Questions of Cash: The Independent

Posted on October 1, 2011 · Posted in The Independent

Q I travelled to South Africa for the World Cup, but my baggage never arrived in Johannesburg. I had to travel around South Africa for three and a half weeks without any clothes, sleeping bag and other essentials. I never received any advice or offer of assistance: every time I called I was just told the bag had not been located. The value of items in my bag was in excess of £2,000: I had to purchase a pay as you go phone in South Africa for £15 and a further £15 in airtime vouchers to keep chasing the whereabouts of my bag and I spent £300 on my credit card for replacement clothing and toiletries. On my return I logged a lost baggage claim with KLM, as I had booked through their website. KLM says that as part of my journey was with their Alliance partner, Kenya Airways, the claim should be made through Kenya Airways and it is not KLM’s liability. I booked through KLM and paid KLM and it was KLM who checked my bag in, so I consider my contract to be with KL M. I don’t know who lost my bag, but KLM insists responsibility lies with Kenya Airways. My insurance policy states that any lost baggage must be settled by the airline. PS, Wigan.

A When you initially contacted us, five months ago, the World Cup had just taken place. KLM insisted that the matter had to be settled by Kenya Airways. An agreement between all airlines states that the last carrier takes responsibility for the tracing of any missing baggage and settles the claim with the passenger,” said KLM. However, communications with Kenya Airways have been sporadic and the airline has been slow to respond. We are pleased to report that Kenya Airlines has now partially settled your claim – paying £1,070. This is more than the £800 compensation limit often specified by airlines under the Montreal Convention. You are now seeking the recovery of the balance of the value of your luggage from your travel insurer. Kenya Airlines has not responded to our repeated requests for an explanation of the delays in settling your claim.

Q Several financial services companies write to me as if I live in Scotland. I actually live in Northumberland, England, but have a post code for Berwickshire, in Scotland. One day the Scottish Government will change its tax regime and I’ll be stuck trying to explain where I live. Does the Scottish Government use the same erroneous software as the financial services companies? DS, Northumberland.

A A spokesman for the Scottish government insists its systems will not make the same mistakes. Only Scottish taxpayers, whose main home is in Scotland, are required to pay local taxation in Scotland,” he said. He added: I cannot comment on systems used by financial service firms, but systems used to facilitate collection of local taxation will be reliable.”

Q. In 2007 I upgraded a Tiscali dial-up Anytime package to the Tiscali broadband service. I am currently transferring to BT. In the process of doing this I realized that I had been paying for both dial-up and broadband for three and a half years. The overcharge adds-up to over £700. NM, Liverpool.

A You assumed that when you upgraded your service, the old payment instruction would automatically be rescinded. This did not happen. TalkTalk – which has taken over the Tiscali service – apologises for the problems you have had and has provided you with a full refund.

Q. We switched to TalkTalk’s telephone and broa