Our Flight from Austin to Jacksonville, Fl on 6/22/11 was delayed due to weather. My business colleague and I had to spend the night in Houston. All flights to Florida ended at 7 pm even though the weather had been clear for hours prior to that.
All voucher accepting hotels were full, so we had to incur $30 in cab fare, $82 in hotel and $50 in meals for 2 breakfasts and two dinners, total of $162. The next morning, our flight to Jax, Fl was delayed three times and had three gate changes. The stewardess on the flight to Jax, Fl was rude and seemed bothered by her job.
Upon arriving in Jax, Fl one of our bags was lost. The value of the bag was $5000. The baggage clerk in Jax, Fl – Denise – was rude and unsympathetic. She told us that “…It is only common sense”, (implying we had none), to make sure we label every bag we hand over to Continental Airlines. She told us that the bar codes on the bags are not scanned. We later found out that this is not true. She finally offered a strained apology after I became more upset with her lack of professionalism and downright rude behavior toward your customer. She needs to be fired immediately.
We reported the lost bag. I called baggage tracking and they also seemed equally ill informed as to how bags are identified when Continental airlines takes possession of them. I was told that bags are scanned only to “clear’ them, not to identify them. I could not get a straight answer to a most simple question of “ How do you identify your baggage?” I was then told that all bags end up in a warehouse in Houston, TX, whereby they are opened and the contents matched with my description of them. I was then informed that I have to fill out your lost baggage form, which I am doing; fax it to your system tracking center and wait. Typing this letter, filling out the form and faxing it has taken 2 hours of my time. My time is worth $42 per hour, total = $84. Added to the above total, it is now $244 lost due to the inefficiency of Continental Airlines, not counting the time lost due to an overnight stay in Houston, TX and my lost bag, worth $5000.
I need Continental Airlines to compensate me for the $244 I have lost and I need my bag returned to me within the next 45 days. I need either a voucher for the amount or a free, roundtrip ticket to the destination of my choosing that equates to the $244 I have lost. I will post this letter all over every social media outlet I can find, every blog and everyone I know if I am not compensated in some manner. The President of your airline does a little speech during pre flight, does he mean what he says or is it all smoke and mirrors and just another shallow airline scam? He will be my next point of contact if this issue is not resolved.
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Continental Airlines. Poor Customer Service
Posted by Alain on 2011-01-06
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- We were supposed to return to Pittsburgh on a round trip ticket on Jan. 2 from Newark on Continental Flight 3205 leaving 5:29 PM. We got to gate 111, C terminal early and all was well until about 5:15 when they announced a gate change to 114 where we were told our plane was coming in from Montreal. At 6:30 PM, we were told it was 15 minutes from the airport and would board shortly. At 7:00 PM we were told to go to gate 70 on another concourse were the plane would arrive and then board us. We arrived at the gate and the passengers and crew were disembarking. At 7:30 PM we were told the crew had timed out and they were getting another crew. At 7:45 PM we were told they couldn't find a crew and CO 3205 was cancelled. We were told to report to the Customer Service Desk were vouchers would be provided for lodging and food and we would be put on a morning flight for Pittsburgh. When I arrived at the desk around 8 PM and got through to the Representative I asked for vouchers for the night, what we needed to do about our luggage and tickets for the next available flight. He looked me in the eye and stated that I would not get any vouchers since it was the fault of the FAA and Air Traffic Control that our flight was cancelled. I said it was Continental's fault since they, not the FAA & Air Traffic made the schedule for their crews. He then countered that we were "Local" and therefore wouldn't get any vouchers (local meaning were beginning our flight in Newark and not part of a continuing flight). I countered that I didn't live in Newark, it was a round trip ticket, and we wanted vouchers since the other agents were giving them out to all customers from our flight (I had been checking with my fellow passengers leaving the desk prior to my turn. He called his "boss" who apparently approved our vouchers. I didn't appreciate his sullen attitude so I requested his name. He said nothing so I just waited while he worked on his computer getting our boarding passes and vouchers. Neither of us had raised our voices during this exchange. We regarded each other silently for the few minutes it took to get our paper work. A hostile, but quiet atmosphere. I would not have bothered with a complaint at all except for the poor attitude of the customer service agent. Situations like this occur in air travel these days and I, like many others, just accept it. The frowning and defiant customer service agent angered me, however. He didn't have to be friendly, but he could have been minimally civil. I've never had a big problem with Continental, but thanks to this one person I have very negative feelings about them at present. I will be contacting Continental using website feedback, a phone call and snail mail. I will be interested in their response. We may be using them again considering that all their other personnel on this day (and most other times we've flown Continental) have always been fairly pleasant. Much will depend on how they handle my complaint to them.
Resolution Update 01/29/2011: Continental's response was deemed adequate by consumer.
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Treated Poorly with a Broken Wrist
Posted by Linda on 2010-04-18
I was treated poorly with a newly broken wrist. Below is the e-mail I sent to Continental.
Flight #co59 March 27th 9:05 A.M.
Three days before my flight home I slipped and broke my wrist. My husband Rob Wilson tried to move us to first class for the trip home there was no seats available, so we asked to be seated in the front row. We were told you had to request those at the desk before we board. I get to the boarding desk and request the front row seats they tell me they were already assigned and that the flight was full. I said how could they already be assigned when you have to request them here. I was told "They were probably given to someone who Really needed them.", I said Excuse me. He then said "Well to passengers in wheelchairs or traveling with a baby." He then actually looked and said there was one seat available in the front row. I said that would not work, I was traveling with my son and I needed his assistance for my seat-belt, opening packages, etc.. I was then told "Well that was all they had.". I then asked if I could at least have extra pillows to help support my wrist which is in a cast and still swollen. I was then told I would have to stand there and wait so that I could ask a certain cabin member, so I stood there and waited. I was told they would give me an extra pillow. As we boarded the plane the flight attendant who ended up being the one who served our drinks said "Oh your the one with the broken arm I heard about you.". We took our seats and shortly after a woman that works for Continental came on and asked the woman with the baby to move to the back section of the plane. She did this so that a family of four could sit together on the front row all adults in fine physical condition. I stopped her and said I have a problem with this. She said "What you have an aisle seat what more do you want?" I said the seats in the front row are supposed to be for passengers who need the extra room (like for my son fastening and unfastening my seat-belt). She said "they are for passengers.". I then stopped another flight attendant the one we first spoke to when we checked our bags and told her what had just happened how they moved the woman with a baby to give the seats I had requested to a family who needed no assistance. She said "I will have to see what is going on" and never came back. When we got in the air Ed made an announcement and said if you have any problems or concerns to contact him so I did. The guy that came when I pushed the button I told him I had requested extra pillows for my arm (yes after they made me stand there and wait to ask they did not give me one extra pillow)and I needed to talk to Ed he brought me back a used wrinkled pillow. He told me it was ground crew who made the decision to move people and now that we were in the air they could not move people (I did not put quotations because I can not remember exactly how he said it.)I told him I asked his flight attendants while we were on the ground and that I was going to be making a complaint about this. I also told Ed about that I did not appreciate the used pillow the other attendant had brought me and he did bring me a new pillow. They also did not bring the drink cart all the way down so that they were not bumping my arm. The flight attendant that was serving our drinks was rude at first but we were not rude back and her attitude changed and she was pleasant the rest of the flight. I appreciate the little things but the seat situation and how it was handled was inexcusable. For future training with a broken wrist you can not grasp things with your fingers, you can only use one hand. I would love it if all the attendants on the flight had one hand immobilized had to fasten their seat-belt, open the packages such as pillow, headset,& food or how about a simple trip to the restroom. They need to think about that before they treat another passenger the way I was treated.
In comparison my short flight to El Paso the flight was late and it had been a very long day of traveling BUT the flight attendant made my day when she offered to fasten my seat-belt for me.
I am typing with one hand so I hope there are not too many mistakes on here.
Below is the non acceptable response I received. While reading this response note my husband is a Silver Elite member and our flight was on his account and disappeared after this flight, but we had copied our itinerary the night before the flight so I have proof of this. The family they moved people to seat were adults I took pictures because of the way I was being treated so I also have proof of this. They did not even address the issue of my broken wrist for which I have x-rays from Germany and the USA.
Dear Mrs. Wilson:
Thank you for contacting Continental Airlines.
I am sorry to learn of your disappointment with our services. The bulkhead seats are assigned by the gate agent on the day of departure to meet seating requests for customers with special needs.
If there are not passengers with special needs, our premium passengers can be assigned those seats, however, we cannot tell at this point exactly what occurred that the passenger with the baby was asked to move to another seat. Please know that flight attendants may work with passenger's request to reseat those with younger children together. Unfortunately, I cannot comment on what happened, however, I am glad to report your comments in detail to the appropriate management division so that we can revisit our procedures on seating.
Mrs. Wilson, I thank you for providing us with your feedback as it is always important and valuable for us. I do appreciate your business, and I regret any situation that leaves you disappointed in our service. We will be working hard to earn reports that are more favorable from you on your future Continental Airlines flights.
Customer Care Manager
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Rude, offensive flight attendants
Posted by Sally on 2009-09-21
On Friday, July 31, 2009, I was a passenger aboard Flight 48- ATL to EWR in seat 20-D on the aisle. I was appalled by the rude treatment I received from the two male flight attendants, one was very tall, and one was short, in comparison. At 10:39 I boarded the flight scheduled to leave at 11:14. The coach cabin was quite hot, and after finding my seat, (I had no carry on except my small handbag) I inquired of the steward (the shorter of the two), whether or not he believed we would indeed be able to take off as scheduled, whereupon he informed me in a very unpleasant tone that he had no idea, and that we sure couldnÃ¢ÂÂt take off until I took my seat, implying that my questioning him would cause a delay in the planeÃ¢ÂÂs leaving. I took my seat.
The flight was not terribly late leaving and the cabin cooled down quickly, so I was pleased and relieved. As the attendants served drinks I asked the shorter one for a can of tomato juice; when he poured a glass for me, I asked again for the whole can. Rather than saying Ã¢ÂÂSure, here you go,Ã¢ÂÂ or Ã¢ÂÂNo problemÃ¢ÂÂ he merely turned and glared at me and without a word set the can down on my tray table. Later, he came down the aisle shouting Ã¢ÂÂturkey or ham, turkey or ham, turkey or hamÃ¢ÂÂ¦.Ã¢ÂÂ like a vendor at a baseball game. I had no idea that Continental was still serving food and was surprised when another passenger told me they were handing out sandwiches. I was amazed at this manÃ¢ÂÂs utter lack of civility; he appeared to have resented having to serve the passengers anything and the whole cabin was like the proverbial Ã¢ÂÂcattle car.Ã¢ÂÂ
After the 13 year old girl in the middle seat and I had assisted the approximately six year old Asian girl in the window seat who spoke NO English with her snack and drink, we gathered up the refuse and consolidated it all on my tray for ease of collection. When the very tall steward came down the aisle to collect, it was all ready for him. Up to this time I had had absolutely no interaction this man. He said something to me that I did not understand and when I said Ã¢ÂÂwhat?Ã¢ÂÂ he shouted Ã¢ÂÂhand it to me.Ã¢ÂÂ I was amazed as it has always been my experience that attendants prefer to pick things up themselves in order to sort them. Incredulous, I shouted back, Ã¢ÂÂYou want me to hand it to you?Ã¢ÂÂ He replied in a most unpleasant manner, Ã¢ÂÂYes, you have to hand it to me.Ã¢ÂÂ Whereupon, I picked up as much of it as I could at once, and placed it firmly on top of the cart. He then said to me, Ã¢ÂÂThatÃ¢ÂÂs assault; you have assaulted me.Ã¢ÂÂ I could not believe my ears and informed him at once that I most certainly had not assaulted him. He said it again, in a threatening manner. The man obviously does not understand the meaning of the word Ã¢ÂÂassault.Ã¢ÂÂ Indeed, it would have been impossible for me to have assaulted him as I, a 65 year old woman, strapped in my seat and blocked in the seat by the service cart, had no ability to do anything but sit and be threatened by a huge (I would estimate 6Ã¢ÂÂ3Ã¢ÂÂ) and very intimidating man towering over me. The exchange ended with his threatening me that I would be Ã¢ÂÂdealt withÃ¢ÂÂ when we landed. I was terribly frightened that he might indeed have the power to have an Air Marshall detain me.
But I am not one to be intimidated for long, and as I passed him while deplaning, I informed him that I would be waiting for him at the gate and that we would get the matter settled to which he replied, Ã¢ÂÂYes, we will; see the man in the red coat.Ã¢ÂÂ I stayed in the gate area for at least five minutes, but could find no such man at the gate so I went to the adjacent help station and spoke with Ã¢ÂÂFredericoÃ¢ÂÂ explaining what had happened. Frederico went over to the gate and was gone for some time. Worried, and concerned about my husband who was waiting for me, I followed him back to the gate, where he was talking to the man in the red coat who had now appeared. They asked me the names of the flight attendants. I did not know them as they wore no name tags I could see, but I felt they would be coming off the plane soon and we could settle the matter easily as there were only two male attendants on the flight and one was short and one was very tall. That is when Frederico and the man in the red coat informed me that the flight crew had already exited the plane and left the premises. So it seems that the steward really was not worried about having been assaulted by me, but merely wanted to intimidate me and make certain that my flight was as miserable as possible. He succeeded.
Flying is difficult enough these days; it would seem to me that the very least a passenger can expect is simple courtesy. A response would be appreciated.
I got a response; a customer service person said "I am sorry for the unprofessional behavior of the flight attendants.
Not assuaged by this, I wrote again:
I would like to express to you that I thought long and hard about my original complaint, weighing the inconvenience in time and energy expended in my writing it against my indignation at the way I and others on the flight were treated. Thus, rather than just dropping it as I was inclined to do and can now see I would have been better off doing, I persevered.
I was not asking for an apology from someone who had nothing to do with the situation, but truly thought it my responsibility to let the airline know what had happened and how I (and other passengers) had been treated by its employees.
Judging from you letter, it seems to me that you do not understand the seriousness of this incident. Ã¢ÂÂDemonstrating an unprofessional demeanor,Ã¢ÂÂ as you characterized it, is hardly descriptive of the actions of the two flight attendants in question. Is it possible that you missed the part where I explained that one of the men implied that he would have me Ã¢ÂÂdealt withÃ¢ÂÂ when we arrived? I could take such a threat to mean nothing less than he would attempt to have me arrested or at least detained for questioning. That, Mr. Vaughn, was an egregious and unwarranted action on his part. He was hostile, offensive, and threatening and succeeded in causing me a great deal of anxiety. In these times of heightened security, I well known that a passenger can be removed from a flight or detained at the end of one if he is said to have been obstreperous or unruly, and judging by the manÃ¢ÂÂs basic hostility and absurd accusation that I had assaulted him, I had no doubt that he might well have accused me again whereupon the security officers would have had no choice but to detain me. I have a background in criminal law and I well known that the mere accusation of assault can, at the very least, result in detention if not criminal action. Of course I would have had no problem defending myself against such a ridiculous accusation, but the inconvenience and embarrassment of such an occurrence happening weighed heavily on me. I was in Newark to meet my husband and some friends for a long week endÃ¢ÂÂs holiday.
That I do not know the names of the men seems irrelevant to me; however as I think of it, donÃ¢ÂÂt flight personnel usually wear ID badges? The employees at the desk outside the gate were clearly identified by their nametags. But then Continental Airlines must surely know which of its employees were working Flight 48- Atlanta to Newark on July 31, 2009. If not I can give you a further description: one was white, about 5Ã¢ÂÂ 9Ã¢ÂÂ, medium build, olive complexioned, Mediterranean background with dark, straight hair, brown eyes and appearing to be about 40 to 45 years old. The other man was black, medium complexioned, very tall, I would estimate 6Ã¢ÂÂ 3Ã¢ÂÂ, athletically built, with close cropped black hair, brown eyes and I would judge in his mid to late thirties; it was he who threatened me. There was a third attendant, a woman, who was in the First Class section; I had no interaction with her.
It is all well and good for you to assure me that Ã¢ÂÂmanagement will act appropriatelyÃ¢ÂÂ and that Ã¢ÂÂnecessary corrective actionsÃ¢ÂÂ will be taken by your In Flight Management team, but it is of little comfort; indeed, it seems to me to be your way of attempting to assuage my feelings and disposing of my complaint expeditiously.
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Mistakes, Lying and Unethical Behavior of Continental Airlines
Posted by Kristi on 2009-04-07
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA -- The following occurred on my trip to Cancun and back to to San Diego. I was traveling with my boyfriend. We were supposed to leave San Diego at 6:15am on April 2nd however, due to weather conditions in Houston we were delayed. By the time we got to Houston we had missed our flight.
We were put on standby for the 2:15pm flight. It was at this time that I emailed Christopherson Travel to let them know the situation and see if they could help. I did receive a call from them once I had made it to Cancun that said that Continental was going to put my boyfriend and I on the priority list for stand by on the 2:15pm flight. This never occurred. I'm not sure who the person was that you Christopherson Travel spoke with at Continental but they did not follow through on what they told them.
My boyfriend and I were number 17 and 18 on the standby list. They called both of our names to board the flight and just as we were walking on to the plane they told us, they actually did not have two seats they only had one. My boyfriend told me to go ahead and he would do standby for the next flight so that I could make it on time to our company event. He was told at that point that he was at the top of the standby list and should be on the 3pm flight with no problem.
This is where the errors began. Continental entered into their system that my bofriend had left for Cancun and I was still in the airport. They then put my name at the bottom of the standby list. Because of this when the 3pm flight was boarding they took other standby passengers over him. They figured out their mistake on the plane manifests and told my boyfriend that if he didn't say anything about the situation they would confirm him on the 6pm flight. This was completely unethical and they said this so that no one would find out about the mistake they had made.
He finally arrived in Cancun at 9pm at night.
Then on April 5th we went to check in for our 1:30pm flight to Houston and then our connection to San Diego. At this point the person checking us in by the name of Carolina V. looked very perplexed. I asked her what the problem was and she said at first she couldn't find me on the flight but then she did and here were my tickets. I looked at my boarding passes and the one from Cancun to Houston was fine but my seat for Houston to San Diego said SBY (Standby). I asked her why I was on Standby and she said that I was going to get my seat in Houston and that I definitely had a seat.
I told her that Standby was not a seat and that my boyfriend's boarding pass had an actual seat assignment and that mine did not. She then told me that everyone who has a contract with Continental was guaranteed a seat and that I was going to be given a seat in Houston. I told her that SBY is not a confirmed seat and I felt like she was being rude to me and asked to speak with a manager. She told me there were no managers working that day. Finally I found a supervisor who was very nice and probably the most helpful out of all the Continental employees I encountered during my flights.
She explained to me that they didn't have me listed as having arrived in Cancun and that because of that my flight was canceled and she said "Yes, you are on Standby and not guaranteed a seat at all." I did let her know that the other employee had lied to me. My best guess is that she didn't want to deal with the situation and was telling me I had a seat in order to get me off her back. I think she was hoping to pass the situation off to the people in Houston to deal with. The supervisor tried to get me on another airline but everything was booked so I stayed on standby. We then called Brendan's sister who used to work for Continental and she stayed on the phone for 90 minutes to get me a seat on the flight from Houston to San Diego. She as an outside source was able to do what Continental was not willing to do for me.
We finally were on our initial descent into San Diego and one of the flight attendants walks by and I ask her if she can take my trash. She looks at me and says "I already came through with the trash bag and need to take my seat so I can't take your trash." The trash can and bags are right where the flight attendants sit, so I'm not sure what the issue was but felt that this was another negative customer service experience that occurred.
Finally we arrive in San Diego and my bag has been delayed. The person who works at the baggage claim desk told me my suitcase would be in at 9:30 and delivered around 10:30. At 10:30pm I called the baggage customer care and spoke with someone by the name of Sue. She said my bag had arrived and that it would be delivered within the next four hour window. I was up on and off waiting for my luggage until 4:30am when I called the baggage customer care again and the women that I spoke with told me that she called the delivery person and left him a message and that he would call me back. I asked the service agent if I should call back in five minutes if I don't hear from him and she said no it could take a while because he could be dropping off bags. I said that shouldn't take very long maybe a minute or two at the most.
I then told her that I had had an awful experience so far and I really needed some help getting this situation resolved. She told me at that point "It could take him a while to deliver the bags if he encounters someone like you, who isn't happy with their service." This was again another employee who was rude to me. Her name was Holly. I waited a few minutes and called back. I then spoke with someone who told me my bags wouldn't be delivered until after 8am. I asked her why I hadn't been told this information before in fact, I had been told by three separate people that my bags would be delivered last night. She had no explanation for this. I then called back at 7am and the person I spoke with someone who told me that my luggage would be delivered on the 11am delivery time and there was a 4 hour window at that point. I explained to the person that I had already been up almost all night waiting for my luggage and that I really needed them to get my luggage to me earlier than that because I had a doctor's appointment at 11:30am and couldn't miss it as I would be charged for not canceling within 24 hours. I was able to get my luggage earlier than the 11am time slot however the delivery person called me asking me to come outside and get my luggage. I went outside and he wasn't there. I called him and found out that he had the incorrect address. I gave him the correct address and received my luggage
We encountered mistake after mistake on our flights. We were also lied to and were treated poorly by several employees. I requested that they reimburse my company for the airfare and address each of these issues. As of right now nothing has been done and I am being told that most likely it won't be. This is unacceptable to me for a company to make this many errors, engage in unethical behavior, lie and treat customers poorly and still not take responsibility for their behavior.
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Their Employee's Each Have Their Own Standards And Policies
Posted by Heidi on 2008-05-14
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA -- Continental Airlines, flight 17031 LAX to Newark then to Lisbon-Portugal, on April 20th 2008. My flight was originally going to leave at 10:20am but the plane was late and since we (me, my boyfriend, and my parents) arrived three hours early, our plane was changed to the earliest flight, which leaves at 8:30 am. We intentionally came three hours earlier instead of two because we were bringing with us an Airsoft gun, its a sports gun (not a real one) which uses BBs like paintball guns use paintballs. About 3 days before, we looked online with their luggage policies and other information that can tell us about what's needed, or if it was OK to travel with a sports gun. For real guns the policies said that a hard case with locks, lock combinations known by owner, and let the airlines know you are carrying a gun to sign some papers and so forth.
Since it wasn't a real gun we got the hard case and locks so it can travel in a more appropriate manner, and save us some trouble at check in. We also called customer service to double check on our issue and they told us they don't see any policies about Airshot or BB guns, But that we should carry it in a hard case with our locks and just inform the people at check in. When we checked in our luggage we let them know about the sports gun we were taking (it looks like a real Pistol 9mm Glock 18C, gas). So they called the manager to seek his approval, and the old man helping us with our luggage told us it shouldn't be a problem since its not a REAL gun.
Once the manager laid eyes on it he quickly told us we cannot take the gun. Saying, and I quote, It doesn't matter if it doesn't work like a gun, Its not classified as a toy, It looks like a real gun, So I'm going to treat it like its a real gun. My boyfriend and I tried to explain to him that its not a real gun, and you cannot classify its a gun when it cannot use BULLETS. He insisted that the looks of the gun, made it a real gun, and then he told us we needed to get a permit from Portugal that its all right to travel with it. It made no sense to us, he wasn't making sense of himself either, we asked him How can we get a permit when its not a real gun? Theres no such thing. He was asking for something that didn't even exist. Also his request for a permit wasn't even on their website! even for international travel.
My father tried explaining too but his English is a bit troubled (he speaks Spanish) but the man was stubborn and rude to us, not wanting to hear us anymore and trying to dodge us by getting in the crowd and keeping order. Time was running out for us, while we were trying to think of anything, my mom was calling this number Specifically to Continentals head of customer service. They were telling us we should be able to travel with it, we told the Manager once more that we are allowed to travel with the gun. We even told him that the lady helping us on the phone can talk to him about, He refused to talk to anyone, he was telling us to call this other number which I'm sure would be agreeing with this man. We even saw him go on his computer, most likely looking for policies or anything to back him up in this situation. With short amount of time since our plane time changed to an earlier time, we had to focus on not missing the plane.
Our time was ruined, I was bitter and angry when I just wanted to enjoy the last few minutes we had with my parents. We had to leave them quickly, like 5 minutes, our goodbyes were short. I know its understandable that our airports are more strict from all our incidents in the past, But one thing is keeping the airlines safe, another is asking for something that cannot be done. Once our plane left, my father called their Customer Service and it was a man now. First he was saying that their shouldn't have been a problem, but then he changes his mind once he sees the Managers message about the gun looking real. So now Mr. Jeff M. is trying to cover himself, but why? was he wrong then? He shouldn't have to leave a note if their policies are what he says they are.
In all honesty I had faith and patience with this airline. But if they're going to be sneaky and just cover each others back for their own benefit, I find that untrusting and unreliable. All in all to this date my parents have investigated everything, even contacted the Portugal Embassy and they themselves told my parents that its fine to travel with the Airsoft gun because its not real and looks shouldn't have mattered. Also even if the airlines would insist on such a permit, the Embassy said theirs no such permit or document they can give us. Basically we could have travel with the fake gun, and all that trouble was for nothing. Its all a waste of stress, time, and breath. I wish I could have said goodbye to my parents with a better moment. I hope this comes to better use for all the people out there who have fun with Airsoft, and try to travel with their not so cheap equipment. The Airsoft gun cost us over $100 dollars, not including the magz.
So in all honesty if your traveling CO airlines your going at your own risk. Their Customer Service are unreliable and won't help you, their website is a joke because they brag about being the best when they're the worst and their policies/info doesn't apply to the policy of each their employees. Each of their employees have different info about the Airlines policies, that or CO thought them how to use them only when it benefits them... My parents are still trying to show the error CO and their manager [snip]. made. Hopefully a lawyer can help us, if not were not traveling with CO ever again!
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Luggage Bumped In Favor Of Stand-by Passengers
Posted by Gordon on 2008-03-04
I am a tour co-coordinator for a Canadian tour company and have been traveling by air for over 40 years. I understand in this day and age of high demand, shortage of baggage handlers and increased security that the airlines have a challenging job when it comes to handling luggage. But also, today, we have better means of communication like inexpensive toll free numbers, bar code technology, cell phones, websites and email. I can understand that luggage can be easily misplaced – it happens. What I cannot condone is the appalling lack of communication and training that seems to be the plague of the airline industry. Considering the volume of luggage that is handled by the airlines, misplacing a piece of luggage is understandable – providing no information on its whereabouts is not. I can ship a parcel by almost any carrier and track its progress daily. Airlines for some unknown reason, have not embraced this technology and they should.
On February 13th, 2008 we boarded Continental flight 288, connecting in Houston with flight 590 to Lima Peru along with our guests for this tour. We warned them in advance to ensure that medication, spare glasses and some overnight things should be carried with them on board in the unlikely event that their luggage is delayed. The connecting flight, Continental flight #590 was not full so they took on a number of standby passengers, some of whom they accommodated by moving full-fare passengers around so they could all be seated together. Once we reached Lima, Peru, we were told that some of the luggage had to be removed from the hold because of the “weight and balance” of the aircraft. I can understand this – we all wanted to land safely. What is inexcusable, however, is that the standby passengers got their luggage – a lot of luggage actually – and two members of our tour group did not.
I have been through this many times before with other airlines so we did all of the required paperwork, noted all of the contact information and left for the hotel. As we did this, however, I noted that the baggage claim desk had a clip board with several pages of information related to misplaced luggage. I inquired and they said that luggage had also been removed from three previous flights and they were just arranging for it to be forwarded. What I did not expect is that it would all be forwarded to Miami to be sorted and shipped by freight to its original destination.
Next day I attempted to contact Continental with 1-800 number that they provided for me. This was not a toll-free number from Lima, Peru so I spent a great deal of time and money – mostly on hold – to be told that they were not sure where the luggage was at that moment. I tried the Continental web site as recommended by their representative and they had the luggage registered but had no information on its whereabouts. We had expected the luggage to arrive on the next flight but were told that luggage had been removed and not added to subsequent flights to Lima.
Knowing that the Peruvians like to take the weekend off, I started to step up my inquiries making calls to the local agent and other contacts that I had at the airport. No one could tell me what was happening and even the long distance 1-800 information people had no knowledge of where the luggage was. Finally, we got word that it had been shipped to Miami and would be forwarded to Lima the next day – still no information on the web site. Remember, we left Vancouver on Wednesday, it is now Sunday, four days later, and Continental was still unsure about when it would get to the airport in Lima and the local airport didn’t have a clue either. A pallet of luggage finally arrived from Miami just before midnight on Sunday. We were leaving for Cusco, Peru at 7:00am so I had a friend hustle over to the Airport at 4:00am to pull the luggage from the pallet and get it to the hotel in time for our domestic flight to Cusco.
There are two issues here. One is that luggage was removed indiscriminately giving the impression that Continental accommodated paying standby customers at the expense of passengers that had pre-booked and paid full fare. So while the shareholders got a nice bonus this year, the paying customers had their luggage sent to Miami to be shipped five days later by freight to the original destination.
The other issue is with communication. With all the modern technology available in today’s world of electronics, Continental failed to provide information that would have given their paying customers peace of mind. Knowing exactly what was happening with their luggage would have given great comfort to those who have had it misplaced. Every day of our inquiries were met with some vague promise of delivery that afternoon or the next day. For me, as a tour co-coordinator, just having a local number to call for updates would have relieved a lot of stress. For those at Continental’s baggage information center, having information to provide for their passengers would probably have cut the number of follow-up calls in half.
From the in-flight magazine, the smiling face of “Larry”, the CEO, invites your comments and provides three lines on a post card for the detail – hardly an endorsement for any meaningful input. On their website, the Customer First document is full of platitudes like “commitment to service”, “leader in the industry” etc. and looks like it was written by an MBA right out of college. This document claims that Continental strives to return checked bags within 24 hours but neglects to mention that, for international flights, the luggage is forwarded to Miami and then on to its original destination by freight carrier, USUALLY within five day – a bit of a stretch from 24 hours. It also fails to mention that the “toll free” numbers provided are not toll free at all when calling from outside of North America and there is no warning that you could be on hold for as long as ten minutes before getting information or the lack thereof.
In the Customer First document, they talk about full disclosure. If they are serious about full disclosure, they would disclose the possibility that their paying customers could have their luggage removed to accommodate stand-by passengers who pay more than what it costs them to freight misplaced luggage all over the globe. If you examine their Contract of Carriage document, you will discover that the Customer Care toll free at 800.WE.CARE2 is toll free from North America only, presumably they are not interested in the comments of international travelers. Through this number, you will not reach anyone that is equipped to provide information regarding Continental’s policy of dealing with delayed luggage destined for international locations.
If this were an isolated case, I would not have bothered to post this information. Since this experience, however, I have talked to friends and colleagues and discovered to my surprise that other Continental passengers have experienced the same dilemma, even within the U.S.A.
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Hidden Fees and Tax
Posted by Gregory on 2009-12-16
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- This is an email to the email@example.com I wrote after spending three frustrating days trying to reserve a ticket. The letter explains my serious complaint against Continental Airlines.
To whom it may concern:
I have been attempting to book a ticket using the "Advanced Search" option. I was looking for the lowest fare so I did not need exact dates or the +/- 3 Days option, I was/am "flexible" with my dates. I have used this option many times to review prices and to actually purchase tickets. As you know, the destinations are required and then a beginning date for travel, then a choice for the total number of days desired for the trip. I did this and the familiar grid appeared with dates and fares, noting the lowest fare in green, which were December 25-31 and then again in mid-January...$470. I clicked the price and as usual it took me to a list of flight options but with a price of $710. I spent an hour or so trying to figure out if it was me, my computer, or a rogue cookie...I called customer service and she got the same results and could not explain it but said she would notify the appropriate department. I continued this for two more days, getting a mix of prices, and all considerably higher than what www.continental.com said was the "lowest available fare". Now, I just hung up with a representative in your web support department and after about twenty minutes of her getting the same bizarre results, researched the issue enough to find there is a $240 International Fuel Surcharge Fee. That "fee" is over 50% of the "lowest available fare" and is NEVER mentioned or explained on the website or during the reservation process. I fully understand and expect that the $470 does not include fees and taxes so the final fare is higher...but double your "lowest available fare"? I wasted (yes, I am at fault for being so stupid but that is another email) three days checking your website, expecting the computer glitch to be fixed or frankly, some semblance of logic for the unexplained increased fares. So, now I can use what few miles I have and pay the fees for expediting the OnePass reward ticket (that fee is posted), pay the increased fare or not make the trip. I could also try American Airlines but they do not have good connection times and they have really gone down hill the past few years...(another email). I'm writing this due to two reasons, I decided at the last minute to visit my family in OKC and the price seemed fair enough, considering my timing...and I want someone, somewhere at Continental Airlines to know how disappointed I am with the online services. It has been an extremely frustrating few days that could have been avoided if this YQ tax was noted and explained on the site. I still do not have, what I feel is a logical answer to how a tax could be so much...and a flat $240, not a percentage...and hidden from a loyal flier. Plainly put, it is deception in advertising. Okay, I feel better and now I just need the tax explained to me. I can then move forward with planning my trip.
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Worst service ever!!!
Posted by Richard on 2011-11-08
PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA -- BEWARE FLYING CONTINENTAL FROM PITTSBURGH! Yesterday I had the, without a dobut worst experience of my 20-plus career flying- not just on Continental, but on ANY airline. Upon boarding the 1st flight of the day from Pittsburgh to Houston, a verbal announcement was made (the PA system is faulty), asking if there were any more "confirmed seat holders" yet to board. I approached the check-in desk with my boarding pass and was told to board. Since the line boarding was still all the way out the jet bridge I told the Continental desk check-in person CAROLEE (Supervisor #G2530) that I was going to step across the way and quickly go to the restroom before boarding. I was told I could not and that my seat would be given away and the door closed, forfieting my being allowed to board the flight. Upon returning in less than 2 minutes, I was banished from the flight, my seat was given away and the door opened again to allow stand-by passengers to board. None of this had any bearing on the flight's departure as no baggage was involved, nor did my wishing to utilize the facilities in the airport alter the standard boarding procedure in any way.
I know this to be fact because I recently surpassed the half-million mile career mark with Continental and am currently listed as a GOLD member in their frequent flier club. Since I do fly regularly, I'm well aware of the standard practices. I was shocked at the treatment I received- to the degree several other passengers offered me their contact information in the event they may be of assistance in confirming what transpired.
Upon recovering from what happened at the boarding station, I then went back to the gate agent to see what options I would now have to endure. Both the agents working the main gate conveyed having seen similar treatment from CAROLEE previously.
The original flight was scheduled to depart at 5:50am. After not being able to board the next two flights via stand-by status (8am & 11:30am) I was finally granted a seat on a 2:30pm departing flight. The other agents expressed their sincere apologies, I was offered a meal vouchure. I actually felt bad for them to have to work under such tyrannical conditions.
Above my own concerns- I came away from it all thankful I am healthy enough to have only wished to pee before standing another 20 minutes in the jet bridge. I couldn't help think of someone less healthy that may have needed the contend with a more serious medical condition.
My advice when traveling out of Pittsburgh would to be to dehydrate yourself or better yet AVOID flying Continental.
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Bad customer service / Bad flight / Bad everything!
Posted by Katie on 2007-11-30
WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA -- I have frequently visited this page and felt the need to share my horrible experience with Continental that ended today. I am a recent college grad and moved from Cleveland to South Florida. I wanted to go home for Thanksgiving, so I bought a ticket a couple of months before Thanksgiving to avoid a high price. I have a small dog that I wanted to bring home so I called Continental to bring him as an in-cabin pet. I had purchased a travel bag for him that was the exact dimensions that Continental had on their website that pets must be in. When I called on 11/15 and they said it would be a $190 dollar charge, which was fine, they checked to see if there was room (bc only a limited number of animals can fly) and they ran my credit card over the phone. They also assigned me aisle seats on my arriving and departing flights. After they ran my credit card, they told me that pets must be under 10 lbs. Well, my dog is 13 lbs, but he fit well within the specified dimensions. There is also nothing on the website about the weight limit for pets. I asked if he would be OK to fly and they said it was up to me but there was a chance he wouldn't fly. The lady was sort of rude, but I figured whatever, her job sucks so I let it go.
I thought about it for a couple days and I decided to just board my dog instead of risking it on Continental bc if we didn't get on the flight, I was going to miss Thanksgiving with my family. So I called on 11/17 and told them that I was cancelling my pet's ticket bc I thought it was too risky and I wanted to make sure I was not preventing someone else from boarding a pet. The lady was very nice, definitely elderly, and I was happy to learn they would receive the $195, although I thought it was strange they would be mailing it to me instead of putting it back on my VISA. a few more days pass and it is Tuesday 11/20 and I leave the next day. I am packing and then I think about my reserved aisle seats and hope that I didn't lose those bc I cancelled my pet's reservation. So I call Continental and speak to this nasty woman who tells me my ticket has been cancelled and they are giving me a refund and that is all she will tell me. She is incredibly rude and talks over me when I tell her that I never cancelled my ticket. All she offers to do for me is to rebook my ticket. I keep saying "No, I don't need my ticket rebooked.
I need my cancelled ticket to be reinstated". There is no way I was going to pay for another ticket two days before Thanksgiving. I ask for her manager, she puts me on hold for 15 minutes and hangs up on me. I call back and get a polite man, who tells me that he sees that I had only cancelled my pet's reservation but for some reason, my entire reservation has been cancelled. He puts me on hold to see if he can get me reinstated. After almost half an hour, he tells me the good news that my ticket has been reinstated and the $195 would be going back on my VISA. I was so happy bc I really thought I was going to get screwed by Continental. Fast forward to my flight, I of course get a middle seat bc that is all that was left when my ticket got reinstated, but I can deal. On the way back to FLorida, I sit in a two seat section and the seat next to me is empty.
This is perfect because I am exhausted. Right before takeoff, a flight attendant tells me that someone's seat is broken and she will need to sit a gentlemen in the seat next to me. I prefer aisle so I get up to let the person in and it is seriously a 400 pound man. I give the attendant a dirty look but I don't want to look like a jerk so I let the guy in. HE can't fit the divider down and he is halfway in my seat. I try to sit down, but the only way I can sit down is if I am fully turned in the aisle and even then I can feel his fat against my back. It was so uncomfortable and the attendants kept banging the drink cart in to me, but I seriously could not move in. Too make it worse, he was sweating and had body odor. I finally land and figure I will just sleep everything off. SO I wait almost two weeks for my refund (I was told I would have it in 3-7 days). I call today to see where it is. The main reservation line says that they will have to transfer me to the refund department.
The first lady says she shows it was refunded already and to call my credit card company. I say no, and she abruptly puts me on hold and then hangs up on me. I call the reservation line again to be transferred (bc I didn't write the refund line # down) and the girl tells me she cannot transfer me bc it is an 800 number and acts like a snot when I tell her I was just transferred. at this point, I am sick of these stupid Continental games so I tell her she's a moron and that it sucks to have her job, and hang up. not very mature, I know. I call the reservation line again and am transferred again to a polite girl who sees that there is a refund request in the system as of 11/17, it has just not been processed.
Of course not, why would it be? She says she will make sure it is processed today so we will see if I get it back on my visa in the next couple of weeks. But I will definitely never fly continental again after that headache.