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Air France / Disaster

1 United States Review updated:
Contact information:

To Whom It May Concern,

I would like to make you aware of my experience on your Air France Airlines. My party of 10 people (4 business class seats and 6 economy seats) had a terrible trip departing, connecting and returning on your airline. The personal were rude, unhelpful and spiteful.

To begin, Flight AF0007 on June 24, 2008 @ 19:10 was delayed. We were told (by the stewardess) that the connecting flight in Paris would be held since we were 10 people. At Paris a bus with a sign "Venice" on it was sent to speed us from one terminal to the other. We were told that personnel were supposed to meet us and provide priority status, so we could move more quickly through immigration etc. and get to the gate on time for Flight 1426 @ 9:50 to Venice. No one was ever sent to assist us.

We inquired numerous times if we could get to the gate more quickly, but we were told by the airport staff "Don't Worry" the connection would wait, especially since we were 10 people. Not one of the airport staff called and inquired for us, the just said "Don't Worry".

When we arrived at the gate the flight had departed. Personnel at the gate said they were never informed we were on our way. Then we were told by another employee that they never wait for passengers. I don't know if your policy is to wait for passengers that have landed and are en route or if you do not wait. (I guess your employees don't know the answer either). When we became upset, one employee actually had the nerve to say Next time they won't send a bus to the terminal- They will let us walk! Actually, sending a bus was useless since there was no one to assist in getting to the front of the extremely long immigration line.

Because we missed our connection to Venice, our plans for a prepaid tour bus and a boat ride and a tour guide was not possible before we had to board our cruise ship. So we lost our money for those excursions.

Upon our return to the United States Flight 1427 @ 12:40 in Venice was delayed again. When the delayed boarding time was finally announced there was still enough time to make our Paris connection. But then, they announced that 4 people didn't board the plane. We now proceeded to wait 45 minutes more for these people to arrive. So, do you wait for passengers or not? Now with the departure delay and the added 45minute delay for those passengers. We now would miss our connection in Paris AF0010 @ `15:55.

Previous to our arrival in Paris the airline had rebooked us on AF004 @ 20:45. Upon our arrival we found there was a flight @ 18:00 that was available. So we went to the Transfer Desk in order to get on the 18:00 flight. We were the 1st passengers to arrive at the Transfer Desk. The agent confirmed that there were enough seats on the flight for my family of 10. Again we needed 4 business seats and 6 economy seats. He did not know why they put us on the later flight @ 20:45 when there were so many seats available on the earlier flight@ 18:00 (maybe they didn't expect our flight to land at the time it did)

We asked to speak to the manager. At this point we were quite upset trying to explain why we had to move to the earlier flight. The Supervisor C/Rousseliere @ the Air France Transfer Desk did not want to switch us. She said we were already booked on Flight AF004 @ 20:45 and there we would stay.

We explained to the supervisor:

1) That my grandfather and his wife are in their 80's and the longer wait is too taxing on them.

2) We had 4 infants that had to be picked up from babysitters and the later flight would get us home too late to get them.

3) We required special meals and with all the delays we had not eaten for many, many hours.

She lied and said there were no seats available on the earlier flight. We told her the original agent said there were plenty of seats available. Her reply was "The agent was mistaken".

My grandfather and his wife, who were part of my party, saw the attitude of the supervisor and quietly moved to another agent. My grandfather had no problem switching to the 18:00 flight with 2 business seats. Then my sister and her father went to this agent to also get on my grandfathers' flight. The new agent was in the process of giving my sister seat numbers, when the supervisor ran over and told the agent not to give my sister seats. She told the agent to tell my sister there were no seats available on the plane. Obviously the agent had to obey her supervisor and didn't give my sister and her father seats.

After they denied my sister seats we asked how the elderly couple (My grandfather and his wife) got seats on the flight, since she said there were none. She lied again and said they were already booked from much earlier in the day. Obviously this was not true since they were on the delayed flight with me. The supervisor was not aware the elderly couple was from my family.

The supervisor then went back behind closed doors. The original agent who called the supervisor to help make the changes said "when people are insistent that Air France Policy is to not help them. They automatically do nothing to assist them".

For your knowledge the 18:00 flight had at least 2 or more business class seats available for my parents and numerous economy seats for the rest of my family. The flight was definitely not full. My grandfather asked the stewardess/steward and he counted himself.

Our 20:45 flight was also delayed. In total it took us 24 hours to get home to New York from Venice. We had not eaten in this amount of time because we require special meals that did not arrive to the planes. Since we got home so late, my grand children were not picked up on time. We also had to pay the babysitters an extra days pay for the 4 infants.

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  • Gi
      6th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    Pathetic Customer Service!!!

    To Whom It May Concern,

    It will take more than 3 min to read my story; if you have time then here we start.

    My name is Girishkumar Rudraiah. I am a citizen of India, located in Bangalore. Due to Business reasons it was required for me to
    Travel Unites States of America on 13-Sep-08 and as per the schedule my connecting flight started from Bangalore to Paris, Paris to
    Cincinnati, and Cincinnati to Providence. For your information this was my first International travel. I liked the service provided by both
    Air-Delta and Air-France throughout my journey to US. Even I passed this message to my entire team and they were really happy. I
    Reached US safely and things went really good while I was in United States. It was time for me to return back home and the date I
    Had to start from US was 24-Sep-2008. This time my flight started from Providence to Atlanta, Atlanta to Paris, and finally Paris to
    Bangalore. I was supposed to reach Bangalore on 25-Sep-2008, but that didn't happen.

    Flight from Providence to Atlanta went fine. After reaching to Atlanta I was expecting flight to Paris will be on time but found there was
    Delay for 6 hours. Flight#DL22. I still controlled my patience because I believed Air-Delta will take responsibility in case if we miss
    Connecting flight from Paris to Bangalore. While traveling to Paris, Air-Delta Captain came to each of the customer and apologized for
    the delay and said nothing to worry, air-delta will take care of us in good manner. You have to note this point.

    As expected before I reach Paris-De-Gaulle my connecting flight#DL8461 to Bangalore was left, operated by Air-France. Okay, I knew
    things went wrong but I still believed Air-Delta/Air-France will take care of responsibility. I was taken to a terminal not sure where
    Exactly and had to meet Air-France Customer Service Desk. I expressed things happened and requested them to send me in the
    Next flight to Bangalore ASAP, but the lady who was helping me said my next flight [AF192] will be only on tomorrow [26-Sep-2008]
    At 10H50. My heart beat started increasing because this time delay was 24hours. I questioned once again is there any opportunity to
    make it early, and the Customer Support Desk said it can happen only if I had Europe Visa. What an option??

    I have only US Visa since my business was in that country, and I'm sure if we have to travel US it is not required to have Visa for any
    other Country like Europe. Now starts the real drama. Went back to Air-France Customer Desk and ask them how and where to stay
    for next 24 hrs. They immediately booked a room in Hotel and said I will be taken to France Police to get Transit Visa for 24 hrs. I
    waited patiently for 3 hrs and it was already noon there. A lady carrying my Visa Application said it was rejected without any reason.
    When asked her the reason, all she said was it is decision taken by Paris Police and nothing to do with Air-France Airlines. Even I
    requested them to get me an opportunity to meet police so that I can explain things happen in the entire trip. Thinking, at least by this
    way they may feel bad and grant me visa. But the lady just refused. She said we knew Paris Police won't give Visa. So why the hell
    did they book Hotel ticket when things were knew to them??

    Next, guidelines given by Air-France customer service desk to me for next 24hrs.
    1. I need to stay within the space where Air-France Customer Service Desk is located.
    2. I cannot cross the gate which is just 50m distance, so that I can make a PHONE CALL to my HOME and Inform them my
    PROBLEM but there is no such option...BECAUSE I DON'T HAVE FRANCE [PARIS] VISA.
    3. I was given Food coupons for lunch, dinner, and next day’s breakfast. But I still can't go out and reach restaurant since I DON'T
    4. In the midnight if I feel hungry or my health is gone bad, there is none to take care of me or I'm not supposed to go out of gate and

    I also met Customer Service Desk SUPERVISOR and explained things happened to me. All he said was, I HAVE CAME THROUGH
    DELTA AIRLINES AND HE CAN ONLY HELP AIR-FRANCE CUSTOMER. WHEN asked him to connect me to Delta-Airlines via
    Phone, he said that is not his problem. HE ALSO SAID, GO AND CALL YOUR INDIAN EMBASSY. Sir, I can't make a Phone call
    because I have been instructed not to cross the gate as I don't have Transit Visa. Once again he just said, IT IS NOT MY PROBLEM.
    The worst statement he made was, YOU WILL BE GIVEN FOOD COUPENS AS A COURTESY.

    I spend rest of the time by sleeping on RED CARPET. I was given blanket which was 3/4th and didn't cover half of my body. It was
    Freezing, still had to sleep. After 2AM there were none on the floor, except some people who had undergone the same problem like

    Its time for me to ask few questions.
    1. Before I started to travel, why I was not informed by Delta Airlines that Air-France will help only Air-France customers though both
    the airlines work together?
    2. When I faced all these problem, what was Delta Airlines doing?
    3. Why haven't you mentioned the problem that may occur while traveling on your website? If I knew it before, I would have never
    Opted your airlines [both delta/air-France]
    4. Why was I treated sub-standard, is it because I belong to Developing country?
    5. I didn't miss the flight, it was Delta-Airlines fault and when the problem is yours why didn't you take necessary action?
    6. I didn't had bath for 2 days, was forced to eat whatever Air-France authority had given..who is responsible for it?
    7. Totally, 6 + 24hrs delay. Can there be frustration better than mine?
    8. I was not allowed to make a phone call? Is this how you people provide service?
    9. Because I didn't reach on time nor I made a phone call, my parents fall sick and were taken to Hospital? Who is responsible for
    this? Should I ask Delta Airlines or Air-France???
    10. For all these pain I faced, there was not a single person from both the airlines concerned about me.

    After all these problem when I reached Bangalore, one of my check in baggage was missing. After one day I received the baggage but
    there were missing items for more than $80. I logged the case and still haven't received a response.

    While traveling to US I had so much expectation/respect on both the airlines, but now you people have reached to my trash folder.
    Though it pains, I will share my experiences to all of them who travel frequently and I will request them not to go either
    Delta/Air-France Airlines.

    I'm not a frequent traveler. Whenever I think about this trip, I loose my temper and fail to work. This has dropped my performance.

    I rather feel prison would be better than staying a night in Paris.

    You may neglect my mail and concentrate on your daily work, but don't forget things won't be same always.

    If you are looking to know more about me. Here is my information.


    Sabre Reservation Code: CXJCZR

    Passenger First Name: GIRISHKUMAR
    Passenger Last Name: RUDRAIAH

    Issuing airline: DELTA AIRLINES INC

    E-mail ID:

    Thank you Delta Airlines, Air-France for providing such a wonderful customer service.

    THE END.

  • Pa
      24th of Feb, 2009
    0 Votes

    Thanks for the heads up. Will never travel with Air France.

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