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COMPLAINT: Bad experience with Allegiant Airlines

 
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  #1  
Old Aug 26, 2009, 3:09 PM
V. Stein-Retiz V. Stein-Retiz is offline
 
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Be aware if you fly with Allegiant. We took a flight from Medford Oregon to LAX and we did not have any issues until we went to pick up our luggage. We were traveling with two small children and had car seats and luggage so we did not want to carry everything on the Shuttle to get the rent a car and planned to come right back to get it which we did and by then the airline had locked it up and left for the day leaving no one behind to un lock it. We needed to drive to San Diego after that and it was a Friday. We talked to anyone in the airport we could find and no one could help us. We called the 800 number and could not reach a live person. So we had to rent a car seat from the rental agency and hit major traffic due to the delay.
It gets worse. On the way back we arrived at LAX early to get the seat back (what we thought we early) and when we spoke to the ticket agent about the seat she said there was no one in the storage area to get it out to bring it up to us but she would give it a try. Then she proceeded to process our tickets. We had to remind them to mark our ticket with a lap child because last time they forgot and we got hassled at security. Then we asked for a tag because we were checking our stroller in at the gate. We asked what gate we needed to go to and the agent pointed to the gate area and said 68A but as we left we heard the other agent tell her passengers who were on the same flight to go up the elevator. So we stood in line and then it was getting late and we told the airport person we were getting too close to our flight time which was 8:15 so she said get out of line and go up the elevator which we did there was hardly a line at all and we got through security and ran to the gate to find our plane had left and it was only 8:12. We found an Allgegiant airline person and asked what we could do and of course the said there only flight was to Billings Montana big help! We told her the ticket person told us to go to the wrong line and just as we said that her comes the agent so we asked her why and she said that we checked in in plenty of time to get through security and she did not know what happened and that the elevator only for wheel chairs but we said we had a stoller and obviously that would not have made it up the stairs or the escaltor either. They gave us no help and no apologies. We had to find another flight on another airline or stay in LA til Monday. We found another flight and had to pay $200 per person and it was not taking off for 12 hours. So we spent 12 hours at LAX with a 1 year old and a 6 year old. Wait its not over yet. Then we asked about our luggage. It made it onto the plane so then we said we will not get to Medford til 10 and your ticket area will be closed and we do not want you to lock it up. They said that was our problem. We also said we had medicine in the suitcase because it could not go through security and they said we should have that of thought before (yes we should of anticipated their complete incompetence prior to packing at 5 am) Luckily my husband who did not go on the trip with us drove to the airport to get out luggage but found that one bag was missing and they had no idea where it went. So we had to leave a message on their lost baggage line and we had not heard anything by Monday so we drove to the airport and it was there waiting but no one had called us to let us know it had been located. So we wrote a complaint letter to the airlines and got a response to let us know that they would credit us for the flight we missed but nothing else since it was our fault. Like we want to fly with them again after that! What good is a credit on their ariline for something we already paid for???
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  #2  
Old Aug 26, 2009, 3:57 PM
PHXFlyer PHXFlyer is offline
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1. Why didn't you check with the luggage agent before you left to pick up your car? Had you done so you would have been advised of the time the baggage office closes. If an airline only operates a couple of flights a day from an airport there is no reason to keep their employees there. Once the flight lands and the luggage gets to baggage claim they allow a reasonable amount of time for people to pick up their bags, lock up the unclaimed ones and clock out. You can't expect the airline to pay an employee overtime to wait for you to return from picking up your rental car.

2. I am very familiar with LAX and especially terminal 6 as Continental uses the same terminal. The elevator is indeed for wheelchairs. Sorry, strollers don't count. If you didn't make your flight because of the line at the TSA checkpoint then you didn't allow yourself enough time. Period. Sorry to be so harsh but that's just how it is. LAX is a very busy airport and T6 has notoriously long lines at times.

3. Never, EVER, pack things like medicines in your checked luggage. The TSA makes exceptions to the 3.4 Oz. rule for prescription medications. Obviously you were unaware of the exception but it is on the TSA's website.

4. You are very lucky to have received a credit from Allegiant. Their contract of carriage is very specific and makes no exceptions. If you miss your flight without canceling you lose the value of your ticket. Wether you decide to use the credit or not is your choice. I tink you are blaming the airline for many of your own issues. As a matter of fact from your post I cannot find anything Allegiant did wrong.
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  #3  
Old Aug 26, 2009, 4:15 PM
V. Stein-Retiz V. Stein-Retiz is offline
 
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Dear PHXFlyer,

Do you have children?? Then maybe you would understand why we did not have time to check in with the luggage agent to see if they were going to happen to be at the luggage area 30 minutes after the flight landed. The kids were crying that they needed to go to the bathroom, get a diaper change etc... No reason to keep their employees there for more than 30 minutes after the flight landed which is a reasonable amount of time ???? Do they not realize that you can not drive without your car seat and that we obviously put it on the plane for a reason????? Whatever the reason was that we left the car seat was not important the fact that they were not there 30 minutes after the flight landed is not reasonable!

Sorry to tell you that the airport person told us that we could use the elevator for strollers because it is too dangerous to go up stairs or the escalaor with a stroller. Have you ever tried to take a stroller on an escalator at the mall? You will get yelled at since it is a safety issue even if you fold it up and try to carry it up or down.

The ticket agent herself said we had checked in on time. The airline website posted the minimal check in time was 45 minutes prior to the flight and we checked in well before that.

We did take the medicine in the small amount allowed in our carry on bags but that was not enough for the 12 hours we got stuck at the airport. Also we had to take more than that with us because we were going to be gone for a week and we had a lot left on the return so we put it in our checked bags. Keep in mind what we were talking about was getting the medicine back when we returned to Medford. They were planning to lock it up again which meant we could not get it back until Monday when they opened up for their next flight and obviously that was the problem. Yes we could go to the pharmacy and get the presciption filled when we returned but yet one more issue that the incompetence of this airline caused. Why are you defending them and don't you have any thing better to do like take a flight or something???
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  #4  
Old Aug 26, 2009, 5:02 PM
Gromit801 Gromit801 is offline
 
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The only time the airlines get defended in here, is when the customer has made mistakes and are trying to blame the airlines for their own screw up.

You screwed up in a few different ways.

Were you there two hours or more before flight departure? Doesn't sound like it.
If you choose to fly with kids, then it is up to you to plan accordingly, and make sure all your ducks are lined up. Doesn't sounds like you did this either.
Did you check with the airline counter before you took off for your rental car? Nope.

Don't use kids as an excuse for your mistakes.
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Old Aug 26, 2009, 9:50 PM
bah humbug bah humbug is offline
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Originally Posted by V. Stein-Retiz View Post
Dear PHXFlyer,

Do you have children??

I do, but I still don't understand where you are coming from.

Then maybe you would understand why we did not have time to check in with the luggage agent to see if they were going to happen to be at the luggage area 30 minutes after the flight landed.

Why not get one of those little carts, put ALL of your luggage on it, one person stays behind with the kids while the other goes to get the car. Or if one person can't handle two crying kids, split them up, one kid goes with to get the car, one stays behind with the luggage.

The kids were crying that they needed to go to the bathroom, get a diaper change etc... No reason to keep their employees there for more than 30 minutes after the flight landed which is a reasonable amount of time ?

Please don't try to tell us you got off of the aircraft, claimed you luggage (minus your car seats) got on the shuttle with your two crying kids, got processed at the rental car area and was back in the baggage claim area within 30 minutes, and the agent was gone??? In LAX??? NOT POSSIBLE!!!! You would be lucky to accomplish all of that in an hour.



Sorry to tell you that the airport person told us that we could use the elevator for strollers.

I am sure anyone CAN use the elevator....it's up to YOU to get on it. Why would you need to be told to use it if you know you have a stroller?

The ticket agent herself said we had checked in on time. The airline website posted the minimal check in time was 45 minutes prior to the flight and we checked in well before that.

That means you checked in prior to the airlines "cut off" time. Plenty of people check in prior to cut off, but miss their flight due to long security lines. You act as if 1 hr prior with two small children, bags and stollers is a lot of time....you need at least 2-3 hours at a major airport.



We did take the medicine in the small amount allowed in our carry on bags.
Medicine does not count in the 3oz rule. You could have taken the whole bottle....this is from TSA's website under TRAVEL TIPS...

"Medications, baby formula and food, breast milk, and juice are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding three ounces and are not required to be in the zip-top bag"


Happy Flying
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Old Aug 26, 2009, 10:23 PM
PHXFlyer PHXFlyer is offline
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Originally Posted by bah humbug View Post
Sorry to tell you that the airport person told us that we could use the elevator for strollers.

I am sure anyone CAN use the elevator....it's up to YOU to get on it. Why would you need to be told to use it if you know you have a stroller?
Actually, the elevator the OP is referencing isn't open for the "general public." He is talking about an elevator in T6 which is located adjacent to where the line forms for TSA. The elevator lets you out on the upper level mezzanine which has it's own (much smaller) TSA checkpoint. The checkpoint is only for airline and airport employees, travelers in wheelchairs and their companion, members of Continental's Presidents Club and frequent fliers with elite status. There is someone stationed at the bottom level of the elevator to check credentials and restrict access to the elevator. Sometimes when the line gets seriously backed up an airport employee will take several people out of the line and send them up on the elevator. This happens very rarely, however.

I have heard that some people, when the T6 line is ridiculously long, go to either T5 or T7 to clear TSA. After clearing there are underground walkways (no people movers and no electric carts so anyone who is challenged by walking distances shouldn't try this) that connect the terminals so you don't have to re-clear security. If you try this just be prepared for some resistance by the person checking your boarding pass. If they point out you're in the "wrong terminal" simply remind them that the terminals are inter-connected behind security anyway so it shouldn't matter.
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Old Aug 27, 2009, 12:28 AM
bah humbug bah humbug is offline
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Originally Posted by PHXFlyer View Post
The checkpoint is only for airline and airport employees, travelers in wheelchairs and their companion, members of Continental's Presidents Club and frequent fliers with elite status.
In that case, I really don't see why the OP was upset because the agent sent them to the line and the other agent sent their passenger to the elevator. Maybe that passenger was an Elite passenger. The OP doesn't know. Just a classic case of eavesdropping. Not knowing the whole story, but getting upset over it.
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Old Aug 27, 2009, 1:03 AM
PHXFlyer PHXFlyer is offline
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Originally Posted by bah humbug View Post
In that case, I really don't see why the OP was upset because the agent sent them to the line and the other agent sent their passenger to the elevator. Maybe that passenger was an Elite passenger. The OP doesn't know. Just a classic case of eavesdropping. Not knowing the whole story, but getting upset over it.
Allegiant doesn't even have a frequent flier program so they don't have elite passengers. The passengers who were directed to the elevator either had a legitimate disability (traveling with children is not, in itself, a disability) or were from an adjacent counter of another airline and they did have elite status.
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