Archive for Posts Tagged ‘travel’

12

Aug
2014
Comments Off on North America’s Best Airline Strikes Again!

North America’s Best Airline Strikes Again!

This is really a story of how Air Canada continually disappoints its customers, so it makes me wonder what these criteria is for best airline! I recently filed a claim with Air Canada to get points for one leg of a 3 legged return flight that I was on and had booked through their own site I believe. Point being that I should have never had to file a claim since my Aeroplan number was on file and I did get points for the rest of the trip. The claim was made online and I provided all the information they requested at the time. Over 2 months later, I get an email that they cannot award me the points since this kind of claim has to be done in written form and I will need to send in a copy of my boarding pass. To boot, the email comes through an address that you cannot reply to, even though it did have a trouble ticket number in it. I found this response lacking, in that this request is completely unnecessary as everything was done online (even my checkin) so the records are all there if they really intended to ever award the points. Sure, I may have kept my boarding pass if the original claim had asked for it, or even if they did not take this long to respond, but none of this was done. So the real question is, why?
  • Why not verify the records they have instead of asking for a written claim?
  • Why allow for such claims to be filed online if they need to be in written form?  Just inform your customers that it needs to be mailed in (so they can claim the mail was lost! )
  • Why take two months to write back?  I realize there are many claims, but there has to be some level of triage to make sure responses are more timely.
  • Why respond from an email that is not tied to their trouble ticketing system?
  • Why ask for this stuff to be mailed when it can just as easily be scanned and emailed?  we are in the digital age after all.
  • And my favourite: Just how do you think I got to my first stop if I was not onboard the flight I claim I was on.  Perhaps, I over paid for an Air Canada ticket just so I can fly it with another airline to go through this wonderful process.
The only answer that can satisfy all of these questions is:  “To make sure the process is long and complicated enough that customers give up”. I said all this to come back to the title of this post.  A quick scan through twitter for Air Canada reveals many other customers that are not happy with the airline for various reasons, and yet they are awarded the Best Airline in North America!! (This is the best placed exclamation mark ever) How?  who is judging this?  what is the criteria for being the best?  and being the best at exactly what? Don’t get me wrong, the planes and staff are generally good, but from a customer satisfaction point of view, Air Canada is lacking.  And just like many other airlines, they have the luxury of being able to ignore all of this due to lack of alternatives for customers. The shame of it is that I still recall the good days of the airlines.  When tickets were cheaper, the staff more professional, and the airlines really cared to make sure they customers return and fly with them again. I end this post by congratulating Air Canada on surprising every one by earning this award 5 times in a row.  
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10

Mar
2012
Comments Off on Does inconvenience give you security and peace of mind

Does inconvenience give you security and peace of mind

Recently, a YouTube video went viral showing how easily the airport body scanners can be fooled. The TSA has now responded to that, but it basically says: “Don’t ask us how it works, just trust us that it does. You are safe now.” It reminds me of the Knight and Day movie with Tom Cruise where he is talking about words and sentences to watch out for…..”you’re safe now”……”it’s for your safety”…..safety. I personally always go early and go through the pat down and avoid the machines. Besides being an invasion of my privacy and exposing me to more xray, I have never felt any safer. Now, this Gizmodo article only reinforces my choice. It is an interesting read.
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21

Feb
2011
Comments Off on A Rare Act of Goodwill

A Rare Act of Goodwill

I recently had to delay my travel to a customer site by a couple of weeks. Booking most of my trips through expedia, I called them and asked the agent to rebook my travel and paid the change fee. The two weeks past and it came time for me to travel back to the customer. However, when i checked the details of the flight, it was booked to return on a Saturday, instead of a Friday (which was what I had originally booked). I doubted anything would happen, but I had to try and call expedia to see if they would correct this mistake for me. After spending a good 45 minutes on the phone talking to two agents, I lost it and started screaming at the agent, who continued to keep his calm throughout. I explained to no avail that my life had come down to my travels from Monday through Friday and that the weekends area sacred family time that I would not have made a mistake of booking. While the agent, understood, he argued that I had seen the confirmation email and had even checked on the itinerary on expedia a couple of time since the rebooking. I could not argue with this but, with all honesty, I only ever paid attention to the start date of the travel to make sure that was correct. I lost all hope and hung up on the agent when i finished my screaming……probably the worst thing i could do, but I had lost it and now had to pay money out of pocket for a mistake that I did not believe originated from me. Then, just as all hope was lost, the unthinkable happened. The agent called me back (he had asked for my number in case we got disconnected). He said that he was not finished, and that if I was willing to hold, he would talk to the higher ups and see what he could do. I not only held on the line, but also my breath for a miracle. He came back after 8-10 minutes and said that he had reviewed my portfolio and talked to the higher ups and they were willing to get me a one way ticket back on Friday as an exception since I was a valued customer. Unbelievable, but they made a customer for life.
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