Outraged easyJet passengers are fed up with the “pathetic” waiting times they are facing to be reunited with their luggage when touching down at Edinburgh Airport.
Airport staff have seen a rise in angry customers complaining of waiting more than an hour at baggage reclaim.
The low-cost carrier currently has a ground handling contract with Menzies Aviation, providing baggage and ramp handling for its 13,000 annual flights and four million passengers in the Capital.
It is understood Menzies introduced a system where staff unload incoming passengers’ bags and immediately reload the plane with the departing bags for a quicker turnaround on the runway to meet scheduled departure times. Meanwhile passengers from the inbound flight have complained of huge waits at the baggage carousel.
The issue is believed to have been ongoing for a number of months, with suggestions the service levels of Menzies, which also has contracts in Edinburgh with other airlines including British Airways, Loganair and United Airlines, has deteriorated with the firm experiencing a high level of staff turnover.
Iain Wilson, managing director of Edinburgh web development company Blot Design, told the Evening News it was “pathetic” how he and fellow passengers were forced to wait more than an hour to reclaim their luggage after arriving from Milan.
He said: “It was such a shame. We landed at 7.15pm and got through to baggage reclaim where we were waiting until 9pm.
“The worst part was there was no one to speak to and we got no updates as to what was happening or when we’d see our luggage.
“Passengers were getting angry and just complaining to one another.
“There were a number of foreign people on the flight and I was embarrassed that this was their first impression of Edinburgh.
“The airport cannot bury their heads in the sand on this though. They have a responsibility too and surely want their customers to have a good experience.”
Other passengers have expressed their dissatisfaction on social media.
Joanne McKerchar said: “Love flying into Edinburgh but a one hour wait to get our bags? This part lets you down every time.”
Campbell Paterson, who arrived into Edinburgh on board an easyJet flight from Paphos, added: “Waited one and a half hours for our baggage after arriving at 1.15am. The second time this has happened to us this year.”
Menzies’ contract with easyJet, the largest airline at Edinburgh Airport, is ending at the end of this month with Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) taking on a five-year contract from November 1.
easyJet told the Evening News that WFS would ‘continue improving its on time performance and overall airport experience for customers’.
A Menzies Aviation spokesman said: “Menzies Aviation faced operational challenges last Saturday evening at Edinburgh Airport, including the arrival of two late-running flights simultaneously, which resulted in delays to the delivery of passengers’ luggage.
“We regret the impact these delays have had on passengers, and apologise for any inconvenience caused.”
An Edinburgh Airport spokesman said: “Baggage handlers are not directly employed by Edinburgh Airport but by one of the two agents we have on site.”