Jet Airways — mismanagement for boarding the connecting flight - 9w 629 from kuwait by 9w 573 at mumbai
booked a ticket online (Booking reference IEPOWT) in Jet Airways Flight 9W 571 scheduled to depart Kuwait at 9-55 PM on 19 Jan, 2017.
The short travel duration of only 2 days via Mumbai to Kolkata was intended to attend a wedding ceremony in the evening of 20 Jan at Balasore, Odisha. Accordingly, I made all arrangements such as onward train booking from Howarh and other plans with my relatives to attend the marriage before returning back on 22 Jan to Kuwait.
However, just before 2 days of scheduled departure, I casually visited Jet airways website to find the online check-in process and schedule and was in horror to notice the change in flight to 9W 573 on 20 Jan.
I called Jet Airways local office in Kuwait and the response was very arrogant and was told that the local office is not responsible for personnel who have made online booking. I was also told that the change has been made as early as in first week of December. I did not receive any kind of communication e.g. phone, sms or email on this change.
Since it was too late to find another airline to suit my schedule, I asked for an alternative arrangement and was given a revised schedule for 9W 573. The impact on me was to cancel the train booking and find another train. The transit time at Mumbai for flight changeover was only a hour and forty minutes but was assured by the Jet a/w official on the flight changeover.
The flight 9W 573 landed in Mumbai near to the schedule time. However, I did not get any assistance for a faster immigration clearance for the flight change to Kolkata.
In such a situation, we expect airline assistance for a faster clearance through immigration and customs. As a foreign national I was not given any immigration form within the air craft as is normally followed by other airlines. The walking distance from the flight up to the immigration was too long and then picking up a form, filling in the form, standing in the long immigration queue took considerable time. After bag collection, I responded to a Jet A/W official asking for Kolkata Passenger, but then when I identified myself for the same, he asked me to follow the normal queue instead of giving me any special assistance that was so essential at that point of time. However, I could pass the Customs and was at the Counter 45-50 minutes before the schedule departure of Kolkata flight 9W 629. Behind me there were at least 7 other Passengers begging the airline staff to complete the process asap. However we were all denied boarding. The girls at the counter had no clue, searching for the contact nos, contact persons which we were able to clearly make out as drama since it was already pre-decided to delay us for the evening 6 PM flight.
I was begging the airlines personnel including the Manager please do not do this as I have come only for 2 days to attend a marriage and I will be missing the wedding if I have to wait until 6 in the evening. There was no takers, the personnel were so arrogant, they were not ready to listen. My baggage was straightway pushed with a new tag for the evening flight, my boarding pass that was issued in Kuwait was torn away and was given a new boarding pass. I was left with no choice, a 58 year old man was standing and crying helplessly as I realised, the journey was in vein.
The flight from Mumbai to Kolkata 9W 629 though was scheduled to depart at 6 PM got delayed and the arrival at Kolkata was 9 - 30 PM instead of scheduled 8-35 PM. I was too late for the train I booked. All my efforts to hire a taxi paying huge sum of money to be in the wedding did not materialise as I could arrive at my place only in the early hours of 21 Jan by which time the marriage ceremony was over and the bride/groom had left for the faraway place to the place of origin of the bridegroom.
All the above happened only because of the carelessness of Jet airways, cancellation of the flight I originally booked in, no assistance at Mumbai airport for the transit, and boarding denial although there was sufficient time. I therefore ask Jet Airways to arrange to refund me the ticket price they charged.
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