Airline and hotels get promos wrong and leave consumers hanging dry. Airlines may cancel a flight or downgrade you and tell you just to go pound sand.
I thought that it would be the right time to rehash what you can do to make these entities do it right in the end.
Here are the steps that I suggest that you should take:
1. Open a case with the customer service department in writing allowing the company to make it right.
You can try strengthening your case by Tweeting the company a few times or leaving messages on the company’s Facebook wall.
2.Complaint To The Executive Office
If you want to give them another chance and have some patience, you can always write to the office of the CEO. These complaints are usually handled by some executive customer service team.
3. Explore Options To Dispute The Charge If Paid Using Credit Cards
Depending how you paid, when and where, you may be able to dispute the charge through the credit card company for “significantly not as described” or “services not rendered”.
If the credit card company sides with you, the company can, although they rarely if ever do, turn the amount to collections.
4. Complain To The Regulatory Authority
How and where to send these complaints are often dependent on where you live or do business. In the United States in case of airlines, you can for example open a case with the Department of Transportation’s Aviation Consumer Protection Unit or the Attorney General of the states that you are based or where the business is located.
5. Sue The Company In The Small Claims Court
This is really the last option for “minor” issues as it doesn’t involve hiring a lawyer to represent you and it is a consumer friendly option. The Small Claims Court option is available in most western consumer friendly countries.
These companies are no saints and loyalty programs only exist to fatten their bottom line.
Many don’t do you any favors if you miss a flight or book a wrong date. When they decide to downgrade you from a paid first class seat to a business class one that is their business decision. Many customers are “sheep” and aren’t willing to fight what they paid for and are entitled to.
You may wonder what are the stacks of papers on the feature photo used for this piece? They belong to the four Small Claims Court cases that I filed last month due to unresolved issues with the airlines. I have always been able to resolve issues involving hotels without having to go this far.
Unfortunately, I cannot go into the details about these cases right now, but I am not going to give the other party exclusivity or going to sign a NDA. In due course, I will write about these cases, whether I win or lose.