Air India booking confusion

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Feb 26, 2019
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#1
I am a fourth year student at UC Davis. This past January I embarked on a journey to India using Air India to attend a wedding of a friend. I reserved tickets in November to attend without any issues from San Francisco to Delhi, then Delhi to Bagdogra. However, a week before my travel dates I received a message informing me that my flight was cancelled from Bagdogra to New Delhi. Immediately I contacted the customer service line and was able to book a replacement flight.

When I reached India I became concerned that my flight from New Delhi to San Francisco may be changed as well so I called the customer service line once more on January 15. During the call, I enquired about the cost of changing flights. Through a miscommunication, the Air India representative came under the impression that I wished to change my flight. When the representative asked for my banking information, I realized that a mistake had been made and tried to inform the representative that I did not wish to change my flight. I sought the help of my two friends to correct the mistake as well. The representative refused to listen to either of my friends and began to shout at them. One of my friends tried to communicate in Hindi and English to check that we were being understood. However, the representative claimed he could not speak Hindi and would not help me. Eventually we sought the help of a previous Air India employee to correct the mistake. On Friday January 19, 2019, I checked my reservation once more but it was not fixed. In the end, I paid Air India $741 by phone, then $9 at the Bagdogra airport for a priority seat, as only priority seats were available. I sorely need this money to complete my college career for tuition, housing, and food. I tried to contact via email the Air India representatives listed on the Elliott site three times: Captain Arvind Kathpalia, Ashwani Lohani (inactive email listed), and Pankaj Srivastava (inactive email listed).

The mistaken change in flight that I was charged for was the result of a simple misunderstanding as I attempted to communicate with Air India representatives. Any help that Air India could provide with a refund would be greatly appreciated.
 

Barry Graham

Administrator
Staff Member
Director
Jan 7, 2015
1,061
918
113
#2
I am sorry that you didn't get any replies to this. @John Galbraith would it be possible to research the contacts again since it seems that they are not working?

@MiaMacNeill19 did you try cmd@airindia.in - the last one listed?

I am surprised that they went ahead and released the seats before you paid for the new flight. Most airlines don't make any changes until you have actually paid for the change. This is very unprofessional of the representative at Air India to cancel the old reservation without your permission. I also don't understand why they couldn't reinstate the old reservation if you hadn't paid for the new one since the change wouldn't seem to be final until you have paid for it. It also seems wrong that you had to pay for a priority seat if that was all that was left. I don't know much about their loyalty program and I don't understand why they didn't upgrade someone else to make room for you in a regular seat.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#3
I was able to "validate" all the email addresses in the contacts for Air India. Also, I confirmed that the secondary and CEO names are correct.

Are you receiving an error message?
 
Feb 26, 2019
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#4
I am sorry that you didn't get any replies to this. @John Galbraith would it be possible to research the contacts again since it seems that they are not working?

@MiaMacNeill19 did you try cmd@airindia.in - the last one listed?

I am surprised that they went ahead and released the seats before you paid for the new flight. Most airlines don't make any changes until you have actually paid for the change. This is very unprofessional of the representative at Air India to cancel the old reservation without your permission. I also don't understand why they couldn't reinstate the old reservation if you hadn't paid for the new one since the change wouldn't seem to be final until you have paid for it. It also seems wrong that you had to pay for a priority seat if that was all that was left. I don't know much about their loyalty program and I don't understand why they didn't upgrade someone else to make room for you in a regular seat.
I did not try the last email listed. I am going to email cmd@airindia.in today. The other email addresses came back with inactive ID notifications.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
7,815
7,650
113
San Francisco
#6
Mia, I just reread your original post. It's a struggle to pull the facts out. I would suggest that you make a list of what happened. Leave out all the information such as the agent yelling at your friends, just make a concise list of the facts in chronological order.

An example: 1) Tix booked for flight *** date *** city pairs***. 2) Flight *** cancelled. 3) Called to rebook. Agent thought I wanted to cancel. 4) ...

Put an opening and closing paragraph on it. Airlines read thousands of complaint letters every month. Yours needs to be easily understood, so that someone will act on it. State exactly what you want as compensation and be very appreciative of the reader's time. Polite, patient and persistent often creates positive results.
 
Feb 26, 2019
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#8
I tried the last email listed on the Elliott site. I immediately received a response by email requesting the ticket number and phone number used for the calls. I have not heard back since April 2.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
16,688
15,306
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#9
Did you reply back to that email saying you haven’t heard from them?

Once you have gone to the CEO, the last step is to go back to the help screen and fill out the form again saying you followed the full process on creating a paper trail and have not received a response.

At that point the advocates will look at it and tell you if they can help or not.