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Old Sep 24, 2017, 7:36 PM
pierghe pierghe is offline
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 1
Exclamation Etihad Changes rescheduled flights adding costs and causing discomfort

On March 1st 2017 I've booked with Etihad (on their website) a trip from Milan MPX (departure July 5th) to Hervey Bay in Australia (arrival July, 7th) and way back departing on September 18th with arrival at Milan on the 19th. Each trip was composed of three flights with stop over in Abu Dhabi and Sydney.

On June, 15th Etihad sent me a note with the following subject "Your Etihad flight has been cancelled and rebooked". Yet it was a shame that, in the way from Hervey Bay to Milan, the flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi was confirmed to arrive on Sep 19th at 5.40am but the connecting flight to Milan (for which Etihad had re-issued the ticket) was to depart at 2:45am of the same day. Not easy to get...

That is Etihad was proposing to me a new schedule that was just impossible.
So I called Etihad contact center but it came out that Etihad, acknowledging that the ticket should be changed again, was not able to offer alternative solutions which wouldn't imply a great deal of discomfort to the passenger (in this case my daughter, aged 17): eg. wait almost 24 hours at AUH airport, with an overall delay of 1 day (which woud also cause problems to her school schedule in Italy) or reach Brisbane on her own and then reschedule the trip to Europe from there.
"The problem had been generated by the cancellation of a flight of a partner Airlines and there was nothing they could do to preserve customer's original conditions".

I was told that either I accepted one of these two options or I could be refunded. This happened a few days before the departure with consequent issues of availability and prices.

As a matter of fact the airline refused to carry responsibility for a problem that had been originated by a partner Airline and reversed the pain (and the cost) on the customer.

In the end I was left no other choice but to buy for my daughter an additional ticket with Qantas from Hervey Bay to Brisbane and reschedule the trip with Etihad from there.

So, to the cost of an additional flight we had to add the discomfort of adding a fourth flight to a trip that was already long and tiring.

I wrote to Etihad to complain on their site on June 20th, asking at least that they refunded the cost of the Qantas flight, and I didn't receive any answer.

I am profoundly disappointed by the way this problem has been managed by Etihad staff. It is not conceivable that in 2017 customers can be treated this way. I had booked quite a time before the whole trip with Etihad, discarding other options like Emirates and this is what I was given back.

Etihad should bring the responsibility and protect their customers, securing a solution which minimizes the difference with what was originally scheduled, or compensating the discomfort and costs that are caused by them and that can not be in any way related to the customer.

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