When airlines destroy or lose your stroller

If an airline damages or loses your very expensive stroller, are they responsible for compensating the traveling family?

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According to consumer advocate Christopher Elliott, the answer is: Nope. Elliott tells the story of a family that checked their stroller while traveling on American Airlines and later discovered the $700 stroller they were planning on using while hiking completely mangled. In addition, American Airlines lost a smaller stroller the family brought along. American's terms and conditions says that it doesn't accept strollers as checked luggage, and assumes no responsibility and liability for such items.

This is in light of news earlier this summer that American Airlines was no longer gate-checking baby strollers weighing more than 20 pounds, and required customers who were traveling with one to check it at the ticket counter.

The immediate inclination is to get angry at airlines for requiring travelers to check strollers, and then accept no liability if they get damaged. But the requirement is likely part of the many precautions put into place while traveling in a post-9/11 world. It's also a reminder that parents should think twice about traveling with a thousand-dollar stroller.

Moral of the story: Make sure to get your expensive stroller covered under your homeowners insurance.

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