Always pack an extra pair of underwear, socks, shirt and pyjamas in your carry on!
I have been lucky enough to have travelled extensively around the world and on all of those trips, I can count the number of times I have had my luggage lost on the fingers of one hand. Every time my luggage was lost, it was quickly found and delivered the next day, at the latest. However, that all changed on my recent trip to Ireland.
My sister-in-law, a seasoned traveller, and I arrived in Dublin after flying from Winnipeg via Toronto and London Heathrow. When we went to pick up our luggage at the carousel in Dublin airport we quickly realized our stupidity. We had forgotten to pick up our luggage in Heathrow. Even though we knew we had to, we FORGOT!
So, we sheepishly went to the lost luggage counter in the Dublin airport to tell them of our stupidity. They politely did not laugh or judge us on our neglectfulness and had us fill out the appropriate paperwork. We filled out our report on Sunday and were told that there were many other flights flying that day from Heathrow and we should get our luggage later that evening. So we went about our day, thinking that all would be returned by the time we arrived back at our hotel.
After a day of sightseeing, we returned to our hotel expecting to see our luggage. We saw no luggage; it had not arrived yet. So, I called the lost luggage department to inquire as to where it was, but the luggage department is only open from 9:30 to 5:30. This did not help us any, since it was already after dinner. On Monday morning, we begrudgingly put on the same outfits we had had on since leaving Winnipeg Saturday morning. I was pleased because I at least had an extra pair of underwear and a pair of socks (that was in a comfort pack from another flight) that I always remember to pack in my carry-on.
Monday at lunchtime I called the luggage department again and was reassured that the luggage had just arrived and that as soon as it was processed it would be sent out to our hotel. Still no luggage at 5, so I phoned again to get an update. At that point I was told that the luggage had indeed arrived, but that it needed to be cleared through security before it could be released. I was reassured again that it would be delivered later on that night. It was getting dangerously close to bedtime, our eyelids almost at half-mast, and still no luggage.
Tuesday morning rolls around and we get up to find out that our luggage had not miraculously arrived during the night. So Tuesday, once again, we wore the same clothes we have worn since Saturday morning. Thankfully our hotel room had a bathtub in which we could wash our clothes with hand soap and hang them to dry on the towel rack.
I call the luggage department again and am told that the luggage is indeed still in Dublin airport, it just has not been processed yet. However, we were now compensated with a monetary amount to go and buy some clothes. Yippee! Finally, some good news, albeit also extremely frustrating because now, instead of enjoy our tours and the sights, we had to be shopping for new clothes. All the while still wondering if we would actually ever see our luggage again.
On Wednesday morning we wake up again to no luggage, but at least now we have new clean clothes to wear. Around noon, we happily received a text saying that they had found our luggage and it had been sent to our hotel. We anxiously awaited its arrival and were very happy to see it when it was delivered.
So the lesson from my travelling adventure I will take home from this trip is I will always take an extra pair of underwear, socks, a shirt and pyjamas in my carry-on when I go on any plane trip, JUST IN CASE!