Etihad Airways / changed our confirmed booking without notifying us
We are writing to lodge a complaint against Etihad Airways for changing our confirmed booking all of a sudden on the day we were flying back from Ahmedabad (India) to Sydney (Australia) after New year Holidays on the 15th of January 2019.
We had booked four tickets online ( round trip) from Sydney to Ahmedabad and Ahmedabad to Sydney through the BYOJET WEBSITE three months prior to our trip.
Later when we received my mothers tourist Visa, we booked another round trip ticket from the ETIHAD WEBSITE- with same flights so that she can travel with us. As she cannot travel alone we made sure that all the five of us board on same flights.
Moreover, Etihad didn't even inform us 48 hours ago. On the contrary they had sent us the regular reminder email a day earlier on 14th January 2019 - that the flight is ON TIME.
Please note we are 5 passengers - among them is my youngest daughter who is just 11 yrs, one is a Diabetic child who is on insulin shots and one is my mother who is senior citizen of 61 years old - who has back problems and cannot even stand or walk for long time.
When we reached airport on the 15th January, around 6:30 and stood in the queue for 1 hour for baggage check. At 8 pm I requested the staff to check in us quickly as my son was having low blood glucose and my mother was unable to stand. They provided me the wheel chair for my mom and asked us to check in from another counter of Business Class.
We stood there for a while and the CSA - gave us the boarding pass for Ahmedabad to Mumbai - saying we will get the remaining boarding pass from Mumbai. Soon, another senior CSA from Jet Airways, interrupted and tore the boarding pass provided and thew them into the bin. When we asked what was happening- he said that our tickets are Void and the system was showing two bookings on same.
We assured that we haven't changed our booking and showed them the reminder emails we received a day earlier about our flight on Time. He said as the authorities are with Etihad we cannot control anything.
We were so stressed and upon lot of discussion- he told we need to call Etihad to send us the new email about the edited booking.
We called Etihad Australia number so many times the call got cancelled- finally we were assisted by Etihad- customer service person named (SAFWAN) who sent us the new booking for all five of us through SINGAPORE- which was flying next day 6:25 am.
The hassel was where do we spend whole night? On the airport or should be go back home which was far from airport. Atleast one hour drive.
Also how do we carry so much luggage back home to and from- as we need to reach airport again next morning before 4:30 am to board 6:25 am flight.
All this stress and mental harassment was enough for me to get dehydrated- i started having loose motions and vomiting on the airport itself. Somehow we agreed to fly next day as per the new booking - but my question is what is the compensation for all this unnecessary pain???
Last but not least- after agreeing to the new booking- we couldn't travel as a family. We were provided all five seats in different directions. It was real hassel for me to repeatedly run here and there on the flight to take care of my young daughter and diabetic son and old mother.
All the customer service told us only the crew can help us to get seats near by. They said as the flights are full we cant do anything and when we requested the crew on board they didn't even help us.
Me my family had the lifes most unbearable experience with ETIHAD- and I need answers to my questions-
1. How did Etihad change our confirmed booking without our notice? The flight was not canceled- it was flying on time. Why our tickets got changed?? We were suppose to fly as per routine.
2. The CSA- Etihad (SAFWAN) said the booking was changed on the 15th morning- who did that? Etihad said Jet Airways did it. And the CSA Jet airways (Himanshu) said only ETIHAD has the control. Now the question is who is saying the truth? ETIHAD OR JET?
3. If Etihad changed the booking- why didn't they inform us in advance. (We didn't receive any email or text message on 15th January.
4. Both our Australian numbers was working- we just received one miss call on our Australian number in the afternoon around 2:30 pm. So we called back Etihad and spoke for 2 minutes. They still didn't tell us that our booking was changed.
5. But both our emails were also working.. why didn't they email us??
6. We have provided all the screenshots of the calls and text messages and emails with the timestamp on it.
7. So that you can check and compensate us.
8. I want the full refund of my all my five tickets fare from Ahmedabad to Sydney.
9. If you do not compensate asap. I will apply in consumer court against Etihad and will take it further. I am the permanent resident of Australia and my husband is the citizen of Australia. So we have the right to fight - against the unfair and biased treatment.
10. We will apply in Fair trading NSW if this doesn't get sorted.
Passenger details: Afnan Punjani
Flight Details: EY8868 - 9W330
Ahmedabad to Sydney Via Abudhabi from Mumbai.
Scheduled to fly at: 9:30 PM On 15th January 2019
Instead - we travelled on 16th January 2019 at 6:25 AM
Flight details: 9W738
Ahmedabad to Sydney Via Singapore from Mumbai
Etihad Airways Customer Care's Response, Jan 20, 2019
Hello Afnan, we are very sorry to hear about your experience and we apologise for the incovenience caused. I will forward all your details to our team to investigate your case thoroughly and our team will get back to you via email soon. *Marc
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