Amsterdam, Netherlands 31 Oct. 2009. I was staying at CitizenM hotel located at the Amsterdam Schipol International airport in Amsterdam, Netherlands (AMS). As I returned to my room, I noticed a guy sitting just outside the hotel smoking and drinking a beer. I thought it odd as it was quite cold and he looked rather down. He really looked like he needed someone to talk with so I said hello to him and we started chatting.
As it turned out, his bag was stolen while he was on an inbound train for Amsterdam from Paris. He asked me not to use his image, hence the focus on the hotel’s door/signage in the video below. Listen to his story below. Have you had a similar experience?:
Me: Tell me your story, what is your name first?
Sugarto: My name is Sugarto (in a low tone).
Me: Say it again?
Sugarto: Sugarto. So the problem is that I was coming from Paris to Schipol and maybe in Brussels or any other place so somebody stole my luggage [trails off].
Sugarto: and that is the hand luggage.
Me: And this was on the train or on the plane?
Sugarto: It was on the train, the Thalys.
Sugarto: I informed the train manager, but he said that I had to inform the Schipol Police but eventually I got my eTicket from the KLM counter and they were very helpful to me [his tickets and not his passport were in the bag as well].
Sugarto: The problem is that if something goes stolen in the train which I know is the responsibility of the passenger who is traveling, but there should be some responsibility on the part of the train manager, basically it sucks!
Me: Absolutely. So where is your next journey?
Sugarto: I’m going back to my country, that’s India.
Me: Oh, O.K., so this was just a stop, an interim stop from Paris.
Sugarto: Yes, it was an interim stop from Paris.
Me: Which part of India are you from?
Sugarto: I’m from New Delhi.
Me: Ah, O.K. Excellent, how long have you been gone?
Sugarto: I’ve been in this country,
Me: In Europe
Surgato: In Europe for say around 6 weeks.
Me: O.K. was that business or pleasure?
Sugarto: Business, business.
Me: So here is a quick question, does your cell phone works? [sound of helicopter in the background]
Sugarto: Ah, No, because I’m not on roaming, so probably the cell phone won’t work for me. What you have to do is you taht you reall have to setup roaming and then you have to use it.
Me: Ah O.K. and it will perhaps cost a fortune if you do roaming.
Sugarto: Yea, it is too costly, especially for travelers. I’m on a business purpose so it means my expenditure is more or less paid by the company but people who travel on their own money so its very costly. Unluckily my cell phone was also in my hand luggage. So let me check when I get back to Delhi how can I get it. I need to contact my parents and I don’t know how to do it. So let’s see.
Me: So most of your trip was O.K. until this I take it?
Sugarto: Ah, I think so, yes.
Me: Wow, I’m very sorry to hear that but I think usually if something gets stolen on the train, I think when you buy the ticket, there is like a limit of liability on the ticket.
Sugarto: Yes, I think so, it should be a part on the train as well because you are spending around 100 EUR for a train ticket and you don’t get any services except for the traveling. Yes, that should be there, at least you should have the flexibility to log a complaint while traveling with the train, but I don’t know.
Me: So you only noticed this when you got off the train or when you arrived?
Sugarto: When Schipol was arriving and I was ready to back off. So, however, my main luggage was still there as it was kept in the main part of the train.
Me: Alright, great, thank you.