Another tale of rudeness from the Lounge staff

Old Sep 17, 13, 6:41 am
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Unhappy Another tale of rudeness from the Lounge staff



My parents who are both in their 70s, were travelling on BA last Saturday from LUX-LHR-BHD (Luxembourg, London Heathrow, Belfast City) in CE for the incoming leg and domestic on to BHD. The flights were miles tickets on my account.

They have never flown up front before but as there was a long lay over in LHR and they are getting frail, it was worth the handful of miles.

I had warned them in advance (thanks to the posts on here) that sometimes the lounge staff at LHR don't always fully understand the rules permitting entry, especially on incoming CE flights, so luckily they were tenacious.

Firstly, on arrival into T1 from LUX, they went to the International lounge (of course, the wrong lounge) where they were simply told by the attendant "No, your not allowed in here", loudly and in front of other passengers. They questioned this, say, "our son assured us we would be allowed in the lounge" to be told again brusquely, "no, you are not allowed in here". They were very embarrassed by this and left the lounge.

I think this is not a suitable way to talk to any passenger.

Undeterred, my Mum (good on her!) went to the Customer Services desk where a very helpful assistant checked their tickets and boarding passes and confirmed that they were allowed in the Domestic Lounge as they had arrived on CE. On presenting themselves at the Domestic lounge, the attendant looked at their boarding passes and said no, they would only be allowed in if they were members of the Executive Club.

Eventually they went back to the Cust. Svs desk, found the girl they had spoken to and asked her to call the lounge to inform the guy there that they should indeed be admitted.

When they finally walked back, they were admitted, but without a word of "i'm sorry, I misunderstood or anything from the attendant".

Thumbs up for the CS agent who, apparently, said to my folks that "this happens all the time" and apologised to them. She also said that she put a note/complaint in the system. I will also complain to BA - apart from anything else, the amount of unnecessary walking they ended up doing was a lot, but BA staff should offer the correct service for which they charged.

This issue seems to be reported on this forum again and again. I hope everyone who has the same experience also sends the complaint to BA, but so far BA don't seems to be correcting what seems to be a simple training issue.

In the end, their flight back for BHD was delayed for 3 hours, diverted to BFS (Aldergrove airport) where there was another hiatus, as it took some time for ground transport to be arranged to get them to BFS. They were happy indeed for the lounge access during their long lay over, but happier still to finally get home at 2.30 a.m.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 6:46 am
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Not the best of experiences. Yes the rules are complicated (and staff training seems to be abysmal) but this doesn't excuse the rudeness that people seem to be coming across again and again. People make mistakes but they need to be willing to refer up and admit them when things go wrong. Surely in the case of the domestic lounge at LHR staff should be very clear on the admission policy.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:08 am
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This is beyond a joke. I appreciate I'll get berated for being "over-sensitive" and assured and reassured that I'm in the minority. Thanks in advance for all of that.

Frankly, a substantial proportion of lounge staff at Heathrow lack:
1. Common courtesy
2. The most basic of manners
3. Any knowledge regarding basic rules of admission and refusal to lounges
4. An absurd inability to apologise when making an error, nor an ability to learn from it

All in all, this ought to a matter of embarrassment for BA, not least as it primarily affects customers in their premium cabins, and those frequent travellers.

Note - there are a number of excellent lounge staff at Heathrow. I can only imagine they must be deeply frustrated with their colleagues.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:17 am
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Rudeness = either warning or sack. Why are these people in the front desk if they can't speak to customers normally? For me, i'd straight up sack these people. Not worth employing these rude lounge dragons. They are just degrading BA's brand
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:17 am
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You should also PM a link to this thread to BA Executive Club and let Nicci know that this madness is still ongoing. Simply not acceptable.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:18 am
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I hope your parents got their names... Not acceptable behaviour.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:23 am
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Originally Posted by andset1191 View Post
Frankly, a substantial proportion of lounge staff at Heathrow lack:
1. Common courtesy
2. The most basic of manners
3. Any knowledge regarding basic rules of admission and refusal to lounges
4. An absurd inability to apologise when making an error, nor an ability to learn from it
Oh come on, they have a pretty good knowledge, and I find them always polite and courteous. Perhaps they're only rude to those who they believe to be trying their luck?

We are focussing on a very edge case here. The only problem I'm aware of occurs for non-status pax in non-premium cabins (i.e. domestic flights), who happen to have arrived in on a premium cabin.

The vast majority of passengers eligible for lounge access have a boarding pass showing a premium cabin, and/or status.
Originally Posted by andset1191 View Post
it primarily affects...frequent travellers.
Erm, no it doesn't. It /only/ affects non-frequent travellers, i.e. those without status.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:25 am
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Originally Posted by edi-traveller View Post
You should also PM a link to this thread to BA Executive Club and let Nicci know that this madness is still ongoing. Simply not acceptable.
Nicci knows this goes on again and again and again.

So BA knows this goes on again and again and again.

And does nothing
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:26 am
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Thanks you for all your supportive comments. I have deliberately tried to keep my post factual and dispassionate, and avoid any inflamatory language, but I was pretty cross about the whole affair, to be honest. When I was in the T1 Int'l lounge myself on Sunday afternoon, i wanted to ask any of the staff if they been on duty the day before.

But of course, I didn't and instead passed my time perusing the thin pickings of food offering now available.

My poor parents, my Dad is a vicar - they would never dream of speaking to anyone - stranger or otherwise - with anything other than the utmost of respect and good manners. I am just glad that my Mum decided to go and speak to CS.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:27 am
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I wondered what would happen if u just force urself in and then they call the police?
Someone needs to teach these people a lesson
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:29 am
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Originally Posted by correctioncx View Post
I wondered what would happen if u just force urself in and then they call the police?
Someone needs to teach these people a lesson
You'd be chucked out I presume. It's up to BA who they let in and out since it's their property from a legal point of view they can probably make up the rules as they go along.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:32 am
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Originally Posted by sigma421 View Post
Yes the rules are complicated
But the thing is that the rules are not complicated at all... Inbound/outbound connection in a Club cabin allows lounge access for the domestic sector. It would have been more complicated if only CW connections allowed access.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:37 am
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Can't they just develop a software and either print out on the BP lounge access eligibility or better still use lounge invitation cards
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:37 am
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This seems to be happening more and more and in my opinion it’s because BA now doesn’t have dedicated lounge staff, I believe that they should go back to having a small team of lounge “Angels” that are also fully trained in ticketing.
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Old Sep 17, 13, 7:39 am
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I think its all down to individuals, people all have off days.

I had a funny one the other morning where the guy on the gold first lounge looked at me and sneered "gold card"? No other words, no good morning sir may I see your boarding card.

Fortunately he was somewhat disarmed by me equally terse response, "no GGL, here is my boarding card".
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