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Cancelled flight due to missing staff/Awful customer service
Posted by Tennis1986 on 09/06/2009
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 back up 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 incase. 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.
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Posted by Ben There on 2009-09-06:
What was the value of the flight worth? I see that flight prices start at $49 so you might have come out ahead with the $100 voucher. Also, if this is a United ticket, it might take Delta a long time to process the refund. As for getting reimbursed for the Jetblue flight and the extra day of parking, don't hold your breath on that one. Airline never cover those costs.
Posted by jimworcs on 2009-09-09:
Write a complaint to the DOT. You need to put this complaint in strict chronological order, as it is a big chaotic to read. However, as the delay was entirely Delta's fault you are entitled to compensation and they are just giving you the run around. I would stop dealing with Delta and start going via the DOT. Delta will suddenly start co-operating. Delta are by far the worst for customer service. They are arrogant, huge and don't care.
Posted by tennis1986 on 2009-09-11:
Thanks for the advice. Ben There- no I did not come out ahead because even though my original ticket was about the price of the $100 voucher they gave me, I still had to spend almost $200 to take Jetblue home. Even so, I'm not ever going to use this voucher because I refuse to fly with such an awful company again.

Jimworcs- If I go to DOT should I try to pursue not only that I get my refund (which supposedly I should get by the end of next week, but I'm not holding my breath on that one), but that I'm also compensated for further expenses (taking a different airline home, parking, etc)? I don't want to waste anymore of my time, but it should not take over a month to get a refund, and it's ridiculous that every person I talk to at Delta tells me something different, making it take so much time and effort just to get a simple refund for a cancelled flight. I feel like they owe me for all the loops they've put me through, even if it's not standard practice. But if there is no way it will ever happen, even if I go to DOT, then I'll just worry about the refund.
Posted by Ben There on 2009-09-11:
Talking to the DOT will not assist you in getting your Jetblue and parking expenses paid. I am not suggesting that you don't file a complaint with them, but Delta gave you a hotel and booked you on a flight the next day which is where their responsibility ended. You made the decision to purchase a Jetblue ticket (an airline that no other airlines work with), and if airlines started paying for an extra day of parking, babysitting, pet boarding, DVD rental, etc..., then tickets would cost a whole lot more than $100. Showing up late is just a risk we all take when traveling and we should be prepared to take on some unexpected expenses if we can't make it home on time. The airline's responsibility only goes so far.
Posted by tennis1986 on 2009-09-11:
Maybe Delta's responsibility does not go beyond giving me a place to sleep and getting me home, but they do have a responsibility to give me a refund in a timely manner without putting me through a million loops and turns trying to get it. They didn't provide the service, therefore it's not their money to keep. I have literally spent hours and hours trying to get my refund. Delta needs to take responsibility for making this such a difficult process.
Posted by Ben There on 2009-09-11:
I agree that the refund should be in a timely manner. That said, many companies including airlines say that refunds can take up to a month, 4-6 weeks, two billing periods, etc... The first thing everyone says is "it only takes them a second to take my money"... Timely is relative...
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Worse Customer Service Ever!
Posted by Upset Buddy on 01/02/2009
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 "Roberto" got into a heated argument with an older guy. Not sure what was said but you could see that the words back and fourth were not friendly. After awhile I decided to go up to the counter and ask Roberto 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 Roberto 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 suppose to be seated in 7a. I told her that I was. She asked if I had a "Rep pass?" Not knowing what the was I told her that I didn't know. She turned around and walked away...6:35am now! Next thing you know Roberto 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 Roberto 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 your 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 fourth with him. It was either that or to go to jail in Buffalo and be stuck there for awhile. After contacting my fiance to let him know what had just happened as I cried my eyes out from the embarrasssment, 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 Chuck. He advised me that Chuck was downstairs back out at the counter pass security. Without another word I walked downstairs and met Chuck.

Chuck 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 Chuck calling back up stairs to Roberto and was very upset with him for sending customers back to him to reschedule their missed flights. I watched as they argued back and fourth. Soon Chuck got the opportunity to talk to me. I explained the situation to him. I was informed that Roberto 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 suppose to board the plane. That 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 Chucks response. He said that that's the way Roberto was and that he gets complaints a lot about his customer service skills. Now if that is the case, why is Roberto still employed with Delta? I think that Roberto 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 Roberto was. As I approached a seat and I heard Roberto 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!
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-02:
Flying on a buddy pass during the second busiest time of the year... what were you thinking? Employees have a very hard time flying non revenue, much less buddy passes.
I don't doubt the gate agent treated you roughly but as a pass rider you need to bite your lip - that complaint could easily get your friends pass and flight privileges revoked.
Posted by Nohandle on 2009-01-02:
Someone tell me what a Buddy Pass is. I'm guessing it is a pass given to employees of an airline to give to family or friends. I've just not heard that expression.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-02:
Nohandle. Buddy Passes are issued to employees (depending on airline, 8-12 passes a year) You are free to give them to friends/family. Buddy pass riders simply pay the applicable taxes for the segment (cheap). The friend flies "non rev" (non revenue) and are the last to be given seat assignments, as they are flying free. Specific conduct, attire are strictly enforced, as they are flying as a guest of the employee and airline. You have zero rights as a buddy pass pax, thus complaining can get the employee in trouble.
My airline is very strict with non revenue conduct and will revoke a employees privileges - thus employees carefully brief friends as to conduct.
Posted by Nohandle on 2009-01-02:
Thanks VF. I was aware airline employees, as one of their benefits, were given passes since I had a former employee whose husband was employed by one. I didn't know they were free to pass them on to family and friends. As far as the attire required, yes I was told that as well by the employee. At that time it was strictly business attire and you were bumped if a revenue customer came along, sometimes at the last moment.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-02:
Great info, VF.
Posted by dan gordon on 2009-01-02:
a non revenue fare is the absolute lowest priority of any standby passenger, and trying to use it at Xmas is pretty bad advice. While a nice gesture the chances of finding an empty seat at the holidays seems like a remote possiblility. With all the ice and snow storms many revenue pax would certainly have priority making your chances of using it very iffy. These are standard airline rules not just Delta.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-01-02:
Nohandle, if you are discussing buddy passes on Evercom phone lines, I believe it takes on a little different meaning.
Posted by LauraW on 2009-01-02:
No one has yet addressed the primary focus of the complaint, which is the rudeness of the Delta employee, Roberto. The complainant is very understanding of the holiday rush. It shouldn't matter how one obtained a ticket, such rudeness is unacceptable. Apparently Roberto did not follow the guidelines set down by his employer. Unfortunately, most commentors on this site seem to accept and even condone rudeness on the part of those paid to deal with the public.
Posted by Ben There on 2009-01-03:
Any company as large as Delta is going to have a few bad apples, and some really good apples that just have bad days. I have seen gate agents get more abuse from passengers than any other employees at the airline, because people blame take out all kinds of frustration at them. While Roberto's attitude sounds horrible, we are only hearing one side of the story... I think the OP was very unaware of the aspects of flying nonrev which is shown by her flying on the holidays with that type of ticket and it seems she did not know that she could be pulled off of a plane and not get on another one till the next date. She even still uses the word stewardess...
Posted by Privelege NOT!!! on 2010-08-28:
Wow!!! It is 2010 and I see that customer service skills at Delta has not improved. I recently traveled with my family or need I say attempted to travel on buddy passes. Service to those traveling on these passes are beyond poor. It was our first and certainly our last experience. Buddy passes are not a privilege; especially if you are being treated as third class citizens. I was very cognitive of keeping my complaints to myself to prevent any negative backlash to the employee. In response to those Delta employees who responded above, is this kind of treatment acceptable had it been someone in your family or friend? If you consider traveling, do not purchase these tickets. They are not as discounted as everyone thinks; they are NOT FREE. My family and I wound up spending more money on these passes than we would have had we paid for regular tickets. Word of advice, if you want to have a hastle free trip, try to find discounted tickets through some other airline. The experience that Delta left behind will prevent my family and I from ever flying on this airline again.

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Lack of seats available for Frequent Flyer milers
Posted by N64135 on 04/22/2006
HAWAII -- I want to share two letters that I wrote to the CEO of Delta Airlines. The first is dated March 7, 2006:

"I have been a loyal patron of Delta Airlines for many years. And, for many years I have either paid full fare or upgraded, when told it was available, into business or first class. I say this to indicate that I have no objection to paying the premium necessary for the extra comfort afforded by the higher class. At the same time, I do expect to be treated fairly when I inquire, from a Delta Skymiles agent, as to availability of upgradeable seats. The purpose of this letter is to bring a situation where it is apparent that such treatment was not forthcoming.

"Here are the facts. In January [2006] I called Delta Skymiles to arrange for reservation to attend a conference in Greece in July. At that time, my Skymiles account had over 100,000 unused miles. My request was for either a business class ticket using my miles or an upgradeable fare, which would be upgraded using my miles. I was told that no such seats were available and that if I wanted to travel business class I would have to pay full fare. Believing that to be the case, I went on-line and booked a ticket (for $4500.) on January 17th. Because of my fondness and loyalty to Delta I did not elect to book the ticket on a competing carrier.

"Just recently, I discovered that a colleague of mine....was able to just two or three weeks ago to book and upgrade to attend the same conference. This is very disturbing and I dislike, as a loyal customer of Delta, to that seats suddenly, several months later, become available when I was told in January that such was not the case. It almost makes me wonder if my loyalty to Delta is not reciprocated by the airline. I hope this is not the case.

"I hope you will take this letter seriously. I have flown Delta for close to four decades and maintained my positive feelings through the airline's good and non-so-good times. I sincerely want those feelings to remain as they are, but such treatment as outlined above does make me wonder."

The next letter, dated April 21st, tells what happened next.

"Close to two months ago I wrote the letter referenced above. I will not rehearse the complaint in the letter except to say that I was very disappointed in the response. Several weeks later at 6 AM I received a call from some lady in your Customer Relations Department. Aside from the fact that she [could not seem to grasp time zone differences] I was appalled that all she could do was to read me the regulations after she admitted that didn't have a copy of the letter in front of her. So, first I had to repeat the details of the letter before we could move on. Her call was a waste of my time as well as hers. I was fully aware of the regulations (I can read, thank you). My point which I tried to make to her was that merely reading the regulations was no way to build customer loyalty particularly in a highly competitive industry. It is rude and disrespectful to the customer. I tried very hard to get her to understand that surely it would not be a difficult thing to put customer who a)have asked for an upgradable ticket and b) paid the higher fare when such seat was not available on a waiting list for when such a seat becomes available. These customers should have their needs meet before others who book later. After all, you do this when putting people on a standby list and it is a matter of first come, first served. She seemed oblivious to my point. There is no reason that people wanting to use their frequent flyer miles to have to depend on an accident of timing.

"I am a social/industrial psychologist and one thing I know is how to treat customers when you want repeat business. The way this comment was handled would not have passed mustere even among the most naive business student. Delta Airlines can do better."

I don't expect much of an answer--but thought I would share it with those of you who have had similar experiences.
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Posted by viperpa33s on 2006-04-22:
The airlines are in serious trouble financially. This is due to of course from 9/11 and other economic factors. I had read awhile back that the airlines want to get away from frequent flier miles due the fact that it is costing them money. Not saying that is your case in this situation but it seems it is leaning towards it.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-04-22:

I feel your disappointment in Delta and I have had the same type of experience with thy frequent flyer miles and to this day I can’t seem to get a flight where I can use them. I had this experience with Singapore air as well for over a year flying back and forth to Asia and in the end they sent me a letter to say they finally realized I did not live in Korea. So my miles would be good now BUT from that time on not the year’s worth I had accrued. I give up on frequent flyer miles.
Posted by N64135 on 2006-04-22:
Your're probably correct. Airlines would,if they could, drop their frequent flyer programs. The pencil pushers don't seem to realize that handling the programs correctly (in a way that even a first year MBA student would know) would result in increased customer loyalty and booked flights particularly among the business flyers from whom the airline derives much more profit. I really don't think 9/11 had much to do with it. The airlines' drive to the bottom in customer satisfaction began long before--about the time of deregulation in the Carter administration.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2006-04-23:
Cashing in on your milage comes with alot of conditions. At the time you tried to make your reservation there may not have been any available seats, but there may have been some cancellations by the time your co-worker booked for theirs. Did you request to be on a call list for cancellations?
Posted by Timboss on 2006-04-24:
So many frequent fliers are using their miles that the number of seats is becoming extremely limited. I've been told plan 8-12 months in advance.
Posted by rhondam718732 on 2006-04-24:
I completely undserstand the complaint and I agree that it seems unfair. BUT, let's get real; as other posters said - the sirlines are in trouble and I doubt they have time to develop systems for wait listed Del;ata premium passengers. And as far as paying $4500 for a ticket - well that's certainly your call, but my opinion is that unless you are travelling around the world, isn't that a RIDICULOUS amt of $ to pay?? If you can afford that why not just pay for first class. Anyway, many people are struggling with affording $200 airfares to see family and your complaint - while it has merit - just makes me want to say "Boo - flippin'-whoooo"
Posted by N64135 on 2006-04-25:
Thanks for all your comments, even those that were rather wide of the mark. As far as being on a "call list" I was told that no such list exists and it would make the idea of non-refundable tickets moot. My point was that they should maintain such a list, even to putting a check box on the web reservations forms. As for the cost of the ticket, that was the least expensive business class ticket I could find. It was on their webpage and at least $2,000.00 cheaper than a ticket quoted over the phone from a Delta agent.

Now, I know we spend a lot of time complaining on these webforms, but when we have a positive experience we should note it; after all, fair is fair. If any of your Delta Frequent Flyers have a problem with a reservation and are fortunate enough to reach a Ms. Dolores Vilchez, count yourself lucky. I just spent a couple of hours on the phone with her straigtening out a problem caused by Delta's reservations computers. She was patient and accomodating even to point getting a supervisor to override the computer to give me connections that would not give me cardiac arrest rushing from one gate to another at JFK. If she keeps this up, she'll probably get fired to being too good to customers...
Posted by NAGY on 2006-07-23:
Alas! When you are using your miles/points with an airline for upgrades, their rules change hourly. They are trying to stay alive with the most bizarre biz procedures ever dreamed up. I've flown up front with a major airline for 15 years on upgrades, but you need to understand that the available seats for upgrades are released without any kind of organization; what is unavailable right now could pop up at midnight, or 3 months from now. If you don't like what the res agent is telling you, call back in a couple of days, a couple of weeks, a month or two. You'll eventually get what you want but it requires patience. A coach price for a seat up front is definitely worth it. If you absolutely have to be somewhere at a certain time, buy a coach ticket to ensure you'll get there and change/cancel it when you find a deal you like. The fee is small for a seat up front.
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Employee Theft
Posted by Kvesp23 on 02/15/2005
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- Our connecting flight was missed due to an earlier flight delay. We were then directed to the wrong gate by a Delta employee. In all of the confusion, I had the harrowing experience of leaving my purse at a gate where we inquired about our reticked flights and immediately returned for it, but was told by the agent that no purse had been found. I was frantic and a Continental gate agent offered to call security for me. The agent said not to worry that my purse had been found and was in safe keeping. I could retrieve it at lost and found. I rushed to the baggage area only to be told that lost and found was closed. I returned home hopeful, but apprehensive. Two days later Delta called and said they had my purse and it would be sent to me by FedEx. The purse was returned and to my chagrin was ransacked. A credit card, $500 in travelers checks, $75 in cash, and $100 restaurant gift cards were taken. I immediately emailed customer care, but it has been over two weeks and I haven't had a reply. Delta has added to the problem by not requiring accountability of their employees. The protocol of handling lost items shouldn't be a license to steal by Delta employees.
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Posted by halibut03 on 2005-03-20:
Do you know the definition of dumb? Look it up because you fit that catagory. Having worked in the airline industry for many years, we grew tired of people trying to blame an airline for their own ignorance. Keep your purse with you!!! Did it also have your life saving medication in it, or did you check that in a suitcase? Delta is not responsible for someone who does not have the brains to hold onto her purse. You could have left it in the womans room and decided to blame an airline for your stupidity to see if you could get some money back. Your kind is a dime a dozen out there.
Posted by PinkElephant on 2005-03-21:
Please take into consideration that your purse may have went through many hands and while it may have been the Delta agent, it may not have been, too. I am so sorry this happened to you, over the years I've found wallets and feel funny even looking inside, and have never taken a thing...
Posted by Spikey on 2005-03-26:
It is difficult for me to understand how you can blame your airline for your carelessness in losing your purse. Did you ever think that whoever 'found' your purse lightened the load before turning it in? Most probably NOT the airline personnel.
Posted by stop complaining on 2005-08-09:
How do you know it was Delta who stole your things, maybe it was security or the person who brought it to lost and found? Do you have proof?
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How Delta's domestic flight had bags into RUSSIA!
Posted by Respect! on 07/20/2004
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA -- How Delta's domestic flight
passenger's personal itmes/data
Ended up in...

On Friday, July 16-04 As the flight from LAX to JFK seemed to be overbooked, the attendant at the gate has requested passenger to leave the 'personal' bags [one bag had contained: cell phone, address books, laptop computer, keys to apartment -- the intended place to stay, the other bag was a garment bag with suites, ties, shirts etc.] at the gate and gave the tag numbers for it, when the passenger asked the attendants were to leave it, the reply was: 'Just leave it "there" at the entrance of the plane.'
Where should I retrieve it?
Together with all baggage at the arriving carrousel.

At arrival, the 2 pieces were missing, a file was opened, and this is the "story."

Your bags in Russia!!!

Saturday, July 17, 9:50, to 10:10 PM attempts to Call to Delta's baggage main number: 1-800-325-8224, gave a busy signal, when finally answered, a recording voice said... "Please hold...you'll not be disconnected" ... well, sure enough, it WAS disconnected, another 3 attempts and finally a human voice replied:

She [Indian/Pakistani accent]:
'You flight from "Russia"...'
Passenger: "what"?
Delta's She:
'It was discovered on Aeroflot's flight, and it was supposed to arrive Saturday at 6:00 PM in JFK..'
'How, Why, What?'


Delta's she:
--Silence -- Silence--- ... 2 minutes silent, she hung up.

Passenger tries again, busy signal, after 12 minutes trying, another costumer service (this one too from India, Delta's Cheap Service-company indeed). This one was a male voice, at least more polite than the first one.
'Your baggage was somehow on the Russian airline Aeroflot ... it was "supposed" to arrive in JFK earlier this evening but it has not been screened...'


'Are you telling me that my personal stuff was handled in Russia?'

Delta's He:
I have no idea why, it "happens."

'It happens? Did it ever happen, such a switch from domestic to international?
And Why "Russia"?
I was never in Russia, nor did Delta have any "Russian" association around this flight.'
'And what now?'

Delta's He:
'JFK is not responding to me at this hour, The only thing I could suggest to you is to call tomorrow morning at 6:00 AM.'

Sunday, July 18, 6:00 AM
Passenger calls the above number.

Delta's He:
'Please try again at 6:30...'
Could you give me JFK's Delta-Baggage direct phone number?

A Call at JFK's Delta-Baggage 6:30 AM (718-632-5664)

Delta's She:
'It has been found, Do you want this to be delivered to the address you wrote at the file?'
'Yes, please, and no phone calls needed, this place will be open the entire day.'
'What time am I expecting it?'

Delta's She:
'Within 6-8 hours from 9:30 AM and on...'

(Sunday-July-18) 4 PM
Passenger calls:
'Do you have any idea if the delivery people have the correct address? Is it on the way?'

'Reimbursed for what?'

Delta's She (718-632-5664):
'What? It didn't arrive yet?'
'No, and I already lost a lot because of the missing bags, BTW How do I get reimbursed?
Delta's She:
'Reimbursed for what?'

'Let me give you their direct phone number 718-...

Passenger calls up the delivery service, a rude (African American accent) female replies:

'Sir, we called there was no answer, you should have picked up the (call waiting) beep...'

'I've told Delta explicitly to deliver it directly WITHOUT any "phone-calls" needed. And what "beep"? this line-number I gave does NOT have a beep/call waiting!!!'

At around 4:30 PM, the Passenger calls again the delivery company, a more pleasant male voice replies, and "promises" to deliver it between 10:00 PM till midnight.'

"Catch 22" & Record-not!

Passenger calls Delta (718-632-5664), to update on the "delay" ... and asks if can be any record by email or a printout of this case -- specifically "why it ended up in Russia" -- can be provided,
Delta's she:
No, the only ones that can give you a record are the ones at the 1-800 #.
Passenger calls the 1-800 #, and the "catch 22" says: go to the JFK's 718 #...

Another day, and the bags are not here!

(Sunday, July 18) 11:55 PM Passenger calls the delivery service, and is now being handled by a different person by the name of John, though polite, he says that; now is too late, so the only option is to wait for tomorrow morning...'

Monday, July 19, 7:00, AM, Passenger calls up the delivery service, the same John says that: 'You'll get a phone call within 10 minutes...'
20 minutes pass by, the passenger calls up, and John apologizes and says he is on it.'

After a few minutes the delivery man calls up and says that because of the traffic (understandable) he'll be "there" in about an hour-and hour and a half.'

After almost 2 hours the passenger calls again, and is told that he's about three blocks away...

After about 20 minutes the bags finally arrived.


Caused by the delay:

1) Aggravation of knowing that it's personal data was handled by foreign hands, and rerouted back to the US immigration's & custom control, when the original flight was a mere domestic one.

2) Not having the keys to the apartment where intended to stay in NY, caused hardship in having to pay extra for room and board.

3) Not having suite/ties/shirts boosted up expenses of having to acquire such.

4) The cell phone being in the bag, caused:
Prevention of data/phone numbers, that includes having to use the 411 information that is also not for free.
Time consuming in accessing data.
Having to use phone cards.


'Reimbursement for what????' -- She asked!

The tags were yellow colored, known by Delta airlines employees NOT to remove it from plane!!!

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Posted by Frqunt_Trvler on 2013-10-31:
My bags were supposed to go from Brussels to Atlanta. They ended up in Aruba. I sure wish Delta had sent me to get them there instead of sending my bags to me.
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Delta Steals Young Man's Money
Posted by 1luxdei on 03/27/2014
ATLANTA GEOTGIA -- The following letter that I sent, complaining to Delta, will explain our problem

Dear Mr. Richard Hirst, Legal Vice-President with Delta,

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 # 0062180808133) 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 hw 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 Jamie 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 bag, s 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,
David Edwards
2411 Berry Road
Knoxville, TN
Email: 1luxdei@gmail.com
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Dont Fly Delta
Posted by NICOLE3250 on 11/25/2013
NEW YORK -- Worst experience ever don't ever fly delta!!!
Upon arrival I had an hour to spare. I got something to eat and proceeded to go to the gate they told me to go to. Once I arrived I was then taken from that gate to a different gate. When I arrived at the last gate they where in the process of closing the door. Even though I was only 2 minutes late and not due to my mistake because they had given me the wrong gate to go to in the first place. I begged to be let on the plane and she smiled in my face and told me to bad stating that she could not open the door (when I first arrived and asked to be let on they had not been locked yet). She then proceeded to tell me that she would be charging me $300.00 for my daughter and I to take the next flight. When I asked for a manager the man standing next to her told me he was it. After stating I would be social networking what happened they then got the real manager. Who was as helpless as the first guy who had lied about being the manager!! I understand if it was my mistake and that is why I missed my flight but it was not!! I was there with over an hour to spare but given misinformation!! Then after all of this they where mean and rude. They have lost a customer for life and anyone who reads this picks a different airline!!
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Posted by ontario_girl on 2013-11-26:
That's why I never trust what I'm told. I look at the gate number printed on my ticket.
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Vindictive Delta Reps
Posted by Monkeyboy4life on 11/07/2013
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. This is the complaint I submitted:

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. Its 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 then 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.
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Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-11-09:
"I told him that finding the right ticket counter had been very difficult"

After dealing with many customers on a daily basis, what was the agent suppose to say to your above statement?

Don't every be rude to airline employees. As you now "suspect" they can make your experience a living hell. I worked for an airline for 8 years and I can clearly admit, "Do not give an airport airline employee a hard time!" They can use your original comment about being hard to find them to put you on the SSSS list on a flight that's oversold and need either volunteers or "involuntary" denied passengers.
Posted by Soaring Consumer on 2013-11-09:
File a complaint with the DOT:

You may also qualify for denied boarding compensation under EU 261. Here is the complaint form:
Posted by Paul on 2013-11-09:
I don't understand what "reconciliation" you feel you are entitled to. Their reply makes sense, based on the details that you provided.
Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2013-11-11:
" 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. "

Perhaps they thought that your job that involved the military was relevant to security. Would it have been that big of a deal to let them know what you do with the military? By not answering their questions or being evasive, then I could see where that would give then reason to be apprehensive. You don't have the same rights when it comes to security or air travel in general in Abu Dhabi as you do in the U.S.
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Horrible International Travel Experience With Delta
Posted by Rtulsyani on 07/27/2013
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA -- Left following feedback three times on Delta.com site, no response from them. Started my travel from US to India via Europe, with wife and 2 very young kids. All papers were checked by Delta staff at US airport, no issues. In Europe, they didn't let us board the connecting flight, saying there is an issue with paper work. We were stuck for a day, and had to rush to different offices in an unknown country. Sad thing is no from Delta has time to respond to the 3 times feedback over last 3 weeks, so not sure why they have any feedback mechanism to begin with.


Confirmation# : HG6ZUZ

I hope my feedback here is viewed in right perspective. We started our trip from Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA to Delhi, India via Amsterdam. Each one of us has American Passport, and were carrying OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) card. It was our understanding that it was all we needed to travel to India. Our travel documents were fully verified by the Delta Staff at Fort Lauderdale airport (American Passport and OCI card for each of us). We took the fight to Atlanta, and then a connecting flight to Amsterdam. After the security check at Amsterdam airport, we were denied to board the plane and were sent to KLM Transfer desk. The gentlemen at the transfer desk told us the kids need to get Indian Visa from the local Indian Embassy in Amsterdam. We were completely shocked as the documents were fully checked at the start of our journey by Delta staff at Fort Lauderdale Airport. Anyhow, we had no choice, so we rushed to the Indian Embassy, got the Visa done and rushed back to the airport. You can imagine the state of a person traveling with his family with two kids, stuck in middle of unknown place trying to get whatever was instructed. Anyhow, after reaching back to Amsterdam airport, the KLM staff told us that the next day’s only KLM flight to Delhi was fully booked. We were then sent to Paris, where we had to spend the night since our connecting flight to Delhi was next day (04-Jul-2013).
All of this nightmare for us could have avoided if we were stopped at the starting airport (Fort Lauderdale) only, which is where we live. Going into an unknown country, and running from one place to the other with the family is an unforgettable experience. I lost my one day of work, and my family lost one day of vacation, not to mention the trauma that kids had to go through.
I also wanted to mention a point for Delta staff training. The immigration officer at Delhi airport told us that they the OCI card for each one of us was enough to get the entry to India even If the so called sticker wasn’t available.
To add to the adventure, none of our 7 checked-in bags arrived to the final destination (Delhi) with us, though we were told at Paris airport that they will be on the same flight AF 226. So here I am waiting with my family inside the airport, and then the relatives waiting outside the airport.

But the saddest thing is that it has been three weeks and I have left feedback at Delta.com three times with no response from them.
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Posted by olie on 2013-07-28:
I think it's the traveler's responsibility to make sure that all necessary passports, visas, and ID cards are obtained before traveling.

I can't imagine being an employee at Ft. Lauderdale and having to know what all the requirements are for ALL flights headed into Amsterdam. Surely there were passengers staying in Amsterdam, and others traveling on to Germany, France, Russia, and other European destinations, as well as Asian destinations such as New Delhi.

I'd think that the Ft. Lauderdale responsibility was that you were able to leave the US and land in Amsterdam.
Posted by Bee on 2013-07-28:
I am sorry but it is your responsibility to make sure you have all the proper documents prior to travel.
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Worst Customer Service Experience Ever.
Posted by Lovelaughing101 on 07/04/2013
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY -- Because I was literally 2 minutes late for my flight, the automated check-in computers wouldn't let me check in. After flagging down a service rep, her name is Anna, she said, "Nope, sorry!" and giggled. She couldn't care less. She then told me I had to pay $100 more for a different flight; I was appalled! She was so disrespectful. And mind you, Louisville airport is very small, and the screen at the desk said they were still boarding- I could have made my flight easily, and so could have my one checked bag. After paying $100 plus the $25 fee for my bag, I then had to wait for six hours for my flight. When I wrote Delta to complain about my experience, they sent me two automated responses, neither came from a human. They each contained a $25 gift card for me to redeem (for different random companies, like Land's End and Boston Steaks) by mid-August. Here I am now, in very early July, wanting to redeem my giftcards (it isn't much, and certainly doesn't make up for what happened), and guess what? They took one of the giftcards back! I could only redeem one. I ended up paying more than $600 for a flight because of them, and was treated very rudely by Anna, and all I get is a $25 gift card to a place I don't even shop?

Being especially a SkyMiles and Delta card member, I definitely expected far more than what I got, both in service and apology. I'm cancelling both, as are my family members. Ridiculous. I've always liked and flown Delta, but not anymore.
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Posted by Ben There on 2013-07-04:
I think Louisville minimum check in is 30 minutes, which meant you got there 28 minutes before departure?

I think you will find that any airline will refuse to check you in with a bag at this point - unfortunately for late passengers there is a lot more going on behind the scenes than simply you clearing security and getting on the plane. You bag must be handed over to TSA, cleared, delivered back to the airline, and sent out to the plane... where they may have already shut the cargo doors since you mentioned that boarding was already in progress when you got to the airport.

In the minutes leading up to a flight, they must also finish up the final passenger list and submit the names of everyone on board, calculate weights, clear standby passengers, and accommodate any last minute seat changes. A late passenger means these steps be done over, which can delay the flight and all the people who managed to show up on time.

If there is a chance I will be cutting it close to departure time, I check in on my phone in advance and ensure I have just a carry on bag...
Posted by John Nicholson on 2013-07-04:
Welcome to the wonderful world of TSA and your friendly government and it's insane regulations. If it is any consolation, you might get lucky and be groped by the TSA on a future flight.
Posted by Ben There on 2013-07-05:
John Nicholson, the TSA and the government had nothing to with this complaint. Delta Air Lines sets its own policies for minimum check in times.

The TSA just screens bags and mans security check points, and they don't care how early or late you check in.
Posted by info352 on 2013-07-05:
you completely missed what John said. What he said was that the airline has to take account of how long it takes for TSA on average to screen a bag otherwise that bag will not make it to the plane. The average time is 10 minutes. After that the bag doesn't magically appear planeside, it has to be taken there by people who might be busy with other tasks. There are cut off times for very good reasons, I'm not sure why we are even arguing that.
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