Air France Complaint - The whole story of how Air France Avoids Finding your bags
ROISSY CDG CEDEX -- January 7, 2010
To: President Delta Airlines Richard Anderson
VP Baggage Delta Airlines
Chairman Air France Jean-Cyril Spinetta
VP Baggage Air France
Wall Street Journal
Frequent Flyer Magazine
First Class Flyer Newsletter
` US Department of Transportation
Re: Serial Baggage Failures and Lack of Response by Air France and CDGAF34188
Grab a coke or a cup of coffee because this is a long message.
A little background: We are both Platinum on NWA or Delta as it is now. Some of these events took place from NWA flights but in all instances Air France (AF) was responsible for baggage handling and tracking. Our only 2 grandchildren live in the small village of Breux Jouy, south of Paris about 45 minutes out; we go to see them 2 or 3 times a year; we have been to France 43 times, always either on NWA, Delta, or when they were partners, Continental. Ben has over 1.7 million body in the seat miles and Jean has 1.1 Million Miler miles, we are exactly the kind of customer you want and want to keep, yet we have been constantly abused by Air France and their incompetent baggage handling and the fact that neither NWA or Delta can help us.
Here is the story but this is not all the times AF has lost our bags:
Sept. 2, 2008 bag lost at CDG from flight Memphis-Amsterdam-Paris…numerous calls finally on 3rd bag is “out for delivery today” waited up till 12 A.M. but no luck.
Sept. 3, 2008 Called AF again…should be tomorrow.
Sept. 4, 2008 Called AF again…should be tomorrow.
Sept. 5, 2008 Bag came at noon. Only 3 days lost.
But all of these calls involved numerous calls to the number we are given…and on hold for 10 to 13 minutes and then disconnected. Probably spent 5 or more hours trying to find this bag. Oh well we should not have planned on doing anything else but calling AF.
Dec. 17-18, 2008 Memphis-Detroit-Paris
Jean’s bag did not arrive; took 1 ½ hours to do the paperwork
Dec. 19, 2008 AF can’t find bag and the Paris NWA number simply doesn’t answer; spent all day trying to get Jean’s bag, but no one knows where it is; NWA says it is in CDG and AF says “have not been notified” this phrase will occur over and over again; No one can help and no one is responsible, really frustrating.
Sat. Dec. 20, 2008 no help on bag; AF wants us to fill out a form of the contents; NWA no help; called all afternoon and NWA says bag is at CDG, but no one is responsible to do anything.
Sunday December 21, 2008 message on James Ward’s phone (number we leave for AF to call); spent 1 hour on hold and 4 times disconnected but finally got someone who says delivery today or tomorrow. Had my daughter in law Chantana Ward call the delivery service and speak to them in French; they say delivery will be Monday between 8 and 1.
Monday December 22, 2008 bag comes at 11 A.M. The only thing that works for AF is the delivery service they use.
So in summary we spent 4 days of our limited time trying to get Jean’s clothes and a few Christmas presents that were in her bag. We leave for Memphis early on Dec. 23rd and got the bag on the 22nd.
June 3-4 2009 Memphis-Minneapolis-Paris terrible service on NWA; but miracle all the bags arrived. Took 25 hours to get home on June 15th, partly because NWA did not put enough fuel in plane to avoid weather in Memphis area…don’t they have weather radar?
December 18-19, 2009 MEM-AMS-CDG…NW# 256/KL #1233 missed; AF 1741
Well, the pilots did not arrive early as they should to check out the plane, so when they did check it out there was a maintenance problem; so plane left late, no tail wind, so arrived in AMS late and we could not make our connection on KLM.
So they put us on Air France (oh, no!) with a 3 hour layover. Did you know that the AF lounge does not honor Delta Sky Club cards except for 1 person?? Bet you did not know that…and even though you came in business class they don’t care…but nice lady let us in the lounge anyway. Always carry your platinum card with you when dealing with Air France.
Arrived at CDG at 4 on Sat. Dec. 19th instead of 11:45. No bags. Checked 4 one full of toys and games for grandchildren. Long line at baggage office finally got forms filled out. File CDGAF34188.
Sunday Dec. 20, 2009 begin the telephone route 5 times; on hold 10 to 13 minutes and then disconnect. Website is a joke. It has no information and you cannot even alter or add to the information they have for your profile even though there is a button for “update information”. Finally get someone who says 2 bags are at CDG. We had told them to hold the bags there and we would come get them as it usually takes 1 to 2 days for the delivery service to schedule the bags to Breux Jouy the little village where we are. So, thinking the bags are there we go back to CDG and wait in long lines to get a permit to enter the baggage area and then the line at baggage service office (2 hours) and no the bags are not there as they have not been “notified” (there is that phrase again).
Monday December 21, 2009. No info on bags early (called 4 times and disconnected AF takes no calls before 9 a. m.and finally get someone) website still says “searching for bags”; The situation is this: silver bag found; black and brown “no confirmation”; blue (Jean’s clothes) still searching. A call that they have found one and will deliver 6-10 pm and it comes at 9 pm.
Tuesday December 22, 2009. Five calls and disconnects before one connection. but finally get someone who says all bags will be cleared by tonight; website has no new info and on the bag that has been delivered there is still a comment “out for delivery” they don’t record when it is delivered, because guess what “they don’t care”. Call at 8 pm and no information. We post a comment about “how Air France handles lost luggage on My3cents.com.
Wednesday December 23, 2009. Four calls and disconnects. At 10 A.M. get a representative and she goes over same words as all the other times and cannot tell me what is happening with bags and there is no supervisor. I ask when bags will be delivered and she says “when they are confirmed” we go round and round over fact that they don’t know anything about where bags are or where the blue bag is on the planet. She says “I am tired of this conversation” and hangs up! Call later in day and representative says will send message to CDG to confirm the two bags so they can be sent out. Disconnected only twice. About 6 pm call the Platinum line (full fare international rate toll call) at NWA to see if they can do anything. They send an e-mail to MEM, MSP, ATL, CDG, DET asking if anyone has any personal contact at CDG that could help us. No answer. James Ward files a e-mail with Air France reference number 4127126001.
Thursday December 24, 2009; 11 A.M. “we know nothing about whether the bags are at CDG or not” the same as last 4 days; now they want a description of the contents of the blue bag; we have the form but they want it FAXED to them…not e mail, no they don’t have that just a fax. Wow this is the dark ages. Then representative says “sorry I can’t hear you” and hangs up. They have more ways to avoid doing anything that you can count.
December 25, 2009; no calls to AF today and website still same.
December 26, 2009. usual disconnects; representative says no news and we can do nothing. NWA Platinum line says we can’t help you call Air France. What a great way to treat a regular customer.
December 27, 2009. Website says brown bag out for delivery and it comes at 2 pm; website at noon says another bag out for delivery and will be picked up today at 3:30 P.M. We emphasize that we have to have the bag today as we are leaving tomorrow. Bag comes in the P.M. (Jean’s clothes).
But wait, didn’t you check 4 bags? Yes and we got three after 8 days. The black bag with the toys and games? Who knows maybe it is on its way back to Memphis, but we suspect some baggage handler gave his children some extra Christmas gifts like the Wall Street Journal article reported a week before we left. But, can’t you keep checking the website? No, there is no longer an active file on CDGAF34188.
The problem is that you cannot find out anything. You are completely helpless and at the mercy of their phone and web system. I am sure there will be excuses, circumstances etc. but to have this happen over and over means there is something seriously wrong with NWA and Delta passing off the responsibility for bags to Air France and not leaving some way for us to contact either airline and get any help.
Would we ever travel on AF? No but we would not have to begin with if NWA crew had show up on time and done checks like they were supposed to and we made the KLM flight, so we have some “circumstances” too.
What to do? Institute some sort of communication between the head of baggage at AF and Delta so when something like this happens we can get an explanation of what is going on instead of “waiting for confirmation”.
And the big question is: WHERE IS BAG 603433, BLACK ROLLER BAG FULL OF CHRISTMAS PRESENTS AND TOYS?? There is no access as of Jan. 5th 2010 to CDGAF34188 any more on the Air France website. Any ideas?
Will any of you do anything? Probably not, but a lot of people are going to read this and the summary which will be on my facebook page and posted on My3cents.com.