You might remember Denise, who left her iPad behind on a United plane, getting it back after Consumerist intervened and a wonderful United employee helped her. Then she received an interesting e-mail, presumably reading it on her iPad. The airline wanted to send an update about the status of her lost item claim: they were “still searching” for it.
That’s slightly amusing on its own, but the interesting part is that the e-mail didn’t come from United. It came from an outside company called Chargerback, which provides this very specific service to airlines, hotels, and any other place where someone might leave behind an electronic device.
Chargerback takes care of interacting with customers who have lost things, e-mailing them updates, keeping a database of missing items, and providing a pre-printed shipping label to the company that has found the item, accepting a $9.95 payment for the shipment directly from the customer. Businesses that use Chargerback don’t have to pay anything to the company.
This could explain why there was so much of a gap in communication between Denise and the office in the United terminal where her iPad was actually located. Maybe that office never entered her claim in the system, or something else happened to prevent United and Chargerback from matching up the iPad they had sitting around and the iPad that Denise reported missing.
That’s the problem with contracting another company: she could track where in the airport her iPad was, almost down to the office within the United Terminal, but it wasn’t logged in the system, making it still “lost.”
Chargerback [Official Site]