Northwest Airlines Complaint - 8 Hours In Line At Narita Before Empty Plane Strands Us!
TOKYO -- I was one of the very unfortunate passengers to be in Tokyo during the "Meltdown of Northwest Airlines-Narita"! I was to be on a scheduled flight to Singapore, that evening. My girlfriend (tahnkfully on another airline) left with no hitches, at 5:30, while I was left to stand in quite possibly the longest line in aviation history, and if not, surely in my 35+years of travelling.
Because no NWA employees were walking the lines explaining the situation, I was only privvy to the fact that flights had been cancelled the previous day, by speaking with others in line. Here was the first problem: NO INFORMATION! After the line wound around and around for hours, angry passengers started jumping-yes jumping, into the security area, screaming at each other and staff, and generally getting fed up. I was only bound for an Asian destination, so surely there would be no problem for me right? Wrong. At one point, the passengers going to Singapore, Pusan, Manilla, and a China destination were asked to come forward. A mad rush ensued, and a choked security area got even worse! Again, why not 4 lines, one for each destination, and an orderly check in process...this was not to be...4 hours later, after all flights were delayed, I was finally at the check in..only after begging a solitary NWA employee to tell me where we were supposed to stand for the Singapore flight. As I gave my information to the girl at check in, and she asked me which seat I wanted, and I thought all was well, a grave look came across her face, as she informed me that my flight was just then taking off! Without passengers! I was told that because of the early morning flight from Sing, the crew had to get there!!! Forget about us passengers! So, as this was the last flight out of Narita to Singapore that evening, we'd have to find ourselves our own accomodation, and meals(after 8 hours, no bathroom or food).
Worse, they could not get me confirmed on another flight until Thursday..5 days later!! I was floored. Never in my life, and I travel 60% of the time, have I seen such a poorly handled crisis in my life! And in Japan, no less! As I left to find a hotel for the night (by this time it is 11PM)..the next of several fights broke out, sending the now posted police officers fling into action yet again.
Needless to say, I took another airline home, and will not be taking Noorthwest anytime in the future. If you travel as much as I do, this kind of treatment is not what I expect from an International airline, and it was an embarassing scene to witness as well, as the ugliest sides of humans came boiling to the surface..Shame on NWA...I hope you learn from this huge debacle.