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Old Oct 27, 2013, 7:04 PM
yyang102 yyang102 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 2
Default Get mislead to the wrong counter and missed my checked in deadline

The reason I'm writing here is because my original complain to the Air Canada customer relation doesn't work, got a "sorry" message and that's all. My message on Air Canada facebook page got a reply saying the "sorry" email finalized my case, and zero reply afterwards. I have to post my experience here just to prove that Air Canada's strategy of treating customer complaint is saying sorry but do nothing!

Here's my original complaint letter to AC.

I got an unpleasant experience at Calgary airport on August 6th, 2013 with Air Canada staff.
My flight to Toronto, AC 1164 departed at 6:30 AM and I was running late because I got confused by the construction detour routes near airport, but I still manage to get the airport at 5:40 AM. I IMMEDIATELY talked to a Air Canada staff to direct me to the check in counter. She was talking to another staff while answering my question, and I ended up got mislead to the international flight check-in counter, I waited there for almost 5 minutes until I realized that this could be an international flight only counter, and I asked then learnt that the domestic flight need to be checked in at the counter down the road at the far end.
I run to there and asked for help, the staff at the end of the lineup checked my tickets saying you JUST passed the checked in deadline for your flight, and you have to go to the rebooking counter, ppl there will help you out and no need to worry. She was very nice and helpful.
It was a busy morning, I waited 20 minute and got to talked to the lady behind the counter, she told me: you are late, the system closed down, if ppl over there can not do anything (referring to the domestic check-in counter I guess), then I can't do either. I told her that I knew that, and I'm here to get help and try to solve my problem. I start telling her that I got mislead to the wrong counter and waited another 20 min to finally talk to her, but she didn't listen, she told me it was not 20 min long, and she was rude and talking like I was totally lying for the waiting time. I was checking my cell phone all the time while I was waiting cuz I have noting else to do.
She kept telling me that if you want rebook, you will be charged extra fee. and she give me three flight options and said the next flight will depart at 7:00 AM, you got one minute to get into the system (It was 6:14 AM at that time), you need to pay $169.50. I was left speechless but I knew I need to get back to Ottawa today (my flight was a connecting flight to Ottawa) as soon as possible, I was left without any other option but handed over my credit card, no chance for even talk to a supervisor about this, I then asked for the earliest arrival flight, and she passed me with the boarding passes, until I run to the security check, I start to realize that my flight was actually depart at 8:00 AM, guess the 7:00 AM one was closed down or sold out.
There are several ways that Air Canada can help me avoid this circumstance. If the first staff that I was talking to could be more responsible and asked for my tickets, I won't ended up wasting my time waiting in the wrong places.
If the tickets confirmation that I got from could have a warning message saying the Air Canada has changed their check-in policy, I won't get to learn this rule right at the airport from the last lady who helped me rebook the tickects. She sounds like it's mine own problem that I thought it should be 30 min instead of 45 min prior to the departure time. While, I've been travelling with Air Canada for the past five years, most internationally, but I'm pretty sure, the domestic flight had 30 min check-in policy.
Here, based on the above mentioned experiences today from Air Canada, I think it's not just me who need to be responsible for my late checked-in and the penalty, I'm hoping for some response from AC that can solve my problem better.
Thank you for your time,
Yifan Yang
Old Oct 28, 2013, 9:32 AM
jimworcs jimworcs is offline
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Shropshire, England
Posts: 3,197

You have no chance whatsoever of receiving any compo, as they will resort to their "it is in the T&C's" defence. It is never a good idea to rely on airline staff for accurate information. 45 minutes at a very busy time (early morning) is very close to the bone... you really do have to resort to self help and allow much more time, which takes account of the possibility of roadworks, accidents etc.
Old Oct 28, 2013, 6:54 PM
yyang102 yyang102 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 2

I do regret of asking Air Canada staff to help me find the right counter...that's apparently a bad idea and I will definitely count on myself in the future. However, a busy morning means ppl are taken the self-help machines that I could find. I could simply lineup and wait there of course, but I had experience that the machine is not reading my print-out confirmation... so i chose to trust AC staff other than the machine which i should not to....
I just felt that if there are staff at the airport waiting to help customers, they should really respect their work and customer's trust. They are paid to do the work at the airport, and it's Air Canada's responsibility to train their staff to be able to help customers properly. And Air Canada should start being more responsible for their staff's mistakes otherwise they are losing their customers faster than they expected.

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