Sir, ma'am, or more than likely automated machine,
"Customer relations" as your airline calls it is appalling. When my flight was delayed 2 hours because there was no crew for the flight, I waited in line at the ticket counter because I was missing my connecting flight. When I was told a seat would be held for me on a flight from PHX to SAT at 1235 I had to clarify... as in PM, as in almost 15 hours after my scheduled flight out of PHX was. I was told yes.
No empathy, and no further explanation. Well, obviously one might have questions. Where will I sleep? What will I eat? How will I get to and from where I'm sleeping? I was told I'd be put in a hotel with transportation to/from the airport. Again, what about my meals? As I am an average human I do generally eat three meals a day. By my calculation, in 15 hours one generally eats at least two meals; breakfast and lunch (as by the time I'm released from the us airways flight it will likely be 435 PM, at least, if there are to be no further delays). My question went unanswered.
Also, like many Americans I have a job to do, which I will miss an entire day of due to this delay. No problem you might be thinking, just call in sick, if you are in fact a real live human reading this. However, there is a problem. I am not the average American. I am part of less than 1% of the US population that decided to raise their hand to volunteer to support and defend the constitution and all of the people it protects in this great nation. Unfortunately I do not have the luxury of calling in sick. We are either on leave, or not. As I only took leave until Sunday, as I believed the flight I purchased would actually arrive relatively close to the time stated on the $466 ticket I purchased, this makes me Absent without leave... or as you may more commonly have heard it, AWOL.
Luckily, my chain of command are reasonable people and I won't be reprimanded, though technically they have the right to. The real problem is I am deploying very soon and have important appointments and training to attend prior to this deployment. When I explained this to the agent, again I was met with no empathy.
This training and appointments must still be completed. It will be coming out of my personal time, the limited time I have left before leaving. So, given no empathy or compassion for my situation, I certainly expect my time to be compensated. I asked what I would receive for this grave inconvenience. The answer of hotel and transportation was re-iterated to me. However, this is not compensation. This, and my meals, are the bare bones minimum you have the responsibility to provide to me. I take offense that this attendant was implying that was doing me a favor. I politely responded that this was insufficient. I was told to contact customer relations and he looked onto the next customer. I requested the telephone number of customer relations. I was given the equivalent of a ticket stub in response to my request. I moved aside. I took a few breaths as you can imagine my frustration at this point. I then turned over the stub not to find a phone number, but a mailing address and a website. Frustrated, I proceeded to the website on my tablet. No phone number listed for "customer relations".
How is that possible? How do you perform customer relations via email and regular US mail, which your website also says responses may take up to three days after receipt of email. Further frustrated I called the reservations line listed on the website to try to speak to someone who might find some empathy or compassion...to no avail. I was on hold for 55 minutes before being told to hang up my phone as we were finally about to ***. 55 minutes, on hold, waiting with hope of some empathy or compassion from some representative of this airline, and nothing.
Upon exiting my flight that finally arrived in PHX I was herded into a line with the rest of the passengers to pick up my ticket and my hotel voucher. I was told breakfast was provided and lunch was not. Because your airline has delayed my delivery by over 15 hours I would not be home, able to eat lunch from my own home, instead I will be paying air port prices for something your airline should at least be covering. I ask again for a customer relations number and am again directed to the website. The agent then added good luck, they're not likely to compensate you for anything else. At this point, your airline has sufficiently kicked the hornets nest.
After kicking the hornets nest, you then start a fire under the hive...here's how:
Fast forward to me waiting for my bag at the carousel, it never coming, and me going to the us airways baggage claim. Here I wait in line about 20 minutes, finally get to the counter and am told my bag is in holding until my flight 13 hours from now. You are holding my bag hostage. I can request to be reunited with my bag, but it can take a minimum of 45 minutes to 4 hours. Why is customer service dead to your company? First, you delay my flight by 2 hours, leave me standing in line for 30 minutes, on hold for 55 minutes, finally *** to my connecting city, shuffle me into another line, tell me you won't feed me lunch and good luck getting anything else out of you, have me wait for a bag that you didn't tell me you plan to hold hostage, have me wait in another line for 20 minutes, then actually relay to me you are holding my bag hostage and that I won't get to brush my teeth, shower, change my clothes, and send me on my way 11 hours later. What's next? Will you delay/cancel my flight home? I guess we shall find out tomorrow, but how much is one person supposed to take?
How do you propose you will compensate my time since we can see that empathy and compassion are clearly too much to hope for? More importantly though, how will you change how you define customer relations, and how you train your employees, because as I see it now your "customer relations" department should be aptly named the "it's really not my problem" department?
Sincerely, though the employees I've encountered of yours are not,
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