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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
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    Troy, MI
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    Default Lufthansa - Customer relations gone bad!

    I have an equally disappointing story about Customer Relations from Lufthansa. If airing grievances about a company is allowed here, and I'd be more than happy to air a story of a company doing wrong by its customers, namely my daughter Alyson and me. Your thoughts, Vicki and Pete?

    Ken
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  2. #2
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    Dec 2004
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    Default

    Go for it Ken! I'm going to give this thread it's own forum to live in called "Customer Service - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!"
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Hartford, Huntingdon, United Kingdom
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    Default

    Not a huge fan of Lufthansa myself either. KLM all the way baby!!

    Hit us with the dirt Ken.

  4. #4
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    Troy, MI
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    Default Gone bad...

    On her flight back to Germany during her year of study abroad, Lufthansa lost my daughter's bag. She thinks she may have seen her bag get stolen off the conveyor, but I am dubious. The Lufthansa baggage rep on site said it would be covered, said they are liable regardless of whether it was lost or stolen, took her claim, and directed her to make a police report, which she did. Jean Bari in Customer Relations emailed her earlier this week, saying they are now denying her claim. Because it was stolen after it hit the belt, she says, it's not their fault, even though Alyson never took possession of the bag. I say that's horse puckey - they can't say for sure that was her bag, and that it wasn't another legit passenger picking up a bag that looked like hers. Why would a thief pick a used duffel bag out of an array of expensive luggage from well-heeled international travelers? In any case, she gave them a bag she never got the chance to retrieve. She gave it Lufthansa. She never got it back. End of story.

    The bag was full of all of our Christmas presents to her - mostly clothes, needed for winter. They dragged this out for weeks, made us gather up all of the receipts, and then denied her based on the police report their baggage agent advised her to file. Just as bad is the fact that they hide behind a wall of secrecy - the correspondence from Jean lists only a FAX number, and all of the email addresses involved in their correspondence are generic. I have responded to the email. They have not responded to me. It is obvious they want to make this as difficult as possible for the customer. Everything I can find about them on the web indicates this is their modus operandi. Now I have faxed a reply. I await a response.

    Wrong. Just plain wrong.

    I'm not giving up. Lufthansa denied the wrong claim here. I will continue to escalate my response (not here - don't worry Pete and Vicki) until they fulfill their agent's initial commitment to reimburse my daughter for her loss.
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  5. #5

    Default

    You need to call Clark Howard. He is a former travel agent turned Consumer Advocate with a nationally syndicated radio show out of ATL... You can find his info online. He has an entire consumer action center on staff that can help you so you don't have to worry about battling to get on the air.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dr9 View Post
    You need to call Clark Howard. He is a former travel agent turned Consumer Advocate with a nationally syndicated radio show out of ATL... You can find his info online. He has an entire consumer action center on staff that can help you so you don't have to worry about battling to get on the air.
    Great lead, thanks, and I'll give it a shot. I still have a hard time believing this isn't one of those'"we'll bluff first and see if they cave" moves, but it is really hard penetrating their shell. Hopefully this will help.

    Ken
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
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    4,066

    Default

    Good luck to you. I'm generally of the mindset that I forgive the actions of regular employees of companies (unless it's a continual pattern), because no matter how hard a company tries they simply cannot hire all good people and can't control everything an employee does.

    BUT - when it's management that is the problem, I am all over giving them a hard time and fighting them until I get tired of it (I don't get tired too quickly). I haven't had very many problems with companies, but when I do I try to send a message.

    Hope it goes well.

  8. Default

    When you've went though normal customer service channels without help, implement an "executive email carpet bomb." Basically it involves finding the format for the company's email addresses and a list of the executives which can easily be found on any finance website. Using these two, you then can take educated guesses at the emails of the executives. Write a NICELY worded complaint letter and send it to them all. Often, executives actually care, and have the power to cut though all the BS and "policy wont let us do that" rhetoric that you hear so frequently.

    Most recently, I did this with my cable company. I've been having problems for about 10 months now. Countless calls to customer service, countless tech visits too. One email to the executives and within a day I get a call telling me they're looking into the matter. 48 hours later, i get another call saying they've diagnosed the problem, have new equipment on order, and there will be a maintenance window in about a week to replace the faulty equipment.

  9. #9
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jt852 View Post
    When you've went though normal customer service channels without help, implement an "executive email carpet bomb." Basically it involves finding the format for the company's email addresses and a list of the executives which can easily be found on any finance website. Using these two, you then can take educated guesses at the emails of the executives. Write a NICELY worded complaint letter and send it to them all. Often, executives actually care, and have the power to cut though all the BS and "policy wont let us do that" rhetoric that you hear so frequently.
    Along these lines, I became a fan of Lufthansa on Facebook, and posted a politely worded query there. Got a response from a rep very quickly. So far, so good. It's hard to be the voice of reason after you feel your kid has been wronged, but as they say, "let cooler heads prevail."
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    The Facebook thing is a great way to get issues resolved quickly. Most places want to seem like they are there to be customer service oriented and to be more approachable which is a great venue to post in since they will be seen as "friendly" if they help and "less than friendly" if they don't.

    I'm sure they will act on this now that you've hit them on Facebook.

    Cheers,

    Oskaar
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

  11. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Oskaar View Post
    The Facebook thing is a great way to get issues resolved quickly. Most places want to seem like they are there to be customer service oriented and to be more approachable which is a great venue to post in since they will be seen as "friendly" if they help and "less than friendly" if they don't.

    I'm sure they will act on this now that you've hit them on Facebook.

    Cheers,

    Oskaar
    This is one advantage of working with larger companies: if you hang them high enough, then they tend to clean up their act to save face. People love jumping on band wagons when it comes working against faceless entities and it's really not that hard to start a movement against them...as long as you're willing to be the lone nut who screams and waves his/her arms a lot in the beginning.
    From the bonny bells of heather
    They brewed a drink long-syne,
    Was sweeter far than honey,
    Was stronger far than wine.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelic Alchemist View Post
    This is one advantage of working with larger companies: -----%<-----
    ha ha! I'd guess that the only German based flying organisation that might be bigger than Lufthansa, would be the Luftwaffe - but of course, they're a little bit different
    here's me home brewing blog (if anyones interested....)
    and don't forget
    What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away! Tom Waits.....

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by fatbloke View Post
    ha ha! I'd guess that the only German based flying organisation that might be bigger than Lufthansa, would be the Luftwaffe - but of course, they're a little bit different
    I think you may have misunderstood (purposely?) her use of the word "larger" as a positive adjective with regards to Lufthansa as opposed to the normal comparative adjective usage, but nevertheless you have a point in that not all types of "big organisations" share similar concerns.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smarrikåka View Post
    I think you may have misunderstood (purposely?) her use of the word "larger" as a positive adjective with regards to Lufthansa as opposed to the normal comparative adjective usage, but nevertheless you have a point in that not all types of "big organisations" share similar concerns.
    Erm no! the pun/play on words was entirely deliberate!
    here's me home brewing blog (if anyones interested....)
    and don't forget
    What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away! Tom Waits.....

  15. #15
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    Mar 2009
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    Elk Grove, CA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ken_schramm View Post
    Along these lines, I became a fan of Lufthansa on Facebook, and posted a politely worded query there. Got a response from a rep very quickly. So far, so good. It's hard to be the voice of reason after you feel your kid has been wronged, but as they say, "let cooler heads prevail."
    Very smart idea.

    But you've convinced me to fly something other than Lufthansa when I head to Europe this summer.

  16. #16
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    Default A very welcome change...

    Today, Jean Bari from Lufthansa emailed my daughter and said that she has reversed her decision, and is agreeing to pay her claim in full! In the next two weeks, no less. Waafreakinhooo. I am so happy, I could kiss her. I wish there hadn't been so much grief involved in this whole incident, but I am delighted to see a company do the right thing. Now we just have to get the check in hand, but the commitment seems to be there.

    A little vinegar, a little honey, a little web presence, and one smart rep in New York.

    Yes!
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ken_schramm View Post
    ... snip ...

    A little vinegar, a little honey, a little web presence, and one smart rep in New York.

    Yes!
    Excellent, you sent her some Oxymel!

    The important thing is that you got them to modify their behavior and provide the service they are supposed to!

    Congratulations!
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

  18. #18
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    Jan 2005
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    I've got to say, the email they sent to Alyson saying they would pay her claim was one of the most satisfying emails I've ever read. She's a happy kid, which is a nice change of affairs after all she went through.

    Thank you, Lufthansa.
    It's time for some woodshedding, Willie Mae. The blue light was my blues, and the red light was my mind.

  19. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ken_schramm View Post
    Along these lines, I became a fan of Lufthansa on Facebook, and posted a politely worded query there. Got a response from a rep very quickly. So far, so good. It's hard to be the voice of reason after you feel your kid has been wronged, but as they say, "let cooler heads prevail."
    Hmmm ... I think I will try posting on FB too. I still have my boarding cards and the name of the sup and flight crew that got me soooo angry.

    I recently took a connecting flight on DELTA from IL to MI going to Nagoya, Japan for vacay with the family. This is our first family trip and my sister had her 2 year old daughter with her. When we checked in at the counter in IL, they gave us our boarding passes for the MI to Nagayo flight as well. I noticed, though, that the seats were not together and when I mentioned it to the attendant, she said that she cannot seat us together from her system and it will be managed by the crew for that flight. We were a little late leaving IL because of they had to de-ice the plane (not their words, but mine). When we got to MI, we rushed to catch our connecting flight. When we got to the gate I went straight to the desk to ask for them to seat us together. The attendant told me that he cannot seat us together because the flight is full. So went on to say that they cannot possibly expect a 2 year old to sit all by herself away from her mommy on a 12 hour flight. He pointed out that if that were my concern, I should have checked-in for my flight earlier. This got me really angry and told him that I was came from a connecting flight from IL which was delayed and he is telling me I should have checked-in earlier?! That was when a supervisor intervened. He said that the flight is full, but they will try their best to seat us together - which was the answer I expected - then he went on to say that I should not "harass" flight crews because they can refuse carriage if I do that - WHAT?!?! I was so angry, but for the sake of my niece, I kept quiet and just let them do their job. Suffice it to say, that will be the last time I am taking Delta.

  20. Default

    Hi, I think, instances like this can happen and patience must be given once in a while and talk it over the right authority calmly. However, sometimes, I understand that when your kids are already at stake any guardian or more of a mother would have been so mad about it

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