United Airlines' third-party app delivers couple's bags, missing $4,000 worth of items

SAN FRANCISCO -- A San Francisco woman has a warning tonight for travelers given the option of having a "third-party app" deliver their bags when they don't arrive in sync with their flight.

Newly engaged Janessa Mendence couldn't wait to spend Christmas with her fiance's family in Indianapolis, but when the couple arrived they discovered their bags did not.

"I was in hysteria I started crying," said Mendence.

United Airlines offered to have a third party vendor called "Where's My Suitcase" deliver the bags to Mendence.

"I went through everything and realized that 60% of my belongings were gone including my most valuable items, Burberry trench coach, Burberry rain boots," said Mendence.

More than $4,000 worth of belongings missing includes all the Christmas gifts for her fiance's family.

"It was heartbreaking, I felt terrible to come here pretty much with nothing to give them for Christmas," said Mendence.

Her fiance's bag was also missing close to $400 worth of items.

The couple went to Indianapolis International Airport to speak to the United reps directly.

"One of the reps had told me I shouldn't have packed such nice things in my luggage in order to have avoided this," said Mendence.

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Mendence posted the story to Facebook which her former colleague Lauren Del Barto saw.

ABC7 News interviewed Del Barto in October when Delta Airlines sent used a third-party app called "Roadie" to deliver her bags. Her items were also missing. Delta ultimately reimbursed her $5,000 dollars.

"We kind of started to wonder if this is something that might be happening pretty frequently with third party delivery services," said Mendence.

In emailed statements, United tells ABC7 News, "We are investigating the situation and our Customer Care team is reaching out to our customer to learn more."

Where's My Suitcase writes, "As United Airlines investigates this customer's claim, if required, our company would be in full cooperation as there are multiple touchpoints in the journey of a checked bag."

United tells Mendence it will need six to eight weeks to investigate and that she will need to provide receipts for any item over $100.

Unfortunately, Mendence isn't sure she has all those receipts and the Burberry jacket was a gift. She says no one from "Where's My Suitcase" has responded to her directly.
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