Northwest Airlines Complaint - The Worst Service Ever
LITTLE ROCK ARKANSAS -- I would like to report my experience and concerns about what happened after Northwest flight 293 landed at 8:56pm in Little Rock, Arkansas on February 28, 2009. After waiting for our bags for more than 30 minutes I and 20-30 other passengers were told by a Northwest baggage handler at 9:40pm that there were no more bags coming. That person instructed us to go to the Northwest ticket counter to file lost baggage claims. For some reason Northwest Airlines has no lost baggage office at the Little Rock Airport.
Our large group left the baggage carousel and proceeded to the NWA ticket counter. When we got to the counter no NWA employees were present. After abut 15 minutes of waiting, many passengers grew agitated and restless, and they left the line to try to find someone to help. Some mentioned that lost baggage claims must be made before a passenger leaves the airport.
My wife left me in line and went to the Little Rock Airport customer care counter, and she asked the airport employee to page someone from Northwest Airlines to go to the ticket counter. That person spoke with someone by phone and reported to my wife that the Northwest employees “were cleaning the plane and would be at the ticket counter in about 10 minutes.” That was at 10:05pm. I was still standing in line at the Northwest ticket counter when my wife came back and told me what the airport customer care person had said. At that point we had all waited about 30 minutes for a Northwest employee to make an appearance, but no one came.
After about 45 minutes of waiting many passengers had left, but some passengers became so irritated that they went behind the Northwest ticket counter and began rifling through papers, using the computer, opening drawers, removing items and looking behind the ticket counter’s baggage conveyor into a room, all in an effort to get some help or perhaps vent frustration. There were Continental and US Air ticket counter people present who had to have seen this group of people breaching security but they ignored the situation.
I felt threatened and nervous about this activity, so I asked my wife to look for airport security or the police. She left the line and walked all parts of the airport that she had access to inside and out. There was a Little Rock Police Car parked at the front of the airport but no officer was in it. My wife finally contacted the same customer care person that she had spoken to earlier, and pleaded with her that there was a security breach and near riot going on at the NWA ticket counter and said “someone needs to get down there immediately”. The customer care person said that she would contact the airport manager again, and that he would contact the NWA employees who were cleaning the plane one more time and ask them to go to the counter.
I was the second person waiting in line that evening, and I finally left at 10:40pm after waiting in line for an hour. During that hour no NWA employees, no Little Rock police and no airport manager ever came to the counter. Some of the passengers were still rifling through things behind the counter, and one of the men when told that he might get arrested for what he was doing said that he didn’t care, and that he might break everything back there before he left.
I arrived home about 11:15pm, and I tried to call NWA customer service at 1800-225-2525. I waited on hold for nearly ½ hour and finally gave up. On Sunday morning I called another number on you website (800-745-9798) where I reached a real person. I briefly explained the situation and wanted to know what to do about reporting the lost checked bag. That NWA person said that I would have to go back to the airport to fill out a lost bag claim. I asked for the telephone number for the NWA counter at Little Rock Airport and the customer service person said that she wasn’t allowed to give that number to me. I asked her to call the counter at Little Rock Airport had have someone call me. She said that she couldn’t do that either. I asked her again to please help me, and she said that without a lost bag claim number there was nothing she could do. She said, “sir, I am in Minnesota. What do you think I can possibly do to help you retrieve your bag in Little Rock without a claim number.” With that remark I ended the call.
I received my checked bag two days later.