Delta – Flying Woes


Those of you who know me understand that I’m not a person who just lets a company do whatever they want to my purchase/service experience and not hear my feedback and know that I’m taking my business elsewhere. This time around, I had the most HORRIBLE experience with Delta last week. Instead of recreating everything that happened, here is the complaint that I sent to their customer service detailing the events. You be the judge on how you would react to this experience.

On December 20, 2012, I was scheduled to return home from a
business trip. My coworkers and I were all traveling Delta. One coworker
had the same return itinerary as me. When we arrived in Atlanta from
Charleston, SC, we were supposed to be on flight DL 109 leaving from
gate B32 at 5:50 p.m. When I arrived, we were told at the gate that the
5:50 p.m. flight had been moved and we would now have to go to gate T1
for an 8:15 p.m. flight. Not only were we told this at the gate, but I
also checked your web site, which said the same thing – 8:15 p.m. at
gate T1. My co-worker and I stopped to get something to eat then made
our way to gate T1 only to be told that the gate HADN’T changed and that
the flight had already left at 6:15 p.m. We were then told that we would
have to go to customer service and be put on another flight. It was
explained to us that there was a technical error in the system that
magically made the gate switch on a flight that we knew was already
overbooked, which seemed ominously convenient to me. When we got to
customer service, we were told that we would be put on “stand by” for
the 8:40 p.m. fight that was leaving from Gate A5. And not only that, it
was the last flight out to Seattle for the evening. I told the
representative that it wasn’t good enough for us, the error was Delta’s
fault and we HAD to be on a flight to Seattle that night. We were told
to go to gate A5 and talk to the representatives there. When we arrived
at gate A5, we were told – very unapologetically – by the gate
supervisor that we were on stand by, nothing would be done unless people
didn’t show up for the flight, and that if we couldn’t get on, we would
have to take the first flight to Seattle on Friday, 12/21/2012. I
explained again that this wasn’t good enough because my coworker was
leaving for Europe the next day and my vacation was starting – all
because of Delta’s technical error that caused this snafu. The gate
supervisor was stoic, unapologetic, un-empathetic and uncaring. How he
could be responsible for dealing with the public is beyond me. Because
of his uncaring manner, I did lose my temper because of the insult to
injury – first Delta’s errors cause us to miss our flight then the gate
supervisor can offer no empathetic suggestions, not even saying he’s
sorry. This is definitely a person who should be required to go through
customer service training again to develop his soft skills in dealing
with upset customers who have been screwed over by Delta’s errors. Not
all passengers showed up for the flight so thankfully my coworker
– the one who was leaving for Europe on 12/21 – was able to get a seat
on the flight. I, on the other hand, had to spend the night in Atlanta,
completely ruining the beginning of my vacation and causing additional
stress to my young daughter who was at home, crying and waiting for me
to come home. Thankfully Delta had the decency to provide me a bed to
sleep in for the night, but only further insulted me in this situation
by not even offering me a toiletry kit for the night (I had no clean
clothes or anything) and the biggest insult being a food voucher that
was only for $6. I don’t know if you all thought I was going to go to
McDonald’s to get a Happy Meal for dinner or what, but on top of the
horror of convenient technical errors, a missed flight, a rude gate
supervisor and forced stay in Atlanta ruining my vacation – a $6 voucher
for dinner was a slap in the face. This is absolutely the worst flying
experience I have ever had and will NEVER fly Delta again, nor will my
family; and I will be more than happy to tell friends about the
experience whenever given the chance. I don’t know of any response you
could give that would salve the pain of this experience, but if you do
respond, please do NOT send an unpersonalized blurb that only spouts
company policy in treating people like dollar signs instead of human
beings. If that is your intent, don’t bother responding. It will only
make the situation worse.

Delta did respond and at least the agent did say he way sorry. Unfortunately, all that he offered was a detailed explanation of their policy (not helpful to my situation) and stated that he added Sky miles to my account (a ludicrous, baseless offer since I said I was never flying with them again).

We all have choices. Some people, like the person who responded to the review of my apartments, are willing to take their “lumps” and accept that life isn’t fair. Even when “life isn’t fair,” you have a choice. You don’t have to continue to give your money to companies that treat you in a manner that you feel is “unfair.” Companies will continue to treat people this way as long as customers continue to “take their lumps.” If you’re not getting the service that you paid for, go somewhere else.

You have a choice. Rage against it, y’all.

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