“Forgotten treasures are looking for their new home!”, reads one of the several posts by the fake Dubai International Airport account. “Choose from a variety of items at attractive prices without any percentage discounts.”
Social media is rife with such posts, involving a scam claiming to sell lost luggage for prices as low as Dh8. The scheme allegedly involves clearance of the airport warehouse, where the “lost luggage” has remained unclaimed for over six months.
The real Dubai International Airport (DXB) account posted an advisory to passengers on social media cautioning them of the ‘fake profiles.’ It said, “We’ve spotted fake profiles claiming to sell lost luggage on Facebook and Instagram, and we want you to know that it’s not us!”
Taking the humorous route, DXB wrote: “We’re here for takeoffs, not rip-offs. So, if you see any suspicious bargains, stay sharp and don’t click on them.”
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The fake Facebook account remains active, with the latest link and comment posted on January 16. The scammer’s posts claim that lost luggage sales are conducted “online only”. Several scam posts have generated a lot of attention, with positive comments, reviews, and photos from so-called “clients”.
The page encourages people to visit the website and place orders. They also offer “nationwide delivery” and “60 days to return” policy. One post wrote: “Suitcases that have been in storage for over a year are to be recycled. The airport doesn’t want to pay the concession fee for the next quarter and is selling the remaining lost luggage in storage.”
Khaleej Times clicked on the attachment to follow the link and was alerted to a cyber threat from euxy11sale8.space, which might steal passwords, messages, or credit card details.
This isn’t the first time such a scam has emerged. Around the same time in January, a Facebook page called ‘Kuala Lumpur International Airport’ uploaded several posts and ads, claiming to have “lost suitcases with electronics” for sale .
The page is listed under the ‘Tutor/Teacher’ category and was set up in Casablanca, Morocco. It started posting about selling lost luggage on January 10 this year.
Malaysia Airports official Facebook page alerted travellers of fraudulent Facebook pages or online sellers that claim to offer lost luggage items for sale.
0.1% chance of baggage being misplaced at DXB
On an average, 2.7 million bags were moved monthly from September 2023 to January 2024 from DXB to 140 global destinations.
The chances of baggage mishandling by Dubai-based Emirates is very minimal, at 1.3 in 1,000 bags, the airline revealed on Feb 2, as it maintained an almost perfect 99.9 per cent success rate in baggage handling during the busiest travel months.
“Emirates has an excellent statistical record for baggage handling, where 99.9 per cent of all baggage coming from Dubai or transferring through, reaches its owner on time, at the correct destination,” the airline said.
How to report, claim lost baggage
If you have lost any personal belongings at Dubai Airport, there are several ways to retrieve them. You can use Dubai Airport lost and found contact number at 042245383, which operates 24 hours daily.
Alternatively, for items lost on board your flight or in the terminal, call the airport’s general information number on 042245555 or fill out a lost item form. Airport Dubai lost and found office can be found in the lower levels of Terminals 1 and 3 Departures.
If your lost luggage is recovered, some steps must be taken to ensure you get with your belongings and receive compensation for any related expenses.
- Contact the airline’s customer service to receive information about your baggage claim.
- Once your luggage is located, provide your contact details for doorstep or hotel delivery.
- If your luggage is delayed for 12 hours or more, request a refund on any checked baggage fees.
- After 24 hours, submit a claim with the airline to be eligible for compensation.
- Keep receipts for any incidental expenses of up to $50 per day for a maximum of five days. Most airlines will reimburse you for these expenses.
How to track a baggage in Emirates
In case the baggage gets misplaced on an Emirates flight, here’s how to track it. You can use the Emirates app, select your trip under ‘My trips’, and choose ‘My baggage status’. This allows you to track your baggage from check-in to your destination. If your bag is delayed, the tracker will give you a reference number (called a PIR). The delayed or damaged baggage tracker is also available on the Emirates website. The airline will reach out to you to arrange a delivery time. However within some countries, local laws mean they can’t forward the delayed bag to the passenger, who will need to collect it from the airport.