a lesson in customer care by Emirates airlines

if all airlines in the world followed Emirates airlines’ customer care policy i wouldn’t be surprised if people stopped flying and went back to camel back caravans

here is Emirates airlines response to an extremely bad travel experience i have had with them last month, basically everything that could go wrong with the flight went wrong and instead of trying to ease the pain they are just adding insult to injury

the response can be summarized to: well, unfortunately we only care about business and first class ticket holders, but that you for flying with us. but hey judge for yourself

23 April 2012

 

Mr xxxxxxxx

Email: xxxxxxxx

 

Dear Mr xxxxxx,

 

Thank you for visiting Customer Affairs on 3 April.

 

Please accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience you and xxxxxxxx experienced due to the delayed departure of flight EK651, from Colombo to Dubai, on 2 April. Our Daily Operations Report shows that this flight was delayed for 6 hours and 16 (which meant we were stranded at the airport for more than 8 hours) minutes, due to the late arrival of the incoming aircraft from Dubai, which was attributed to technical difficulties with the operating aircraft.

 

I do agree that our passengers are inconvenienced when flights are delayed. Whilst we make every effort to transport passengers according to planned schedules, sometimes operational necessities/technical difficulties cause changes to these schedules. When this happens, we do our utmost to minimise passenger inconvenience.

 

Flights are only operated when our Engineers tell us that it is safe to do so.  Emirates will never compromise on the safety of our passengers and crew.

 

I do regret to learn of your disappointment when you were not advised of this delay.

 

Normally, in line with our operating policy, lounge access is not provided to our Blue Skywards members travelling in Economy class. However, as a gesture of goodwill, our Airport Services Manager provided you an access to Sri Lankan Airlines lounge (big fat lie, we were taken to the staff lunch area and were left there for the full 8 hours. we were denied access to the 4 very nice Sri Lankan airlines lounges as we didn’t hold a Sri Lankan airlines ticket. this said place we were dumped at served expired food which gave us severe allergies for 10 days after)  for the waiting period in Colombo. I regret if you were unhappy with this arrangement.

 

I am concerned to note your concerns regarding access to Emirates Business class lounge at Colomboairport. I wish to inform you that the lounge is exclusively for passengers travelling in Business class (a total of 2 people were travelling in Business class that same day, I am sure they wouldn’t have minded if we shared the 1 bench in that lounge)

 

I note that you were unhappy that you were not upgraded to Business class on a complimentary basis. I would like to advise you that upgrades are given only in times of operational necessity.  Furthermore, upgrades are given with great reluctance, as we do not upgrade as a matter of course, out of consideration for passengers who pay the First or Business class fare. (out of the whole flight only 10 passengers were Skywards members they were all treated as cheap cattle. (We explained that the 8 hour airport wait was proceeded with a 3 hour drive and that we had to attend to jobs early the next day, and that a complimentary upgrade -to an empty Business class- would give us some much needed rest on the4 hour flight back to Dubai. not saying that after all the suffering it would make us feel that Emirates cares)

 

I am advised that our Contact Centre staff in Dubai, was unable to upgrade you and xxxxxx to Business class, as there were not enough miles in xxxxxx Skywards account.

 

It is of further concern to learn that you discovered your surfboard in a damaged condition on your arrival atColombo airport, when you travelled on flight EK348 to Colombo on 23 March 2012 (they forgot to mention the full damage report, it was mildly damaged on the way to Colombo and then irrecoverable damage was made to it on the flight to Dubai)

 

I wish to advise you that surfboards should be robustly packed, following the below precautions, which are clearly stated on our website, www.emirates.com. (exactly what was done on both flights)

 

Fins should always be removed, or, if they cannot be removed, should be firmly packed with polystyrene foam. Both nose and tail should have bubble-wrap or neoprene foam attached for protection. The rails (sides of the board) should have cardboard down the sides to absorb shock. The board should be packed in a properly padded surf-bag. (errrr, seriously???!!!!!! how stupid do you think we are)

 

Our Conditions of Carriage, Article 8.7.6, which forms a part of your ticket contract states that passengers must ensure that checked baggage is sufficiently robust and well secured to withstand the usual and normal rigours of carriage by air without sustaining damage. (and again what the hell do you think we did???!!! plus it was checked by your staff at departure and arrival)

 

Furthermore, your claim is governed by an International Treaty known as the Montreal Convention 1999, which has been ratified by the countries where you began and ended your journey. 

 

Under the Montreal Convention, Article 17, paragraph 2, the carrier is not liable if and to the extent that the damage resulted from the inherent defect, quality or vice of the baggage.  Therefore, we are unable to consider your claim for the surfboard.(bla bla bla bla)

 

Nevertheless, we remain concerned at your overall disappointment and wish to take this opportunity to restore your faith in Emirates. Therefore, as a gesture of goodwill, without prejudice or admission of liability, Emirates is pleased to credit 10,000 complimentary miles each, to your and xxxxxx respective Skywards accounts.(seriously 10,000 miles????!!!!!!!!! what the hell am I supposed to do with that? a flight to another GCC capital costs at least double the airmiles for an economy fair. and that damaged/broken surfboard has to be replaced where is the money for that Emirates?)

 

Thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention, and for allowing me the opportunity to respond. We appreciate your support as our Blue Skywards members, and look forward to welcoming you and xxxxxxon board our flights again.(not happening anytime soon)

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Amjad Khan

Customer Affairs

now seriously………………….i am lost for words, these guys still haven’t figured it out. they didn’t see all the European airlines fall out of the sky the past 3 years until they cleaned their customer care strategy and started paying attention to their customers, all of their customers (economy class or first class, a customer is a customer point). they still didn’t figure out that its is with economy class flyers that they will stay in business

but hey who am i to talk, i’m only an economy seat buyer, plus Emirates don’t seem to need or want customers their business is keeping afloat with only their cargo service bringing in cash since everything else sank (you only have to visit the shiny Emirates terminal to witness the great emptiness of a falling airline)

Etihad, Fly Dubai, Air Arabia…..get ready to take on a new loyal customer


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2 responses to “a lesson in customer care by Emirates airlines

  • Elvira Hale

    Emirates is probably the best airline company in the world. I am very sorry that you werent satisfied with service you were offered, but I am sure they were trying their best. Fly with them again, I know you will be pleased!

  • melicieuse

    to be honest this is not the first time in the past 3years that Emirates airlines shocked me with garbage customer service (I frequently use them to fly around the Middle East and to Europe) but one of their staff always manages to fix it and make me trust them again, this time however they got the golden award for consecutive fatal errors. I will try my best never to fly with them again (since that flight last month I managed to stay away, Saudi Airlines and Gulf Air got my money).

    Seriously ” Furthermore, upgrades are given with great reluctance, as we do not upgrade as a matter of course, out of consideration for passengers who pay the First or Business class fare” doesn’t translate to me as “trying our best”

    All airlines upgrade as courtesy upon 3 things:
    – if they manage to overbook their economy class,
    – when they want to please a customer they pissed off
    – as a nice gesture when they want to please frequent flyers on their programs

    Emirates is run by a bunch of monkeys who think that customers should feel privileged for buying an over-priced ticket and flying with them and shouldn’t even think of complaining when they aren’t happy, especially not if that over-priced ticket is an economy class ticket.

    The only thing helping Emirates airlines is their cabin crew, that staff is excellent but god help you if you ever have to deal with their ground staff

    Anyway its only a waiting game for them now, the airline is going down the toilet. they are only making profit from the cargo service

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