The amount of airline luggage lost has hit its highest levels in a decade.

Nearly eight bags in every 1,000 have gone missing. Globally, it adds up to 26 million pieces of luggage that has been lost, delayed or damaged in 2022.

Airlines must track every piece during its journey with a barcode, but millions of items continue to disappear. Many airports and airlines made staff cuts during the pandemic and have struggled to recruit quickly enough to cope with post-COVID travel surge.

The number of bags that were delayed, lost or damaged jumped to 7.6 pieces of luggage per 1,000 passengers in 2022. This was the highest rate since 2012 when the figure was 26.3 million, nearly nine pieces per 1,000 passengers.

In 2019, it was nearly six pieces per 1,000 passengers. Airlines have 21 days to find and return missing luggage, at which point travellers are entitled to claim compensation.

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