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Canceled / Delayed / Overbooked
COMPLAINT: greedy airliner

 
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Old Apr 7, 2016, 12:52 PM
tudor roman tudor roman is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
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Greedy, unreliable and irresponsible Austrian Airlines. Flight OS 787 from March 24th 2016:

- - Charging me additional fees for luggage while re-scheduling my flights following the late Austrian cancelling of a flight (after check-in). In the conditions they re-booked me on delayed flights with missing the luggage at connection and an arrival hour at final destination 5 hours later than planned ;
- - Reason for cancelling the flight by Austrian hostess: “operational reason”. As told by other airport staff, the reason was in fact lack of availability of cabin crew, maybe also not a fully booked flight.


Details: I made a last minute booking for a return flight Bucharest-Vienna on March 20/24th 2016. Due to booking on a small mobile device and the configuration of their site I could declare at booking just one check-in piece of luggage, despite having also a pair of skis (it is not a direct option in their booking site, you have to take another link, for checking their conditions for luggage, in order to book sports equipment).
For the first flight I was requested and I paid the penalty for my extra-luggage at check-in, expensive, but no comment on this.
On the return flight, OS787 from March 24th at 17h35, I checked-in about 3 hours before the flight , at Austrian oversized luggage counter, and I was not requested the penalty for the extra-luggage. (I have to admit that I was somehow amazed receiving this, even more I have to say, with a smile).
Bad luck, flight was cancelled and I had to go for alternatives.
Behavior of the Austrian Airlines employee at the Transfer Desk when changing and rescheduling the flights:
- - At the transfer desk, despite the waiting people and plenty delayed flights at the moment, two of the employees just took a break, remained just other two;
- - See the number of Austrian Airlines flights delayed in the airport wing where I was, I asked why the cancelling, if any bomb elsewhere (it was a couple of days after Brussels attack). Answer of the employee: “I suppose that is a bad joke!”. I consider I had a pertinent question, see the moment and the reliability of the airline. To my repeating of the question the hostess answered “operational reasons”.
- - The employee transferred me on a LOT flight (LO 0226 at 19h35), by Warsaw, arriving in Bucharest 5 hours after my original Austrian Airlines booking. The first LOT flight had more than 1h30 delay, most surely already known by the employee at the moment of the re-booking (around 17h15), making limit for me catching the second flight and already sure that the luggage will not arrive at same moment with me at final destination.
Under these circumstances the Austrian Airlines employee at the Transfer Desk, when issuing the tickets, notices that at the first check-in I was not requested to pay the sports equipment and so requested me to pay the extra-fee. I made her the observation that at first check-in, by the counter of over-sized luggage (so no question that it was a miss), I was not requested the extra-fee and, furthermore, the situation is not me to be in default, but Austrian Airlines for cancelling the flight. She answered that they have the duty to correct all errors and I can complain if I want. I repeat, this was all said and done when shifting me on a 5 hours delay flight combination with almost sure delayed luggage at final destination. As it happened.
Later on, I was asking at all counters to my final destination the reason of cancelling of the Austrian Airlines flight OS 787 and it looks that the “operational reason” mentioned was in fact a lack of cabin crew, possibly combined with a not fully booked flight! No weather conditions, no bomb, no last minute mechanical failure; just lack of professionalism, greed and callousness of a company that pretends to be a national one.


See this way to treat the passengers, I think is more to appreciate and attitude style Michael O’Leary, assuming and claiming high and loud his low cost conditions. Great time for Austrian to propose him a job. With a manager like O’Leary I’m pretty sure that a Transfer Desk hostess as the one I had to deal with could even get better career development, maybe a business class hostess position.


It looks like hiding behind the fingers is becoming a business strategy and politics in the German speaking area.
May I recommend: If you do not want to spoil your traveling with such unprofessional airline and such box and narrow minded employees, don’t take the risk and avoid Austrian.


Hope that these remarks will not end in penalizing the first check-in employee, who accepted my luggage without additional fee, neither to be interpreted as a complaint against LOT who was in delay, as I expect to be the “by default” of this Austrian Airlines (as, in fact, I was already told by the hostess at the boarding on LOT – “responsibility is with LOT for your luggage, Austrian has nothing more to do with it”).


One more thing: in this EU occupying itself in regulating everything and whatever, when will we finally have some regulations regarding the airline companies responsibility in delaying or cancelling the flights and informing on the real causes? Or still relying on and waiting for American investigators to shake the tree?
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