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Should I Hate Air France And Should I Ever Consider Flying Air France Again?
Posted by on
As you are getting ready for another summer vacation anywhere outside of the US or just Europe, AVOID taking Air France at any cost. I’ll let you decide if the heading of this review should have been “I HATE Air France”. If you do book a flight with Air France after reading this review and have an unpleasant experience with them, then please do not complain afterwards because you are forewarned. Here is our story:
It was late June of 2010. We took a flight with Air France, from Washington DC to Istanbul, via Paris. The first leg of the trip was uneventful, thank God, because what happened afterwards was bad enough to cover many many Air France mishaps that you might experience on any given flight. After transferring to another airplane, we continued our trip from Paris to Istanbul, which is supposed to be 3 hours. A half hour or so before we were supposed land in Istanbul, the pilot announced that we were returning back to Paris because the airplane’s landing radar was not operating properly and landing conditions in Istanbul were windy. In other words they were concerned about the safety. We did not like the news, but, hey, anyone can experience such a malfunction on any airplane or airlines. While we were returning back to Paris, we found out from a flight attendant that the airplane had come from Frankfurt first and this condition was known. So if Air France knew the problem why did they assign the plane to fly? We said let’s not get upset and ruin our trip. Two and a half hours later, and a full thirteen plus hours after we left home from Washington DC, we landed back in Paris.
The airplane parked on the tarmac. We walked down the stairs to board a bus. Oh by the way, I forgot to mentioned that my wife’s knees are in such a bad condition with arthritis that we had to install a chair lift for her on the stairs of our house so that she can be mobile without pain. But enduring pain is exactly what she did - she walked down the airplane stairs. The next problem arrived when the bus let us off in front of a three story set of stairs that we had to walk up to reach the terminal. Everyone walked up, and we waited. Waited to ask someone to take us to an elevator so that my wife would not be forced to negotiate the stairs with pain. Oh by the way, I did not mention that I am a heart patient. It is not good for me to walk up three flights of stairs either.
Well, an Air France representative came. We told him about my wife’s knees, he said that there is no elevator. I questioned his statement, stating that I cannot believe that in Charles De Gaul Airport there is no elevator anywhere to take us up. All they had to do is just walk us to the nearest elevator. The man insisted that there was no elevator and we had to walk up just like all other passengers did. My wife’s arthritic knees? My heart condition? I asked him what happens if I have a heart attack while I am trying to go up three flights. His response was, if that happens we’ll take you to the hospital. At that point I told him that he should call the police because we are not going anywhere until they take us to an elevator. Yes, a few police came around trying to understand the problem. The man was insisting that there was no elevator that we can walk to, nor could they can take us to one, and if all of the other passengers can go up, we too can walk up to the terminal. I told him if he kept up that attitude we might both be on the front page the next day. At that point, my wife said that she would walk up no matter what. She and I walked up three stories of stairs in twenty minutes, while taking breaks along with the entourage of Air France representatives and a few policemen. Ironically, after we came home there was the official Disabilities month and passage of disabilities laws to provide a variety of capabilities to people like us and those in worse condition. Thank you America for trying to accommodate all disabled people and shame on you Air France for insisting and expecting us to be in the condition to walk up three floors to your terminal and refusing to take us to an elevator. I would like to ask you, should I hate Air France and should I ever consider flying Air France again?
     
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leet60 on 12/25/2010:
I recall Charles De Gaulle airport having some elevators, albeit smaller than those in the U.S.
These were restricted to be used by "wheelchair bound" passengers only.

It is sad that your disabilities were not accommodated, but not surprising in Europe.
trmn8r on 12/25/2010:
My answer to you would be don't fly any airline if unexpected changes are going to cause you such anguish. If you didn't come in on a wheelchair, they will probably assume you can climb stairs. This begs the question of what would have happened if a passenger *did* require a wheelchair.

The situation with returning to Paris may have been that the particular radar that was down was only needed to due to specific weather conditions (such as guiding the aircraft in under computer control). You have no way of knowing, but there was probably an explanation other than they forgot.
Anonymous on 12/25/2010:
Hmm... Should you fly Air France again, or should you not now... If you do there may be trouble, if you don't, and fly with someone else it could be double... Let me consult my magic 8 ball and get back to you on that.
dan gordon on 12/25/2010:
I don't think you should ever leave the USA again. We accommodate disabilities but that is rare in the rest of the world. If you need and expect American standards wherever you travel then staying put is the best advice. Air France had absolutely nothing to do with the 'stairs' at the airport.
trmn8r on 12/25/2010:
We found the United Kingdom to be VERY accommodating when it comes to disabilities - both England and Scotland. We rode on the "Queen's Elevator" at one site. It had an insert in it to protect the Queen's velvet, and only the buttons showed through openings. We were ferried on occasion and given special treatment.

My mom had a problem walking, and they were just SO understanding. It was amazing. We went to France the following year, and it wasn't the same. I don't mean to bash France though, we had a wonderful time and I think the UK is just a standout.
Ben There on 12/26/2010:
Next time you travel I suggest that you request a wheelchair assistance when you book your tickets. As long as you notify the airline at least 48 hours before departure they will pass that along to the airport who is required by EU law to assist.

If you wait till you are at the airport they might not have the resources to provide these services to you, and there is never a guarantee that you will have jetbrides on any airline. http://www.airfrance.us/US/en/common/guidevoyageur/assistance/pmr_aeroport_airfrance.htm
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Mishandled luggage
Posted by on
By a non competent worker who has just dropped it while unloading the cargo out of the airplane due to a bad handling manner and or unfamiliarity with such a type of cargo which end up by a crash of the cage, putting at risk the life of our dog named “HIJO” was consequently lost at the airport premises, my wife and me were subject to a forced delay of five days at the CDG, Charles Degaulle Airport – Paris. From September 16th to 21st (both dates inclusive).
We were informed personally; A cage handle dysfunction caused a cage door opened letting the dog run away and considered lost within the airport premises, a spokesman of Air France stated, additional Reference in various media TV and daily papers, (TV3, France today, la liberationNews papers, La tercera News papers & Chile vision ) as well.
Thereafter the erroneous Air France spokesman statement was never changed and no compassion or attenuation excuse was so far expressed to us to persuade us and or substitute the first misleading attitude.
We have immediately contradicted publicly through the media A. F spokesman, as the Dog cage first time used, is hermetically meeting with animal transportation code and in full compliance with the international norms, being made to withstand common eventual shocks may be incurring during air cargo manipulation beside the fact that the cage door cannot be opened unless manually pushed down and released to open as a security measure which can’t be forced by any means by the animal itself from inside out, obviously the Cage is not designed to withstand a free accelerated dynamic fall down from an airplane cargo gate relevant height to hit the runway ground as it was discovered later on by us we refer as well to the smashed cage in our custody as it was retrieved back from A. France .
In adversary to good ethics, without the help and support of the Media, animal associations and the 1000 EU offered by us, we were like ignored, desperate and frustrated; that is the plane truth unveiled along the five unforgettable days sealed with trauma and desperation, no one of the Ground Air France responsible felt to deal with the matter in respect and vigor to animal transportation regulations, cargo handling and Air passenger’s rights for compensation under the international conventions and codes, everyone was trying to avoid us and consequently negate the default, and consequently the passengers eligibility to accommodations and assistance in respect to hours and days of delay caused by the company.
Without our insistence and perseverance our dog considered as a family member could have been lost forever or possibly lost his life.
Five long days, day and night, Four of them we have called the agony days those before our dog was found at a CDG ground yard, the fifth day was the happy day by excellence marked by finding our companion while we were already exhausted and both my wife and me sick, a doctor refused to write a medical report to me as I was suffering fever, flu, headache and stomach pain, he instead has verbally

advised me to swallow some “Paracetamol”. Thereafter my wife had to be and still under medical care and follow up for the Traumatic time we had and depression she was subject to until this actual date suffering in consequence thereof.
Opposed by our solid decision not to leave the airport promises without our companion; Air France offered us one hotel night accommodation with a limited snack food allowance, beside the humble hotel conditions, then after we were constrained to sleep till the fifth day, as our flight was due to leave to our final destination, at a business class salon obviously not equipped with the necessary long staying accommodation facilities, eating the snacks regularly served at this lounge, any other necessities was on our own cost,
At the fifth day still at the business class lounge waiting for our flight to take off to our destination Santiago du Chile, as the flight was due to leave late evening .
After 20 days from our arrival to Chile, , Air France While we were expecting to be compensated decently, we Ironically were addressed with $ 200,00 USD Two Hundred, after all our trauma and frustrating agony we were subject to, due to a mistake which we never commit as if Air France still treating the matter in light of their first statement .
Thus, to resume the material direct damage and inconveniences we have faced avoiding going deep into annoying details abundant enough to write a book.
Till now the famous AIR FRANCE DIDN'T PAY ANY THING FOR US...LIKE THEY MUST DO.
     
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Anonymous on 01/10/2010:
Was the dog found?! The poor little guy!
jktshff1 on 01/10/2010:
"our dog was found at a CDG ground yard"
Anonymous on 01/10/2010:
You are entitled to compensation BIG TIME from Air France. As a dog lover myself I feel for you and wonder how your dog managed for the five days in a cold airport. I wonder if he got food and water anywhere. I don't understand how it took 5 days to find him. CDG is a big airport, but still a vehicle should have been able to search the airport and find him in one day. I suspect that AF having considered the dog "lost" callously never bothered to look. That was good of the lounge to allow you to stay all those days.
Anonymous on 01/10/2010:
Ohhhh thanx jkt, I read that twice and didn't see it. Guess I need more caffeine.
Skye on 01/10/2010:
That's awful. Poor little dog. As if having to travel in the cargo area wasn't traumatizing enough.

Glad he was found at least.
Anonymous on 01/10/2010:
Thank God, your dog was okay. I have three words that will solve this problem in the future: Board your dog. He will be happier there. This airline clearly considered animals mere luggage. Disgusting.
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Rude, horrible customer service, arrogant beyond belief.
Posted by on
I flew from America to Paris with Continental Airlines, landed December 30. 2009, and flew from there to Oslo with Air France the same day. Upon arrival in Oslo my bag doesn't show up, and I file a missing luggage-report.

Because of new-years I wasn't able to get a hold of the Oslo service-desk until Saturday, when she could tell me that they found my bag: Air France sent it to Mumbai, India. She told me it would take a few days. I called Air France to find out if I would get some sort of compensation: I had no warm clothes or anything at home. And the temperature was -20 celsius. A woman at Air France service told me that no, I was not entitled to any compensation as long as my bag was located. Great. She filled out her form with all my information about me and my bag and told me she would send Mumbai a "message" to send me my bag.

On Monday I call again, to see when I can expect it. "Nothing new" the lady tells me. -"Nothing new?? what do you mean, my bag is supposed to be sent by now!" It hasn't, and she can't even really tell me why, she doesn't know! She's guessing that they're waiting for a confirmation that the bag really is mine.
My name is on the bag in two different places, one of them very secure. This sounds odd to me.
But she tells me again that she will send them a message and ask them to send me my bag.

I call again on Tuesday: same story. I ask the woman if they can't call them instead of sending them these "messages", talk to someone at they're office in mumbai. -"No, we don't have their number." _"uhm.. okay, well it has to be online somewhere, on a website maybe?" she says: -"we don't have an internet access."

I call a little bit later the same day when I discovered that my homeaddress was misspelled, but this time Air France tells me that Continental airlines has my bag, and that mumbai are waiting for an authorization from them before they can send my bag! I tell him that this is news to me, and that I will call Continental and see what's keeping them.

I talk to a very nice woman at Continental and she asks me if I want her to call Mumbai (!). sure! She calls them while I'm on hold for a few minutes, and when she gets back to me she tells me that a representative from Air France came and physically picked my bag up from their office on Sunday 1.January. and after that there are no messages in my file saying what's been done with it.
she can also tell me that Air France hadn't sent the proper message, they were supposed to send something called an "official request on hand" or something, and told me that I needed to ask them to do that.
She also advised me to ask them to call their own office. She was horrified when I told her how they responded to that request. she also told me to ask for a supervisor.

I call up Air France, and a new man at the service desk starts listing all my details. I try to tell him it's not necassary, since I talked to them 20 minutes ago, he arrogantly responds: "okay, miss, let me do my job, okay? will that be allright with you? okay." (in a french accent)
After he's finished listing all my info, and I've confirmed, I tell him the news I got from Continental and what she told me Air France needed to do. He interrupts several times with: "Thank you for telling me what to do" in an extremely rude and sarcastic tone. He refuses to let me talk to a manager, when I ask him to please call their offices he replies: "I've already told you, miss, that's not how we do it here!"
I'm obviously getting nowhere with this guy so I give up.

I've called again today, Thursday, "no news". my bag is still in Mumbai. They can't tell me anything. Except that it's confirmed that it's mine.
They already told me that on Tuesday.
She gave me a phonenumber and a faxnumber for Mumbai airport.
None of them worked.

I can't find any other number for Air France, I've tried to send two messages to Mumbai airport, no response.
I don't know what to do..

     
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RestaurantGuy on 01/07/2010:
Here is the phone number and the address for Air France in Mumbai- Maker Chamber V1, 1st floor 220 Nariman Point Mumbai 400021, telephone number is 022-2025021. Give them a call and good luck
Anonymous on 01/07/2010:
Hennie, let me suggest that you relax and stop chasing after Air France for now. If you have not already done so, write them a letter as soon as possible and deliver it to their office in Oslo, and complain that you did not get your bag when you arrived in Oslo. Your luggage is delayed and you are entitled under the Montreal Convention to up to $1,500 for expenses for purchases for items to use while you were without your bag. Air France does not have to agree. This is an international convention which is binding on Air France. When your bag arrives you collect it and you still claim up to $1,500 against Air France. You can claim in Oslo, Paris or in a United States office of Air France whichever is convenient to you.
goduke on 01/07/2010:
I could be wrong, but I think the montreal convention only kicks in when the bags are officially declared as lost or are missing for 21 days, at which point the convention considers them lost. We're only 9 days into the disaster on this one.
goduke on 01/07/2010:
Just be glad they aren't catpaulting cows across the castle wall at you.
PepperElf on 01/07/2010:
well there's different things for different days for the MC

but instead of just saying what applies etc, I'm just going to drop the link

http://www.state.gov/e/eeb/rls/othr/ata/114157.htm
Anonymous on 01/07/2010:
Article 19 of the Montreal Convention provides:
"The carrier is liable for damage occasioned by delay in the carriage by air of passengers, baggage or cargo."

Here is a sample letter of complaint:

Date of this letter
Your Name
Your Address
Town/City
County
Postcode/ZIP

Name of Airline
Address of Airline
Town/City
County
Postcode/ZIP

Dear Sirs,

Re: Flight No: (the number of the flight), Date: (the date of the flight), From: (Your place of departure, for example, London Heathrow), To: (your place of arrival, for example, New York JFK).

On arrival at (name of your arrival airport), I discovered that my luggage was missing and I informed your ground staff of this, they completed a PIR and gave me a copy. As it is now (number of days since your flight, for example 3 days) since my flight and my luggage has not yet been located, I am writing to formally lodge a complaint regarding my missing luggage. When I checked in at (name of your departure airport), I declared the value of my luggage to be (the amount you declared your luggage to be valued at, for example, $12,000 – only use this sentence if you declared the total value of your luggage during check in) and asked your staff to take good care of my luggage. I hereby give (name of the airline) 21 days to deliver my luggage to me, failing which, I will expect you to reimburse me for the loss of my luggage in it’s entirety including associated costs.

In the meantime, I will purchase replacement items which I need urgently and are necessary for my stay. I will forward copies of the receipts to you and expect reimbursement for these items. In the event that my luggage is located, I will expect (name of the airline) to either deliver my missing luggage to me, or if I am forced to collect my luggage, then I will claim for travel, hotel, and any other out of pocket expenses.

I await your urgent reply to my complaint.

Yours Sincerely.

(Your Name)
goduke on 01/07/2010:
Thanks, Pepper. I think is any situation, though, the OP has to prove some kind of damages -- either the value of the articles or the cost to purchase new ones. I don't think you can just walk in and say "write me a check."
Anonymous on 01/07/2010:
"Just be glad they aren't catapulting cows across the castle wall at you."

Your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries!
PepperElf on 01/07/2010:
o yeah. cos if you could do that ... hell send me to Air France
so I can tell them they lost my 3-million dollar ring and they need to cut me a check to replace it... >:-)


not that I'd really do that but... well I'm allowed to have an evil mind =)



yaya - runaway!!!! runaway!!!
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A Pleasant Surprise From Air France Crew
Posted by on
I often fly with Delta and Air France. I've had quite a high number of bad experiences with both airlines and I am glad I can share a pleasant experience for once.

I recently flew from Bangalore to Paris CDG, and then Paris CDG to Atlanta. I was originally in India for 10 days. But I caught typhoid fever and was unable to travel. After I was finally allowed by doctors to travel, but still on medication and exhausted from two weeks of disease, I decided to fly back home.
I get on the plane in Bangalore and as I am heading towards my seat a flight attendant asks me if I speak French. I tell her I do. She then answers in French "you'll be sitting soon and will be able to sleep and rest". I was surprised by her comment (I hadn't let the airline know about my being sick) and speechless. She then added "you just look so tired...". I let her know that indeed I am exhausted because I have been sick for two weeks and was supposed to fly back to the US much earlier. I then proceed to my seat.

5 minutes later the same flight attendant comes to me and asks me if I mind telling her what I have. I let her know I've had typhoid fever. After reassuring her that I was not presenting a risk to other passengers anymore she asks me what it is that I would need the most to make the flight as easy as possible on me. She offers me extra blankets and pillows. She asks me if I need a lot of water (indeed I am supposed to drink liters and liters for my kidneys to properly function). She lets the rest of the crew know about my condition and they all came and checked on me during the flight. They gave me 1.5 liter bottles. They also moved the passenger next to me to another seat so I could lay down. When I was not drinking enough they would gently remind me that I needed to drink more.

I was extremely touched by their kindness. I was nervous to get on two flights for a total trip of 24 hours while still being very tired. They made it so much easier on me (without me mentioning anything about my condition or asking for anything, everything they did for me was their own initiative). Before landing in Paris they checked again on me and asked me to let the next crew know about my condition.

So when I arrived at my gate in Paris to board for Atlanta, I went to the Air France counter. Although I had a seat they couldn't change because I had purchased it with my miles, they still moved me so nobody would be sitting next to me. The crew also offered me bottles of water. They were all very nice. Maybe not as sweet as the crew on the Bangalore-Paris flight who was as caring as my own mother, but still very nice.

I have to say that after all the unfortunate experiences I've had with Air France for the past 20 years, I was very surprised and glad to be taken care of in such a sweet way by the Air France flight attendants.
     
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Anonymous on 05/26/2009:
Wow, that is really something for the French. Maybe there is hope for them after all. Very good review.
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Travelling with pets
Posted by on
This is a complaint I sent to Air France:

To whom it may concern

Dear Madam/Sir,

On 5th August, we (my husband, 2 kittens and I) were traveling with your company from Sofia to Paris and from Paris to Montreal (details about the flight provided at the end of the letter). I'm glad to say that the flight from Sofia to Paris was pleasant and that the flight attendants were helpful and professional. However, we are very unhappy with the service we received from the Air France staff in Sofia, the place from where the tickets were purchased, as well as with the conditions during the flight from Paris to Montreal.

Even though the tickets were booked 2 months in advance, no one in the office in Sofia was able to inform me about the requirements concerning the transportation of pets in the cabin. Even after calling the main office three times, and once the office at the Sofia airport, I still couldn't receive reliable information. For example, once I was told that if I take a pet I would not be able to have any hand luggage. This is a problem because if I follow all the instructions of the office staff, than on the day of the flight I might be surprised by new set of instructions known only to airport staff or vice versa and therefore would not be able to board the flight. I regret to say that the staff at the Sofia office and at the airport is poorly trained.

Additionally, we specifically requested to book seats at the back of the plane or in front (in our class), and were surprised when during both flights we were travelling in the middle of the plane. This was not a problem during the first flight (Sofia-Paris) because the seat next to us was available and we could put one of the cages there and the other on the floor. However, during the second flight (Paris-Montreal) the plane was full and we were ordered by the flight attendant to put the cages below our seats. Even though, we followed all instructions as to the measurements of the cages, it was so tight between the front and our seats that we had to put our feet on the cages and stay like that for more than 7 hours. Given that my husband is 1.90cm, this was a very unpleasant experience. Additionally, it was so tight that we couldn't check on the cats even ones during the whole flight or add water. The flight attendants were extremely unhelpful and rude, and refused to provide any assistance. The only half joking replay I received was that they the only place for the pets they could find was in the fridge.

We chose to have our little cats (both are around 3 kilos) with us in the cabin, because it causes less stress to the animal and the possibility of fatal accident is reduced. Due to the deplorable conditions in which your company transports pets in the cabin (I dare not think what the conditions in the luggage department are), I was not sure that they will survive the flight even though they were with us. I find your attitude towards animals horrific. The fact that I paid EUR 300 to transport 2 cats and that there was no designated place for the cages is shocking. Following this experience, neither I nor a member of my family will ever use your services again, with or without pets. Also, we strongly discourage any of our friends to fly with Air France. I strongly believe you have to seriously revise your rules and procedures, and, above all, to train your staff.
     
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Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
Goodness gracious! I'm glad my family wasn't traveling on that flight with you. My husband and daughter are both highly allergic to cats.
yoke on 10/15/2008:
What did the airline do wrong? How is it there fault you did not have leg room once you put the cages under the seat?
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
I'm with Miss Marple. I wouldn't want to pay all that money so I could have the privilege of sitting near your precious kitties. They belong in cargo.
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Miss Marple - you sure do get around and with your "goodness gracious" comments. Goodness gracious I am so glad you are around to solve everyone's problems.

Goodness gracious indeed.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
tarhrah again! I think your educated self sure has a lot to learn. I have cats but would never endager them or others by bringing them on a flight with me. People with allergies could have been killed. I have to agree with Goodness gracious on this one.
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Pets are like people's children. They deserve respect too. No one person can solve all of the world's problems.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
So, okay lets say there is a child on the flight allergic to cats. Now, dander comes from the cat in contact with the child. The child has an allergic reaction and there is no doctor on the plane. The child dies. Is that showing that child respect?
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Hurricane - please - just give it a rest. Don't travel with cats if you do no want to. Again, just because people have cats and someone MAY be allergic to them doesn't make the cat owner a bad person.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
I never understood why people travel with pets.When we go on vacation or just out of the area for the weekend,we either have a friend come by and check in on them,or we board them.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
This has nothing to do with respect, tarahrah. Although I suppose it would -- if my pets paid for the flight.

Goodness gracious! I'm surprised you managed to *not* call me an idiot. Oh, wait, when you did that to other members, your comments got deleted.

Hurricane - absolutely. I've seen people have a severe asthma attack, once coming close to feline(s).
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
I am not saying that but the people who booked those tickets in advance don't know they will be traveling with pets. I would love an airplane full of animals. I would be absolutely delighted but I would feel very bad is something happened to somebody due to allergies. Should they stay home and never travel then in case someone decides to bring a pet? I am a cat owner, an animal lover, and I have to agree with Trainwreck.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
TW -- I think the most often situation would be if the pets were service animals.

I myself have a combo house/pet sitter when going out of town.
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
I have never called anyone an idiot Miss Marple. Shame on you. I have only started posting to this site very recently and I will more than likely stop this date as I see that you find it okay to voice your opinion - you do not like the opinon of others. It is okay for you to be rude and condescending but no one else. Have at it Miss Marple.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
I'm not a big pet guy,my wife is.I'd rather have no pets...no funky smells,no poo to clean up.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
tarahrah, yeah, right, OK. Superbowl can back me up on this, since he's the person you called an idiot.

Shame on you.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
tarahrah,don't leave.We are cool peeps here...except for MissMarple and Superbowl,they are the site's "George Bush,and Dick Cheney".
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J/K they are great people once you get to know them
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
tarahrah -- Why do you tell stories?
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
TW -- does that make you the site's Hillary Clinton?
j/k
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
No,because she is a loser.I'm a winner!
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Oh my gosh - you people are mistaken. Nothing I have written has been deleted to my knowledge and I do not recall calling Superbowl an idiot but if the shoe fits....

I am sure we can all think of choice names for one another but we are supposed to be polite here. However, I find MissMarple, Crabman, Superbowl, and Hurricane anything but polite. It is their way or no way. I really do hope things work out for all of them.

Thanks Trainwreck - I kind of like this sort of communication but some of these posters are just too hateful. There is no reason for some of their attitudes. It is like they want to take their frustrations out on others and they get upset if you protect yourself and others from their wrath. I do not get it.
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Yes - MissMarple - you are mistaken - I just checked my posts to this site and no words of "idiot" to describe Superbowl came from me. Maybe you wished someone would have do so. I don't know. Just a thought.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
tarahrah, it was deleted. You won't find any reference to it now.
Anonymous on 10/15/2008:
I feel like I should hand tarahrah a box of tissues and a copy of chicken soup for the soul.

tarahra is it lonely up there on your pedestal?
tarahrah on 10/15/2008:
Oh please Crabman - My pedestal is fabulous - how is yours?

Well Miss Marple if you cannot prove the "idiot" then it did not happen. Goodness Gracious me!
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Reimbursement
Posted by on
To Whom it May Concern:

This fax is to address my concerns regarding my refund and recent travel on Air France. In an effort to be concise and clear I have outlined my experience in a timeline fashion:

5/31/08 19:30 On Board Flight AF0025, late departure. Crew informs passengers this is due to a malfunction with the luggage loader

6/1/08 09:00 Arrive CDG, can not debark due to malfunctioning stairs. Watch as broken stairs are taken away and new ones replace

6/1/08 09:30 Meet at bottom of stairs with AF Staff holding “Budapest” sign. Loaded into special van and escorted through customs to Air France Service Desk

6/1/08 09:45 Told that other flight was not held due to tickets being held by passengers on AF0025 being sold when AF was told of delay out of IAD

6/1/08 10:00 Told no flights were available out of CDG to BUD until 18:30 due to all flights being fully booked. Asked numerous times regarding other airlines and told all flights were booked.

6/1/08 11:00 Receive Vouchers for sandwich and drink, go through security to terminal. I research flights on internet and find several flights on SwissAir and Lufthansa.

6/1/08 11:30 I go back to Air France Service Desk and speak with Supervisor and ask him about availability shown on internet. He informs me that he can not book on another airline if there is an AF or partner flight available on same day. He informs me that if I book the flight, Air France will reimburse me the cost of the ticket since our delay is over 6 hours. I clarify that AF will reimburse the cost of the ticket on the other airline in full and says yes. He gives me the AF mailing information for reimbursement.

6/10/08 Submit complaint on Air France website noting supervisors name and description of ordeal

6/11/08 Receive reply
Dear Mrs ???
Thank you for your message.
The customer care department will study your request and will reply as soon as possible at the following address: ???
For a better follow-up of your file, your request has been registered under the reference:???
Please quote this number in any correspondence.

Thank you for taking the time to contact us.
With kind regards, Air France Customer Care

6/19/08 Call AirFrance because there has been no reply

6/20/08 Receive reply with PDF letter asking me to supply documentation. Immediately comply and send scanned copies. (Do not notice the do not reply to this email message)

6/24/08 Call to assure all documents needs are received, told be AF representative that everything is in order and being processed.

Approx 7/16 Call AF to check on Status, told documents have not been received, should never have replied to email which sent request. Instructed to mail documents.

7/22 Mail requested documents.

7/30 Rec’d email PDF document from AR agreeing to refund unused portion of flight $393.74 USD.

7/30 Called AF Customer Service. Spk with ***, told me I could speak with no one at AF, all correspondence had to be in writing, there is no email address available or name to address my correspondence. That the flight crew did not have the correct information when we were delayed on the ground at IAD, that a set of working stairs would have been available if flight would have not been delayed out of IAD and that there is no way to pull up my original email and correspondence in which the name of the supervisor was noted. Told Josh that even if US Govt was involved in the delay, I would have never spent $915.66EUR without a clear understanding from the Air France Supervisor that I would be reimbursed. Told that I needed to resubmit information and it would be researched.

8/4 Retrieved information from home, realized in the course of 2 months ticket voucher which had supervisor’s name had been misplaced, may be written on the back of tickets sent to AF on 7/22.

Should this have to be such an arduous process from the customer’s end? I look forward to your favorable reply of a full refund of $915.66EUR. Thank you for your consideration and feel free to contact me via phone so we may have a person to person contact if there are additional matters to be discussed.


8/13 - Called to check on status of above fax and told file was closed with first offer and I have to wait 30 days before the file will be reviewed and reopened. Told Supervisor was not taking calls and did not have email. Transferred to Supervisors vm which stated she was out until 8/13

URGHHH - How do I get a response? It has been over 2 months and I am out $1500.00 USD!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
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Do not trust this airline with you child or your luggage! Awful and uncaring people!
Posted by on
SEATTLE -- I have had many VERY Positive experiences with other airlines so I do not complain easily. But Air France is easily the most irresponsible and uncaring airline I have been involved with.

My 14 year old disabled niece used them and we all had a terrible experience. First off, she can walk but in pain, so we arranged with "Sapir", their disabled service, for her to be picked up and taken to her connecting flight in Paris, where she had a scheduled transfer. No one was there to pick her up and nobody helped her. She had to make her own way (in pain mind you).

We specifically had reservations made understanding that they had an unattended minor service available, as this was our niece's first time traveling this way and this was an international connecting flight. We knew we would have to pay 90 Euros for the service which was not a problem. At the last minute we were refused this service because the arriving plane was 1 hour 10 minutes before the next departure and they have a minimum 1 hr 15 minutes. We were told we could always rebook. We did not need the transfer help because she is disabled and already supposedly had that service. We just wanted someone to look after her for goodness sakes!

The worst: She goes missing and nobody seems to care.

We wait, and wait, and wait, at the airport and she does not show up. 45 minutes after landing the flight crew came through and we spoke to them. Nobody had paid attention or could remember her despite the fact that notes were made to the attendants that she was on the flight. They then told us that everyone was through customs and they were the last and panicked us!

I went upstairs to let Air France know that our 14 year old niece did not arrive and we had heard nothing from her. The manager was extremely dismissal. Said that "she is probably still in customs" and then turned back to his work. I had already told him that his crew had told us that was not the case. As it turned out she was indeed stuck, with their darn own customer service as they had lost all of her luggage! Do you think he would call around and check?

Our niece is very confused when we finally find her. So I go back upstairs to what should be a fairly routine discussion about what the procedure and situation is with the luggage. Once again the manager was short and unhelpful. All I wanted to do was find out what was going on, how it would get to us, etc. But he said they "had already discussed it with our niece" (who was confused beyond reason)and was put off that we needed to discuss it further. He told me "It is not a big problem, this happens all the time!"

That was not the end of it either. Their baggage "customer service" is equally unnatentive and on the edge of rude.

My family often flies international and we have never experienced this kind of detached and unhelpful service in all of our travels. Worse even than third world airlines!

My advice, unless you have a sadistic bent STAY AWAY from this airline! Awful.

     
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User Replies:
yoke on 07/05/2008:
Why would you allow your disabled niece to fly alone?
Ben There on 07/06/2008:
Yoke - my thoughts exactly!
Ben There on 07/06/2008:
Yoke - my thoughts exactly!
justanothercustomer on 01/29/2009:
Isn't that just like the web, to make assumptions and questions without knowing the facts. Disabled can mean a lot of things. How exactly do those replies keep to the topic, which is the service if Air France?

You might prefer to find a chat board which would be a better place to make value judgements. The fact remains that Air France did not follow through on their service and that information is important to pass on.

I would be a fool to keep her from the experience. She was not permanently disabled. She had broken her leg and just got her caste off. I would not have encouraged her to visit the states if I had not been promised by air France that they were going to pick her up and take her between flights. I refuse to get into the trap that overprotective parents do and agree with her parents decision. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and we would do it again even after what happened. However we would pick another airline who will follow through with the commitment.

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Quality Of Service Of Air France Or The Lack Courtesy
Posted by on
WEST LAFAYETTE, INDIANA -- Traveling by Air France is a nightmare since all planes land in Charles De Gaulle airport which is a maze of scenic fiction proportions , with no land crew help and very poor directions written or otherwise. Coming in you still have to stagger miles, go down stairs with hand luggage , catch shuttles , trains, escalators, then do the whole thing yet again, just to arrive after you are taken by bus through meadows, hills and vales, to your aircraft which is parked right next to the one you have arrived with. If you are fortunate to see someone in uniform who should help you and ask them for information, you get the rudest way of telling you that may be you should go that way, meanwhile time is passing by and you might end up missing your connecting flight. Mind you this takes like 2 hours,and here you were thinking that may be you might have time to visit the restroom, have at least something to drink, since all water bottles and others are thrown away as soon as you hit one of the checking in points, thus you arrive panting to the aircraft, thirsty and sweating.

All this of course might sound like griping but it is not. I am diabetic and need to take medication at certain times, as soon as we boarded the plane which was idling for the longest time I asked for water to take my medication which is important as I do not want to faint or go into any kind of unfortunate situations where I might probably be kicked out of the aircraft with nary a glance, what I got was a frosty glare and " One Minute" as if I was a kid asking for candy,or something frivolous. So I had to go myself see the person in charge, explained my predicament, and got my water. I guess they are taught at to treat us passengers one and all as recalcitrant kids to be disciplined firmly.

Another thing about which I have to complain is the food, I ask for vegetarian food on long trips, well the swill I got was non edible and when I asked for at least one more piece of bread again I got the inquisition about why I needed the bread until I made it clear that the food was totally non edible so I was trying to have something to eat for a trip which was to last 8 hours, I mean come on I have paid for my ticket and that is the least they can do.As for my request that they ask the kid sitting behind me who kept on kicking my seat repeatedly for 8 hours, all I got was " madame do you not have keeeds?????" yes I do but what has that to do with my case ????

I did try to reason with the mother of said kid but I think she spoke no known language so I did try to make her understand by hand gestures to ask her kid to stop kicking and screeching at the top of his lungs, but to no avail, and when I asked the stewardess that was what I got, as though I had asked her for something unreasonable. Just a thought, a decade ago the airlines had smoking and non smoking sections, now that all flights are non smoking I would suggest they create a children, no children sections for all of us who have raised out kids, paid our dues and need to travel without going through all this every time we step on an aircraft.

This is all for now. Lesson to be learn, courtesy is not a sign a weakness nor are we paying customers supposed to be treated like cattle just because we travel coach, after all as I mentions we have paid for our tickets and this is the least we can expect.
     
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User Replies:
CrystalSword on 05/02/2008:
Guess we are fortunate, we have dogs who are better behaved than some kids!
jktshff1 on 05/02/2008:
France, the only thing they've ever done themselves is wine and the exocet missile.
DigitalCommando on 05/02/2008:
France is nothing but a nation of limp-wristed waiters who's army fires bullets made of cheese. If the entire trip was free, I wouldn't go there.
Anonymous on 05/02/2008:
How many French did it take to liberate Paris during WW2?


None, they never had to do it we did it for them.
DigitalCommando on 05/02/2008:
California wines are now beating them in almost every category. They can't even claim wine capital anymore.
jktshff1 on 05/02/2008:
seems we are all on the same page here for a change!!!LOL!
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Worse Airlines
Posted by on
ONTARIO CA -- Very Bad experience with Air France.

Suffered a lot with 1 year old daughter. All her special prescribed food was delay by 3 days.

We bought $ 2,100 each ticket to go to India for only 12 days to attend brother’s marriage and this is what we have experienced with Air France.

Experience while going to Delhi

• Left Toronto on 23rd of Dec, 2007 in flight # 353 to celebrate Christmas with family and to attend brother’s wedding on 26th of Dec.
• Connecting flight # 148 from Paris to Delhi was cancelled just 30 minutes before boarding due to short technical staff.
• All 5 checked in baggage were thrown out in some other terminal in Paris.
• After standing in line for 5 hours we were told to collect our baggage from some other terminal and go to third terminal and take a flight to London and from London to Delhi. This is the best option they had for passenger with small kid.
• Help was refused when asked Air France to move those baggages to the terminal where we had to take flight to London.
• With one year old daughter, 2 carry bags and one stroller we took 1 bus and one train to collect our 5 thrown baggages, took 1 hour to locate them on the floor.
• Took train again for other terminal with 7 baggages, one year old daughter to catch flight to London.
• After standing in line for 3 hours we were told that London airport is closed.
• Baggages were checked in for India and we waited for 3 hours for London Airport open.
• After spending 14 hours at Paris Airport with small exhausted daughter we again went to Air France counter.
• This time we were told to take indirect flight via Bombay next day. After many request we finally got direct flight next day to Delhi.
• When we arrived at Delhi 4 out of 5 checked in baggage were missing. Took 2 hour to make missing baggage report.
• Next day after many calls we were told that only one baggage has arrived and we have to come to the airport to identify that baggage. We drove 1.5 hour to the airport. This was our Christmas morning when we were at the air port.
• Day of My brother’s marriage for which we specially went, we still had 3 baggage missing. All our clothes, gifts, baby food and wife’s jewelry were in that.
• Next day we were told that they will deliver 2 more baggage to our home. 2 more baggage arrived after my brother’s marriage.
• Final baggage arrived 3 days after our flight landed.


Experience while coming back

• Flight was 2 hours delayed from India.
• Connecting Flight from Paris was also delayed.
• Arrived Toronto and one baggage out of 4 were again missing. Air France is still unable to locate that bag which has some important papers and my wife’s jewelry.

     
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User Replies:
Anonymous on 01/13/2008:
Air France has many complaints on M3C's but this is about the worst treatment I have ever read about. Supports my feelings that I really do not care much for the French. Good post and info, thanks for sharing it.
Anonymous on 01/14/2008:
Why do people continue to pack "important" papers, special food and jewelry in checked bags?
Anonymous on 01/14/2008:
That's bad enough Robf but then to fly Air France????
Ponie on 01/14/2008:
Sounds like they took half their house with them. Not a good idea. I certainly agree--important papers, special food, and jewelry, all in checked luggage. Just how much jewelry and paperwork is necessary for a trip?
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StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty Star
Employees Just Don't Care
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
MADRID SPAIN -- I booked a trip through the Air France web site for my sister-in-law, her husband, my niece and a friend traveling from Madrid to Houston, TX. Everything was fine until the morning of the first flight from Madrid to Paris. As Spanish people actually have three names, the middle and last was in their computer reversed. Their passport numbers where in their computer also and the ticket agent could see that this was them, but they wear denied boarding passes and told that if they wear allowed on board, once they reached the states, they would, meaning my in-laws, would be fined by immigration. The flight was at 7:00 am in the morning, but no one with authority would arrive until 9:00 am.

So, they missed that flight and once 9 am arrived, this minor problem was resolved in less than 5 minutes. So, they missed two days of vacation for a simple problem, plus had to pay extra to fly Sunday over a book-in agent's incompetence to use their head.
     
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Jeff on 03/03/2013:
Not sure where trm8r reads that the poster made an error. Seems like the airline made an error in their computer and caused a huge inconvenience to the inlaws. Good review!
JR in Orlando on 03/04/2013:
This just shows the importance of checking one's tickets on-line to make sure the names are correct, especially where there is a known problem of having three names, which computers are not set up to handle.

I have this problem because I am a "Jr." which necessitates making sure my ticket, my passport and my identification agree.
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