Wednesday, March 14, 2012

i set my alarm for 830. got up at 9 and did a 30min work out. ate some food, left my house and got to the office at 1045. in my mind i had wanted to be there by 830 and get all my printing done before lunch. but clearly that was never gonna happen. never mind. i still feel lazy in the morning but i hope these steps of getting up and working out regularly are going to pay off in just under 4 weeks time. hopefully will not be snoozing for 30 mins by then!

my easy jet story.
back in january i took a flight to return to the england. i left my friends house with time aplenty. when i got to train station i was told platform 3 to the airport. so i got on the train at platform 3 and it was a while till i noticed it should have already been at the airport. i called my friend to find i was on the wrong train. i got off at the next available stop and was probably close to 50miles away. oops. also, it wasn't a town where i alighted. it was a car park.
i still had 35 minutes before check in. i ran out of credit on my phone but the hot ticket office ladies i was talking to called me a cab from the nearest town. and i borrowed a phone to call a friend on the same flight as me. there was a 15 minutes delay so check in would be a bit later. hot ticket office lady number 2 told me no train for a while and its a 1 hour journey by car. i had 45 minutes.

the cab arrived about 15 mins later and we agreed a fee (all the money i had left on me, in a variety of currencies, equalling about £70!) i felt i had to try to get to the airport and maybe the delay would be a wee bit longer.

we left at about 35minutes to check in closing and after about 8 minutes, lady taxi driver with 7 year old kid in back, starts to pull over asking me if i can hear that. hear what?! she thinks it sounds like a flat.
we get out, i check my side, she hers. and drivers side front tire is flat. and she being a lady doesn't know how to change a tyre. so after eventually finding the wheel nut cap remover i change the tire. this doesn't help the race to the airport.

when we finally arrive, it's 20 minutes after check in was supposed to close, and after some pleading information finally agree to let me call through to the boarding people. they refuse to send someone back to check me in even though boarding hasn't started. the litany of excuses included the check in desks being the wrong ones and weren't connected. i pointed out the computers are obviously connected. he says again they won't send someone back to check me in. after doing less than nothing to help i hang up. i find the easy jet office number and use skype to call them and am told i can rebook at the airport desk for the next flight for £50. ok, so i walk round the airport with him on the phone but they have no ticket desk. even though his computer said they do. so i ask for the £50 booking done over the phone. i'm told they don't have the authority. i ask why all the big bosses with authority work in the airport and not their offices. he replies i should have been there 3 hours before take off. brilliant.

to cut a long and boring part of the story short, instead of rebooking for £235 on the phone, he'll offer me £215. i tell him i call him back. i get a friend to check online and see if there's anything cheaper but there is nothing. so i head back to my friends house to book on the phone. new lady on phone refuses to give me the discount the first guy said he wrote in my notes because i dont have his name. i give her his extension number, she puts me on hold and when she comes back says "i couldn't speak to him but i'll give you the discount anyway"
that made no sense.

and now, my card doesnt work. she wont take payment across two cards, wont book it and allow me to pay at the airport tomorrow, wont even allow me to reserve with a deposit. i ask why everyone at easy jet has been unhelpful today. she says "i've been nothing but helpful and i'm going to hang up now". she hangs up.

i get a friend to book online for me. cost, £225. £10 more than their generous discount offer.

the worst part is, after returning, i found out that the flight didn't start boarding till 850. more than 2 hours after i spoke to the self proclaimed manager working at the gate.

this was not on. i wrote to the ceo of easyjet upon my return, saying they should not treat customers who miss flights when abroad in such a horrific manner. i accept responsibility for missing the flight but can only accept paying £50, not £225. plus i want compensation. a week passes and no response. i see a story in the press of stelios complaining about the board and how they may not get their £800k bonus. so i write another email. i express my concern at the worry they must be faced with losing half their expected salary. at the same time i wonder that maybe the fact that they don't even get their pa's to respond to complaints plays a role in this. 20 minutes later i get a reply. this reply eventually leads to a refund of the flight plus a small voucher off my next flight with easyjet.

i was quite surprised at the outcome and was quite pleased with how they eventually dealt with it. as much as i disliked their customer service at the time of this event, in general their air stewards and stewardess are great, and unlike ryanair they fly to the actual city they advertise. and, of course, they are cheap!

moral: next time i'm gonna try to not miss my flight.

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