Customer Service Stories

By | April 24, 2007

Ff you are a reader and want us to feature one of your stories, we are eager to. Here’s our rundown and synopsis of some of the recent ones we gleaned from other blogs…most from the Consumerist.

  • Virgin Atlantic charged one passenger $110 for a seat upgrade, and gave the same seat to another passenger for free when he asked a flight attendant for it. The passenger found this insulting, and complained. A promised call from a supervisor never materialized, and was offered only $40 for his offense. Personally, we don’t expect him to get much. However, Virgin Atlantic should not allow the flight attendants to upgrade people in this manner. If the counter staff wants to…then no one on the plane will know who paid and did not.
  • A US Airways employee told a passenger they only paid $65 for their flight and thus didn’t have the right to complain about its cancellation. The passenger was advised of the cancellation by automated phone call five hours before departure and asked to call. When he called, he was told his only options were flights too early for him. As he had elite status, he asked to be reaccomodated in first class and even called the Elite line. As he put it….

    When I called and explained the situation, I was immediately met with what could only be described as contemptuous indifference by the “elite” CSR, but I did not know why. She seemed to take glee in telling me “well, the flight you want is sold out.” When I explained, politely and courteously, my frustration about the inconvenience the CSR told me “sir, you need to realize this is a $65 ticket – you couldn’t even drive it for that. I think you’re being unreasonable and you need to be more flexible.”

    Now…US Airways has had its share of problems…but this doesn’t indicate they are overcoming them. Today in the Sky last week commented that even CEO Doug Parker conceded that it will lose passengers if it doesn’t get its act together soon(Take a look at the link to see measures they are taking). This passenger has said he will be switching to Amtrak for his Northeast travel.

  • Southwest wins points for apologizing to one passenger and his family without a complaint from them. Southwest took nearly three hours awaiting deicing on a flight from Chicago heading toward Orlando. Less than two weeks later, they all received a letter from the Senior Manager of PROACTIVE Customer Service apologizing and assuring action to correct the situation in the future. Enclosed were roundtrip passes good for one year to anywhere Southwest flies for each of them.
  • United refused to assist a passenger with a broken leg with seating, opting to charge $54 to seat them in a bulkhead seat, as they sell them as Economy Plus. The plane was not full, and United could have gone the extra mile and asked people to move to give the woman a bit more room, even outside of the Economy Plus section. Saying no while making a customer feel not horrible about it is good customer service. Making them feel like they want to complain the Consumerist implies they failed to do this.
  • Midwest Airlines failed to impress one passenger flying from Nashville to Grand Rapids via Milwaukee whena delayed flight would cause him to miss his connection, forcing an overnight in Milwaukee. They failed to notify him, and after an overnight, he returned to the airport. All flights to and from Grand Rapids except the one he was on were cancelled…his flight was delayed for two hours. So…another day in Milwaukee at a hotel, and finally home the next morning. Midwest did give him a free roundtrip ticket for future use. He wants to know if he should be happy with them or not…give your opinion here.
  • Airtran apparently is giving out documents that look like vouchers, but are apparently not. They apologize for being unable to prove their commitment to one’s satisfaction, and the reverse says it is valid for one year from date of flight, subject to blackouts and capacity controls, and has no cash value. So it seems like a voucher, but does not actually say it entitles someone to a free flight.
  • Jetblue is making good on its promises of late. On April 6th, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported on a family stuck in New York during the Valentine’s Day Meltdown. They kept every receipt during an eight-hour return ride to Virginia in a rental car and sent them in per instructions. They will be receiving more than $1200 including repayment for gas, tolls, and car rental…and eight Jetblue vouchers.