A passenger on Vietnam Airlines flight VN7177 from Hanoi to Da Nang on April 24 left a wallet on board containing $45,000 in U.S. dollars, along with US$2,169 worth of Vietnamese Dong, and an ATM card. The passenger got the wallet back the same day.
Flight attendants turned the wallet over to lost and found in Da Nang, who tracked down the passenger – who was grateful and sent letters of thanks to both lost and found and to the flight attendants who turned it in. Apparently all of the money was still in the wallet when it was returned.
Credit: Vietnam Airlines
More often than not passengers don’t recover lost items left on planes and that’s a failure that basic systems should correct for, if anyone cared enough.
If you leave something behind at a security checkpoint you’re better off searching for it on eBay than at lost and found. (And with the TSA ‘leaving behind at security’ also means leaving valuables in your checked luggage.)
At American no one will retrieve your missing items because helping customers gets in the way of their operation. Apparently the reason you don’t get your stuff back if you leave valuables on a Delta flight? Airplane cleaners will keep what they find.
I once left a camera behind on a Bali – Singapore flight. I didn’t realize until I made it to the train to change terminals. I returned to the gate and there were no staff there to help. So I went to the lounge and told them my story, the camera was recovered, I was updated in the lounge and told it would be waiting for me on the jetbridge of my connecting flight. And it was. This was Singapore Airlines, flying first class. Apparently Vietnam Airlines does a really nice job with this, too.