Shambolic AUP Experience J-F at LHR

Old Aug 31, 2022, 7:26 am
  #1  
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Shambolic AUP Experience J-F at LHR

Very much a first world problem today, but am trying to pay to AUP to F. There is a seat available, it is blocked for me, yet it is impossible to pay for it.

So far two check in desks at F wing, the F customer service desk and the J lounge desk are unable to take payment as their system keeps crashing. The FLY system is timing out and chip pin payment not possible.

All the staff have been amazing but they sounded so angry and sad about the appalling state of their IT and inability to do anything about it.

I am now at general help desk, trying for a 5th time - why does BA make.it so hard to take my money!
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 8:11 am
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I had a similar experience with IB. The app invited me to upgrade for €43 on the MAD - LHR leg. It ticketed the upgrade but wouldn’t accept the €€€ - I tried to pay at an IB desk in LEI, but staff refused to take payment and told me to fly Y up to MAD and deal with the payment there. There was a huge Q in MAD, and with time short I presented myself at the gate. I was boarded in J (which I hadn’t yet paid for) with no problems. Upon landing at LHR I queried it at the BA/IB desk (willing to settle up, I was worried I might be billed in retrospect in full fare J). I was told the note on the system said: ‘No further action required.’ So I ended up getting a POUG as complimentary…

Last edited by Dicksbits; Aug 31, 2022 at 12:41 pm
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 9:28 am
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After 9 different attempts, it proved impossible to purchase an AUP due to crappy IT. How much revenue (and goodwill) is this costing BA?
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 10:26 am
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Originally Posted by jimlad48
After 9 different attempts, it proved impossible to purchase an AUP due to crappy IT. How much revenue (and goodwill) is this costing BA?
We had trouble finalizing checking in two of our party today because they couldnt find the reservations either with allocated seat number, BA flight number, AA codeshare number or BA PNR. Had already succeeded using app but needed docs checked and printed boarding passes. Agent also tried a different computer which eventually helped. At some point one agent started talking to her colleagues about something called JFE wonder what that meant? corporate-wage-slave any insight?
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 10:27 am
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Originally Posted by salut0
At some point one agent started talking to her colleagues about something called JFE wonder what that meant?
JFE is the default check-in system instead of FLY.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 12:23 pm
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Originally Posted by jimlad48
After 9 different attempts, it proved impossible to purchase an AUP due to crappy IT. How much revenue (and goodwill) is this costing BA?
I know its too late but have you called your credit card provider to see what is going on. I know AMEX can be very helpful with these things as sometimes the BA side maybe not showing the error codes properly. It is entirely possible that after so many attempts the transaction will be blocked, etc.
I agree however that BA IT generally is really bad. The best quote Ive got fro
a telephone agent that the more future booking I have the slower is the system. So sometimes it is good to be a BA Blue and not a GGL. Hahaha.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 1:57 pm
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Originally Posted by JFX1764
JFE is the default check-in system instead of FLY.
And just to expand slightly. FLY and JFE are both "DCS", departure control systems built by Amadeus Alta. Alta is used widely throughout European airlines, I think Swiss is the big exceptions. FLY is specific to BA and incorporates things like "Ready to Fly", checking visas and additional documentation before getting to the gate. I think the theory was that all boarding to all destinations could be done automatically, based perhaps on biometrics, since ticket, visa and other checks were already completed. One peek at the camera and you're free to board. Life got more complicated but FLY (without Ready to Fly outside T5) is used for 99% of BA's services, and only BA uses it. The high level of personalisation was built on JFE, which is the stripped down version and is sometimes used when FLY ceases to work. It still keeps tabs on the ticketing side, since that is a crucial stage in BA accountancy - BA often only gets money once you have passed the boarding gate and on the jetty. Agents can login in under a JFE screen and do various booking management features without the embrace of BA's extra functionality. So I'm guessing here that they suspected FLY was the culprit, but from the sounds of it, the problem was external to BA if JFE didn't work.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 2:13 pm
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I know this is a lost crusade, but it's not like every problem in the world is caused by FLY.

FLY is a front-end, showing information graphically. JFE is its Amadeus counterpart. Then there are a number of services hosted on the SIP middleware (conformance, auto-doc-checks to name but two) which Amadeus couldn't, and still can't as far as I know, build, and then behind it there's the panoply of Alta back-end services: Customer Management, CM, where passengers booking and flight details exist from t-72h, FM (for weight and balance) and Reservations & Inventory.

When processing a payment at the airport, or anywhere else for that matter, BA uses external services - a PSP gateway to ensure the card isn't nicked and has funds, then an acquirer like Worldpay, then it's off to the issuing bank. If the OP's payment didn't work it's not "because of FLY", but either because of the PSP gateway, the acquirer or the OP's card issuer.

Sure, not a great experience and, even surer, a lost revenue for the airline. But, for once, it's "not FLY".
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 3:38 pm
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Call me simplistic but if the price is known could there not be a way (for example) either for one of the desks at Heathrow the home of British Airways, or at Waterside, or somewhere (gosh even off a duty free trolley) to get a card reader and pay the amount, then issue the new BP as a seat change or whatever. Wont be the first time there are problems and an immediate & practical solution is needed. If needs be the credit card slip could be sent with ticket number and a memo to BAngalore via post or telex or a scan via email or whatever agile system BA use for back office processing to keep the bean counters (who of course come first) happy whilst also providing a degree of service to these inconveniences called customers. The back office can then ponder it at their own pace.

I also wonder if experience is an issue. Sometimes its just about knowing the right workaround or the right person / team to speak to.
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Last edited by IAMORGAN; Aug 31, 2022 at 3:48 pm
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 4:00 pm
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Cash!?
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 4:03 pm
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BA stopped accepting cash a few years ago. With some reluctance, they did sometimes get multi-thousands of pounds in 10 notes off some customers to West Africa and the Caribbean. Now there is a provision to pay the cash into Travelex and they turn it into a funded debit card, which BA can accept.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 7:05 pm
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Originally Posted by cheshirepete
Cash!?
Cash is pretty much verboten in many customer facing industries. Covid has accelerated it, but before then, strict interpretation of AML and KYC rules made cash very difficult to accept.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 7:24 pm
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Cash is many cultures is still the norm. I've had clients turn up with envelopes to pay for services. Airlines here in Mex do accept it but you normally have to deposit it through a 7 Eleven or Oxxo or bank within 24 hours of the ticket being booked. I believe about 60 percent of adults here don't have a bank account but many have to travel still
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 8:17 pm
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I'd like to know where BA/IAG get their IT whizz-kids from? Are they not qualified?.
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Old Aug 31, 2022, 8:22 pm
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Originally Posted by jimlad48
After 9 different attempts, it proved impossible to purchase an AUP due to crappy IT. How much revenue (and goodwill) is this costing BA?
The least they could've done is to give it to you for free as goodwill... after all they did block the seat for you already. Did they?
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