase. Unfortunately, but that’s the realities of air travel.

Reimbursement of Expenses

In this case mostly you won’t get anything.

If your baggage is lost, and you have to replace any of necessary items, you are entitled to reimbursement for your expenses (sometimes referred to as delayed baggage compensation). You buy all these essential things, then make a claim submitting all the receipts, and KLM pays you. 

You have 21 days from the day you receive your lost baggage to file a claim for reimbursement. But that applies only to situations when your baggage is lost or delayed.

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Is Travel Insurance Necessary?

Is baggage insurance necessary? Yes and no.

You can definitely travel also without it. 

Since KLM will be held responsible for your luggage and its safe delivery anyway. That’s because of the Montreal Convention, a treaty that applies to the carriage of baggage. It applies to most international flights of KLM and other airlines around the world. 

At the same time, having a good insurance is always useful.

It may help you to get compensation quicker. When you have filed a report for damage to your bag, contact your travel insurance company, to ask them what to do next. Your travel insurance may reimburse you for the cash value or price of your luggage. You’ll need the paperwork you’ve received at Baggage Service Office to make a claim.

Please note, that not all insurance policies cover damage to your baggage. Make sure to find it out in advance, to avoid unnesessary stress and bad surprises later.

Travel Prepared

It’s always a good idea to have a plan B.

Baggage doesn’t get damaged too often. But it happens.

Hence it’s a great idea to pack a change of clothes and some underwear in your carry on. Just in case your suitcase and its contents get damaged. Also, do not pack valuable items, money, medications, documents and credit cards in your checked luggage. If your bag gets seriously damaged (like large holes or cracks), its contents may be damaged, too. Or you may even lose some of the contents.

You can also take a packable or foldable duffle bag with you. If your luggage is seriously damaged, transfer your stuff to this duffel bag. If you won’t use it for this purpose, the packable duffle bag may come in handy also if you run out of luggage space at the end of your trip. 

Note that in this case, with KLM compensation for damaged baggage, just like in many other situations we are talking about on this website, it doesn’t apply only to KLM. Rules are the same for other airlines as well. In this case that’s because of the Montreal Convention, a treaty that applies to the carriage of baggage. It applies to most international flights of KLM and other airlines around the world.

Featured photo by Markus Winkler from Pexels

11 thoughts on “KLM Damaged Baggage Compensation”

  1. Pingback: KLM Missed Connection Compensation - KLM Compensation Guide

  2. KLM IS CAUSING ME BIG HEADACHE !!!! 2 TIMES IN A ROW LOSING MY LUGGAGE,BUT THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE !
    I AM A SEAMAN AND YOU LOST MY LUGGAGE IN AMSTERDAM.
    NOW IM IN ENGLAND IN THE SEA WITHOUT CLOTHES FOR 4 WEEKS !!!
    SHAME ON YOU.
    I WANT IMMEDIATE COMPENSATION !!!!! COMPENSATE ME ABOUT ALL THE TROUBLES YOUR AIRLINES HAS CAUSED ME,because i live without clothes !!!!!! REPLY ON THE BELOW EMAIL BECAUSE PREVIOUS TIME I DID NOT DO ANYTHING WHEN YOU LOOSE MY LUGGAGE BUT NOW !!! I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING.
    FILE REFERENCE + (HIDDEN)
    TICKET NUMBER (HIDDEN)

  3. DO SOMETHING !!! I DO NOT CARE ..BECAUSE OF YOUR AIRLINES WHICH I USE FOR 2 YEARS ALMOST EVERY MONTH,NOW IM COMPLETELY DISSAPOINTED WITH YOUR ATTITUTE TOWARS YOUR CLIENTS.

    I WANT IMMEDIATE COMPENSATION !!!!!

  4. Percival Enebeli Whitworth

    My suit cases were damaged and it impossible to contact klm on this issue, I feel frustrated with this ugly behaviour from klm

  5. Voranuch Chanchaona

    My baggage was damaged,cracked wheel and big hole on other side, during my flight from Bkk- Edinburgh yesterday via KL0844/KL1281 . I can’t find somebody at the baggage claim counter in the airport. Please kindly contact me for the claim or compensation.

  6. My daughter Devaki Bajekal was to fly on United and Lufthansa from IAH to Mumbai on Dec 18th. Unfortunately due to the storm in Houston she was put on flight to Amsterdam (UA20) and then on a KLM flight KL-877 from Amsterdam to Mumbai. All along she checked with the agents whether her bags were on board both in Houston and Amsterdam.
    In Mumbai both her bags did not arrive. She lodged a complaint with the KLM authorities in Mumbai. “xxx” and since the last one week we have been trying to contact them. The response has been most pathetic and nobody has a clue where the bags are and neither do they update us with any status.
    I have lost my respect for KLM and their customer service is absolutely the pits. We have lost a lot of important stuff in the bags. KLM is least bothered to help us

  7. Two months ago my baggage arrives with the clasp broken, the sutcase jimied, and a box containing two cell phones taken. Immediately i sent notice to KLM, sent photos of the damage, and was given a claim number. I was told that KLM has had a lot of damaged baggage and that the claim adjustment would be made within two months. Now ten weeks later, i have had no response from KLM. They wan’t even accept a letter from me to their e-mail address. It is hard to think of flying with a carrier that damages so many bags that settlement is delayed by months.

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