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Advice about how to handle this complaint/Request Compensation

Advice about how to handle this complaint/Request Compensation

Old May 19, 19, 8:16 pm
  #1  
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Advice about how to handle this complaint/Request Compensation

We were on a paid Business AC fare CPH-YYZ-LAX. My original connection time at YYZ was to be 2 hours and 10 minutes. But the flight from CPH departed 2 hours late due to a mechanical issue (coolant system).

About 30 minutes into the delay, the lead FA announced that the issue was resolved, and they were just finishing the paper work. Captain came on to correct the FA. The issue was NOT not resolved. He had to move us away from the gate to a different part of CPH for the mechanics to continue. Strike One on the FA for falsely announcing the problem was fixed. Plane moved to another gate and the delay continued.

So we took off 2 hours late, meaning our connection time would be 10 minutes. We were supposed to land at 2:20, but it would now be 4:20 and our next flight was 4:30. I asked the FA about missed connections, and he said they would make up some time and land at 3:30 (so we would make up 50 minutes of the lost 120 minutes.) He said that we'll land at 3:30, and an hour is plenty of time at YYZ to make our connection. I've been to YYZ and I know an hour is good enough. I was content with a 1-hour connection.

Skip ahead to just before landing. The new 3:30 arrival was now updated to 3:40. I figured we still had enough time, but I checked with the FA anyway. He said we're still fine. Especially since YYZ-to-U.S. passengers do NOT have to go through security again. I knew he was wrong, as I've studied YYZ and AC forums here for the past few weeks. But he was so confident and convincing, I fell for his misinformation. I trusted his professional expertise. Strike Two on the FA for this false information.

A bit later, he came to our seats and asked our destination. We told him the 4:30 flight to LAX. "Ohhh," he says. "We've rebooked you on the 6:30 flight to LAX." He showed me a printout that said showed something like 10 LAX passengers with missed connections are re-booked on the 6:30 flight. (This was untrue and was Strike Three, all on the same FA...but we'll get to that). He said relaxing for a few hours at YYZ is better than racing through to catch a connection. Fine. (Even though he had just assured us that 50 minutes was plenty of time.).

He then made an announcement listing all the missed connection flights and the new flights people were on. There were a lot. Flight landed at 3:40 and another 10 minutes of taxi and waiting for jet way. Got off the plane at 3:55.

Took our time getting off the plane (we thought we had 2.5 hours), and there were 2 AC agents at the end of the jet way with new boarding passes for the missed connection people. But they didn't have any for me and wife or other LAX folks. "Are you sure? The FA assured us this was taken care of." No, they said, you have to see an agent at the customer service desk. Still taking our time, we went to customer service desk #1 , and the lady said we had to go to the US side and ask someone over there. Went to desk #2 and the guy scanned our BPs. "Why did he say you were re-booked? The 6:30 is already fully sold out. You're still on the the 4:30 flight. You better hurry." It was 4:10 at this point, and we started our sprint.

Luckily, a short security line, followed by a reasonably short Global Entry line. Sprinted to the gate and boarded with the last few people at 4:30, Phew, we made it.

I don't believe there is much compensation to ask for here, since we made both of our scheduled flights. But telling 10 different passengers that they are on a new flight when they really weren't? And misinforming the entire flight about a repair being completed? And not knowing the security procedures for his own home/hub airport? These are three unacceptable things for the lead FA to blow. Rather than ask for compensation, I simply would like to know, in detail, how each of these three errors occurred. I just want an explanation of the alleged re-booking and how he could tell us (twice) that we were on the 6:30 flight when in fact we were not.

Is there a customer service email address that might handle FA questions and procedures? Any advice on the best way to handle this?

Thanks !
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Old May 19, 19, 8:20 pm
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I don't think you have any grounds for compensation.

You made your original flight.

I'd definitely write in about the experience (less emotion, more facts) and say it made the situation more stressful and confusing than it needed to be, and they might throw you a token goodwill gesture.

And hopefully retrain the FA.
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Old May 19, 19, 11:33 pm
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Originally Posted by cheaptom View Post
I don't believe there is much compensation to ask for here, since we made both of our scheduled flights. But telling 10 different passengers that they are on a new flight when they really weren't? And misinforming the entire flight about a repair being completed? And not knowing the security procedures for his own home/hub airport? These are three unacceptable things for the lead FA to blow. Rather than ask for compensation, I simply would like to know, in detail, how each of these three errors occurred. I just want an explanation of the alleged re-booking and how he could tell us (twice) that we were on the 6:30 flight when in fact we were not.

Is there a customer service email address that might handle FA questions and procedures? Any advice on the best way to handle this?

Thanks !
Why is it so important to "know in detail" how each of these errors occurred?

By all means file a complaint or express your concerns, but beyond that what is the point?
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Old May 20, 19, 5:40 am
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Definitely file a complaint. You might get a few AP points for "goodwill." Nothing ventured as they say. I probably wouldn't have made your second flight. Among my hard and fast rules is to never run in an airport. I will walk quickly but never run.
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Old May 20, 19, 6:39 am
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1. There is no compensation. You were not delayed. Had you been delayed at LAX by 3+ hours you would have been due EUR 300 and by 4+ hours EUR 600. In your case, nothing. Seems quite correct too.
2. This is all a function of too much information leading to expectations. None of it mattered and thus, not worth imparting. If you wish to send in a brief 2-3 sentence (maximum) note saying that you did not appreciate the incorrect information, you may certainly do so. You will receive a standard cut & paste response to the effect that AC is sorry it didn't; live up to your expectations and hopes to see you again soon.
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Old May 20, 19, 6:55 am
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So to summarize, you want compensation because the FA and counter staff have room for improvement and you had to make a tight connection?

If they start paying out for that they'll be broke in a year.
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Old May 20, 19, 7:05 am
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This is tricky because mostly we hear about folks wanting more information... but correct/accurate info should be the base expectation.
TBH, I take everything with a grain of salt and try to use multiple sources- ie checking the app; third party sites like FlightAware, and then triage the info to try to sort real from not-so-real.
The note upthread re pointing out to AC Customer Service that the FA (or was it the SD?) was providing you incorrect/contradictory information would be the only action I would take.
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Old May 20, 19, 7:07 am
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This is one of those 'forget about it and move on' situations
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Old May 20, 19, 7:09 am
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compensation for what?

Travel much?
As soon as I board, I take note of the name of the customer service agent. Get to know him or her.
The CSA is the essential link between you and the AC staff meeting the arriving flight. He/she would already have their nose out of joint because of the way the pilot "corrected" the announcement i.e. he/she is on your side. Advise him/her of your concern and ask for assurance your cnx. will be protected (I know it did not matter in this instance, but, now I am on the record).
Did the CSA handle other aspects of the flight well? If so, I recommend you send a note to AC commending them. Compensation? For what? Poor communication?
IF you really want compensation, you can get it for the 2 h mech delay. What will you get? 15 % discount code for your next AC tix. Whoopee.
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Old May 20, 19, 7:22 am
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Rule number one - when flying on AC you have to take responsibility for everything yourself. Do not rely on anything you're told by flight attendants, gate agents, or telephone agents because half of them have no idea what they're talking about or simply make it up as they go.

That may sound a bit harsh, but put in the bum-in-seat time and you'll find it's perfectly accurate.
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Old May 20, 19, 7:28 am
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I've certainly seem FAs and GAs tell people that their connections will be held (HA!) but an outright specific lie saying that you've been rebooked onto a specific flight seems like a particularly extreme and potentially harmful version of this. In particular, if the passengers had assumed that their first connection reservation had been cancelled and they were confirmed on the later flight, only to stroll to the gate for the later flight and learn that they had missed their flight and there was no space later that day, it would have unnecessarily been extremely inconvenient.
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Old May 20, 19, 8:06 am
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The OP is part of the US based demographic that AC wants to encourage and increase, so by all means submit a "comment' - not a request for compensation - to Customer Service. I'd send in the post pretty much as written here, with the questions as to why it happened more rhetorical than appearing to want precise answers. The post is an entertaining outline of a very annoying comedy of errors.

The one thing that really puzzles me is that the OP's seat was not in fact given away, since at one stage AC was routinely rebooking people who they deemed unable to make a connection, and who then showed up to board and were denied.
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Old May 20, 19, 10:08 am
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Originally Posted by mapleg View Post
Why is it so important to "know in detail" how each of these errors occurred?

By all means file a complaint or express your concerns, but beyond that what is the point?
My main point is a burning curiosity to learn how the Lead FA could go around to 10 different passengers on a plane and give them new flights, new times, new gates, etc., and also show them the paperwork which verifies the rebookings. In actuality, none of us were rebooked at all. How does such a mess occur?
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Old May 20, 19, 10:26 am
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Were none of you rebooked or were YOU not rebooked?

I've noticed a lot of paid J bookings lately will be protected on alternate flights without cancelling the original flight.

For example, a friend of mine had SFO-YYZ-FRA with a reasonable connection. The first flight (noon departure) had a posted delay by 8am. And there a UA SFO-FRA flight on the PNR at that point. He inquired, and was told very explicitly that he had the option to take either flight.

He took the AC flights, and made the connection. He's only UA*G.

Paid J entitles you to certain perks that wouldn't otherwise be available to a non-SE (like holding a seat on a completely full flight that they really need for handling other misconnects).

Another possibility here is that you ended up booked on both YYZ-LAX flights, but since you weren't "re"booked, the agent meeting the flight wasn't aware of you. So even though the later one was full, you may have had a seat there.

I'm not saying this excuses any of the confusion caused by this, but it's another plausible scenario.
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Old May 20, 19, 10:37 am
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Originally Posted by cheaptom View Post
. You're still on the the 4:30 flight. You better hurry."
And which point, I slow down, miss the 4:30, knowing 6:30 is sold out, I will have 600 Euros in my pocket for taking an even later flight.

If you write in, you will get a 10% coupon at best (really 3-5% as it doesnt cover YQ). You can decide if thats worth your time.

Next time pick a different airline, you can see first hand how this one runs their operations.
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