My faith in customer service has been restored, but only by the skin of its teeth.
I’m just going to say two words to you and you’ll get my drift: British Airways.
Now, some of you may have noticed a slight chill in the air recently and there may have been some light precipitation to go along with it. In Edinburgh, where I live, the light precipitation was about a foot deep… a mere trifle that meant the airport was closed.
Very annoying as I was booked on a flight from Edinburgh to Dallas (via Heathrow). But Glasgow airport was open so I thought I’d buy myself a flight from Glasgow and join my BA flight to Dallas at Heathrow.
Ah! Not possible said the agent with whom I booked. If you don’t get on your flight in Edinburgh they’ll cancel the second stage… sorry, nothing we can do about that. You might want to get yourself to Heathrow and try to persuade them to let you on the flight.
Try to persuade? A bit tenuous for my liking.
Okay, I’ll call BA; they’ll see sense.
Sorry, we can’t change a ticket booked by an agent. They can, though, if they really want to.
Back to the agent.
Sorry, that’s BA passing the buck. Go to Glasgow and fetch up at Heathrow tomorrow.
Oh, by the way, if you turn up at Heathrow and your flight leaves from Edinburgh, they’ll cancel you anyway.
Agggghhhhhh… was the way I was feeling.
Anyway, over to Glasgow, where, on the suggestion of Renee I went to the BA Customer Services Desk (this’ll be a laugh, I thought) to see if they could help.
Ann Marie Willis works for One World Alliance. I told her I had a long, complicated story and she listened carefully to what I had to say. ‘Just a minute’, she said when I’d finished and disappeared into her back office. Hello, I thought, I bet she’s talking to her boss.
True to her word she was one minute flat. Here we go, I thought, I wonder what excuse she’ll give for not being able to help.
‘That’s all done for you. You’re checked through from Glasgow to Dallas.’
‘Errrr. Sorry, I thought you said it was all sorted and I must have mis-heard you.’
‘No, it’s all done; come with me and we’ll get your boarding cards.’
Wow, what service! When I explained what had been going on in the background Ann Marie just looked at me and said ‘I’m sure, if either party had tried a little harder, they could have got things changed.’
There’s something about service here… going the extra mile… under promise, over deliver and all that.
I think, though, that things are a little simpler.
Ann Marie had a real desire to help.