toronto airport

Toronto airport keeps losing people's luggage and even pets amid baggage claim mess

Anyone headed to Toronto's Pearson International Airport for a trip knows by now to anticipate giant lineups and hours-long waits at every turn due to how hectic the airport has been lately.

Most might think that the worst case scenario is a flight delay, cancelled flight or missing a flight — all very real potentials amid the low staffing levels, high demand and other issues at the hub — but a few travellers have had even some less expected experiences that proved no less, or even more, stressful.

One Toronto woman, for example, was left to wonder where her dog was for hours this weekend after it failed to arrive in the baggage area after her flight. Upon her inquiry, airport personnel told her they couldn't find the crate in question, and sent her home for the night.

The poor pup — a rescue that the woman was bringing from the Domincan Republic — was locked in his cage and lost in a corner among the hundreds of suitcases perpetually packing the airport's baggage area for a total of 21 hours by the end of the ordeal.

Traumatized, he'd had no access to food, water or any attention, and had, of course, soiled himself overnight.

A lost pet is, of course, far worse than losing any ol' luggage, but that appears to be happening a ton lately too, with one man telling CP24 that he was asked to check his luggage last-minute at the gate free of charge, but hasn't seen it since despite arriving 16 days ago.

He waited a whopping three hours at the baggage carousel post-flight before giving up and heading home. After three additional trips to the airport to try and wade through the constant glut of unclaimed baggage to recover his suitcase, he still hasn't found it, and though he said customer service has been "helpful," they have no idea where it might be.

The Greater Toronto Airports Authority, which runs Pearson, has blamed ongoing staffing shortages, flight delays and cancellations, and even mechanical issues with the baggage system for such cases.

Basically, at this point, if you're travelling through the city's main airport, assume that you're going to end up absolutely screwed by massive lines, cancelled flights, lost baggage and more — and if you're lucky, you may be pleasantly surprised when only one of those things actually happens.

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