I had the most ridiculous experience ever with Swiss Air. And I can safely say that I, and everyone I know will avoid SWISS AIR at all cost in the future.
I first booked a roundtrip ticket from JFK to Venice via Zurich during Christmas, and called the Swiss Air representative at JFK to make a change for the date of the return flight(which costed a fortune). After 40 minutes on the phone, the agent confirmed with me that the change was successful and I received e-ticket confirmation subsequently.
On date of the travel, Dec 23rd, and two hours prior to departure, I was told at the check-in counter that they didn't have my ticket in their system! I was redirected to the ticketing counter to speak with two agents, and were told that there was a mistake made during the rebooking and I need to call Switzerland to reinstate the ticket! After the phone went through, a very rude staff with horrible English picked up, and we had to spend a long time figuring out the situation. Towards the end of the phone call, the phone agent asked me for my phone number and promised to call back soon (which never happened). Notice that this happened 15 minutes prior to the check-in for my flight closes, and I hurried to make another phone call in despair. This time, another agent picked up and surprisingly solved my problem within 5 minutes. The ground staff was helpful in getting me through check-in in the last minute, and I made it to my flight.
Unsurprisingly my checked bag didn’t arrive with me. I reported this issue with the lost and found, and was asked to leave an addess and phone number, which would be contacted when the bag is found. We didn’t hear anything for 2 days, and had to call the contact number ourselves constantly until the third day. Imagine yourself in the same clothes after a 15-hour travel plus two days during Christmas and missed the opportunity to include the Christmas presents in the luggage.
And then there went the most absurd part. I received two phone calls from a ‘unknown” number the day after we found the luggage, and I didn’t want to pick them up for obvious reasons. And then when I got home at mid-night, I saw two Emergency emails from Swiss Air(Joseph and Joshua), saying that they tried to contact me during the day regarding an urgent issue on my return flight, and I should call them as soon as possible. So I called but found that the ticket was confirmed and everything was fine.
However, on the following day, I received another call from the unknown number, and an agent named Joshua was on the phone with me on behave of Swiss Air. He told me that there was a mistake make during the rebooking process, and that the economy class for my booked flight was fully booked. In order to travel back to the US, I have to upgrade to Business Class for an extra $1100, and if I do not disagree, he would proceed to place the extra charge on my credit card!
At that moment I was totally confused and thankfully I said: NO, I DO NOT AGREE. And I asked the guy to call me back in 30 mins since I was on a bus. And then the conversation resumed. Same thing, Joshua made it very obvious for me that I was confirmed for a ticket in the business class, and I HAVE TO pay the extra cost, which, according to him, was “only $1100”. At that point I was extremely angry and stressed out, because I had a schegen travel visa which ended on the date of my return flight, and I do no think it makes ANY sense for my to pay for someone else’s mistake. So I demanded to speak with Joshua’s supervisor, Joshua agreed, and said that he would call back in an hour, which AGAIN, never happened.
The day after, I made another phone call. Another agent picked up, and told me that the ticket was confirmed for the economy class, and I asked him whether there is someone called Joshua working at the call center, and I was transferred to him. Joshua repeated his argument the day before, which to me was just unbelievable, and I demanded to speak with his supervisor again immediately. Then I was placed on hold for 20 minutes when Joseph(not sure if he’s the same one who sent me the email), who claimed to be Joshua’s supervisor picked up the phone and told me that the upgrade was only optional, reconfirmed that the ticket was fine and he would send me a confirmation (NEVER HAPPENED). At this point, I wasted a day and a half traveling in Venice in very bad temper. I still cannot believe that the biggest airline company in Switzerland operated in such consistently horrible manner, and I wonder how they could represent their country!!!