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COMPLAINT: Singapore Airlines - fraud

 
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  #1  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 1:36 PM
puerrtto puerrtto is offline
 
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1. In Oct 2008 I've made a booking at Singapore airlines website (www.singaporeairlines.com) for the flight Colombo - Singapore - Colombo, booking reference. This booking was made for me by my sister with her VISA credit card. Full amount of ~$750 was charged by Singapore Airlines from my sister's account three weeks before I had to board my flight.
Important to say, that with the confirmation that was sent to my e-mail, was the new one rule, not mentioned during the booking rule - "Since you are not part of the traveling party, you will be required to sign a letter of indemnity (LOI) and submit it personally, by mail, or by fax to the nearest Singapore Airlines office".

2. In according with the said above, my sister signed this letter of indemnity, and we sent it to Singapore Airlines office in Tel-Aviv, Israel by fax (she libes and works in Israel). After sending she called to their office, and they approved, that they got this letter and now "Everything is OK, no need to come".

3. Nov 2008 I was denied boarding to my flight from Colombo (Sri-Lanka) to Singapore. As far as local Singapore Airlines officials explained, it was "some problem with my reservation". Because of their extremely bad english, they could not explain what's a problem exactly. I've tried to tell them, that my sister was charged in a full for this flight, and that's impossible that any problem remains. They did not respond, but asked to see my (again - MY credit card, not sister's!) credit card.

4. They took from me the credit card for about 5 minutes, and returned it back with already printed transaction(!) for LKR 226,800 (~$2,067) and asked me to sign it. They said, that for security reasons I need to sign it and explained that they will refund me for this amount later. Again, they could not explain what does it mean "security reasons" and why do I need to pay $2,067 in addition to $750 already paid for the tickets. I said, that my sister was fully charged and I do not intend to sign this transaction in this case. They answered, that if I do not sign amount of $2,067- I would be denied boarding.

5. I said, that no way I sign in any case, and they had no legal right to use my credit card for payments without my permission and authorization. After that I said, that if they do not let me board my flight - I demand from them official letter where the reason of this denial to fly will be stated, and later we will meet in the court.

6. They talked sinhala language (Sri-Lankan language) between them for about 5 minutes, so I could not understand what they are talking about. They made some calls as well. Finally they decided to let me board my flight. I asked them, that I need to be sure, that this amount of $2,067 will not be charged and they said "Don't worry mister, thats OK".

7. Some time ago I discovered that I was charged by Sri-Lankan Airlines(!) for $2,067 mentioned above in addition to $750 already charged from my sister's account.

8. I talked a lot with Singapore Airlines call center, thеy asked to send them "unused coupons" for Colombo-Singapore-Colombo flight. However, as I said above, I did not buy any additional tickets. That's why I had no any "unused coupons" to send them back.

9. A problem wasn't solved till nowdays (6 month!) and, actually, in according to the law, I have to apply to the singaporean court in order to get refund...
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  #2  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 3:18 PM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
 
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i fly singapore airlines all the time (live between nyc and singapore) and i have never had any problems with them at all, and neither has my family, friends, or co-workers

i know tthat in some cases you have to provide the same credit card or ID that you purchased the flight with, for security reasons, and your name doesnt match your sisters.....so that maybe why they charged you, and told you that they will give you a refund

also on a sidenote, i have heard from people at work, and from some maids around the pool, that there are some "corrupt" people who work at airports and many areas in sri lanka, and that they look to make money on the side, especially if they believe your a tourist, and its pretty wide blown across the whole airport and alot goes unreported apparently

also you cant completely blaim people for speaking in a language you cant understand and have "broken/hard to understand" english, as it is very hard to learn and get a hold of in a country where it isnt their primary language and where people dont take learning a new language with 100% comprehension and so on
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  #3  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 3:44 PM
puerrtto puerrtto is offline
 
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Originally Posted by mars6423 View Post
maybe why they charged you, and told you that they will give you a refund
Probably so, but no refund was given. That's a point. Singapore Airlines charged twice for the same flight without any intention to refund.

Quote:
it is very hard to learn and get a hold of in a country where it isnt their primary language and where people dont take learning a new language with 100% comprehension and so on
Look, most of us had to stady some languages in addition to the native one. My language is russian, but in order to survive in our crazy world I had to study english, french, arabic. So what? English is not a native one for most of singaporeans as well, but mandarin dialect of chinese. However, I'm sure, that if one got a job in an international airport - it means he has to learn english. Good english, not kind of "How much and hello". Don't you think so?
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Old Aug 15, 2009, 4:05 PM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
 
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actually almost all of the kids here in singapore are brought up by english aswell as their native language, so they are very fluent in both, the older generations have a little more difficulty but they are understandable and know what they are saying and talking about, all the road signs and everything is in english and so is the government papers and everything

english may not be the native language, but its being used as frequently if not more now in school and at home, than you may think
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  #5  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 4:12 PM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
 
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and i agree that they should be able to have better knowledge of the language if there is a large amount of english speaking people, and know the concepts of how to provide the service that is deemed acceptable

but i also know from a friend who's brother in law works at a airport in a non-english speaking country that the manager hires his/her friends even if their english may or may not be good, but i dont know that as a fact
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  #6  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 4:37 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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Regardless of what language they spoke or which country he was in, this customer met the requirements laid out by Singapore Airlines, but was ripped off by the airline. It makes no difference whether he was in Sri Lanka or Timbuktu.. he met the conditions imposed by Singapore Airlines when his sister bought the ticket, and Singapore Airlines, not local's in Sri Lanka processed a further unauthorised charge on his credit card. Astonishing as it might seem to you mars... the sainted Singapore Airlines screwed up. In any other business this is fraud.. but airlines seem to operate how they like.
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  #7  
Old Aug 15, 2009, 4:59 PM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
 
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the agent said that he/she would be refunded the money and even though he/she told them he/she isnt going to sign it than they must have misunderstood what she meant or there was a mix up in what was going on (which may have been a language barrier), and the charge was still put on, which from what it i read it seemed like it was getting her on the flight, and then the poster would be refunded, it is a pain in the ass and people dont want to go through that, but singapore airlines is tight about security and they want to make sure that the ticket was issued under the flyers name and that it wasnt a fraudulant ticket (such as, a made up name on the credit card) and to make sure that wsnt the case they reperchase the ticket persay and than when you get to the destination you file a claim form and you get the refund
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  #8  
Old Aug 16, 2009, 9:38 AM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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Are you deliberately missing the point?

When his sister purchased the ticket, Singapore Airlines emailed them to outline what actions his sister was supposed to take. This involving sending a letter of authorisation to Singapore Airlines. They did that. He had fully met the requirements of Singapore Airlines.

At the airport, the OP did not sign the charge, although he was present. Credit card rules require a signature or PIN number if the passenger is present. In order to process the charge without the signature, the agents of Singapore Airlines must have said that he was not present, or had signed the form. THIS IS FRAUD.

Singapore Airlines then compounded the problem by taking six months to process the refund and even then only after he had to pursue the matter legally.

The fact that you will defend the actions of Singapore Airlines in these circumstances shows that your Airline Sympathizer label is not strong enough. Airline stooge is more like it.
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  #9  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 4:24 AM
Silent Bob Silent Bob is offline
 
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I think everyone has missed the point here. the poster needs to take this complaint up with the airline who took his money and that's Sri Lankan Airlines, unless this was a mistake in the posting, I'm just quoting what was said:

Quote:
7. Some time ago I discovered that I was charged by Sri-Lankan Airlines(!) for $2,067 mentioned above in addition to $750 already charged from my sister's account.
I think that's maybe why you didn't get a refund, because if Sri Lankan airlines is the company that took your money then you should be able to get it back from them. Because as you stated Your sister did everything she was supposed to have done to secure the ticket, allowing you to travel. If indeed this was done by Singapore Airlines, then defifinitely persue the matter as that's a lot of money out of pocket.
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  #10  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 10:50 AM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
 
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thank you silent bob, i completely overread that and didnt catch it

so in that case you gotta go through sri lankan airlines not singapore for your refund, probably why you didnt get the money back, and kinda wierd how sri lankan airlines would even be involved
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  #11  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 11:17 AM
puerrtto puerrtto is offline
 
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Friends, just today I've got another letter from Singapore Airlines, what makes me feel twice sure, that it was fraud. Pay attention, that they used my credit card without my perm. at all in order to buy additional tickets from Sri-Lankan airlines. What's more - again, they asked to send them coupons of this flight (Sri Lankan), in spite of the fact, that I've never have it at all:

Mr Alexander Lapshin

16 August 2009


081104125/CR/ST


Dear Mr Lapshin

Thank you for your patience while we conducted our investigations.

May I first explain that for third-party online bookings, the cardholder
would need to sign a Letter of Indemnity (LOI) document and personally present
the purchasing credit card and photo identity for authentication at any of our
Ticket offices. This can be done at either our Town ticket office or at the
Airport Ticket office on the day of departure.

It is definitely not our intention to inconvenience or trouble our
customers unnecessarily. I seek your kind understanding that this is a necessary
measure so as to affirm the cardholder’s identity and prevent the misuse of the
credit card from an unauthorized user. In view of the increasing prevalence of
fraudulent online transactions in relation to credit card bookings, it is
necessary for us, as a premium carrier, to take every precaution with our
passengers’ credit card transactions.

As the credit card details need only be entered into the system to complete
the online booking transaction, verification of the credit card itself is
required to ensure that payments were made by the legitimate cardholder.

From our findings, I understand that you produced a photocopy of the Letter
of Indemnity during check-in. However, there was no indication made in the
booking that the credit card had already been verified at our Ticket office. As
such, the staff was unable to accept you for boarding and advised that you
purchase new tickets at the Sri Lankan Airlines Ticket office and obtain a refund on the original e-tickets.


I note that you eventually utilized the paper coupon for travel on 467 / 4
November 2008. Colombo – Singapore. I would appreciate if you could please
send us the unused Singapore – Colombo coupon to:

Singapore Airlines
Customer Affairs Department
25 Airline Road
09–E Airline House
Singapore 8198289

Upon receipt of the document, we will then be able to process the refund of
the tickets which you purchased from our website.

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to explain, Mr Lapshin.

Yours sincerely

Tan Shu Yan
Manager Customer Services
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  #12  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 3:35 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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If Sri Lankan are acting as agents for Singapore Airlines Colombo, then I still think the complaint is with Singapore Airlines. All the consequent losses are as a result of SA's failure to allow him to board, even though he had provided appropriate proof at the Tel Aviv office. I think his remedy will have to be in court.
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Old Aug 17, 2009, 3:50 PM
Silent Bob Silent Bob is offline
 
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Actually puertto, please highlight the WHOLE statement as such:

Quote:
From our findings, I understand that you produced a photocopy of the Letter
of Indemnity during check-in. However, there was no indication made in the
booking that the credit card had already been verified at our Ticket office. As
such, the staff was unable to accept you for boarding and advised that you
purchase new tickets at the Sri Lankan Airlines Ticket office and obtain a refund on the original e-tickets.
It still doesn't say Singapore Airlines took your money, it states you were advised to buy new tickets. The unused ticket they were looking for is singapore - colombo and it would appear that your sister will be the one to get the refund not you, since it states you will obtain a refund on the original tickets. I hope you have all your documents in order because your gonna be in for a fight.
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  #14  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 3:54 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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Just as an addendum...

This is from Sir Lanka's website:

Quote:
SriLankan is the sole ground handler at Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport
If this is the case, Singapore Airlines are responsible for the actions of their agents. If United sub contract calls to India and a customer has complaint about one of the call centre workers, they cannot simply be told to take it up with Mahanagar Telephone in Mumbai. United are responsible for the actions of their agents and Singapore are responsible for the actions of theirs. If SriLankan is contracted to provide ground handling, ticketing, etc on behalf of Singapore, then the customer should have their complaint resolved by Singapore.
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  #15  
Old Aug 17, 2009, 5:16 PM
JR in Orlando JR in Orlando is offline
 
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The problem its seems to me is that the flyer did not comply with the requirements of Singapore Airlines which states in its on-line ticketing rules:

E-Tickets can be purchased using a credit card or debit card, and will be issued to the payment card holder only. The payment cardholder may purchase an E-Ticket for another person if both passengers travel together. However, if the payment cardholder is not one of the travelling party, bring the credit/debit card to the nearest Singapore Airlines ticketing office to have it verified before travelling.

Additionally, Singapore Airlines does mention the Limitation of Liability as a rule on its on-line site. Apparently, his sister did not read the rules, but ordered his ticket. He is then upset when the airline prevents him from traveling for his/his sister's failure to have shown the credit card to Singapore Airlines prior to travel.

As a result he had to buy another ticket at a greater price, if he wanted to fly that day. Singapore Airlines seems to be cooperating in returning the original ticket price for unused portions (probably to his sister). This is the result of not reading the rules before buying tickets.
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Old Aug 17, 2009, 5:31 PM
JR in Orlando JR in Orlando is offline
 
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This is part of the rules of the Singapore Airlines regarding the Limitation of Liability:

"Can I book a flight for Passengers even if I am not travelling with them?



Yes. You can book and pay for your friends, family, or colleagues even if you are not travelling with them. You need to indicate during the booking process on the “Enter Passenger Details” page that you are not part of the travelling party. Secondly, as a paying party, you will need to submit a Letter of Indemnity at our Ticketing Office.

What is a Letter of Indemnity (LOI)?



Letter of Indemnity is a declaration in which you agree to use your own credit/debit card to make a booking for passengers whom you are not travelling with and give your consent to Singapore Airlines to deduct payment from your payment card. By signing a Letter of Indemnity, you indemnify SIA against any payment dispute that may arise from such bookings."

The letter of indemnification is apparently to protect the airlines from the non-flying payer challenging the credit card charge for the ticket after the fact.
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Old Aug 17, 2009, 10:19 PM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
 
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JR.. did you read the original complaint? You appear to have missed a vital part of the initial complaint. This is a quote from the OP:

Quote:
Since you are not part of the traveling party, you will be required to sign a letter of indemnity (LOI) and submit it personally, by mail, or by fax to the nearest Singapore Airlines office".

2. In according with the said above, my sister signed this letter of indemnity, and we sent it to Singapore Airlines office in Tel-Aviv, Israel by fax (she libes and works in Israel). After sending she called to their office, and they approved, that they got this letter and now "Everything is OK, no need to come".
Which bit of that did you not understand? He knew about the LOI and his sister took the action required. Given that.. what is your point?
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