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Canceled / Delayed / Overbooked
COMPLAINT: SOUTHWEST 1266 on Feb 14th

 
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Old Feb 25, 2016, 12:50 AM
Blancety Blancety is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 1

My family and I were scheduled to fly on SWA 1266 to Houston, connecting to New Orleans on February 14th at 6:00am.

We arrived at the gate on time, boarded the plane, and proceeded to wait almost two hours on board with they attempted to fix an indicator light. When the problem first occurred, the gate personnel came on board and told us there was an issue, all connections were ok, and that worst case another plane was available.

These updates continued every 20 minutes or so, with their assurance that our connections were still good. Finally after close to two hours, they decided that it was time to change equipment.

Close to another hour passed as they brought the new plane to the gate, we then boarded the plane only to have another delay as they attempted to fuel the plane. After almost another hour passed we finally pushed back only to have the pilot report that there was an electronics problem and we had to return to the gate.

At this point we chose to deplane as we were scheduled for a cruise and had to be in New Orleans and at the cruise terminal by 3pm. Unfortunately, because of the delays and the fact we were not allowed to get off sooner, we lost an opportunity to book a flight through another airline, although there were seats available.

We asked for our luggage to be removed from the plane also, and were told it would be taken care of.

At no time, while we were held on the planes, were drinks or snacks offered.

As we approached the customer service counter with 150 of our new found friends, one of the three representatives walked away to take a break, leaving only two to deal with a plane full of people.

When we finally reached the counter and informed them we wanted to change our flight from New Orleans to Jamaica (our only viable option to salvage some of the cruise we had paid for and was sailing without us) the representative told us that she could not help us, it required a supervisor. We were told to stand to the side and wait.

The supervisor, recognizing that they were in the wrong, booked us airfare on Delta the next day. One of the few heroes throughout this mess. We were also provided with a room at an airport hotel and $14 per person in vouchers good for use at the airport. 14 dollars for two meals.......

Because we were flying to Jamaica, we had to book a hotel for two nights there. This cost close to $900 for the two nights. Two nights we should have been on the cruise ship, so in essence we paid for those nights twice.

The luggage was never removed from the plane, and we were directed to baggage services to find out its fate. Baggage services told us the luggage could not be retrieved because the plane had already left (it was still at the gate) and that our luggage would end up in New Orleans were SWA baggage personnel would "walk it over to Delta baggage services" for transport to Jamaica.

Several hours later, while at the hotel, still wearing the same clothes we started the day in and not having anything to change into for the next day, we received a call from SWA baggage in New Orleans. They informed us that there was no way Delta would take our bags as we had not yet flown on a Delta plane. When I told them that we were just doing what we were told, she said that whoever told us that should have known better and never told us that.

While we waited we had to get a prescription filled, yes one was in the luggage.

We incurred expense for a meal that night, breakfast the next day, cab fares in Jamaica - to the resort and to the cruise terminal - countless tips, and a vacation tax. All on top of the resort cost and lost time on the cruise.

After the cruise docked in New Orleans the following Sunday, we were subjected to an "extra screening" by customs because we joined the ship in Jamaica.

To all of this insult an injury, SWA customer service offered us nothing in the way of compensation. I called on Monday and asked for a refund which they granted, based on the fact that failed to meet their obligation, until they realize they paid for us to fly to Jamaica.

After almost an hour on the phone, trying to get a refund we compromised and asked for the same amount of airfare in vouchers. (even though we had little desire to ever fly Southwest again.) We were told we couldn't have the airfare refunded and keep the vouchers we had already received. We were told during the third announcement on the first plane that everyone would receive compensation and we recieved $150 just like everyone else. Now Customer Service wanted to take the 150 away and only give us the 216 per person in a voucher.

Sorry for the long winded story, but the details are important as to why we are so upset and continue to push SWA to make things right.

So far our emails, Facebook message and tweets have fallen on mute fingers. And the one hour plus on the phone did not do much better. we are not asking to be made whole again, nothing can replace the time lost, make up for the stress and aggravation, relieve the frustration. Refunding our airfare essentially covers the cost of the resort. Hard earned money that we can't really afford to have on our credit card.

Maybe seeing this will move SWA off the dime.....
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Old Feb 25, 2016, 4:59 PM
Phinu Phinu is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 17

I feel for you, but when flying for a cruise, we always try to fly the day before. Also if we need to drive more than two hours we drive the night before. Too many times especially with connecting flights there can be issues such as yours. You do not specify where you flew from, especially in winter, weather can be an issue because equipment and crews may be unable to get to where you are. I understand that that was not your problem.
The other alternative is to let your cruise line make your air arrangements, they will make sure you get to the ship. Either by another airline or they will fly you to the next port.
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