Qantas Removes Baggage Scales After Run In With Distie Retail Boss
Qantas is removing analogue scales at airport terminals days after a leading sound and entertainment distributor and retailer had a run in with the airline over their dodgy bag weighing system.
Paul Riachi the CEO of Indi Imports and Rio Sound and Vision was returning from the USA, prior to boarding his aircraft, his carry on bags were weighed at his boarding airport before the flight and came in at 32 kilo.
When his flight was in transit at Sydney airport he and his family were switched to a domestic flight where Qantas staff claimed that his hand luggage was overweight at 38.3 kilo.
When he objected pointing out that nothing had been added to the bag between the USA and Sydney Qantas staff “Threatened me” he said, claiming that they would call security when he objected to having to reduce the weight of the bags.
“Staff were aggressive intimidating and demanding” he said.
Now testing has revealed that the scales being used by Qantas inflate the weight of hand luggage by as much as 30 per cent.
ChannelNews also suspects that the Jetstar scales are also questionable after we weighted a carryon bag at 6.8kilo last year only to be told that we were over 8 kilo and had to pay extra for the carry-on bags.
Checks by News Corp recently found that a carry-on bag known to be 7kg came in at 9kg on one Qantas set of scales and on another 7.7kg.
It’s not known whether the problem is because of a move by the CEO of Qantas Alan Joyce to cut costs and not replace the analogue scales with digital scales. Qantas are also facing a backlash from Business Class passengers who are being told that food items on the menu have “run out”, this is due to Qantas trying to cut costs relating to the amout of meals they carry on aircraft according to onboard Qantas staff.
“We are the ones who cop the abuse not management” said one Qantas steward on a flight to Hong Kong.
With Qantas a $90 excess fee is imposed if bags are found to be overweight.
Qantas customers told News Corp recently that their scales were over-estimating carry-on bag weights.
Several reported weighing their bags at home to ensure they were under the limit only to be hit with excess fees at the airport.
Experts said the discrepancy occurred because bathroom scales — commonly used to weigh bags before travelling to the airport — don’t accurately measure small amounts.
“Bathroom scales don’t work when you try to weigh something under 10kg,” said A&D Australasia national sales manager Brian Johnston, whose company supplies and checks the portable scales now used by Jetstar to check passenger hand luggage.
Mr Johnston said the best way to weigh a bag at home was to first measure your own weight on bathroom scales then get off and get back on while holding your carry-on.
“That is the most accurate way of doing it with a bathroom scale,” Mr Johnston said.
Before doing the airport checks, News Corp visited A&D’s Sydney office and verified the weight of the carry-on bag on a scale identical to that used by Jetstar.
A Qantas spokesman said it was “gradually replacing analogue scales with digital scales at our major ports”.
He said its customers could bring a total of 14kg on-board with one piece weighing a maximum of 10kg. If a bag was found to be over the maximum allowance Qantas would load into the hold free of charge, he said.
However, that is only the case if the customer has not already a checked bag.