Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Delta Customer Service Fail

Delta, you have failed me! It pains me to say this since I am an extremely loyal customer - my husband and I have the American Express Delta Gold card, we are both frequent flyers and we will always fly Delta as long as a competitor isn't more than $50 cheaper.

I got married in May and legally changed my name about a month later. However, one of the hardest challenges with getting my name changed on documents was my Delta SkyMiles card. After a few fax attempts and a number of calls, it finally got changed. However, my flight to South Florida for Thanksgiving was booked before this change was made, so my maiden name was listed on my ticket. I noticed this issue yesterday (Tuesday) morning, for my flight which is tonight (Wednesday). I called Delta's customer service number and was immediately helped with no issues by a very nice woman. She told me that my reservation was updated with my new last name and I was all set. Great!

Around 7pm last night, I received the E-mail alerting me that it was time to check-in. I signed into Delta and saw both my husband and my reservations waiting to be checked-in. When I tried to check us both in, I was able to successfully check-in my husband, but I was given an error message for my ticket. I was told to check-in with security at the airport. This wasn't going to fly with me (no pun intended) since I would be flying out on the busiest travel day of the year and I was traveling out of the Atlanta airport, which is the busiest airport in the country. 

This is where phone call #2 to Delta's customer service department came in. I spoke with another nice woman who was able to fix the error and allow me to check-in online for my flight. However, because my husband was already checked in, she had to give me a new confirmation number. She assured me that I would still have my seat next to my husband and all would be the same, except that I was now on my own reservation instead of with him. Fine. I thanked her, hung up and signed back onto Delta's site to check-in. 

As I was going through the process everything was fine until I indicated that I needed to check-in a bag. This was supposed to be at no charge since we booked our flight with our American Express Delta Gold card, which allows each passenger to check-in one bag at no cost and also gives you priority seating. There was NO WAY I was going to pay $25 to check-in my bag. So here comes Delta call #3 for the day. This one didn't go so well...

I was connected to a woman who barely spoke English. I normally don't have a problem with customer service reps with broken English except that she wasn't understanding my issue. I also try never to get worked up or raise my voice at anyone in customer service since I know that ultimately my problem wasn't caused by them. However, in this case it was. I started to get frustrated after going back and forth for almost five minutes with her telling me that she could do nothing on her end and I had to go to the airport and have them check my bag in without the fee at the service desk.

This was not going to work for me. I explained to her that I was flying on the busiest day of the year and out of the busiest airport in the country and I needed this to be taken care of now. I finally asked her to put on a supervisor, which she said she would do but that they couldn't help me either. At this point I'm on hold for another 10 minutes and I can feel my blood pressure rising. I was finally on with a supervisor, who immediately answered the phone by telling me that there was nothing he could do. Here is where I lost it (I was calm by the attitude definitely came out). 

I told him that he needs to figure this out now as I am an extremely loyal customer and a frequent flyer and as the customer I need to be helped. He explained to me that when I called earlier that morning to switch my last name, I was removed from my current reservation with my husband and was put on my own. Clearly, the rep didn't tell me this, which is why I had the issue checking in. When I called the second time, the rep didn't tell me that because I was on a new reservation that I was going to lose the perks from booking with the Delta credit card. This was screw up #2 on Delta's part.

However, instead of the supervisor apologizing for the lack of communication on his staff's part, he blamed me. ME! Now I was EXTREMELY angry and frustrated. I told him that I work in a customer service industry and I am the client and he was handling this situation wrong. He again disagreed and told me that the best he could do was to have me pay for my bag online and then he would refund me. Fine. But I wasn't happy that he and his staff caused me to waste over an hour of my day on the phone with them. I then asked him if I would have to call back on Monday to get my fee waived for my flight back to Atlanta and he said yes. So now I was going to have to waste time during my vacation because of Delta's screw up.

After he did the refund, he tried to immediately hang up with me. He didn't even ask if I needed anything else, which everyone knows is customer service 101. But you all know me, I wasn't about to let him get off the phone that easy. I then told him that he needed to give me some sort of make-good for my troubles. He was silent. I told him that he could upgrade my husband and I to emergency exit row seats. He said no. I asked him if the seats were taken and he told me he could not reveal this information. Um, excuse me??? So then I told him that he needed to give me some free miles. He said no again. I told him I refuse to hang up until he does something for all of my inconveniences. So after I heard him huff and puff, he told me he would give me 100 miles. I told him, try 1,000 minimum (which is the equivalent of $10). I could hear him rolling his eyes, he sighed again and said fine, and more of less hung up on me. DOUCHEBAG!!!

I was exhausted at this point and it was getting late and I still needed to pack for my trip. I was about to throw in the towel when my husband came into the room and asked me what happened. After I explained everything, he was even more mad than I was. He decided to call American Express and tell them what happened. He was lucky enough to speak with a really nice guy who informed my husband that they get so many calls complaining about Delta. He saw that we are very loyal Delta and American Express customers, and even though AmEx had nothing to do with my issues, he gave us 10,000 miles for our troubles. 

Delta, you could learn a thing or two from American Express' customer service department.

A VERY angry customer!


  1. It seems that blaming the customer is a theme lately... here's what happened to me a month ago:

  2. Wow, that is nuts. I've never experienced anything but kindness from the flight attendants. This was actually my first time having great issues with Delta. I would recommend posting your blog onto Twitter and tagging @DeltaAssist. They are working on my issues for me. Best of luck.

  3. I have. All they offered me was a $25 voucher and still didn't take it seriously. So now I'm taking it to everyone else in social media.

  4. Delta flight attendants have always been wonderful and I've flown with them for 15 years, been a frequent flier member for 12. That's why I'm so shocked at how poorly they've handled how I was treated.