Nightmare experience on American Airline

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Jan 14, 2019
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#1
We need your advice on :
1. Should my sister file a claim only with American Airlines since she booked the ticket with them on their website
2. Since customer relations form has about 1500 characters for problem description, should she fill several forms
referring back to the first claim number from the first form or should she write to customer relations directly.
In the latter case I don't know if they will send her a claim number.
Here is the background information :
My sister booked a flight with American Airlines from Rochester, MN to Bangalore India. AA issued inbound ticket on
- AA RST - Chicago - London 2 1/2 hours layover (flight reached on time)
- Etihad London-Abu Dhabi- Mumbai- Bangalore
- Connection at London missed due to Etihad error. They escorted about 30 passengers from deplaned terminal to Etihad terminal to security point; security line over a mile long did not help with security and left; later 2 Etihad personnel enquired how many were for their flight, all 30 raised hand, did nothing left. The plane left by the time the passengers got to gate. They were asked to go back to deplaned area and reschedule.
- Luggage arrived in Bangalore 3 days later
- Outbound flight to USA - sister arrived at Bangalore 4 hours early - Etihad refused check-in because they had failed to close the Mumbai to Bangalore leg on inbound failed connection. My sister requested the supervisor to please close it so she could check-in, she disappeared and came 30 minutes before flight and told her it was AA's fault and to call them. My sister called me in USA, I called AA they told me it was Etihad's fault, have my sister fix it in India. Etihad simply refused. I called AA and pleaded with them to take care of this situation, to enlist the help of a supervisor and also get my sister on the next flight since the other flight had already left. After 45 minutes of waiting on line, AA booked her on a flight for two days later. My sister incurred lots of roaming charge, as well as missed two days at work.
- She had more issues when she went to check-in 2 days later which we will describe to AA.

To sum it up we need advice, should we file one claim all to American Airlines starting at the lowest level of customer relations; and should we fill several forms or write a letter highlighting the problems encountered to come up with an amicable resolution.

Thanks you in anticipation.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
#2

Patina

Verified Member
Dec 22, 2015
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#3
Suggestion when writing to AA with the 1500 character limit: do not waste characters on things like bullet points, dashes, etc. Leave out phrases like AA's fault, Etihad's fault, etc. Just stick to the facts omitting any emotions or superfluous information like '30 passengers raising their hands'. Focus on what AA has control over, not things like length of security lines.

The most important issues that I can see are: why was the connection in London missed; and why could she not check in for her return flight. The rest is part of travel (late luggage, for example).
 
Likes: jsn55
Jan 14, 2019
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#4
Thank you for your quick reponse. I will ask my sister to follow your advice.

To clarify : Since the Etihad terminal was in another part of the airport all of the 30 some passengers
flying on the same Etihad flight were escorted/bussed to the other terminal and left to go thru the
security check. This is a normal security check that happens when you go from one terminal to another
on an international flight, the probem was the queue was a mile long, and Etihad did not help to
have security process them as a priority.
 

Patina

Verified Member
Dec 22, 2015
1,250
2,097
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#5
Thank you for your quick reponse. I will ask my sister to follow your advice.

To clarify : Since the Etihad terminal was in another part of the airport all of the 30 some passengers
flying on the same Etihad flight were escorted/bussed to the other terminal and left to go thru the
security check. This is a normal security check that happens when you go from one terminal to another
on an international flight, the probem was the queue was a mile long, and Etihad did not help to
have security process them as a priority.
Unfortunately, that is not always an option for an airline. It is up to the security team.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#6
Security at Heathrow can be very long. Changing terminals means a rescreening -- those lines can be painful and there is often no rushing or cutting in line.

I have seen a number of people get into verbal altercations with security screeners at Heathrow, which makes matters worse. I would not want to connect there; starting or ending travel is okay.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#7
Heathrow can be an awful place, and horrible for a connection. I suspect the Etihad people didn't know what to do for their connecting passengers, so they just disappeared. We need some details from your sister to figure this out. After she gets her initial claim filed, please ask her to come back to us with a list of the facts.

The British seem to enjoy standing in queues and Heathrow seems to be the place of choice to practice this. I've had a couple of problems over the years and have always managed to convince a security person to escort me to the front so I didn't miss my flight. But how is a novice flyer supposed to know you can do this? Like Christina, I have witnessed screaming fights in long lines at Heathrow, it's scary. I avoid connecting at Heathrow. If it weren't for Virgin Atlantic, I'd never set foot in it again.