America West Complaint - Customer Service at check in/Baggage service
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- My Girlfriend just had the worst travel experience on a New Year day. I am not sure if this is a rare occurrence or not but I definitely think America West need to be penalized for such a BAD service.
She boarded the flight in Baltimore, Maryland. Since she was moving to California, she had to carry a lot of stuff and hence her baggage was quite heavy. The baggage size limit was 50 pounds per baggage. One of her baggage was only 55 pounds. The other baggage was about 30 pounds. She had to shell out 50 dollars extra to get those extra 5 pounds into the flight. Thinking back, she could have shifted stuff from heavier suitcase to the lighter one but couldn’t the airline discount the fact that the total weight of 2 checked in luggage was less than 100 pounds??? The lighter suitcase had fragile things and it was packed carefully. She pleaded with them and explained why she couldn’t repack but Lo! The airline people won’t listen. This is ridiculous.
Her flight was supposed to leave BWI at 8.18am. The plane was on the runway and had started the run for take off when the captain figured out that one of the engines had failed to start due to electrical problems. I mean, what happened to the preflight checks? Couldn’t they have figured this out when the flight was leaving the boarding area????????? 2 and half hours later, when all the 4 engines were working, the captain casually mentioned that the flight was leaving to Phoenix, instead of Las Vegas. When the flight attendant corrected him, he mentioned that he had referred to the wrong charts!!!This shows how careless the captain was - first he didn’t do a good job on checking if the engine was ok or not and next he had the wrong chart!!!!!!!!!!!
Since the flight to Las Vegas was delayed for 2 hours, she couldn’t catch the connecting flight from Las Vegas to San Jose. What happened in Las Vegas airport for the next 8 hours completely amazes me. She was waiting in a long line to get the boarding pass for the next flight out of Las Vegas. Upon reaching the counter, without asking her preference, she was conveniently placed on a flight which was 12 hours later to San Jose. She was told that was her best chance of getting out although there were other earlier flights to San Francisco and San Jose (which were conveniently missed). The airline attendant mentioned that there was a flight leaving to Sacramento in 3 hours but was quick to mention that the airline will not pay for the transport from Sacramento to San Francisco. Later, she was placed on a flight to San Francisco at 6.20pm but baggage was conveniently sent to San Jose in a flight leaving at 11.56pm (we didn’t know this until the day after). She had requested the attendant to reroute the baggage to the SFO flight and she was given a printout stating that it was being done. She later confirmed (before she boarded her flight) with the flight attendant and she was told it was already rerouted and it can be picked up at SFO airport. Basically, the airline attendant provided the wrong information to her without actually finding out if the baggage was loaded in the correct flight or not. ON top of this, the flight to San Francisco was delayed by 2 hours. So, she had to spend a total of 8 hours at Las Vegas and still find her luggage routed to the wrong airport. TOTALLY UNPROFESSIONAL!
So, when she finally landed at SFO airport, we waited patiently for the luggage to come but in vain, of course. We lodged a complaint and were told that the luggage might go to San Jose. The office attendant appeared very certain that the luggage wouldn’t have been rerouted to SFO. Her exact words 'u know, even if they say the luggage will be rerouted, they probably wont'. It appears that this happens all the time. She told me to check with her in another one hour (around midnight) to see if she has located the luggage. I gave a call to the SFO office from 11.45 to 12pm (around 10 calls) and nobody picked up the phone. Very convenient indeed....
Since I stayed close to San Jose airport, I decided to give it a try and see if the luggage arrived there. When I went there, the baggage claim office attendant was very RUDE. She was like I have a lot of things going on here and I can’t help you. I was extremely angry at this response. Later she apologized for her behavior and she told me the baggage could come through in the last flight (at 1.30am) and she will definitely call us to tell us if the bags have arrived or not but she didn’t. I also called her from 1.30 to 1.45am but she never picked up the phone. The report that I had filed earlier had some mistakes and I had asked this office attendant to call SFO airport office to correct it. She said that she will do it as soon as possible but was never done. I left a message and was hoping someone will call us in the morning but nobody did.
Repeated calling in the morning also didn’t get any response. I had to drive to the airport (San Jose) and check if the bags had arrived. Before I left to the airport, I checked the website for baggage tracking and found that the baggage hasn’t arrived. I talked with the baggage claim office attendant at the airport in the morning and he told me that the tags are always immediately entered into the system upon receipt. 2 things puzzled me - Why wasn’t the website updated to show that the bags were recd and why didn’t the SFO airport or San Jose airport offices call me in my cell to let me know this. Did the attendant actually scan the tags on to the system??? I wouldn’t know this at all…
This is the worst service possible. Wrong information was provided all the time and we were made to go around hunting for our bags. America west has to retrain the staff definitely. If their motto is to satisfy customer requirements, they definitely are doing a very BAD job of it.