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Customer Service
COMPLAINT: First time experience with Alaska Airlines

 
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  #1  
Old Sep 9, 2011, 6:05 AM
WJKohlleppel WJKohlleppel is offline
 
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Posts: 3

The following is the complaint that I sent to Alaska Airlines. The background of the issue is that Phoenix Airport is so spread out that it was impossible to make my connecting flight. Since I booked my flight on Travelocity, and have every expectation that the one hour layover that I had would have been suffient to make my connection, I was operating on that belief when trying to make my connection. Imagine my dismay when I was told that it was too late to get my boarding pass, when the plane was due to leave for another 20 minutes!

View the complaints for yourself. Some may not hold much water, since I was in a crappy mood at having been stranded in Phoenix for 7 hours. But still, the bottom line is that Alaska Airlines failed miserably to make adequate accomodations for my inconvenience. That customer service rep thought she was doing me a favor by waving some $25 fee, when that should be just plain good business sense, anyway.

Here's the official complaint:

I had poor customer service from representatives of your airline in both Phoenix, AZ and Portland, OR.

First Complaint - Through no fault of my own, I was running late to catch my connecting flight to Portland (see first flight referenced). I had 20 minutes before my flight was to depart and I wasn't allowed to get my boarding pass. When told it was too late, the Rep did nothing to aleve the situation. I asked for a simple meal comp, since I was stranded in Phoenix for 7 hours, again through no fault of my own. I was refused a meal comp and the agent gave me snide attitude, stating that she (Arcely) waved the $25 fee that she was supposed to charge me for the flight swap.

Second Complaint - While boarding the next flight (second flight references) I was help up by one of the flight attendants because she was giving a cup of water to another patron. This rubbed me the wrong way, as I had been previously stuck in Phoenix and was already in a bad mood because of Alaska Airlines' agent. I informed her that I had been stuck in Phoexin due to your airline and just simply wanted to go home.
Third Complaint - While waiting to take off, myself and other passengers were sending last minute text messages to loved ones. We were in the process of turning our cellphones off when one of the other fligt attendants (Carol) gave attitude to the passengers. When told to turn our phones off, we told her that we were working on it - cell phones don't turn off right away, it does take a few seconds, or so. She seemed to show some impatience and made a snide remark about how we couldn't take off until all cell phones were turned off.

Fourth Complain - When finally having arrived to Portland, I immediately went to baggage claim to get my bags that arrived to Portland before I did. This was just after 8pm. There were three customer service representatives dealing with a couple who had luggage lost in LA. I found my bags and made several comments that I found them and wished to claim them. Several times I was told to wait a moment. Several times I stated that I could see my bags, to no avail. Finally, one of the representatives had asked another to assist me. She called me over to her side of the desk, even though she could have walked over to my side to assist me. Once again I told her I was here to claim my bags. She told me to hold on one moment while she grabbed a piece of paper. When I asked if she needed to see any ID, she just simply asked what the name was on the bags. When I told her William, she merely said, "it's good enough for me." They clearly saw me scoping my bags and didn't even so much as to verify that I was the proper owner of said bags. And to make me wait, only to not bother verify they were mine made me even more upset with Alaska Airlines.

Bottom line is this: all I asked for was a meal comp. Yes, I was upset at not being allowed to make my connection, but I would have got over it had the rep tried to make the wait a little easier. Since I have never been treated so badly by an airline, I will NEVER fly Alaska Airlines again. This was my first and last experience with this airline. What makes it worse is that I have a dear friend who works for this airline. I would gladly give my business to Alaska Airlines because it means supporting him, in the longrun. But by principle, and by the way I was treated, I cannot give my business to your airline ever again.

And to think, this complaint could have been avoided had some of these airline representatives had checked their attitude.

- Bill
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  #2  
Old Sep 9, 2011, 6:38 PM
Gromit801 Gromit801 is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 745

You planned poorly, and used a third party to complicate the poor planning.

You were late (sure as heck not the airline's fault).

One hour is nowhere near enough time for a connection, especially when Alaska closes it's flights at 30 minutes prior to departure.

Your complaints:

1. Yes it was your fault you were late.

2. Complaining about an FA giving someone else a cup of water? How petty can you get.

3. Cell phones shouldn't even be ON when you board the aircraft. Again, your fault.

4. All important YOU couldn't stand that other people were being waited on, and your entitlement attitude blasted right through.

Bottom line was this is all your fault from the beginning, and feel the need to blame everyone else because the star of the universe wasn't bowed to.
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  #3  
Old Sep 9, 2011, 8:24 PM
WJKohlleppel WJKohlleppel is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 3

Gromit:

No doubt, based on your avatar that you will not see any merit in any of my complaints. Whatever, you have the right to your opinion.

If you recall, I did mention in my post that some of my grievances may seem minor. I can accept that. However, the attitude of some of the airline personnel is inexcuseable in my view. Giving the cup of water to another passenger... ok, that was a minor annoyance. I will concede that point, of course. But the snotty attitude of some and the lack of quality customer service when it came time to get my bags (which I noticed you avoided commenting on completely), that is the big rub right there.

Pardon me, but I thought this was a forum to air my grievances. Whether I am right or wrong, this was the experience that I had, that left me dismayed.

Now, you call me out for using a third-party. OK, so how many of us use third-party to find better deals? I would suspect there are a lot of us out there. Since it is such commonplace, how is the consumer supposed to know that using third-party can be bad? Truth is I've used third-party for years and have never missed a connecting flight, never had any issues until now. I had an issue, I reported it. Take it for whatever it is to you. My position still remains the same: I am not dealing with Phoenix Airport or Alaska Airlines ever again.

Thank you,

- Bill
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  #4  
Old Sep 10, 2011, 10:11 AM
A320FAN A320FAN is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 328

Originally Posted by WJKohlleppel View Post
The following is the complaint that I sent to Alaska Airlines. The background of the issue is that Phoenix Airport is so spread out that it was impossible to make my connecting flight. Since I booked my flight on Travelocity, and have every expectation that the one hour layover that I had would have been suffient to make my connection, I was operating on that belief when trying to make my connection. Imagine my dismay when I was told that it was too late to get my boarding pass, when the plane was due to leave for another 20 minutes!

View the complaints for yourself. Some may not hold much water, since I was in a crappy mood at having been stranded in Phoenix for 7 hours. But still, the bottom line is that Alaska Airlines failed miserably to make adequate accomodations for my inconvenience. That customer service rep thought she was doing me a favor by waving some $25 fee, when that should be just plain good business sense, anyway.

Here's the official complaint:

I had poor customer service from representatives of your airline in both Phoenix, AZ and Portland, OR.

First Complaint - Through no fault of my own, I was running late to catch my connecting flight to Portland (see first flight referenced). I had 20 minutes before my flight was to depart and I wasn't allowed to get my boarding pass. When told it was too late, the Rep did nothing to aleve the situation. I asked for a simple meal comp, since I was stranded in Phoenix for 7 hours, again through no fault of my own. I was refused a meal comp and the agent gave me snide attitude, stating that she (Arcely) waved the $25 fee that she was supposed to charge me for the flight swap.

Second Complaint - While boarding the next flight (second flight references) I was help up by one of the flight attendants because she was giving a cup of water to another patron. This rubbed me the wrong way, as I had been previously stuck in Phoenix and was already in a bad mood because of Alaska Airlines' agent. I informed her that I had been stuck in Phoexin due to your airline and just simply wanted to go home.
Third Complaint - While waiting to take off, myself and other passengers were sending last minute text messages to loved ones. We were in the process of turning our cellphones off when one of the other fligt attendants (Carol) gave attitude to the passengers. When told to turn our phones off, we told her that we were working on it - cell phones don't turn off right away, it does take a few seconds, or so. She seemed to show some impatience and made a snide remark about how we couldn't take off until all cell phones were turned off.

Fourth Complain - When finally having arrived to Portland, I immediately went to baggage claim to get my bags that arrived to Portland before I did. This was just after 8pm. There were three customer service representatives dealing with a couple who had luggage lost in LA. I found my bags and made several comments that I found them and wished to claim them. Several times I was told to wait a moment. Several times I stated that I could see my bags, to no avail. Finally, one of the representatives had asked another to assist me. She called me over to her side of the desk, even though she could have walked over to my side to assist me. Once again I told her I was here to claim my bags. She told me to hold on one moment while she grabbed a piece of paper. When I asked if she needed to see any ID, she just simply asked what the name was on the bags. When I told her William, she merely said, "it's good enough for me." They clearly saw me scoping my bags and didn't even so much as to verify that I was the proper owner of said bags. And to make me wait, only to not bother verify they were mine made me even more upset with Alaska Airlines.

Bottom line is this: all I asked for was a meal comp. Yes, I was upset at not being allowed to make my connection, but I would have got over it had the rep tried to make the wait a little easier. Since I have never been treated so badly by an airline, I will NEVER fly Alaska Airlines again. This was my first and last experience with this airline. What makes it worse is that I have a dear friend who works for this airline. I would gladly give my business to Alaska Airlines because it means supporting him, in the longrun. But by principle, and by the way I was treated, I cannot give my business to your airline ever again.

And to think, this complaint could have been avoided had some of these airline representatives had checked their attitude.

- Bill
I have to agree with Gromit. You were late plain and simple. It is people like you who complain about the flight being trady but when your late for something your refusal to accept responsibility for your faults. Why should Alaska/Horizon give you anything. Your late your late. I do not issue meal vouchers for people who miss flights. I place them on standby for the next flight and that is that. If they want to be confirmed then there is a fee involved. As far as I can see, you may have walked into the Alaska/Horizon baggage service office with a chip on your shoulder since you refuse to except the burden of your doings to your self by turning up late.
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  #5  
Old Sep 10, 2011, 7:04 PM
YouJustMe YouJustMe is offline
American Airlines Employee (NOT OFFICIAL REP)
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 3

Originally Posted by WJKohlleppel View Post

Here's the official complaint:

I had poor customer service from representatives of your airline in both Phoenix, AZ and Portland, OR.

First Complaint - Through no fault of my own, I was running late to catch my connecting flight to Portland (see first flight referenced). I had 20 minutes before my flight was to depart and I wasn't allowed to get my boarding pass. When told it was too late, the Rep did nothing to aleve the situation. I asked for a simple meal comp, since I was stranded in Phoenix for 7 hours, again through no fault of my own. I was refused a meal comp and the agent gave me snide attitude, stating that she (Arcely) waved the $25 fee that she was supposed to charge me for the flight swap.
I think the key word here is "connecting" flight. If indeed the connecting flight was late, on the same airline, then they should have rebooked you on the next available flight. As far as meal vouchers, that depends on WHY the flight was late.
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May have been sent from my mobile device, please excuse my brevity.
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  #6  
Old Sep 10, 2011, 9:36 PM
WJKohlleppel WJKohlleppel is offline
 
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Posts: 3

Originally Posted by A320FAN View Post
I have to agree with Gromit. You were late plain and simple. It is people like you who complain about the flight being trady but when your late for something your refusal to accept responsibility for your faults. Why should Alaska/Horizon give you anything. Your late your late. I do not issue meal vouchers for people who miss flights. I place them on standby for the next flight and that is that. If they want to be confirmed then there is a fee involved. As far as I can see, you may have walked into the Alaska/Horizon baggage service office with a chip on your shoulder since you refuse to except the burden of your doings to your self by turning up late.

So because I am relying on an airline to get me to a destination, and having to debark that plane, go clear across to another terminal, I am to solely to blame? Check.

I get that stuff happens. It is what the airline industry does to make people feel better when stuff happens is what I am talking about. Even my good friend, who works for this airline, agrees that Alaska Airlines could have done more to aleve the situation.

What you guys are forgetting is the attitude those customer service representatives took with me. There wasn't apologetic tone, like is expected from a customer service representative. I worked in customer service for many years. Even my profession now requires me to have a level of customer service skills. There is always a way to kindly refuse service without being a jerk about it.

Whether I had an attitude, or not, that is beside the point. Yes, I was just simply wanting to get home. But that doesn't excuse three customer service representatives to attend to one customer (in this case that couple who lost their luggage in L.A.), when there are others waiting. Nor does it excuse their lack of interest in making sure the right bags were going to their rightful owner.

As I said before I asked, not demanded, three or more times if I could claim my bags. Everytime I asked, I was told to wait because all three of them were looking at one computer screen to help these other folks. One of them could have easily stole themselves away to assist me. And when I did get the assistance, I offered to show my ID, to ensure I was the proper owner of those bags. Now, seeing as how they saw me approach, instect the bags for the name on them, anyone could have said their name was William and walked off with them. With no means of verifying that I was the proper owner of the bags, that is a red flag for me. I work in Security, as a living. Something as simple as asking to verify my ID against the name and address on the bags should have been the procedure to follow. Instead all she did was check the name and ask for mine. When done she said, "good enough for me."

I find that a wee bit disturbing. Even if all the other complaints don't wash in your eyes, as I can see that they don't. The lack of security for the bags is certainly a reasonable issue that one could, or should have.
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  #7  
Old Sep 11, 2011, 1:09 PM
A320FAN A320FAN is offline
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Originally Posted by YouJustMe View Post
I think the key word here is "connecting" flight. If indeed the connecting flight was late, on the same airline, then they should have rebooked you on the next available flight. As far as meal vouchers, that depends on WHY the flight was late.
It depends on how the connecting flight is booked I have seen many times that people book 2 seperate itineraries for the sole purpose of saving a few dollars

If:

A. If the connecting flight was booked by a non-partner / airline not having an interline with Alaska he is on his own

B. 2 Seperate PNRs he is on his own

C. waht were the loads like on the following flights if sold out, then he could have been placed on standby until he got onto a flight.

Having personaly traveled on US Airways from LAS to FLL via PHX, there are several roaming electric carts to go from one end to another at a decent speed through out the airport inthe gate area. Of course these carts are not operated by the airlines, but the airport itself.
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Old Sep 11, 2011, 6:31 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Shropshire, England
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Airlines should not sell tickets which offer connctions which cannot be made. Clearly, this was a connecting flight, not a separate itinarary or the Alaska rep would not have accommodated him at all. The tone of this complaint overall is over the top, although to the OP's credit, he does acknowledge this. However, the attitude he complains of is endemic in the airline industry and this is compounded by the increasingly hostile, monopolistic practices of the "mega" carriers such as Delta/Northwest and United/Continental.
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