I book all of my travel online either through the airline’s site (usually Air Canada) or Expedia. When I make changes to my bookings, I do that online too.
Case in point.
Yesterday morning, I was scheduled to travel on the 06:50 Air Canada flight from Vegas to Vancouver.
Because I wanted to attend the after-conference festivities on Sunday night, on Sunday afternoon I went online and modified the booking to take the 13:12 departure routed through Denver and operated by Ted / United Airlines.
I got confirmation of the change (see the graphic image below) and trusted that all would be well.
When I got to the airport, I was delighted to be able to avoid the long line-up for Economy Class check-in and go straight to the head of the Executive Class check-in line — because I’ve bought that privilege through my American Express card.
Doing so was fortunate — because I stood at the counter for 30 minutes to get checked-in for the flight.
For whatever reason, Air Canada neglected to pass information about the modified booking to its Star Alliance partner, United Airlines. After calling Air Canada 3 times, the United Airlines agent finally managed to bring the information up on his terminal.
Meanwhile, as there was only one agent serving the Executive Class passenger lineup, everyone after me in line also had to wait that long.
As a customer who is probably in part responsible for saving Air Canada a TON of money (that it no longer needs to spend on reservations agents) I would hope that they would invest those savings in a system that actually works.
Moreover, that system should be programmed to detect when a passenger has been inconvenienced to the extent that they’ve missed the chance to grab a bite to eat at the airport before boarding a flight that serves nothing more than pretzels.
Perhaps the “system” could send that passenger an email that acknowledges and apologizes for the inconvenience. Better yet, attach a $10 coupon that would buy 2 beers — a 330 calorie lunch. 🙂
[tags]Air Canada,Ted,United Airlines[/tags]