Disgraceful Performance by United in Madrid

Nov 10th, 2010, 06:33 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 475
Disgraceful Performance by United in Madrid

I need to vent about our recent return flight from Madrid to Washington DC originally scheduled for November 2, 2010. The flight was scheduled to board at 9:45; at about 10:00 we were told to go sit on the streps-this was somewhat like sitting on the floor. From then on it was terrible. About every half hour a new departure time would be posted. Still no plane though. No chairs. No nothing. Finally, at 1:45 pm, a notice appeared that the flight was cancelled. A rather rude man told us to follow hime to retrieve our luggage and a few pamphlets were left on the counter describing our rights.
We stood at baggage retrieve for onand one-half hours-no baggage. Then we were told to go upstairs to get re-ticketed for the next day. We were just about the last on line to get reticketed-finally got reticked at 5:50 pm. We were expected to stand in line that entire time-no chairs of course. There were some passengers with small children and others not in good health-it was a nightmare.

No one from United ever apologized for any of this confusion. I should note that the plane and flight crew were from Air Lingus. I guess there is a leasing agreement is in place for this flight. The pilot of the plane that flew the next day did apologize but I think it was on behalf on Air Lingus.

What a disgrace! There were all of 87 persons scheduled to fly out and United did not have any plan whatsoever for a cancelled flight. No wonder the airlines are in so much trouble. We were eventually housed and fed at a nearby hotel.

Oh, by the way, United has my e-mail-a small gesture of an apology over the e-mail the next day would have been nice!
wanttogo is offline  
Nov 10th, 2010, 07:29 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,018
As much as I dislike United, and as much as it would not surprise me if it were United that treated its customers with this type of contempt, I think the blame here rests with Aer Lingus.

The United web site says that the flight is operated by Aer Lingus, so they're the ones responsible for getting you through delays. And, unfortunstely, Aer Lingus has been known (for the past 10 years or so) as one of the bottom-feeder airlines in terms of customer service.
DonTopaz is offline  
Nov 10th, 2010, 10:10 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 2,420
PHONE! Honestly, next time you are at the back of the line.. FIND A PHONE. Have the "local" number for your airline and CALL them.

But this is typical of the airline industry. We got what we wanted "cheap fares" There was a price to be paid. (And before OP says "I paid $1,000 for this" Yes, it SOUNDS like a lot, but it's about the same as my FIRST flight to Europe in.... 1978!)
CarolA is offline  
Nov 10th, 2010, 02:08 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 475
Yes I learned that one couple did call United and were able to
change their reservations to the next day because the computer at the operator's end said that the flight was "cancelled." an hour before the rest of us were told that.
They still were at the airport until 6:00 pm, though, to change the ticket and get bags etc. The employees who handled
all of this were United employees.

Oh well! At least we finally got home and I have wonderful memories of Madrid.

wanttogo is offline  
Nov 11th, 2010, 02:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,758

Well, there you go.
Melnq8 is offline  
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