Malindo Air — delayed/missed flights, misplaced luggage
On 2nd of July, I was to board OD606 from Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur at 15:15 and then take a connecting Malindo flight from Kuala Lumpur to Trivandrum at 20:40 pm the same day. At check in, I was informed by your staff that the flight was delayed for 3 hours to 18:30. Upon hearing this, I realised I would not land in time in KL to catch my connecting flight and I raised my concern to the staff. She confidently and equivocally stated that my connecting flight is also delayed and will wait and wont depart until we land in KL. My confidence in her statement was low as we had previous incidents with Malindo, where my husband's luggage was stuck in KL and took us a week to receive it. The lady at the check in counter reassured me that the connecting flight will definitely wait and an airline employee will receive us at KL to guide us to our connecting flight and prompted me to board the flight at 18:30.
The flight was not delayed by 3 hours, it was delayed by over 5 hours and finally took off at 20:30! We landed after all the connecting flights had departed, there was no airline staff to receive or assist all the stranded passengers. Stranded, helpless and lost are subtle and understated way to express what I felt afoot KL airport. The transfer desk was absolute chaos with passengers frantically trying to get information from your staff who were most unhelpful. I found myself in a very uncomfortable position amidst all the chaos, where I was the only one who could converse and translate from Malayalam/Tamil/Hindi into English to the airport staff. We were given absolutely no information on what was happening for over 2 hours at which point I personally had to browse for other flight options myself and for 11 other passengers (1 who was in a wheelchair, mothers with babies and small children, and the ederly) and presented alternative to your staff. This is NOT my job, as I do not work for Malindo. It is also worth noting that your employees are given no guidelines or there's a blatant gap in your company policies or the lack of one. Passengers are understandably agitated and one of your employees even yelled at them saying they can't help the situation.
After 2.5 hours of waiting, I was informed that Malindo does not have another flight to Trivandrum till the 6th of July (a detailI knew all the while!) and offered me a seat on that which was 4 days later!!. To top the situation, your employees said the Airport hotel was full and they were unable to provide accommodation elsewhere, since I do not have a Malaysian visit visa! At this point, I was frustrated, tired and hungry and decided to catch the next Air Asia flight to Kochi. I asked to retrieve my luggage and no surprise they couldn't locate my luggage and had misplaced it! Since the Airport hotel was full, they offered to accommodate me in a hotel 40 minutes away from the airport. At the point I had no other option but to ask them for a seat in Malindo flight to Cochin the next day at 21:00. They gave me an economy seat from KL to COK. I had a business class seat reserved from KL to TVM and I was downgraded to economy to a destination which wasn't even mine to begin with!
The nightmare with my luggage is a whole different story. I navigated through immigration and obtained a visa with absolutely ZERO assistance and went to Malindo counter outside. The staff at the counter was a Mr. Ganesan, who heard me out and sent me to the baggage carrousel to look for my luggage with another employee. I went through the tossed baggages at the baggage claim, lost and found, and God knows how many offices to no avail. Nobody had information on where baggages go in an event of missed connection! I went back to Mr. Ganesan who assured me that he needs to go check in the store room, and in all honesty said it was going to be a few hours before he locates it. He was kind and helpful and even gave me his contact number and urged me to go to the provided hotel and rest a while before my flight.
About 7 hours after I landed in KL, I finally reached the hotel which was just an excuse for a budget motel. The room was filthy and the toilets had dead cockroaches. This was the least of my issues however. At 12:00 pm on 3rd July, Mr. Ganesan finally managed to locate my luggage and asked me to report to the airport early, claim it and re check in to my flight to COK. Needless to say, my flight to COK was delayed by over an hour as well. Cochin to Trivandrum is another 5 hours taxi ride.
I ended up spending INR20, 000 on roaming charges to look up alternative flights for myself and other passengers, take UBER from hotel to airport, and for taxi from Cochin to TVM.What was supposed to be a 10 hour journey turned out to be a 40 hour nightmare.
So my question to you is how much do you value your frequently flying passengers and how do you intend to fully compensate this financial and psychological damage that your airlines has caused??
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