Air Canada Complaint - Air Canada Left Us Stranded in Australia
My wife and I flew Air Canada to Australia this month. We were going to Australia to represent Canada at the World Life Saving Championships. Unknowing to us, and not written on our itinerary from Air Canada, we had to pass through the United States (Hawaii) for a re-fueling stop. My wife is traveling on an older Irish passport that is non-machine readable and this caused us a lot of problems when we had to pass through US Immigration. There is a new law in the US that denies entry of all holders of non-machine readable passports into the country! We almost weren't allowed to carry onto Australia because Air Canada hadn't bothered to inform us that we were stopping in the US! Luckily, my wife was granted a temporary 14 day visa in which she had to sign her life away (e.g. signed papers that acknowledged she was not entitled to a lawyer should anything happed while she was in the US!).
We spent the first two days of our trip to Australia fighting with Air Canada over the phone about how we were going to get back home! This was all going on while we were trying to prepare for our competition! Air Canada were telling us that we had to go and visit either the US or Irish embassies to arrange for either a visa or new passport - none of this was feasible given the fact that we were trying to get ready for an international competition and represent Canada! Finally, after several phone calls we convinced AC that they should re-route us back to Canada. They did and it turned the 33 hour flight into a 48 hour + flight that had us go through New Zealand and Japan!
After all of this occurred we were both angry and ashamed to be associated with an airline that has such poor customer service and carried the symbol of Canada around the world! I will use up my Air Canada points generated from this trip and will fly Air Canada one last time - I will then cut up my AeroGold CIBC card up and will be done with the airline for good.
No more Air Canada for me!!