Air France downgrade

Old May 3rd, 2013, 05:15 AM
  #141  
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Also to everyone else who has helped or encouraged us in any way we want to say thanks for the advice and encouragement. Last night my husband privately tweeted Air France the link to Christopher Elliott's article and we received a tweet back this morning that said to check our e-mail today for future correspondence. I don't know if that means they are going to try to help us or ban us for life from Air France for being difficult customers -ie making a fuss about EU compensation.

At any rate, I never wanted any of this to happen. We just wanted to have our seats and have a pleasant trip home. We like Air France and have flown them every year for the past 7 years to Paris and Italy. We want to continue to do so. We pay them thousands of dollars a year to fly them and it seems rather silly to have to go throught all of this to get EU compensation. But it is what it is. We love Paris and plan to continue to go every year.


We are not trying to gouge Air France or take anything from this we don't deserve. This did happen to us and we were very upset. It was compounded by the fact that we were literally walking on the plane when they took our boarding passes away and moved 2 of us and gave us no options, not even to all 3 sit together. The flight attendants put us all together -they were lovely! But, it was a rough flight home. We were a little shell shocked by the rude and dismissive way we were treated by the gate crew at Charles de Gaulle.

Again, thank you all for your help and I will let you know if anything else happens that could be of future use to anyone who happens to find themselves in this situation.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 01:43 PM
  #142  
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We received a very polite reply that we were "reseated" on Air France not downgraded. No more compensation. They just want us to please use them in the future and they are committed to customer care!
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 02:06 PM
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They just want us to please use them in the future and they are committed to customer care!>>

self-evidently.

why don't you send them a link to this thread?
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 02:14 PM
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If you pay extra for that seat and are reseated to a location that costs significantly less, then you should be reimbursed for the cost difference. Note to self: do not fly AirFrance.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 02:23 PM
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I'm with annhig. I'd send them to a link to this thread. And consider not flying Air France again.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 02:27 PM
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only consider it, skatterfly?

wild horses wouldn't get me on a flight with anyone who had treated me the same way the OP has been treated by Air France.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 03:37 PM
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YOu know, I have always flown AF to Europe, always when going to France, and often another city as they have competitive fares. I've never had any problems with them, and like their service on the flights, but I've never had a problem like this.

I am really shocked at their response and it really makes me think much worse of them. I just think it is ridiculous to claim that isn't a different class when you pay more and right on their own website they list it as a different class! Never heard of paying more for a seat that wasn't a different class unless it was a very minor difference (I think some cheapo airlines charge you a little more for exit row, for example).

Now that I think of it, United does have some premium economy seats and on their planes, no, I guess I wouldn't call that a different class, actually. I had to get a refund from them once as I bought one but didn't get it, maybe I said that before.

But regardless of whether it is a class or not, I can't imagine on what justifiable basis they refuse to refund money you paid for something you didn't get, that's the bottom line. This is really one of the worst airline customer service stories I've ever heard.
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Old May 3rd, 2013, 06:41 PM
  #148  
 
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I guess my long ago comment..Take a chancce, fly Air france.. is proving itself!! Keep up the fight and don't let them off the hook if you can afford the energy!!!
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Old May 4th, 2013, 04:34 AM
  #149  
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I am going to write a few letters and send them certified to Paris. I know it is expensive but it will make me feel better. I am also going to file a EU261/2004 complaint. And I am going back to Paris early next year so that alone makes me feel infinitely better.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 05:29 AM
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Sorry to ask this, in case it was clear above, Irock; I know that you have received something, but did they reimburse you the full difference in price between what you paid for and what you got?
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Old May 4th, 2013, 05:42 AM
  #151  
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They gave us back $420 for each of the 2 seats downgraded. EU compensation should have been more but they are now saying we were reseated not downgraded. My husband told me last night that if anyone had seen the rude and dismissive way we were treated by the gate crew we would get compensation and more. But not everyone at AF was terrible. We had wonderful flight attendants who were tremendously kind.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 05:45 AM
  #152  
 
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So was that the total price difference for the seats? I am just trying to understand how/why they are rationalizing that they are "done" with you.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 06:10 AM
  #153  
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They said at first that it was just an adjustment for that portion of the fare. That we were not downgraded we just didn't get our original seat. This was the reply that Mr. Elliott received from Delta when he intervened on our behalf. We never received any reply. It said that Premium Economy was not a different class just a better seat.

After Mr. Elliott's story on us my husband privately tweeted AF and linked the story. They then told us to expect some correspondence. What we got yesterday said that we were reseated not downgraded. But we were, in Air Frances words to us at the time, upgraded from economy to Premium economy on a flight a few years ago. We just felt we were entitled to EU compensation after reading the rule on the EU website.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 06:25 AM
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Yes, if that is the EU policy, then of course you are! But it sounds like they are trying to nickel and dime you based on their having refunded the monetary difference of the price of the seats. I wonder if they are thinking that only EU citizens are entitled to the EU compensation.....a weaselly move but maybe that is what they are thinking....
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Old May 4th, 2013, 06:36 AM
  #155  
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I think they just are trying to not pay anything else and hope I will give up. I didn't know about the EU rules until this happened and I would bet most Americans don't either. AF knows they are beholden to them but from what I have researched they and other EU air carriers try at all costs to avoid them. It just seems sillly to me as we have been using AF yearly and spending thousans of dollars.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 08:33 AM
  #156  
 
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As a former airline refund person (as I mentioned before), I must say that I find their compensation 'legal' but it is true that they are playing on the definition of what a different class is, and that was probably programmed right from the start.

The best way to know if you were in a different class from economy is to check the IZ tax on the ticket. This is the 'solidarity tax' and is applied by a few countries (too few countries in my opinion) to finance health care (mostly regarding AIDS) in the developing countries. For a long haul flight from France, it is 4€ in economy class and 40€ in any other class.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 08:46 AM
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I'd dump the whole frustration on the Air France facebook "Wall" and ask for some basic explanations. Is it a class? If not why does website ???? say it is? If it is a class why was I dumped down without compensation as per????

Watch the customer services squirm.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 08:59 AM
  #158  
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Thank you Kerouac I will see if I can find out that info. So if they only charge the 4 euro, they can say its a different class but still be covered against complaints when this happens.

That is the first bit of useful explanation I have gotten. Certainly AF nor Delta are going to tell me that. At any rate we still plan to go to Paris in February and we want to use the $200 vouchers we received as a goodwill gesture from AF after we complained about the rude and dismissive way we were treated at the gate. I feel like if we do use them to at least get this $200 I will fly economy as someone on here wrote that the exact same thing happened to them on the Paris to Houston flight a few weeks after it happened to us. But after this it may be a long while before we fly AF again.
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Old May 4th, 2013, 09:03 AM
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I"m glad I read this. I had a nightmare experience with Europcar, booked through AutoEurope, and i just posted a complaint on their Facebook page. I"m thinking about posting a thread on it here or elsewhere. These companies should learn that good customer relations is more valuable than a quick buck -- and that maintaining a good reputation, particularly in the social media age, will improve their finances in the long run!
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Old May 4th, 2013, 09:14 AM
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Wow. We used Europcar booked through Autoeurope in Sicily in March. We didn't have any problems. It amazes me how things can turn out do bad for the next person. We have always had good experiences with AF until now. Sorry to hear about your experience. Hope the rest of your trip was great.
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