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Customer Service Have you had any problems with Continental's Customer Service? Have Continental employees treated you poorly?

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  #1  
Old 04-17-2009, 09:23 PM
aschumm aschumm is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5
Default Cancelled Flight - because their manifest is wrong!

My husband flew to Toronto on Monday, with a return flight scheduled and confirmed for Friday. He requires Oxygen on his flights.

When he arrived at the airport on Friday, Continental had cancelled his place on the flight because they said he WAS NOT ON THE INBOUND FLIGHT ON MONDAY. Fortunately, my husband keeps all paperwork when he travels, and showed them his boarding pass from Monday. They then agreed he had a place on the flight, BUT he cannot fly with it because they don't have the oxygen - because they cancelled his place on the flight due to their manifest error. Now, he says he doesn't care about the oxygen and will sign a waiver, but continental won't accept that because a doctor has ordered it - even though HE, himself, has declined it.

Continental contacted the doctor's office, and as luck would have it, his doctor was on vacation, and the other doctors in the office won't go against her orders. And my husband cannot waive his right to the oxygen. This is communism! Do they make him take pills the doctor ordered, too?????

This is incompetence at its highest. Up til now I thought Continental had hired people with intelligence and competence, and could serve the public well, but when it simply cuts a person from a flight because ITS own manifest is WRONG - what, did they lose the little boarding passes they collect? - is absolute incompetence! And if he had simply chosen not to fly the first leg of a round-trip, does that give them the right to cancel the homebound flight? And do they not have a responsibility to notify him that they have cancelled his flight? No one called him, or home, or any other contact.

And what if the plane had crashed - the manifest is wrong!!!! Wonderful.


This is intolerable.
Additionally, there is no place on Continental's website where one can write an e-mail to complain or get any satisfaction.

The results of this fiasco - not that Continental cares one shred - is that we will miss an important seminar we had scheduled for the weekend, and a very much anticipated family gathering to which people are traveling great distances to see him, to celebrate his birthday and other family events. And he has to fly back to Toronto on Sunday, so he will have only one hectic night at home if they even bother to schedule a flight for Saturday - and have to fly again the next day.

And Continental says it will pay for his hotel to stay overnight. Thanks a lot, Continental. Do you really think that makes up for the lost time with his family, and the aggravation?

Incompetence abounds. I thought Continental had done something worthwhile - I see now it was only a smoke screen.
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  #2  
Old 04-18-2009, 07:46 AM
Silent Bob Silent Bob is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: NY NY
Posts: 510
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1) yes Continental (along with a host of other airlines) can and will cancel an itinerary if you choose not to take one portion of the trip and 2) if something were to happen where your husband needed the oxygen, then you will blame continental (even if you signed a waiver), so I think they were lookingout for themselves in the long run as well as your husbands well being. Remember they didn't order that he HAS to have the oxygen, his doctor did.
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  #3  
Old 04-18-2009, 09:08 AM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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Location: Shropshire, England
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Well, the point is though Bob... he did fly the segment. That is incompetence and they really caused this family a lot of problems as a result of it. However, I do disagree with the OP on the oxygen issue. Continental checked with the doctors, and the doctors too felt the oxygen was needed. I understand you were upset and angry at being stranded by their incompetence, but oxygen is prescribed for a reason. The air is much thinner at altitude and if you are already suffering a respiratory condition, the consequences can be severe if you don't have oxygen. Even if you were prepared to take the risk, the airline and the doctors were not.. and I think that is fair enough. That was motivated by concern for your welfare. In fact, it would have been cheaper and easier for Continental to let you fly, but they did not do so for good reasons.

I think you are due some compensation for the great inconvenience you were caused by their incompetence. The hotel room is not compensation.. it is simply mitigating the damage. I would write to them and ask for some compensation for your loss and inconvenience, but I would back off on the oxygen issue.. it was a case of trying to do the right thing.
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  #4  
Old 04-18-2009, 01:16 PM
PHXFlyer PHXFlyer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aschumm View Post
Continental contacted the doctor's office, and as luck would have it, his doctor was on vacation, and the other doctors in the office won't go against her orders. And my husband cannot waive his right to the oxygen. This is communism! Do they make him take pills the doctor ordered, too?????
If the other physicians at his doctor's practice wouldn't override her orders what makes you think Continental would? That's just absurd. I agree the manifest error which caused the return segment to be canceled shouldn't have happened but errors happen from time to time. The boarding passes are scanned as passengers board the plane. Perhaps it was some sort of computer error when the boarding pass was scanned or perhaps it was human error somewhere along the line. You'll probably never know but no system is 100% accurate.

Quote:
Additionally, there is no place on Continental's website where one can write an e-mail to complain or get any satisfaction.
From the main web page of Continental.com simply click on "contact us." It will take you to a page where you have the option to call 800.WE.CARE2 or send an e-mail.

Quote:
And Continental says it will pay for his hotel to stay overnight. Thanks a lot, Continental. Do you really think that makes up for the lost time with his family, and the aggravation?

Incompetence abounds. I thought Continental had done something worthwhile - I see now it was only a smoke screen.
I think if you either call or write (written correspondence is usually best) you may be offered some form of compensation seeing as the canceled segment was due to an error on their part. Let us know the end result and good luck.
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  #5  
Old 04-19-2009, 04:31 PM
aschumm aschumm is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5
Default PHX Flyer

What makes me think that Continental would override a doctor's orders, sir, is that this is still a free country, and if my husband, properly identified, stands in front of Continental people and agrees to SIGN A WAIVER TO GIVE away his right to the oxygen - doctor's advice or not - he has every right to do that!

As far as the "error" in the manifest goes, you are wrong! He, with the oxygen supply person, walked right by the boarding personnel and they did NOT TAKE or SCAN his boarding pass, as the oxygen person was in a hurry to get it set up. The EXACT SAME THING HAPPENED on the return flight, only this time, my husband spoke up and said, "Wait, you have to scan my boarding pass".

No, sir: Continental FAILED to scan the boarding pass. He walked right onto that airplane without being checked. Good morning, Homeland Security. You are about to get a letter about that!

I thank you for your comments, but please try not to contradict what someone says in a post.
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  #6  
Old 04-19-2009, 04:46 PM
aschumm aschumm is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5
Smile Please direct me further, if you would

From the main web page of Continental.com simply click on "contact us." It will take you to a page where you have the option to call 800.WE.CARE2 or send an e-mail.

I think if you either call or write (written correspondence is usually best) you may be offered some form of compensation seeing as the canceled segment was due to an error on their part. Let us know the end result and good luck.[/quote]
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  #7  
Old 04-19-2009, 04:54 PM
aschumm aschumm is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5
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Hi again, PhyFlyer... I had gone to the site, and went there again with your link, but still cannot find a place to send an e-mail. I really don't want to sit on humming-hold to speak to someone who will most likely be rude to me, as Customer Service was to him when he finally went to speak with them... another saga, I won't bore you with!

I do think Continental - or any airline - could extend the courtesy of a phone call or email to the customer when it bumps them from a flight whatever the reason.

BTW, I don't fault Continental for not going against MDs orders - they are covering their fanny, and that's smart! But had they done the right thing in the first place, the whole situation would not have ensued... and it scares me that someone could simply walk onto a plane with a bottle of oxygen and not being checked for credentials, when Continental has just followed the "I won't go against doctor's orders" to a fault. That risk would have been against a plane full of people, not just one. There's a scary irony there, don't you think?

To their credit, there were TWO people at the check-in desk who knocked themselves out to get him a next-day flight, with oxgen - although originally he was told it would take FOUR days... yep, four days - to get the oxygen to Toronto.

One small last point: My husband and I travel all over the world - thousands of miles to international locations, long flights, many flights (nine, in our China trip alone)... and he has had no problems. The doctor here has a tendency to over-medicate, over-reach in her care, but I still think he should have a right of refusal - which he will take care of in her office, next visit. Again, Continental did not falter on the O2 issue, they faltered on their SECURITY!

Thanks again, all of you for your comments.
I will try again to get an e-mail address, and as one of you said, written communication is probably the best.
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  #8  
Old 04-19-2009, 11:11 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Shropshire, England
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I think your last post summarizes the situation very well. The oxygen issue is one that is an issue for your doctor. If the doctor over medicates, you might consider changing doctors, but be careful. I have worked in an ER and it was not uncommon for airlines to divert due to passengers experiencing respiratory problems in the air. It was also not uncommon to find out that they were flying either against doctors orders or had failed to advise their doctor of their plans to take a flight, despite being occasional oxygen users. This is a risky thing to do.

It is a free country, but this freedom works both ways. Your husband was willing to sign away or waiver any claim against the airline, but equally the airline was not willing to risk the cost of diverting if your husband experienced respiratory distress. That is not communism as you say in your first post.. it is good sound common sense.

I think you should write, map out what happened, express you concerns about their negligence, concerns about security and then ask to be compensated for the loss of your time and your inconvenience.

Hope you get a resolution and post the outcome on there..good luck.
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  #9  
Old 04-20-2009, 02:09 AM
aschumm aschumm is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5
Smile Thank you...

...for an insight I had not seen. It could risk other passengers by diverting the flight, and that would not be fair to others. I thank you for that comment, and it will be well considered.

I have written to Continental asking for small remumeration for our inconvenience, and asking them to be more diligent in their Customer Service reps - as they were not (with the exception of two), very Customer-oriented. One was quite nasty to my husband.

Again, I thank you for a sensible, intelligent reply which makes me think twice, and make better choices in the future.

A.
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