A trip of a life time spoilt in part

Old Jan 20, 18, 12:25 pm
  #1  
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A trip of a life time spoilt in part

This is what I wanted to send directly to American Airlines but they limit the words you can send.
To whom it may concern,
We are very unhappy customers (myself, my wife and three children) who have finished a long and disrupted day and none of it being our fault.

We returned a rental car at Miami International Airport this morning (13th January at 10:19am) and then made our way without stopping and at a brisk pace, to check our baggage at American Airways.

We approached the desk and they said that we need to use the machine to check in. We said can’t you help us and the person repeated that we need to use the machine to check n baggage in.

Please let me make it really clear - there was absolutely no queues - None. It was them and us (apart from two people using the baggage check in machine).
We spent a good 5-6 minutes trying to use the machine that didn’t work.

I then had to go and get
someone to help. She said try it again and walked off. I said what if it doesn’t work and she said it would and walked off. Well it didn’t and we had to go and get her again. It was then that she said we can go to the counter where the staff were behind their counters doing nothing the whole time.

Meanwhile, whilst we were starting to stress about time passing by, the whole staff were chatting and laughing amongst each other whilst we were struggling - when all along we could of got some good on fashion customer service.

I queued in line and had to wait approx 5 minutes for the man to acknowledge me. He then all he said was “Yes” with no eye contact. Not “Hello can I help you?

I said do you want me to come as I wasn’t quite sure what “Yes” meant. I found it incredibly rude not just to keep me waiting (keeping in mind there was literally no queue) and then simply saying yes. He just nodded.

I made mention of the lack of help and friendliness we experienced by the staff and he said they all had work to do even when they aren’t serving customers. Fact was they were all standing around and talking and laughing as already mentioned.

He then told us the time had just passed for us to book baggage on. I said that wasn’t our fault and he showed NO signs of caring at all! None!

He said we would have to catch the next flight which we thought he had done properly.

He failed to tell us that he simply put us on standby!

We failed to get on the next two flights and then my wife and smallest child were separated from us.

Whilst I was looking into getting a new flight my two other children were left and told to go to another gate and they said they would page me.

The whole time I was at the help desk waiting and waiting I did not hear my name called once.

My two children were told to go to the wrong gate and then after half an hour they asked again and said to go to another gate.

I dont know how but they found me after searching and searching for me.

They also said the lady was so rude and to be honest we have had so much rudeness over our current holiday with your airline employees.

My wife was in tears leaving the two children and we are very upset.

The man told us that the baggage was closed but I do think it was at all. I think he didn’t like me saying they were unhelpful and the stress he caused us was unprecedented in our travel history!

We request a refund and that in itself doesn’t seem enough after my family and myself being treated so appallingly. We have never been treated so appallingly.

Can you please issue this refund with the view that customers have been treated in this way and to show value in us as customers (unlike our experience would suggest).

I think your customer service needs a complete overall and requires an outside consultant to propose a systemic change to the way customer relations are viewed and how the customer is treated.

We have found that AA people answer your question but all too often we have found that it is the way in which things are said that conveys a whole other attitude that is really quite rude.

It really isn’t that hard to treat people in a caring and respectful way. I understand that the general public can be difficult but it is the innocent ones that seem to be tarred with the same brush as the rude ones.

Anyway we would appreciate a refund ASAP.

Thank you,

——— ———-
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Old Jan 20, 18, 12:40 pm
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Originally Posted by ashb001 View Post
He then told us the time had just passed for us to book baggage on. I said that wasn’t our fault and he showed NO signs of caring at all! None!


First, welcome to FlyerTalk

AA has very specific timelines for checking baggage and you've left out those details. What time was your flight? When were you at the kiosks and when did you first approach the counter? What was your final destination? I've had problems with kiosks before and after one round usually go straight to the counter. My problem typically revolves around the kiosk not being able to read my passport.

I think you could easily shorten your complaint and get within the character limitation of the AA website.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 1:08 pm
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Sorry for your troubles.
However your description lacks facts and has plenty of drama instead.
With few perhaps erroneous assumptions on my part I think that: a) you should’ve allowed for plenty of time at the airport traveling with family, rental, checked bags etc; b) AA didn’t do you any favors because they didn’t have to and they don’t care about any future business with you; c) you will likely fly AA again as long as they are $XX cheaper than a competitor and schedule fits your plans
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Old Jan 20, 18, 1:23 pm
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I suspect a little editing could fit this in "the limits" to contact AA. They're the only ones who can address you issues.

Yes, lots of drama and few facts. When you think someone saying "Yes" is "incredibly rude" and make it a point to complain about him and the entire customer service team, then say an airline needs a complete overhaul (I assume) and hire "outside consultant"(??), I somehow think there are two sides to this story.

If you spent "a good 5-6 minutes" and then were past baggage cutoff, even after you went " without stopping and at a brisk pace" with children, you seem to have cut it way too close for travel. There's a reason for:
we recommend an arrival time at the airport of one hour and thirty minutes prior to departure when traveling within the United States. When traveling outside of the United States, we recommend two hours prior to departure
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Old Jan 20, 18, 2:19 pm
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You cut it too close and missed the baggage cut-off. Your fault.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 2:47 pm
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Your email to AA lacks facts, flight #, departure time and at what time you got to the check in counter/kiosk.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 2:51 pm
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Might be a dumb question, but HAVE to use the machine/kiosk?
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Old Jan 20, 18, 3:09 pm
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Originally Posted by QueenOfCoach View Post
You cut it too close and missed the baggage cut-off. Your fault.
No sugar-coating there.....
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Old Jan 20, 18, 3:16 pm
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Next time, drop off the family and have them check bags before you return the car. Or, just give yourself more time.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 3:49 pm
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Try half the text length and leave out the emotions, state facts and then send it. Good luck.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 4:00 pm
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This is horrible..... not what happened to you but the way you've written it. This could be shortened to 3 sentences and even then I'm not sure why you are due any sort of refund. As Queen of Coach stated, you cut it too close, your fault. Also, because it was your fault AA had no obligation to confirm you on the next flight. Sorry, that's how airlines work.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 4:04 pm
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This thread reminded me of my experience at MIA this morning (7:45). I needed to drop my bag and proceed to the priority door (3) and line as usual. There are ~50 people in line and there are 3 agents at the entrance verifiying that you are allowed in this line. Half the counters (~10/20) are open and the line is moving quite slowly. The priority check in kiosks and bag drop are closed for whatever reason. There are many agents standing on the side of the counters chatting amongst themselves not helping passengers.

So I wait in line and follow everyone else and walk up to the next available counter. I'm curtly told that I need to be "called" and the agent just leaves. In the 15-20 minutes I waited in line, I did not see an agent call anyone or motion or anything. A few minutes later, another agent arrives and helps me, but not in the nicest fashion.

Miami can really be a hit or miss on service, but I've never seen the priority line this long and this slow. I don't understand why the self-tagging kiosks are closed when half the line is just trying to drop their bags. I often fly out of Boston as well and the priority line (which is a quarter of the size of the one at Miami) is always nearly empty. I've never had a rude agent at Boston, but I've had several at Miami.

For reasons like this, I always try to allot an extra half hour, but today's experience was definately the worst I've had in Miami.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 4:06 pm
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The crowd here can be pretty rough. They're right in that the AA systems don't allow much leeway for checking bags beyond the cutoff, and ultimately, it's your responsibility to ensure that you have sufficient time to meet the deadline.

Originally Posted by ashb001 View Post
...

We approached the desk and they said that we need to use the machine to check in. We said can’t you help us and the person repeated that we need to use the machine to check n baggage in.

Please let me make it really clear - there was absolutely no queues - None. It was them and us (apart from two people using the baggage check in machine).
We spent a good 5-6 minutes trying to use the machine that didn’t work.

I then had to go and get
someone to help. She said try it again and walked off. I said what if it doesn’t work and she said it would and walked off. Well it didn’t and we had to go and get her again. It was then that she said we can go to the counter where the staff were behind their counters doing nothing the whole time.

...

I queued in line and had to wait approx 5 minutes for the man to acknowledge me. He then all he said was “Yes” with no eye contact. Not “Hello can I help you?

...
He then told us the time had just passed for us to book baggage on.
But if I'm reading this correctly, you arrived at the check in area 10-15 minutes prior to the deadline, and despite a lack of lines when you arrived, you still weren't able to get the bags checked in time. If so, I understand your frustration.

I'd keep your complaint focused on those facts: You arrived in time, but had trouble with the machines, and the staff was initially unwilling to assist, until later when it was too late. Give exact and correct time of events if you know them.

The rest of it - the rudeness, the lack of clarity about standby, the paging system - it's maddening, but not something AA will compensate for. Missing the initial flight should be your focus. I doubt you'll get the refund you want, but may get a voucher or some customer service miles as an apology. Good luck.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 4:11 pm
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When travelling with my kids we always allowed 3 hours at the airport before departure, things go wrong to easily when you are short of time and stressed about it.

Perhaps giving AA the timeline of your attempted check in would be more helpful. That way they will be able to see where they erred, or not.
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Old Jan 20, 18, 4:14 pm
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Originally Posted by swag View Post
The crowd here can be pretty rough. They're right in that the AA systems don't allow much leeway for checking bags beyond the cutoff, and ultimately, it's your responsibility to ensure that you have sufficient time to meet the deadline.



But if I'm reading this correctly, you arrived at the check in area 10-15 minutes prior to the deadline, and despite a lack of lines when you arrived, you still weren't able to get the bags checked in time. If so, I understand your frustration.

I'd keep your complaint focused on those facts: You arrived in time, but had trouble with the machines, and the staff was initially unwilling to assist, until later when it was too late. Give exact and correct time of events if you know them.

The rest of it - the rudeness, the lack of clarity about standby, the paging system - it's maddening, but not something AA will compensate for. Missing the initial flight should be your focus. I doubt you'll get the refund you want, but may get a voucher or some customer service miles as an apology. Good luck.
Good advice, although I would work in the "rudeness", but without elaboration and using only a couple of words. Such as "I asked for help multiple times but was rudely told....". It's not completely irrelevant, although you don't get extra compensation for it.
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