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Total Lack of Customer Care
By -

ST. PAUL, MICHIGAN -- I am writing concerning travel that occurred on Thursday, August 20th, 2009. I booked flights for my two children, and their significant others, on Northwest Airlines on March 28th, 2009. I booked the flights far in advance to ensure that they could all attend their step-sister's wedding and all of the activities associated with the wedding in Bar Harbor, Maine.

Their Flight numbers are as follows: Thursday August 20th, 2009 Flight: NW 1178, Departs St. Louis-Lambert Int'l, MO (STL) at 10:10AM Arrives Detroit-Wayne County Int'l, MI (DTW) at 12:50PM. Thursday August 20th, 2009 Flight: NW3863, Departs Detroit-Wayne County Int'l, MI (DTW) at 1:30PM Arrives Bangor-Int'l, ME (BGR) at 3:32 PM.

The problem comes in with the airlines. Flight # NW1178 left (STL) and landed at DTW at 12:54 PM on August 20th. They were on the ground. We were tracking the flight status because we were picking them up at Bangor Int'l Airport. They had to wait to get a gate. They all four of them plus 3 additional passengers arrived at their connecting flight before the plane left and at least several minutes before the scheduled departure time. They would not let any of them board the plane.

The airline was aware that their flight was on the ground and should have ensured that all of the passengers made their connection. It was not bad weather it was no act of god, it was simple inefficiency and lack of customer care. Instead none of them were allowed to get on the plane. There are limited options to get to Bangor, Maine.

The result was that they could not get on another flight until the next day, 24 hours and the same flight. However, Northwest Airlines did put their luggage on that flight. Now they are captive in Detroit with no luggage. Northwest said they were not responsible for paying for their hotel, and for the four of them, gave them 100.00 in Airport vouchers for food and told them that they could stay for free at the airport.

Meanwhile back in Bar Harbor, Maine. They missed a family get together on Thursday evening, August 20th. Additionally they missed the family whale watching expedition the next morning. There were two rooms reserved for them in Bar Harbor, Maine, which also were not occupied. I cannot tell you how disappointing it was to not have them arrive on schedule.

These plans were made for a long time, and we had been looking forward to having all five of our children and their spouses and significant others together for a long weekend. Our children live all over the country and it is not often that they are all together, so this was especially difficult. If bad weather had been the problem, that is something not under the control of Northwest Airlines. Ensuring passengers made their connections when the flight is on the ground is under the control of Northwest Airlines.

I made the reservations almost five months in advance yet Northwest must have given their seats to other passengers instead of allowing them to get on the plane which was still on the ground and did not depart the gate for at least 15 additional minutes. Otherwise there was no reason for them not to get on that plane as I mentioned their luggage was put on the plane so that tells you there was ample time for them to get on that plane. I expect restitution from Northwest Airlines for this total lack of basic customer service. They were not even treated kindly at the gate and were pretty much told there was nothing they could do about it.

There is something Northwest Airlines can do and that is refund the cost of the tickets. The Airline did not deliver the service that was expected and therefore I expect that at the very least. There is no price that can be put on the fact that they missed out on 24 hours of this special weekend.

Let me contrast this to an experience that My husband and I had with Northwest early on a Saturday morning, October 27th, 2007. We were flying from St. Louis to Chicago and then on to Ottawa, Canada. Our flight in St. Louis left over an hour late due to a flight attendant being ill, and they had to get a replacement for her. By the time we landed in Chicago, we only had 10 minutes to make it to another terminal across the tarmac to get to our next flight. They held the flight, when we arrived at the gate they said you must be the **. I don't understand why the same courtesy was not extended to my children. It was a much more significant trip and had lasting results.

Northwest Airlines needs to understand that this type of customer treatment and lack of care has long reaching effects. The airline should always strive to ensure that passengers make their connections if their flights are on the ground in time. There is no reason for this type of treatment. I called Customer Service and was treated rudely again, the customer service representative would not let me finish explaining my complaint. I did get upset and he hung up the phone. Distressed customer.

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The Worst Service Ever
By -

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 your 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.

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Spend your hard earned money on an airline that actually deserves your business
By -

I thought I got a great deal on my flight from LAX to ICN (South Korea) on Northwest, a part of Delta Airlines. Little did I know, the service quality was going to be so horrible. If you're in economy, forget about asking for anything beyond what they give you. More than half the flight attendants were rude and don't realize that the money we pay for our plane tickets helps pay their salaries. They should reconsider their profession in customer service. They're doing a bad job representing Northwest/Delta.

We were on flight 302 from Tokyo to LAX. There was an older Japanese female flight attendant with bleached blond hair with more attitude than I've seen in all flight attendants put together, although she was friendly towards and joking around with the males on the staff. The worst one of them all was a young Asian male with long spiky hair. The only pleasant flight attendant was a nice, elderly American gentleman who had trouble hearing.

We pressed the FA button to ask for some water b/c we were sitting next to an aisle sitter who had fallen asleep and we didn't want to disturb him by getting up and asking for water. The rude Japanese flight attendant came and gave us water with some attitude on the side. While my bf was waiting for the bathroom, he saw the water pitcher on the cart and poured some into his cup. The young Asian male FA immediately stopped him and told him that was only for business class passengers and that we needed to ask for water.

Maybe if asking for something was met with a little less attitude, we would want to talk to the FA's. When did water become for business class passengers only? With all the recent and upcoming layoffs, I'm thinking Northwest/Delta needs to reconsider employing people who make their company look bad. I know we will never fly Northwest/Delta again, and we will make sure we tell others about our recent, horrible experiences.

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Impossible to contact via phone
By -

Just wanted to share my displeasure with NWA. We are flying out of town today, my wife, our daughter (under 2 years old) and myself. We have 3 seats reserved since we wanted our daughter to have more room for the long flight. Long story short, I wanted to make sure we had 3 seats together.

Logged on to and tried to reserve the seats last night. It showed a few groups of 3 seats available at the time. It would not let me. It kept assigning us random seats all over the plane. So I decide to call NWA and see what was going on. I can't talk to anyone. They were experiencing high call volume and told me to try again later. Fine. It was the evening so I thought I would try this morning.

So this morning comes, I log in to the website. All the seats are now gone. I can't change them. My 15-month-old daughter is now seated alone in the back of the plane. Nice. They know she is under 2 since we had to specify it at the time of reservations.

Anyway, back to my complaint. I try to call NWA again. This time I get through and get their automated response system. It takes me through a series of hoops where it makes me talk to the computer, and the computer tries very hard to understand me by repeating it back 5 times. Each time it messes something else up and starts all over. Finally the computer gets my information correct, and then tells me they are having system problems and they will connect me to an operator. Great! That is all I wanted to begin with.

A few seconds go by, I get a message that they are experiencing high volume of calls and cannot take my call at this time. It hangs up on me. I spent 20 minutes battling the automated system for them to tell me they can't help me. Nice. Hopefully we can get at least two seats together when we check in at the airport. Otherwise I'm going to leave a bottle with the flight attendant and tell her good luck. ;-)

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Northwest Airlines Botches Unaccompanied Minor Travel
By -

My six-year old son flew for the first time as an unaccompanied minor on Northwest Flight 1549 from Minneapolis to JFK. I was repeatedly assured by NW employees on the phone and at the Minneapolis airport that my son's mother would be allowed and expected to meet him at his gate at JFK. She arrived an hour before the flight with her ID and was told to wait in a specified room and our son would be brought to her.

When she informed the NW employees that she was assured that she would be able to meet him at the gate she was sent to see no fewer than five other employees. When she was finally allowed to go to his gate she was told that my son had been placed on a bus and was being taken to a waiting area at another terminal. He had been assured that his mother would meet him. He was finally brought to her half an hour after his flight had landed. He was, thankfully, fine, resilient lad that he is, but his mother was understandably upset by the events as was I.

After I contacted NW Customer Support at a non-800 number and waited nearly fifteen minutes for an agent, I received an apology and the offer of a hundred dollar flight voucher for a future flight. I explained to the agent ** that I was interested in neither.

What I wanted was for him to take down my complaint and to have someone research the situation and get back to me with an explanation of what happened and why. He informed me that my complaint was being duly noted and would be passed along to the relevant people so that this would not happen again. I responded that my confidence level in NW assurances was not high and wanted someone to get back to me. He said that was not possible but that I could file my complaint online and someone would get back to me.

Surely, it was not impossible for me to receive the service for which I asked, simply inconvenient for him and/or NW. They prefer me to email. I preferred, after their botching the treatment of my son the unaccompanied six year old minor, to speak to a live person and then receive a response, which could have been via email, explaining the how and why of what happened and what steps were being taken to rectify the situation. I didn't want a hollow apology nor a flight voucher from an airline so unwilling to address my request after their screw up.

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Northwest is no longer my carrier
By -

I had flown with Northwest for many years while in the military, and then after. I swore by them, and would always tell anyone to fly with Northwest. I would not ever again. We went from Oregon Wisconsin to Memphis, with our final destination being Montego Bay, Jamaica. Our flight in Memphis scheduled to leave at 10 A.M. was cancelled due to crew. 200 and some odd people all going on vacation, honeymoons, or in the case of my brother-in-law going there to get married.

There were 13 of us on that flight who had planned this trip for over a year. NWA cancelled the flight for crew that day in Memphis. Oh yes, they put us all in hotels as there were no other crews or airlines available. Yes, they gave us a meal voucher that would not cover anything, much less make up for the all-inclusive resort we were to have been staying at. They made the bride and groom be forced to be married in Memphis in a makeshift ceremony due to them not being in Jamaica for 48 hours prior to their wedding.

Beyond all of that, they really ruined a vacation for my wife and I, basically ruining 2 days of our vacation, and all we got for it was an extremely rude manager at Memphis, no seat assignments on an overbooked US Airways flight (Kudos to US Airways for making it right and doing EVERYTHING they could to get us there), and a very polite "Go pile sand" letter from the complaint department.

I am in the most polite tone going to say and spread the word just as much as I used to when I would say 'go Fly NWA'. Well now I am saying I will never fly them again, nor would I ever recommend them. I will also NEVER fly Delta as they are now partnered. What a shame that a company can treat its customers this way and not even care. In this time when the economy is the way it is, I find it shocking that an airline would act in this manner.

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They Are Crooks!
By -

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA -- Okay so tell me why we all 9 family members booked tickets to visit D.C. to go to my uncle's wedding on Friday, & today is now Thursday and our flight WAS for Wednesday. We missed it & thought it was midnight Wed. but it was midnight Tue. which confused us (ESPECIALLY MY PARENTS & RELATIVES WHO BARELY SPEAK ENGLISH) & the associates said that they'd be confused too.

But when we called customer service we go trying to get another flight they tell me that NO we have not missed it, they tell my sister we have and they tell her we need to pay $7,000 dollars first then they tell her we need to. And then after 30 min of being on the phone he changes his mind and says "oh the prices were just raised to $11,000 DOLLARS from SFO to DCA." WOW ARE YOU FREAKING SERIOUS???

So then they go "no it's $150 per person plus $30.00" which is still too much but when we said OK then he jumped up to $8,000. At this point we are PISSED & now we can't find a cheap flight to fly out today noon so we can get there in time for the pre-wedding dinner & the wedding the next day, not to mention everyone is MAD at me for booking it with these CROOKS. They do this to SCAM MONEY!!! I recommend everyone to NEVER EVER USE NORTHWEST AS THEIR AIRLINES!!!

People like them should rot somewhere trying to use us people that make an honest living unlike them scamming innocent people. I swear anyone who flies with this airline is almost never satisfied because they are scam artists. And we don't get our money back so we just spent almost $3,000 for no reason & now we have to pay $500 per person to go & we don't have that kind of money. You don't want to know how much I cried, I still am. It's heartbreaking how heartless people are. We work hard for our money & there's people like NWA who screw us over. Shame that I live in a world like this.

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Incompetent Agents and Horrible Customer Service
By -

I was scheduled to fly from OKC to IND on 1/28/09, but I am 26 weeks pregnant and very sick. I have a physician's note documenting that I cannot fly. On 1/27/09 I spoke to a NWA.com and reservations agent to see my best course of action to reschedule my flight. I was told that I could cancel my flight and would have until 1/28/10 to reschedule a trip. I specifically asked the reservations agent if I would lose any ticket value or pay any fees for this change. I was told by the agent that I would not. I now understand that this information was incorrect, but it is clearly what I was told.

Today I tried to rebook my flight for Feb. 5 to Feb. 12. When I search flights 6385/6104 outbound and 6284/6339 return on NWA.com, the total price of the flight is $238.90. My e-cert value is $226.89. Given what I was told by the reservations agent, I expected the cost of the ticket to be $12.01, but the cost to exchange the ticket is $1390.02.

I immediately contacted the reservations department to try to resolve the situation. I spoke to an agent and to a supervisor named **, neither were friendly or helpful. When I asked ** if I could speak to her supervisor, I was told that there was nobody higher than her within NWA that could help with this situation.

To say the least, I am extremely frustrated with this situation. I understand that the information that I was given was incorrect, but it is not my fault that I received false information. If I had been given the correct information, I would have used the weather waiver option and moved my outbound flight at no fee. I hope that you can assist me by waiving the reschedule fee to book a roundtrip between OKC and IND from Feb. 5-12. Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

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Northw-Ors-St Proved It Again
By -

OAHU, HAWAII -- Let me start by saying I am a Minneapolis native, and though I've lived in San Diego for 20 years, I still do my best to support companies from my hometown. Unfortunately, time and again, Northwest has proven to be the most unfriendly, uncooperative company I have ever come across. We just had another experience that has finally broke this camel's back. My family and I ended up spending the night on a cold cement floor on the outside of the Oahu airport instead of getting on our flight which didn't leave for another 4 hours after we arrived at the airport. There was a complete blackout in Oahu and it caused some major chaos.

We had come on the last flight allowed in from Kauai. When we went to the "mainland terminal" to catch our flight to LAX the employees refused to allow us to get to the gate, because it was "closed" even though the flight could not go anywhere until the control tower had power again. When we finally got a supervisor, he literally threw a hissy fit, said "I've had a really stressful day. I can't take this. I'm outta here" and left. I doubt his stress included laying his head on a cement floor that night. As we lay there, cold, thirsty and tired, I could hear our flight take off at 3 am. NWA refused to help us in ANY way.

They would not try to get us an earlier flight the next day on any other airline--including Delta (the only flight from Oahu to LAX is at 11:10 pm) and they basically said, "go find a nice spot on the floor". I WILL NEVER USE NWA AGAIN. The employees are treated like crap, taking pay cut after pay cut while their CEO get multi-million dollar bonuses. It's no wonder they treat their customers like crap. I finally got some resolution, but from Hawaiian Airlines. They were absolutely phenomenal. We've decided that no matter the cost difference, the next time we fly to Hawaii, we are use Hawaiian Air.

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Northwest Is the Very Worst
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

This isn't quite recent but bear with me. A few years back I went cross-country on Northwest and this was the first time I've ever flew. Halfway across the flight, I asked for some coffee. The flight attendant glared at me and look at me like I was Garbage (I never did get any coffee)! Then I was struggling with my luggage, told me to get my act together! Is this the professional service they are supposed to show their customers!? I tried calling their so-called customer service, was put on hold for over an hour then hung up on!! The only way to get even is to tell people NEVER FLY NORTHWEST!!! I HOPE THEY GO OUT OF BUSINESS!!!

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Northwest Airlines Rating:
Star Empty star Empty star Empty star Empty star
1.0 out of 5, based on 1 ratings and
87 reviews & complaints.
Contact Information:
Northwest Airlines
5101 Northwest Dr.
St. Paul, MN 55121
612-726-2331 (ph)
www.nwa.com
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