I hope you had an enjoyable holiday and all the best to you for 2010. Unfortunately my wife and I had our worst flight experience with Delta airlines on our recent holiday trip to Barbados. We purchased a flight online on June 12th 2009 for our trip to Barbados with Delta confirmation # **. The first leg of the flight was flight #1297 departing JFK, New York for Atlanta at 6:00am. We were then supposed to connect with Delta flight # 659 departing Atlanta for Barbados at 9:40am.
We arrived at the Delta counter at JFK around 3:45am and after checking in our luggage with our customer service agent we were told to proceed through TSA security and to the Delta gate where our seats would be assigned. Upon arrival at the Delta gate we were then told that the flight had in fact been severely overbooked and that were no longer any assigned seats.
After about a frustrating hour and a half of limited communication from the Delta service manager at the gate a large group of about thirty passengers including my wife and I were all informed that we would not be seated on flight #1297 from JFK to Atlanta. For us this was very frustrating as we had bought our tickets six months in advance and had tried unsuccessfully to confirm our seats over the last few months with your customer service agents. We had been told that our seats would be assigned at check-in at the JFK airport on Dec 23rd.
Close to 7:00am on Dec 23rd we were finally told by one of your customer service agents at the JFK counter that we would be refunded for the portion of our flight down to Barbados as our delay to Barbados was greater than the acceptable time frame stipulated by airline rules. We would however be on our own to find an alternative carrier to Barbados. We were also told that our flight back up from Barbados would however remain intact with Delta. This was a most startling proposal as it was two days before Christmas and we were basically left to find a flight down to Barbados which is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Caribbean.
After several frantic calls to numerous of your competitor airlines we were able to miraculously find the last two seats on a JetBlue flight #871 down to Barbados leaving that same morning at 8:30am. The two last minute JetBlue flight basically cost the same as the one-way ticket refund that we received from Delta for the cancellation of our seats to Barbados.
We informed your Delta customer service agent at the JFK gate that we would be taking the 8:30am JetBlue flight. He informed us that Delta would still take our checked-in luggage down to Barbados on their flight # 1297 as that flight was taking off. We were told by your customer service agent that we would be able to collect our luggage upon our arrival in Barbados on the JetBlue flight that was scheduled to arrive later that same day.
We arrived in Barbados later that same day on JetBlue. Unfortunately our luggage didn't arrive on the Delta flight as promised from earlier that morning. When we asked the Delta agent in Barbados about our luggage they informed us that we had to talk to JetBlue about our missing luggage even though Delta indicated they would deliver our luggage to Barbados. Of course the JetBlue agent could not understand the rational why they would be responsible for luggage we never checked in with their airline and which Delta had indicated was on a flight connecting out of JFK, New York through Atlanta to Barbados.
At this point we were now stuck in Barbados with no luggage and limited effective assistance from the local Delta customer service representative. Later on that night (December 23rd) I sent Delta Online Support an email message indicating that our four pieces of luggage had been lost. I got an email response that same night indicating that we could expect a response in three to four days!!!
The next morning December 24th I called Delta's 800-number and I was told that our bags were left in Atlanta and that they would be forwarded down to Barbados via Puerto Rico around 11:30pm on an American Airlines flight. I called later that same day to confirm our luggage had made the flight going through Puerto Rico and I was told by ** one of your customer service agents that our luggage was now being sent back to JFK, New York instead as Delta had no evidence that we had indeed arrived in Barbados. I explained to ** that I was indeed ** and that I was currently stranded in Barbados without any clothing and toiletries.
** indicated we would now receive our luggage upon our return to New York from vacation in Barbados. In addition she also indicated that we would not get any reimbursement to purchase emergency clothing nor toiletries while stranded in Barbados. I think our call with ** was recorded so you can verify this exasperating conversation with your customer service agent who obviously didn't grasp the concept of customer service.
On Dec 24th we spent about $450 on emergency clothing and toiletries as the local Barbadians had explained to us that the island celebrates Boxing Day on Dec 26th. Most stores in Barbados would therefore be closed for an extended weekend from the Thursday (Christmas Day) until the following Monday!!!
On Friday December 26th we finally got a surprise call from Delta that our luggage had arrived in Barbados. At that point we had not only spent several hundred dollars on emergency clothing and toiletries but we had also incurred a large international telephone call bill trying in vain to resolve and track our luggage with your customer service agents back in the USA.
The trip got worst on our way back. There was there a one hour departure delay on our connecting Delta flight #488 out of Port-of-Spain in Trinidad to JFK, New York on Jan 2nd. In addition when our luggage arrived at JFK, New York two pieces of our luggage were badly damaged. On December 3rd I filed two damaged luggage claims # ** and # **. Upon filing these two claims I was told I now have to find a FedEx office to ship the damaged luggage back to your facility in Carrollton in Texas. This is just another inconvenience for us relating to this already horrible trip experience with your airline.
I apologize for the length of this letter but I think you can sense we are highly annoyed with this extremely poor level of service that we received from Delta. I did a quick scan of the internet tonight to determine whether they were any online websites we could also post a copy of this letter on so that we could expose a wider swath of your current and potential customers to our recent trip experience. We found the following websites: **.
Upon browsing these websites it appears this poor level of customer service has also been experienced by several other customers of your airline. I'll spend some time over the upcoming weekend to make sure I post this letter on these online websites and with the relevant identifying personal information redacted.
Delta has been a disappointing service provider for this recent trip. You are very aware that word of mouth is vital to companies such as yours operating in an industry that is very competitive. My wife and I will also make sure that we share this Delta flight experience with as many friends, family and colleagues that we come across over the upcoming months.
At this point we are merely asking for some compensation to recoup the money we spent on emergency clothing and toiletries in Barbados and to recover the cost of the lengthy international telephone calls we made to Delta's customer service bureau in the USA from Barbados as we tracked our missing luggage. I think you'll agree that some reimbursement would be a small gesture of goodwill as your airline almost ruined our fond memories of Barbados. If you have any additional questions I can be reached at **.
I'm writing due to a terrible experience I had with Delta flying from JFK to Buffalo. I had a 10pm flight on a Sunday night. The flight kept being delayed until about 12 or 12:15am, each time Delta announcing it due to a reason such as the incoming flight was waiting for traffic so that it could pull up. Then they had to unboard that flight, etc.
At about 12:15am they canceled the flight due a missing flight attendant. They didn't realize they were missing someone two hours ago when we were supposed to leave? While I do understand things happen, I don't understand why there was no one there as backup or why the flight wasn't cancelled sooner rather than delayed for two hours only to cancel it anyway. If it had been cancelled sooner, there was a flight to Rochester I would have tried to go on earlier that night.
Once the flight was cancelled and we were told to go to the counter to rebook a flight, I was told by the person assisting me that the soonest direct flight wasn't until two days later, and the soonest flight at all would not get me in until 3pm the next day. This was not even an option for me because Monday was my first day of Dental school in Buffalo, which started at 8:30am.
He told me that Jetblue did have a flight to Buffalo that would get in at 8am, but if I wanted I could take what Delta had until I knew if the seat with Jetblue was available. He told me that all I would have to do to be refunded was call Delta and I would be reimbursed for my ticket if I chose to fly with Jetblue instead.
I ended up booking the morning flight with Jetblue even though it costed me close to $200 so I could get to school on time. I went to my first day of class on less than two hours of sleep since Delta cancelled the flight so late and then the hotel they set me up in for the night (which didn't even have hot water) took over an hour to get to by the shuttle system. I had to be back to the airport around 4am told fly home. When I called Delta to cancel and confirm that I would be reimbursed, the woman I spoke with said no. I did not have time to speak with her at the time, so I called back a couple of days later to inquire as to how to get reimbursed.
I was told that they could not reimburse me by phone because the airport issued me a paper ticket rather than an e-ticket so I would have to go to the airport to reimbursed. I asked to speak with a supervisor and when I was finally put on the phone with her, she told me the same thing, saying I could either mail my tickets in or bring them to the airport to be reimbursed. She seemed to think that going in was the better option and I did too, being I didn't trust Delta to get my refund to me.
A few days later, I drove a half-hour to the Buffalo-Niagara Airport with my ticket as instructed to request my refund. When I approached the person at the ticket booth for Delta, he looked completely confused about how to issue me a refund and called Delta for support. After waiting for about 45 minutes with the person at the desk, he finally tells me that he can't issue me a refund there and would have to mail my ticket to Atlanta for the request. He said if I didn't hear anything about my refund in two weeks to give Delta a call. There was some sort of conflict because I had bought the ticket over Expedia and flown United Airlines to JFK, so I only needed to be reimbursed for the return portion of the flight.
However, the supervisor I had spoken with was completely aware of that situation and if that was in issue with me not being reimbursed at the airport, she should have never told me to waste my time going there! I don't understand why there is such a lack of communication that I would have a supervisor direct me to go to the airport and waste two hours of my time, only for nothing to be resolved.
In addition, the service I received from the Delta representative at the airport was completely unprofessional. While he was on hold with someone trying to figure out how to reimburse me, and wanted to speak with one of his coworkers about an unrelated manner and asked me to hold the phone for him so he could go in the back. This is no way to act with a customer.
A few days later, I called Delta to complain about everything I've gone through and was told I had to email Delta and attach a copy of my Jetblue ticket. When I went to the website to do so, I saw there was nowhere I could attach anything so I called back. A different representative then told me I could not put on an attachment despite the previous representative telling me to do so, and that she thought I was wasting my time because she said she doubted Delta would reimburse me. She offered me a $100 voucher towards a future flight. I took it for the time being but they can have it back. I do not want a voucher for Delta because I never plan to fly Delta again!
I called the refunds department 2 weeks after I went in to the airport to find out the status of my refund. A rude woman told me it takes 7-10 business days to receive it. Apparently she couldn't count because it had been 11 business days. I figured I'd give it a couple more days though just in case. I called back a week later and there was nothing known about my refund still. Basically they lost my refund request. She told me I shouldn't have brought it to the airport because they have so much traffic going through there and it's more likely to be lost. Well if I hadn't been instructed by a supervisor to do so I wouldn't have!
Since then, I've been told to fax in my refund receipts I got from the airport. I also called because I didn't want someone telling me again that it was lost. They have told me it will be another 7-10 business days before I am refunded. This is just absurd. They're pretty much holding my money hostage that isn't even theirs because they never provided the service they were supposed to have provided. It should not take this much time and effort to get refunded!
Because of this cancellation, I wasted a lot of time and money trying to resolve the situation. The only compensation I received for this inconvenience was a night at a hotel that didn't even have hot water, and a voucher for a meal that I couldn't use because I flew out of the Jetblue terminal. In order to get home by the time I needed to be there, I had to pay $185 out of pocket to fly Jetblue as well an extra day of parking at the Buffalo airport. Then there were also the hours on the phone and at the terminal.
As a student in a doctoral program, time is very precious to me right now, and I don't have time to waste. After all the hassle they've put me through, I'm trying to get back both my refund as well as reimbursement for my ticket with Jetblue and extra day of parking. I wrote an email to Delta five days ago and still have not gotten a response, as well as filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. I will NEVER fly Delta again. They take your money and put you through hell trying to get it back.
BUFFALO, NEW YORK -- On 12/25/08 I was given a buddy pass by a friend to go to Buffalo, NY and surprise my ten year old son for Christmas, who is currently living with his father. Getting there was not bad at all. I arrived a little late, but everything was fine. Now I have traveled with Delta airline plenty of times and preferred Delta over the rest. This was the first and last time flying with a buddy pass.
Now I am aware of the procedure when using a buddy pass. If the flight is full, you would have to wait on the next. Fine, no problem! My flight to come home was a deal breaker. I understood during the Holiday season that it was possible that I would not be able to make it home in a timely manner.
As I set and waited for the first flight at four in the morning from Buffalo NY to Atlanta GA, I watched as the ticket guy ** got into a heated argument with an older guy. Not sure what was said but you could see that the words back and forth were not friendly. After a while I decided to go up to the counter and ask ** if he had an idea if I would be able to make this flight or not. He replied " You will know if I call your name!" Not once looking up at me. I thought that was rude but hey it was the holidays and everything was hectic. So I went back to my seat and waited.
After everyone had boarded the plane ** gave me a seat 7a and closed the door. Now the plane was due to take off at 6:30am. He handed me my seat at 6:27am. I walked down the ramp and was seated in 8f because someone was already sitting in 7a, and the stewardess advised me to sit anywhere a seat was available.
After five minutes of being seated a stewardess came back and asked who was supposed to be seated in 7a. I told her that I was. She asked if I had a "Rep pass?" Not knowing what that was I told her that I didn't know. She turned around and walked away...6:35am now! Next thing you know ** is walking down the aisle. He stopped and looked at me and said "You need to get up right now!"
I said "Why you just gave me this seat"? He said very nasty "It doesn't matter you need to get up and get off the plane now!" Now everyone on the plane is looking at me like I was some kind of terrorist. I was really embarrassed. Without another word I got up and exited the plane. I walked threw the tunnel and waited at the counter.
A couple of seconds later ** exited the tunnel. Not knowing exactly what had just happened I questioned him. I said "What happened why was I kicked off and you gave me that seat?" He stated in a disrespectful tone "Go and sit down and I will be with you later!" I said "You don't have to be nasty you gave me that seat!" He stated "First of all that wasn't your seat, that seat belonged to a paying customer!" Again everyone seated waiting for the next flight was listening to what was going on.
I said "I understand that but you acted as if I forced myself onto the plane, when you are the one who gave me a seat, I just want to know what going on!" He said really loud "You never had a seat that was the other ladies seat. She is a paying customer and you are basically trying to fly for free, so you don't have a seat!" I said "It doesn't matter if I'm a paying customer or not you don't have to speak to me that way." He then said " If you're going to sit there and argue with me you won't be flying at all!" At that point I decided not to continue going back and forth with him. It was either that or to go to jail in Buffalo and be stuck there for a while.
After contacting my fiance to let him know what had just happened as I cried my eyes out from the embarrassment, he advise me to get the guys name and his supervisors name and number. I walked over and asked him for his name he refused to give me his last name and told me his supervisors name was **. He advised me that ** was downstairs back out at the counter pass security. Without another word I walked downstairs and met **.
** was very busy with a line that you wouldn't believe. I waited or him to get a quick moment. While I waited I heard ** calling back up stairs to ** and was very upset with him for sending customers back to him to reschedule their missed flights. I watched as they argued back and forth. Soon ** got the opportunity to talk to me. I explained the situation to him. I was informed that ** had made a mistake.
Once a paying customer seat was giving away to a standby the paying customer had missed their flight and needed to rescheduled. So those customers he let on the plane after me was not supposed to board the plane. The fact that I was flying with a buddy pass was no ones business. He violated the confidentiality policy of Delta Airlines by shouting out this information. What was really odd was ** response. He said that that's the way ** was and that he gets complaints a lot about his customer service skills.
Now if that is the case, why is ** still employed with Delta? I think that ** should be fired and should not work in customer service anywhere. I was given another stand by ticket and was sent back up to where ** was. As I approached a seat and I heard ** telling another ticket person about our argument and how he started to tell me off. I think again that his actions were completely unprofessional and I will see to it that he never does this to a customer again. Paying or not! No one deserved to be treated like this.
After spending a total of 15 hours in the airport on 12/30/2008 after the last plane left without me. I called my girlfriend to pick me up and I went back to her house, got on-line and bought a one way ticket home to Texas. Of course I didn't purchase the ticket threw Delta. I flew Air Tran, and they have just gained a new customer. I see why they were voted #1 in customer service. They were very pleasant!
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- We took a trip to Cancun. We flew from Louisville to Cincy then to Cancun no problem.. on the flights back we flew Cancun to Atlanta and Atlanta to Louisville. At Atlanta (there were six of us on this trip-3 couples) everyone checked their bags at customs no problem. One of the girls that I was with had to tell the people who checked our bags to put her luggage on the belt 3 times!! When he finally did he laughed and heaved her bag 2 feet in the air!
Once we got to Louisville we waited and waited for her bag to come through and it never did- we heard a man say that all the bags that were coming were already here... It was about 1130 and night and she was furious! We went to the desk and she didn't even have to tell them her name - they KNEW who she was because they had already checked the name of the luggage they had with them... when they said her name they brought her a piece of luggage that RESEMBLED hers but was completely demolished... I mean- metal reinforcements sticking out of the luggage, clothes hanging out, flip flops missing, pockets completely dangling from the bag.
The only thing that kept her bag together was a Rainbow strap to help her identify her bag on the belt. She bought a Chi straightener for like $100... crushed... mangled... She bought 2 new bikinis from Victoria's Secret (you KNOW how much they were...) her fave had the strap completely removed from the part that goes over the breast and the underwire was showing... I mean... the luggage was half the size as it was when she checked it in... We have pictures... tons of them.
All Delta could say was, "Sorry... you can list 8 things that were in the bag and we'll have your money to you within 7-8 day." They did bring her a Swiss Army piece of luggage which was pretty nice... but she had nearly $1200 worth of work clothes, jewelry and shoes in there... It's only been a couple of days so we don't know how its going to turn out... Louisville Airport kept saying they received the luggage like that - they didn't do it, that's how it came to them. The luggage literally looked like it had been run over and dragged down the runway. BUT BEWARE!!! THIS COULD HAVE BEEN YOU!!!
ATLANTA GEOTGIA -- The following letter that I sent, complaining to Delta, will explain our problem: Please pardon my having to contact you directly, but no one else at Delta (at least so far) has gotten back to my issue. We have a young Scottish boy who is the Delta ticket holder, ticket # **) who came to visit our church (he's 19 years old and will soon be the new choir director at our church ) and when he came into the U.S., the Immigration Dept. only allowed him 30 days to visit, and yet his pre-paid return ticket was for 90 days later. This naturally necessitated his having to change his ticket.
The travel agent in London changed his departure date and charged him $561.00 which obviously being young he simply didn't have this extra money, so I got the money together for him, and subsequently when the time for his departure came, we took him to the Knoxville, TN airport. He arrived at the air port at 4:20 on 3/24/2014 and went to check in. While he was in-line at 4:300, someone of your staff came to him and said that he would have to take another flight as that one was leaving early.
We later found out that what they had really done was to insinuate that he had something that they would only call “questionable in his pocket without saying exactly what it was that he had in his pocket (I would respectfully remind you: WITHOUT STATING EXACTLY WHAT IT WAS THAT HE WAS ALLEGED TO HAVE IN HIS POCKET). Of course, it turned out to only be some American coins that he had forgotten were in his pocket.
If you yourself were to see this fine young man then you would know (common sense would tell you) that this is not the sort of person who would intentionally carry something “questionable” on a plane. It is obvious to anyone who should meet ** that he is a very clean-cut, honorable young lad.
So being the very polite and humble young man that he is, he simply "Thanked" them, thinking that they would put him on a later flight (remember, he was told nothing except that he would have to take a later flight). He then called me when I was in-route to my home in Knoxville, TN, and he told me what happened.
Now, today when we contacted the travel agent in London to book his alternative flight they tell the poor boy (I mean "poor" literally as in orphan) that he may have to pay for a new ticket. I called the British Embassy and told them what happened, and they suggested that I contact you folks directly, for as of 3/26/2014 his thirty day stay approval by customs is cancelled, and he will be in violation of U.S. law. I hope you folks still have a heart and can do something to help this young man get home, after all he not only bought a ticket but paid an $561.00 extension as well. He simply has no money with which to purchase another expensive ticket.
Anyway, it was very arbitrary and clearly unfair in the way that your personnel handled this matter at the airport. I mean, if he truly had something “questionable” in his pocket, then why it was not specified in order to be documented as to exactly what it was that he had. They simply told the travel agent that it was “questionable,” whatever that might mean. If he did indeed have some thing “questionable” then why was he not arrested and detained.
I should think something really “questionable” would be important enough especially if you are going to take some one's money for a ticket then deny him the right to that ticket that you would have to document for legal purposes exactly what it was that he had that should cause you to deny his constitutional rights. I think any reasonable person would agree with this as being truly a mistake on Delta's part.
The way to correct that mistake and end this matter is to give him the ticket which he has legally paid for. I hope that you who are reading this email can see the mistake that has been made here and will rectify the situation without delay. Again, this matter has forced him to violate U.S. Immigration law. Please, he needs his ticket immediately so that he can get back home to Scotland.
Also, Delta has sent his bags, which were already loaded, to Detroit. I just hope Delta will do the tight thing here so that this matter can be resolved and this fine young minister can get home, as well as preventing us from pursuing other, more constitutionally legal courses of action. Thank you.
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- This complaint was met with the typical Bureaucratic talk around and no reconciliation whatsoever despite several emails back and forth with Delta's customer service department. I was basically told that they have the right to not allow anyone from boarding their planes for any reason. That is pretty sad after having to pay thousands of dollars for their services and then be denied access for the services you paid for because one of their employees has a problem with you.
My flight experience from AUH to PIT on 25 July 2013. First of all, I was not able to obtain a boarding pass for my Paris to PIT flight even my bags were checked all the way from AUH to PIT. This was a huge inconvenience, but not the reason for my complaint. After departing AUH and my layover in AMS I arrived to Paris and after walking around the airport terminals for a while I finally found the proper check in counter for my flight to PIT.
The First Delta Representative I encountered was extremely rude. I had just completed about 15 hours of travel and on my 2nd layover and was very tired. I told him that finding the right ticket counter had been very difficult; he replied that it wasn't his problem. This upset me as I imagine it would anyone under normal circumstances, let alone after traveling for so long and not having enough sleep.
After his rude and discourteous response, I proceeded to the counter to complete my check in so I could get my boarding pass and complete my long journey home. When the boarding pass was being handed to me, a Delta supervisor came over and said I had not completed the security screening and needed to go back in the check in line. I asked him if he could just complete the security questions there as I had already finish checking in and was about to receive me boarding pass. I also told him about the rude Delta Rep I had encountered and the fact he did not ask me any questions and allowed me to walk on to the counter.
He argued with me and made me go back to the line. I went back and they asked me if I had packed my own bags, etc (This was quite pointless as I had already checked my bags in AUH all the way to PIT and only had my carry on with me at the time). The supervisor and Delta Rep also kept asking me about my association with the US Military and information pertaining to my job. I answered the questions regarding security but not about my association with the US military or my job as these should not have any bearing for me to fly.
After the questioning I was then escorted back to the counter to get my boarding pass which now bore the dreaded SSSS on it. They had labeled me as a security risk and I was treated as a criminal/terrorist the rest of the time I was in France. They kept asking if I was US military and what my job was at each point I was stopped to be checked. I felt like I was being targeted because of my association with the US military.
They also searched my carry on and frisked me at every possible point on the way to the plane. I was journeying home for my sons 2nd birthday party and to attend a family Reunion that weekend as I work overseas in support of the military. I subsequently missed my sons birthday party as I was denied boarding on my scheduled flight even after being thoroughly searched as the Captain had been told I was a security risk and told them not to let me board the plane.
They waited till the plane was boarding to deny me access and embarrassed me in front of the other passengers. After the flight departed I was told I had to pay an additional $1666.13 USD in order to fly on the next days flight and if I didn't pay they would cancel my returning flights as well. I also had to purchase a hotel room for the night.
This is outrageous. Then upon finally arriving to PIT, after my sons birthday party, my checked baggage just happened to get 'lost'. It was lost until the day I left PIT and continued on my journey to Indonesia, the Philippines and then back to Abu Dhabi. It was obvious that after my experience with the Delta Reps in Paris that my luggage was lost in spite. It's too much of a coincidence to have not been on purpose. I have been traveling for years. I have visited over 50 countries and flown several airlines and this is by far the worst experience I have ever encountered.
I know that I will be made out to be the bad guy from the workers there in Paris as I was alone and have no witnesses on my behalf, but I know I was treated incredibly unfairly and targeted because of my association with the US military. I was subject to less than hospitable treatment and suffered undue stress as well as undue expenses. Most importantly I missed out on a day with my family and my son's 2nd birthday party. I only get to see my family once every 6 months for a couple of weeks and each day is very precious.
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- So, Delta Airlines… in an email, you've asked me for my thoughts about my recent travel experience with you. Here they are… I spent more than $8,000 in airfare for travel to Spain for 4 people beginning August 4, 2012. We paid an additional $1,800 in extra baggage fees, EACH WAY for our video & photo equipment. Not only were we bumped from this flight, but two pieces of luggage did not arrive in OKC when we finally got there. The four of us missed international connections due to Delta flight delays. Our outbound trip that was supposed to take 16 hours turned into 28 hours of travel.
We had our return flight reservations cancelled by Delta because we missed our flight due to a late Air France connection -- again caused by Delta's late arrival time. I spent $100+ dollars in international rate phone calls trying to get my Delta flights re-booked -- with 90% of the time waiting on hold. I was compelled to expend an additional $650 in train travel expenses in order to make a business appointment when Delta would not provide alternate flight arrangements with other airlines.
When I most needed someone who would give a damn, all you gave me was on-hold music and "I'm sorry, we can't do that..." It's not right to treat consumers this way. Yet you do it daily to hundreds, if not thousands of travelers. The unspoken brand message I received from Delta during this ordeal was "** you; we don't care."
I have traveled by air for more than 40 years. I'm old enough to remember (before deregulation) when flying was a great way to travel. This is by far the worst experience and poorest service I have ever experienced from ANY company. I plan to devote much time and effort toward communicating via Facebook, Internet travel sites, forums and other mass media about the horrible experience I had with Delta Airlines and Expedia.
I am a 30-year veteran of advertising agencies, so I know a few things about getting the word out. I will do my best to see that Delta Airlines loses much more than my $8,000 and future business. Tarnishing your brand will become my new hobby.
In summary, Delta Airlines... ** YOU. ** your bean-counting, cost-cutting CPAs, consumer-screwing middle managers, senior management and shareholders who perpetuate this lousy consumer treatment. ** your advertising agency for lying to consumers about your company. And ** you lame-ass consumer research twits for asking my opinion of your ** company. Perhaps you now have better insight into my thoughts about my experience with Delta Airlines.
Delta's criminal behavior. My 15 year old daughter (minor flying by her self) in potential danger. I bought non stop flight tickets for my daughter, paid more, to make sure she will have no extra trouble. Her trip was stressful enough: Dallas to NY JFK; NY JFK to Moscow Russia, then on the way back Moscow to NY JFK; NY JFK to Dallas. My daughter very bright person, she had flown before, so I decide to let her navigate between her gates and flights by her self.
On the way to Russia her flight from Dallas was late, so she missed her connection and Delta had rescheduled her for another flight that leaves 3 hours later and runs by Russian Airline. So my daughter had to run from her gate she arrived from Dallas to the gate of her original flight to Russia and Delta representatives closed door right in front of her face, stating she is 2 min. late. Then they sent her to her previous gate, to change her flight, then she had to stay in line to change her ticket, so Delta booked her on Aeroflot (Russian airline) flight.
By the time they gave her new flight information, she had only 1 hour to run to new gate and get checked in. That was her trip to Russia. I thought it was bad, but I was wrong!!! On the way back, Delta canceled her connection flight to Dallas and re-booked her on flight with 2 connections (NY, Wash, Atlanta, Dallas) and they changed date for next evening. My daughter outside of the security (because she had to clear custom) with all her luggage, even bag that was checked in in JFK Airport by her self for another 26 hours, after flying form Russia (flight 10 hours).
I made 7 calls to Delta, had to wait for at list 25 minutes. Delta told me they booked my daughter to American Airline, they gave me confirmation number and also they said: Tell your daughter to go to AA and give them confirmation code. When my daughter with all those bags got there AA representative told her, Delta never booked her on this flight and now they don't have available seats. My daughter was running around asking for help, but Delta representatives at the airport, was ignoring her, when I asked her to give them her cell phone, so I can explain the situation, they refused to talk to me.
It took me 7 hours to try to get her on any flight to Dallas, but it wasn't successful. Finely they got her on flight to JFK to LA to Dallas ha-ha-ha!!!! But it made me feel little better, at list she is not on a street in strange town. Now she is on the way to LA and her flight is running late, so I am worry she is not going to make her connection to Dallas, but at list her baggage checked in and hopefully it will make easier to run between gates in LA.
It would be funny story, if it wouldn't be so sad. Why did I pay more for non stop flight from NY to Dallas? Why no one is responsible for this situation? Why my daughter have to spend night on a street in NY or fly all over the country to get home? Delta you are bunch of criminals!!!
One can understand that it sometimes can be difficult to get a seat on a plane, more so during peak travelling times, flying on a Delta Buddy Pass, on a standby basis. That being said and done, our first attempt to get on our Delta flight (Flight DL201) from Johannesburg back to Atlanta was on December 10, 2010.
Needless to say, after having checked in at 15H45, as was required, we were told to return to the particular check-in counter at 19H00. That we did, and stood around until 20H20, when the flight departed. At no stage were we advised that no seats were available.. The people working for Delta at the check-in counters simply closed up their workstations, and disappeared. No word of what the situation entailed i.e. no seats available, the plane has departed, or to come back and try again the following night! Nada, Zilch!
The above events were repeated for the following 6 nights, no seats, no explanation, nothing.. That was when I felt I had come to the point that I felt I was owed an explanation by the people in the Delta Ticketing booth. At all times I remained polite (in fact, my wife who is a multi-media producer, has all on video), and during my conversation with the staff in the ticketing booth, it became clear that they did not work for Delta Airlines, they were merely subcontracted by Delta, and in fact worked for a company called Swissport.
That was when I demanded to speak to their supervisor if they had such a person - and it then transpired that Delta had in fact only one employee / manager, a person with the name of **. I demanded to speak to him, but was advised that he had already left and gone home. I demanded that they call him at home, which they did.
** the manager of Delta Airlines at OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg, was not at all interested in my questions, particularly when I asked him about another standby couple who had offered their seats to myself and my wife, when they learnt that we had been stuck for more than a week, not being able to get on a Delta flight and when I pointed out to him that there were in fact 22 seats available on the plane, he simply said that Delta's first priority was to load extra cargo, instead of standby passengers (Non-Revenue Passengers, as standby passengers are known to Delta) as that was financially the most logical thing for Delta to do.
He then simply hung up the phone on me the last thing one would expect from a Delta employee, but then, alas, perhaps understandable in the Africa context where very little accountability can be expected! About 5 minutes later, three different couples who were also on buddy-passes and on the same priority rating, offered their seats to us, as that was their first attempt, and they by then knew that we were now trying for 6 nights to get on the plane! The check-in people simply refused to allocate that particular couple's tickets to us, or to any other of the other standby passengers for that matter!
One particular couple - who were then indeed allocated two seats - were so annoyed that Delta would not pass on their seats to long waiting standby passengers, that they then simply refused to get on the plane, and cancelled their boarding passes.. Regardless of that, Delta would not issue those particular seats to ANY of the waiting standby passengers!!!
That being said and done, we simply went back to the ticketing office, to have us again placed on the standby waiting list for the following night. That was the night of 18 December. Every night the same thing happened. Some passengers did a trip to South Africa for 10 days, only to be stuck at O. R. Tambo for the same number of days! (Personally, we have been trying to get on the Delta flight for 14 days now!) This all is nothing but a clear example of an abuse of power! But then also the total breakdown in security!
One particular passenger who lucked out and was given a boarding pass, called us again when we had returned to the hotel, after another unsuccessful attempt to get on the flight! She had cleared customs, was cleared by security personnel, and got on the plane, only to find that someone was sitting in her allocated seat! She called a flight attendant, and it then became clear that the boarding pass given to her at check-in was in the name of another person, and not in her name! Needless to say, she was then again promptly escorted off the plane, and nobody was held accountable or even questioned about the breakdown in security!!!
On December 23, we tried again to get on the flight, with no luck, regardless that we were told earlier in the week that the 23rd is wide open, with many seats available, and that the 23rd was THE day to get on the flight on a stand-by passenger basis! It became clear when passengers started checking in that there were 22 seats available in business class, and 94 in economy class. Guess what only 2 passengers on standby were allowed to board the plane!!!
Again we were fed the nonsense that the number of standby passengers allowed to fly was subject to the amount of cargo to be taken on, which was UTTER NONSENSE! That became clear when one retired Delta pilot, (also on standby but on a higher priority of course!) explained to us that the cargo story fed to us was nonsense. According to him, if a flight has an 8 PM departure, the cargo would already have been loaded on the plane by 4 pm!!!
According to the same pilot, the issue was only about the inefficiency of the agents booking in passengers and issuing boarding passes. We checked, and sure as hell THAT was indeed the problem!!! It took a minimum of 4 hours for inefficient staff to issue boarding passes to all passengers. (Again, they are not employed by Delta Airlines, but are subcontracted from a company called Swissport. Hence the fact that they have no incentive to work faster or more efficient!)
Look at this now. This same retired pilot, when he SAW that Delta would not board a standby passenger with a sick baby in her arms, then went and BOUGHT the lady and her baby a ticket out of his own pocket, just so that she could get on the flight, and get her baby home! Shame on Delta!!! A couple of non-revs, as standby passengers are known and described by Delta, killed time by comparing how long it took other airlines to issue boarding passes to their waiting passengers. Believe it or not, Lufthansa, Air France, KLM and BA took an average of 1 hour and 15 minutes to board their passengers! Compared to Delta's FOUR hours!!!
So the story given by Delta that the weather, cargo / passenger ratio etc. was the determining factor as to how many standby passengers were allowed to board is plain poppy cock! It simply boils down to this the captain on the plane has a departure time deadline, otherwise he gets dinged - and when it comes close to his scheduled departure time, he simply has the aircraft doors closed and proceeds to depart. Which means - To hell with whom still needs to board even if it is a passenger with a fully paid ticket not just the standby-passengers!
So these are the simple facts but Delta will not acknowledge the problems are 99% to be blamed on inefficient people employed on a subcontract basis as that will not be the Political Correct thing to do!!! So they blame it on totally irrelevant factors like weather and cargo!! (If that was indeed the case, why do other airlines not have the same problems!!!??)
Totally bloody preposterous!!! (It is not like non-revs are flying for free - standby passengers still pay around 50% of an economy class ticket! Threatening one to have the flight privileges of the person who gave us the standby ticket is so egregiously inhumane, and corporate crap! (And amounts to blackmailing!) On Christmas Eve, we were told that DELTA had a total embargo on standby passengers, meaning we were again stuck for the night at the airport, and could only HOPE to get on a flight on CHRISTMAS DAY!!!
On Christmas Day - Day 16 of trying to get on a Delta Flight, we again went to the airport at 3 PM, to have ourselves listed on the standby-list. One particular employee named **, (his name tag described him as a flight controller) - told us to come back to see him (not another agent!) at 7PM, when it was the cut-off time to check in. He apparently had received word that the Captain on flight DL201 had decided to allow all 14 stand-by passengers to board the flight! At last! After 16 attempts go get on a Delta flight!
We were advised that we were to take up seats as indicated on our boarding passes, but that we were to be moved to the business class section after takeoff, when the plane reached cruising altitude. We did so when told to move seats, only to be faced by disgruntled and irritated flight attendants, when we were seated.. As it was, they were already mad at having to work on Christmas Day, and then got even more disgruntled when the section which was supposed to be clear of any passengers, were now filled by the non-revs the Captain allowed to board!
(The flight attendants were rude and unfriendly, and one could almost feel that the food and drinks were just about thrown at you!) So, there it is our 16 day ordeal with Delta Airlines with whom I will never fly again, and an airline I will not recommend to any of my clients going on an African Safari.
ALTANTA, GEORGIA -- On Saturday October 2, 2010, I left Sarasota, Fl on Delta Flight 2348 to Atlanta, GA. I was then supposed to continue to Paris, France, on Delta Flight 274 and continue to Genoa, Italy on Delta Flight 5843 with a final destination arrival time of 5:20pm on Sunday October 3, 2010. With an on-time departure from Sarasota, we actually arrived about 20 minutes early into Atlanta, GA. While this was the case, we could not reach our gate because another Delta aircraft was at our assigned gate.
After sitting on the runway until almost 8:30 PM, we finally reached a gate and unloaded from the aircraft. I immediately made contact with the agent at the gate and told her to let my other flight know that I was there and would be at the gate soon. She confirmed and I started running to the gate. I arrived at the gate at 8:35. There were still five to seven people in front of me to board the plane and an irate gentleman at the ticket counter. The Delta representative at the gate took my ticket and passport, scanned my ticket, and was in motion to scan my passport.
The other Delta representative at the ticket counter said “He (referring to me) didn't get here early enough; he can't get on the plane.” In the meantime, the gentleman at the counter that did not originally have an assigned seat on the plane was allowed on the plane and I was bumped. I was directed to a Delta special services counter and the door to the gate was closed.
At the counter, I was told that the soonest I could leave was the next day. I was schedule for Delta flight 130 at 4:40PM to Munich and then Continental Flight 5486 to Genoa at 11:00 AM on Monday October 4, 2010. I was also told that Delta was only going to give me a discounted rate at a hotel because the rescheduled flight was not Delta's fault; it was air traffic controls fault. While waiting on the hotel shuttle, I called the Delta, explained the situation and the representative said it wasn't Delta's fault, it was due to in climate weather in the area. If clear skies and on a starry night is in climate weather for a Delta aircraft, I don't feel comfortable riding in one.
After continuing the conversation, the representative said he would give me a $50 flight credit. At this point in time, I am still paying for a hotel room in Atlanta. I have to pay for might night missed in Genoa, and I lose a full day's work. In my luggage was also two boxes of brochures that were going to be used for the sales of boats at the Genoa International Boat Show. Without these brochures, the company's full line cannot be shown to customers and sales are missed.
Finally arriving to the hotel at 12:20AM on Sunday October 3, 2010, I get a room. The room was dirty and the bed wasn't even made. The hotel that Delta recommended had a nice lobby but the room was awful. I was put in another room. At 3:30AM, I received a notice from Expedia saying that I needed to contact the company immediately pertaining to my flight. At that time, I called Expedia and they informed me that the flight from Munich to Genoa was overbooked and I was only on the standby list for the flight. While even more frustrated with the situation, I tried to sleep for a while and returned to the airport to sort out the matter.
At the same special services counter from the day before, I asked about my flight and told them I wanted a guaranteed flight and did not want to be on standby. After checking my reservation, the Delta representative was baffled at her findings telling me that she did not have access to the Continental flight information but the flight was in conjunction with an airline that Delta is not even supposed to book with. Once again, I was rescheduled on a new set of flights. This time, I was scheduled on Delta Flight AF681 to Paris at 5:50 PM on Sunday October 3, 2010 and Delta flight AF5847 to Genoa at 9:55 AM.
Delta Flight Af681 to Paris left on time and landed on time. The connection to Genoa, AF5847, left on time also. While in the air, the captain explained that we were circling the Genoa airport because of storms, and we were number 6 in line to land. We were expected to land in about 30 minutes. About 15 minutes pasted and the captain came on again saying that the airport was now closed due to flooding, and we would be landing in Nice, France.
Upon arrival, I proceeded to baggage claim and received none of the three pieces of luggage I checked. I reported my delayed luggage and proceeded to the provided bus to Genoa. When we got to the bus, the driver told us that there was to be no eating or drinking on his bus. We would arrive in Genoa in three to three and a half hours, and we could eat then. About five hours into the ride, yes five, a girl appearing to be in her early teens asked the driver to unlock the bathroom so she could use it. He denied her request and she sat down.
About 20 minutes later she returned and was denied again. Immediately her father stepped in along with other passengers on the bus and demanded that the restroom be unlocked. We were sitting still in traffic and there was no reason the driver couldn't do it. After a small uproar, he gave in. On his way to unlock the door, he yelled to the passengers to not take advantage of the toilet because he didn't want to have to empty it and clean it. After six and a half hours of travel, the driver exited the highway and dropped all of the passengers and their luggage off at an abandoned gas station that had several beggars at time just inside of Genoa.
I tried to get the driver to let me use his phone or give information at least. He resisted, slammed the bus door and drove away. Now, Delta has dropped me off in an unsafe environment, in pouring rain, in a foreign country, with a foreign language, without any official of the country seeing my passport. Immediately, the number of beggars grew and so did my uncertainty. I, along with a group of other passengers, got together and began walking toward hotel Novotel. The front desk at Novotel was nice enough to call a cab for me. After waiting an hour, a cab arrived. I was taken to the hotel where I was supposed to meet my colleague, Bristol Hotel Palace.
Upon arrival at the hotel, I called my hotel, Hotel Alexander, and was told that my reservations had been sold. I did notify them before leaving the USA that my flight had been moved to the following day to keep my reservation. Since the airport was closed, they didn't think that I was going to arrive and sold my reservation. Luckily, another person from my company was staying at another hotel and took a different airline. I stayed at the Bristol Hotel where he was and got a room for the night. Before going to bed, I called and had the information for my delayed luggage changed and confirmed.
The next day and the days following, I called from my hotel, Bristol Hotel, checking on the luggage. The lost baggage line had no information on the luggage. My final day in Genoa, I received an email from Hotel Alexander saying that they had my luggage. I called from my hotel and they said I needed to give them 1500 Euros to release my luggage. Of course, I do not speak Italian, and they only spoke very broken English. I told them I was not paying the fee but I need my luggage. They hung up on me three times and demanded the money.
I called Delta (actually Air France) and the representative said that it was their mistake and the airline would pick up the luggage and bring it to Hotel Bristol. The entire day passed and I didn't receive the luggage. I finally called and went to Hotel Alexander myself to get the luggage. Strangely enough there was a representative there that could speak perfect English and demand the 1500 Euros.
After arguing and bartering for over 30 minutes, I had to pay 270 Euros to get my luggage. At this point, I was surrounded by 4 large men yelling at me in Italian; I felt I had to pay or I wasn't going to leave there in good health or well-being. This is another dangerous situation that Delta and its partners forced me to be in. Delta offered me 19000 skymiles. What a joke. A refund of the entire trip, a refund of the money I paid to get the luggage back, refund for the clothing and laundering I had to do, and a refund for the extra $255 worth of luggage I checked is what I should get.