Check-in / Boarding Experienced problems during check-in or boarding?

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Old Jul 9, 2010, 5:06 PM
sporter410 sporter410 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4
Unhappy honeymoon cruise missed because of 12 minutes

My husband and I missed our honeymoon cruise (first ever cruise for me) and missed family that was waiting at the gate to go with us. We did not realize you had to ck in 1 hr ahead for international; our e-ticket stated on the bottom 30 minutes. We were at the counter signing in for our flight and it said to check in at gate. That was at 8:12(12 minutes lates). When we told the attendant, she said we would have to schedule another flight, but no other flight would get us there in time to catch the cruise. She called the gate again and told them we had a cruise; they obviously didn't care. She called a manager over and she also tried to call the gate. They didn't answer. She called again while they were still trying to see if there was any flight to get us there in time for the cruise. When she called the last time, which was now 8:25, she told them she could walk us thru and be at the gate in 10 minutes. She put the phone down and told the other attendant that they hung up on her!
We have been so upset about the fact that despite the 12 minutes, the attendant at the gate, could not be more understanding of the situation. Family was waiting at that same gate and we would miss a cruise. Missing the honeymoon cruise was bad enough after all the planning we did to get ready for it, but most of all, we are so upset because my husband's 87 year old mother who had been waiting for us to go on a cruise with her has now been disappointed.

My husband is a teacher and he can not go after a certain time and I had planned my vacation at work for quite some time now and the rest of the summer is booked by other employees for their vacation time so we could not reschedule the cruise.

His mom, who had purchased our flight ticket in the first place was willing to pay for us to fly to Juneau, Alaska to get on the cruise there when they docked. She e-mailed the next day to see if we could work that out. The cruise was also going to allow us to come on then, but CONTINENTAL AIRLINES would not honor the ticket to fly back at the original price and wanted to charge us 1200 a ticket. We just did not have the finances to do it. All they had to do was honor that so we could board at Juneau and it would have made this horrible experience to be worked out. It would have given them that chance to live by what their phone number reads, 1-800-"WECARE2." That is a joke. We have been so stunned by their uncaring attitude at trying to work with us. The airlines has no idea what trauma this has caused. I wake up at 4, have angina pains, and anxiety attacks. All over 12 minutes, which I know now we were suppose to be there at 8:00, but they could have worked with us to help it all work out.

My husband and I both filed a complaint with the airline; he by e-mail and I called. They would not try to make things right at anytime that we have contacted them and we have tried several times.

I know my friends at work, at the vet, and family that I have talked to all have a negative attitude towards CONTINENTAL AIRLINES now. They are all shocked at this also.

So, if you plan on taking a trip, maybe you should see if anyone else other than CONTINENTAL flys to where to want to go.
Old Jul 9, 2010, 11:27 PM
Gromit801 Gromit801 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 745

I feel your pain.

In your shoes, with so much riding on making that flight, I would have been at the airport two hours early, regardless of what the eTicket said. Proactive approach.

Never underestimate Murphy's Law: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.

As far as resolving your situation, you can try small claims court, but in all honesty I don't think you'll succeed. You can also try filing a complaint with the Department of Transportation, and your own state's Department of Consumer Affairs.
Old Jul 11, 2010, 1:36 AM
Leatherboy2006 Leatherboy2006 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 340

my only thing is you were taking family on your honeymoon cruise
Old Jul 11, 2010, 3:27 AM
cortney cortney is offline
Airline Employee (NOT OFFICIAL REP)
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 288

are you sure the ticket didn't say to be at the gate 30min prior to departure and not checked in?? not doubting you....just saying. when i cruise i always fly in the day before the departure or book with the cruise line...if the flight is delayed they wait for you. but checking in 1 hour early for an international flight is really pushing it
Old Jul 11, 2010, 11:51 PM
sporter410 sporter410 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4

Yes, we have learned from this experience to fly in the day before the cruise. Also, the internet did show to be 1 hr ahead for international, but unfortunately, we did not see it until we went back and looked; we only saw at the bottom of the E-ticket where it stated 30 minutes. We actually intended on being there a hour ahead of schedule as that is what we normally do for domestic flights. There was a little more traffic than we bargained on(which is another reason to fly in a day ahead for a cruise). There had been a bus fire which may have caused that, but still I wish we had just left earlier. We thought we were giviing ourselves enough time. My disappointment with the airline is that they would not work with us even though according to their rules, it was our fault. There was still time for them to get us on the plane. I was told over and over when I called in that you had to be at the gate 30 min before and we could have made that easily as there was no line going through security. The attendant had even told the gate employee that she could get us at the gate in 10 min.

And yes, it seems strange to go on a cruise with family during a honeymoon, but we were not planning on spending all our time with them. The cruise was an Alaskan cruise for 1 week so we would have been able to spend time together and visit with family.

I have calmed down some now, but don't like to relive it in my mind. We will plan it another time.
Old Jul 12, 2010, 3:51 AM
mars6423 mars6423 is offline
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: New Jersey/Singapore
Posts: 412
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Sorry about the cruise and vacation that was lost, at least your happy with your other half (hopefully)

i would say even leaving 1 hour for a vacation like this is still cutting it close, as you said about a bus fire, if possible get there as early as possible.....not saying that if it is a 5pm flight get there at 5am but def get there early and just sit at the cafe or something and pass time there

I have been i guess you can say "spoiled" as i fly out of Singapore alot and there the airline (Singapore Airlines) is very accomodating and helpful extremely customer oriented aka total opposite to the US based airlines, and at the airport they have a pool, great shops, food, archade, a movie theater and spa's to name a few, so if i have time and my flight is later in the day or evening (i take the 11:30pm to LHR alot) so i get to the airport around 5pm and just do whatever, go to the lounge if i get tired and so on
Old Jul 12, 2010, 11:30 AM
sporter410 sporter410 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4

That sounds like an awesome airport. Yes, we definitely learned a hard and expensive lesson since we we also lost $600 on the cruise.

Thanks for the reply and tip.

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