End to End BA are a Shambles

Old Jun 28, 2022, 3:46 pm
  #1  
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Thumbs down End to End BA are a Shambles

This is another moan thread - please read on if you're not interested.

So as a little context, I'm a seven year GGL, now dropped to a lowly lifetime gold. Was flying on a paid Club World ticket DUB-LHR-YVR and back.

The outbound checked in with Aer Lingus at Dublin, no queue for premium check-in. Bags tagged to Vancouver. Fast track security at DUB took around 20 minutes to get airside. No integration between EI and BA meant no business class seats, no through printing of boarding passes, priority boarding etc. Not ideal, but knew all of that going into it. So landed at T2 and went through FCC and the bus to T5. Dumped at the FCC which was a seething mass of people. Total chaos. Managed to find a lone working kiosk which spat me out a boarding pass, saving an hour plus wait all because their partner airline in the same company couldn't print a boarding pass, and the app wouldn't either.

Waited 15 mins the Galleries First lounge to speak to an agent to put my bag tags in to my booking, as knowing from bitter experience, that needed to be done. Long queue of people waiting to be rebooked.

Boarding and departure - well, we left three hours late. Service on board was disinterested. The food was the well publicised and unremittingly awful single tray and half a sandwich as the second meal. Nothing proactive, not called by name. Landed and both bags hadn't arrived. At least the Menzies staff had pre-filled a lot of the paperwork.

Shopping commenced, claim lodged and acknowledged for c. 400 within 48 hours - the sole saving grace. Bags arrived roughly 36 hours late.

The inbound was a very similar story.

Checked in with Alaska at SEA who through checked my bags to London. As an aside, super friendly staff and lovely lounge in the North concourse at SeaTac. Arrived at YVR and went through international connections. BA have closed their lounge so into the dreadful Plaza Premium which I spent 30 minutes in before leaving to sit at the gate. Flight three hours late again. Didn't bother with dinner and went straight to sleep given we pushed-back back at midnight local time. 'Breakfast' was a panini. On stand three hours late, one bag arrived, the other didn't. Filed a claim, except the staff at LHR were clearly so jaded that they couldn't be bothered to give me a worldtracer ID. Filled the customs declaration and left.

Tweet BA asking for a report and get told to report it to Alaska. Speak to them who answered after two rings and spoke to a very helpful lady who tells me it's BA's responsibility, but of course will help me file a claim and thanks me for being a oneworld emerald.

TL-DR:
- BA are consistently late
- The food is still awful
- The staff couldn't give a monkeys
- Ops are in meltdown
- Other airlines seem to be dealing with things better

Last edited by Dave_C; Jun 29, 2022 at 2:39 am
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 3:55 pm
  #2  
 
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Yikes sounds like a real mess! I have a YVR-LHR flight next week (seriously regretting not sticking to SEA-LHR now), likely I'll add my own complaints to this thread after that flight too!
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 4:05 pm
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by lily23
Yikes sounds like a real mess! I have a YVR-LHR flight next week (seriously regretting not sticking to SEA-LHR now), likely I'll add my own complaints to this thread after that flight too!
Or, much more likely, you wont.

Yes, there are plenty of negative of tales around, and not to demean the OPs experience in any way, but these forums generally only contain complaints - as do most consumer forums - and there will be far more people in the camps that branch it was fine and it was brilliant

That J meal service needs sorting out though
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 4:24 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by darthlemsip
Or, much more likely, you wont.

Yes, there are plenty of negative of tales around, and not to demean the OPs experience in any way, but these forums generally only contain complaints - as do most consumer forums - and there will be far more people in the camps that branch it was fine and it was brilliant

That J meal service needs sorting out though
I've been on FT for almost 20 years now. Yes, everyone is travelling again. Yes the airlines are in a mess.

However, some airlines are in more of a mess than others. I will absolutely not spend cold hard cash with BA again (and that includes that outrageous YQ on long haul Avios tickets) until they sort things out.

Lufthansa Group absolutely have operational issues, however from my recent flights seem to be and order of magnitude better, or at least their operational issues are less endemic than at BA.

The one positive from this experience - Alaska. Friendly, helpful, on time with people that seem to care.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 4:27 pm
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by darthlemsip
...snip...Yes, there are plenty of negative of tales around, and not to demean the OP’s experience in any way, but these forums generally only contain complaints - as do most consumer forums - and there will be far more people in the camps that branch “it was fine” and “it was brilliant”

That J meal service needs sorting out though
Agreed. My flights with BA this weekend were fine. Staff did everything they didn't for the OP (well, in long haul biz at least, my feeder flight was in Y). Called by name, asked multiple times for drinks, etc. My complaints mostly involve the shambles that is flight connections but that's not BA's fault. And I wish they would honor the boarding time they print on the boarding pass and not make me waste my time standing around at the gate when I could be enjoying the lounge. Lots of other little things went wrong on the trip but most of them weren't under BA's control like the arrival gate being broken and being stuck on the tarmac for half an hour while airport maintenance fixed things in MCO. I also get annoyed by the luggage fiasco of waiting forever and then having priority bags come out last. But that's not something BA chooses to honor, even if they pretend to by sticking on a priority tag. Flights were on time, crew was fine, food was OK, used the CX lounge in T3 which was lovely--all in all a basically decent trip.

Again, don't mean to invalidate the OP's experience but as darthlemsip says, most people don't post about decent or even good flights, just the ones that go wrong. And although there are a lot of those, there are still more good flights than bad, even these days.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 4:36 pm
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[QUOTE=darthlemsip;34378436]Or, much more likely, you wont.

Based on recent on-time performance of the YVR route, I would beg to differ-a mere 5 hour delay this evening for example.

Operationally BA are a complete shambles at the moment. Despite mass cancellations, the current schedules, both short and long haul, simply do not work.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 4:49 pm
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Sounds very normal to me nowadays with BA. Currently seating in TK lounge at Istanbul. This is my third flight this week with TK. Flights were on time, got a nice food basket even for 1 hour flight time and my luggage arrived first. On the other hand all my flights with BA have been delayed or cancelled in the last 4 months apart from 1 which arrived on time but I had to wait 1+ hour for my luggage Anyhow, on a positive note I am sure you are entitled to some decent compensation if both of you flights were severely delayed. Thats something BA has not let me down (yet) and paid every single time with no ifs or buts.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 5:13 pm
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Sounds like a really crap experience for the OP, but sadly it doesn't really come as a surprise.

I don't actually agree that BA are a shambles end to end, because that suggests that every component part of the journey is rubbish, which is not my experience. However what I do find now is that almost 90% of flights have at least one of the following (often more): a cancellation (i.e. the service I'm on is not the one I originally booked); a significant delay; poor/mediocre in flight experience; or poor ground handling/security experience- this latter one is not usually a direct BA issue, but adds to the relative unhappiness one experiences.

In other words, I think I had maybe 1 or 2 flights in the last 12 months (mostly around summer 2021) where each of the above component parts of the flight experience was good. Ever since September 2021, almost every single BA flight experience has had an issue somewhere along the line- usually minor in the bigger scheme of things, but a notable deterioration in the overall experience.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 5:29 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by darthlemsip
Yes, there are plenty of negative of tales around, and not to demean the OPs experience in any way, but these forums generally only contain complaints - as do most consumer forums - and there will be far more people in the camps that branch it was fine and it was brilliant
Originally Posted by eefor jfp

Again, don't mean to invalidate the OP's experience but as darthlemsip says, most people don't post about decent or even good flights, just the ones that go wrong. And although there are a lot of those, there are still more good flights than bad, even these days.


Surely the salient take-away from all this isn't that most flights go off as they should, and do not attract complaints; that's the sort of faint praise that damns an enterprise

The point is that there's been a quite startling increase in tales of pretty serious service failures.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 5:45 pm
  #10  
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Alaska is great though right? They need to start flying to Europe.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 5:49 pm
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Having just experienced AC on TATL flights between LHR and Canada I would suggest you are better off sticking with BA. AC is even more of an end to end shambles.
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 6:46 pm
  #12  
 
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Originally Posted by Dave_C
This is another moan thread - please read on if you're not interested.

So as a little context, I'm a seven year GGL, now dropped to a lowly lifetime gold. Was flying on a paid Club World ticket DUB-LHR-YVR and back.

The outbound checked in with Aer Lingus at Dublin, no queue for premium check-in. Bags tagged to Vancouver. Fast track security at DUB took around 20 minutes to get airside. No integration between EI and BA meant no business class seats, no through printing of boarding passes, priority boarding etc. Not ideal, but knew all of that going into it. So landed at T2 and went through FCC and the bus to T5. Dumped at the FCC which was a seething mass of people. Total chaos. Managed to find a lone working kiosk which spat me out a boarding pass, saving an hour plus wait all because their partner airline in the same company couldn't print a boarding pass, and the app wouldn't either.

Waited 15 mins the Galleries First lounge to speak to an agent to put my bag tags in to my booking, as knowing from bitter experience, that needed to be done. Long queue of people waiting to be rebooked.

Boarding and departure - well, we left three hours late. Service on board was disinterested. The food was the well publicised and unremittingly awful single tray and half a sandwich as the second meal. Nothing proactive, not called by name. Landed and both bags hadn't arrived. At least the Menzies staff had pre-filled a lot of the paperwork.

Shopping commenced, claim lodged and acknowledged for c. 400 within 48 hours - the sole saving grace. Bags arrived roughly 36 hours late.

The inbound was a very similar story.

Checked in with Alaska at SEA who through checked my bags to London. As an aside, super friendly staff and lovely lounge in the North concourse at SeaTac. Arrived at YVR and went through international connections. BA have closed their lounge so into the dreadful Plaza Premium which I spent 30 minutes in before leaving to sit at the gate. Flight three hours late again. Didn't bother with dinner and went straight to sleep given we pushed-back back at midnight local time. 'Breakfast' was a panini. On stand three hours late, one bag arrived, the other didn't. Filed a claim, except the staff at LHR were clearly so jaded that they couldn't be bothered to give me a worldtracer ID. Filled the customs declaration and left.

Tweet BA asking for a report and get told to report it to Alaska. Speak to them who answered after two rings and spoke to a very helpful lady who tells me it's BA's responsibility, but of course will help me file a claim and thanks me for being a oneworld emerald.

TLR:
- BA are consistently late
- The food is still awful
- The staff couldn't give a monkeys
- Ops are in meltdown
- Other airlines seem to be dealing with things better
You could have learnt that from this forum without flying

Also your former status means nothing (as does your current apparently0
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Old Jun 28, 2022, 11:51 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire
You could have learnt that from this forum without flying

Also your former status means nothing (as does your current apparently0
Posting my status was meant to contextualise the fact that I understand how BA and airlines work, and that Im not a once a year with the family and kids to Alicante type traveller. Didnt mean for it to come across in any other way.
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Old Jun 29, 2022, 12:57 am
  #14  
 
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Originally Posted by darthlemsip
Or, much more likely, you wont.

Yes, there are plenty of negative of tales around, and not to demean the OPs experience in any way, but these forums generally only contain complaints - as do most consumer forums - and there will be far more people in the camps that branch it was fine and it was brilliant

That J meal service needs sorting out though
I think the whole problem though is that its not consistently brilliant, and not brilliant enough. Not even consistently fine! we do seem to be reading more and more instances of such complete meltdown in customer service. You only have to go onto Twitter to see the continual mess.
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Old Jun 29, 2022, 1:14 am
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Originally Posted by kbooks66
Alaska is great though right? They need to start flying to Europe.
Agreed. Recently did LAX-SEA and return a couple of weeks later. Entirely positive, I liked Alaska.

Ive switched to AA for transatlantic. Everything about my last BA long haul was poor. 3 hour + delay, further 2+ hours for bags. Very poor food. Refusal of 261, eventually paid after CEDR. I couldnt think of a reason to use them if I have an alternative.
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