AirTran Airways Complaint - Customer service treated me like a welfare office refusing me food stamps
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- I flew Airtran yesterday and I will NEVER use their airline again. I arrived an hour in advance and they put me through a completely unnecessary "random security check" and allowed the plane to leave without me. (I suspect racial profiling, although of course that will be extremely difficult to substantiate! But I do happen to be of darker skin and sometimes mistaken for middle eastern, and wearing a scarf around my head, which I suppose could be misinterpreted for a sari).
They told me to take off my jacket, take off my blazar (so all I had on was a tank top with my bra straps showing), spread my arms, put my feet in an outline while they waved a metal detector all over me, patted me down, and ran all of my luggage through, rummaging through my belongings. Once they were finally satisfied, I raced down to the gate, only to find that they had let the plane leave at its departure time, which was 4 minutes before I was able to make it to the gate--no call to hold the plane for me, no nothing, even though I had purched non-refundable tickets through Expedia.com for this airline over 2 weeks prior and THEY had been responsible for my missed flight. I was on stand-by and forced to sit, uncalled, as a couple of their flights left, until they finally let me on a plane to Atlanta, GA. That's when the real trouble started. The customer service there was completely horrible. I asked that my stand-by flight in Atlanta be upgraded to confirmed because I had 3 children at home and their limited amount of flights would force me to wait until 9 pm that night, and if this flight didn't work out, til 11:30 am the next day. I also asked that the airline provide some kind of discount for making me miss my flight. The employee (John Anderson) stated very rudely that it was MY fault for missing the flight, because the agreement "clearly states" that "my responsibility as a customer" was to arrive 2 hours ahead of my flight time, not 1. I called his manager "Shannon" to speak with me, who was just as rude and told me there would be no possibility for a refund or discount for the trouble they had caused me. He said I was treating him with disrespect and he didn't have to do anything I asked of him. He blatantly refused to give me his own supervisor's name, or to go get his supervisor, as I asked him to. I was paying his salary by booking my flight with their airline, and he was treating me like a welfare recipient asking him for handouts. Finally, I was able to get on a flight home at 8 pm--when my original flight from Atlanta was supposed to have been at 10:30 AM.
I will NEVER fly this airline again, I talked to several other people that night having problems with them in Atlanta, not because of their flight service per se, but their lousy customer service. There was a ridiculous amount of passengers (more than I've ever seen on any flight before, and I travel fairly regularly) who had been placed on standby because they overbook flights so severely. They are the most unprofessional outfit I have ever seen.
I've sent an email to the company regarding this matter and I do expect the full names of these employees, an apology from the airlines AND from these employees, and some sort of reparations for the amount of time and suffering wasted to their incompetent service.
If I get no response, or another response to insult my intelligence, I will be pursuing the matter further.