Old Jul 1st, 2010, 05:18 PM
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The last time we went to Europe (2007, sadly) I was all over any travel site I could find and none of them had anything good to say about Alitalia? Has the airline improved or do they still loose luggage like crazy? Do I want to book a connecting flight on Alitalia?
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Old Jul 1st, 2010, 05:37 PM
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Where are you flying from? What are the alternative airlines?

I would think that your characterization "they lose luggage like crazy" is an exaggeration. Perhaps a tiny percentage of Alitalia flyers experience lost luggage (probably less than one in a thousand) ... but obviously, the vast majority of people whose luggage arrives with them don't bother to write about that fact because ... it's not news!

I wouldn't hesitate to fly Alitalia, but there are two proactive steps you can do to protect yourself:

(1) When the check-in agent prints the luggage tags to put on your suitcases, make sure they have the correct airport code for your destination city printed on the tags before you let the suitcases out of your sight.

(2) Purchase an inexpensive travel insurance policy. This will provide you with compensation in the unlikely event of lost or delayed luggage.
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Old Jul 1st, 2010, 08:36 PM
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We flew Alitalia a few years ago into Rome to connect to Venice. Our flight was late leaving Boston's Logan airport and Alitalia, perhaps anticipating a problem, and without notifying us, moved us to a later connecting flight. I only became aware of the change when I looked at our connecting flight boarding passes once in the air to Rome. We got to Rome in time for our connection (approx 40 min available) and we were not allowed to get on the flight we had booked. We were forced to wait, with three children, for five hours for a later flight. We were grudgingly provided meal vouchers after we requested some support. Alitalia staff appeared unconcerned about bumping us from our flight.

We watched our flight to Venice leave the gate and proceed down the runway while we began our five hour wait.

On the bright side, they didn't lose our luggage.

As I've related my tale of woe over the years, I've heard other travelers caution against flying Alitalia, mostly for the poor airport and inflight service.

Just one traveler's experience . . . .
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Old Jul 1st, 2010, 09:46 PM
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Our family of four has just returned from our trip to Sicily. Flew coach, LAX-Rome-Catania and Palermo-Rome-LAX. I am happy to report that the outbound flight left and arrived ontime. We had less than a 2-hour window in Rome, and everyone's luggage showed up to meet us in Catania. We stayed overnight at the airport Hilton on the return. Both the Palermo and Rome return flights left a little late; on the plus side, again, everyone's luggage made it. The food was definitely a cut above American and Delta (I know, I know, that's not exactly a high bar, but we were pleased nonetheless). If you book Alitalia, I would recommend confirming your reservation periodically. I called a couple of weeks before departure to doublecheck the weight restrictions and was told that, due to the Alitalia/Air One merger, my sons' Palermo-Rome reservations had "fallen out", and all of our seat assignments on the Rome-LAX leg had disappeared. Fortunately, these were easy fixes. The agent stated that they'd sent an email, but said email never showed up in my inbox. On the other hand, we did get a phone call telling us that our flight from Rome to Catania would be leaving 10 minutes later. I was also told that seat assignments are not nailed down until you actually show up and receive your boarding pass.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 03:11 AM
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Flown Alitalia twice. BOTH TIMES return flight was
cancelled due to strike, the second one was 11/09 out of
Rome, first one out of Venice 2 yrs prior.

With 2 for 2, I will NEVER fly them again. The worst was
11/09 when they kept the flight ON THE BOARDS as departing
all day long so one could not change to another airline w/o
penalty. Then a no-tell motel overnight after waiting on
a long-line to get voucher w/a 11 pm dogfood meal @ said hotel
15 minutes outside of airport.

The reason for 2nd strike? Ground personnel wanted 10 minutes more for lunch....

Caveat: Outbound flights on Delta are inbound on Alitalia.
Twice bitten, finally learned lesson!
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 03:16 AM
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ALitalia is now part of Air France/KLM. I don't know if that has made a difference to it, but I would hope it has.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 04:04 AM
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Yes, Alitalia is more or less controlled by Air France-KLM now. It is also a brand new company created in 2009. It is unfair to consider it the same company that went bankrupt 2 years ago.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 06:41 AM
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I flew Boston to Rome on Alitalia about a year and a half ago and we had no problems at all.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 07:44 AM
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Well my oldest daughter and her tour arrived on Alitalia yesterday to O'Hare and their flight was late (at least 30 minutes) and they did not have the individual monitors at each seat. She said the movies were weird (probably italian).

My other daughter and I flew Delta in and out of DTW. We had individual monitors with plenty of movies to choose from and a lot of pretty decent food. Our flight was early, however my daughter's bag, along with several others did not come on our flight. I think they have tracked it down and we will hopefully have it today. It includes her favorite clothes as well as all the new outfits she bought in Rome. But at least we were headed home so it's not like it ruined our vacation. It would have been a bummer to arrive in Rome without luggage, but we both did have change of clothes in our carry-on.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2010, 08:22 PM
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I thought that I remembered that they filed bankruptcy, which is why I was surprised when I saw that they could be one of the connections between Rome & Detroit.
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Old Jul 4th, 2010, 04:19 AM
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I've lived in Italy for several years and during this time, Lufthansa, British Air and and Air France have all gone on strike while Alitalia has not. In addition, Air France has cancelled two flights on me, and Alitalia hasn't cancelled any.

But there are professional evaluators that rate airlines and airports in terms of delays, overbooking, lost luggage, etc. Try googling them up. That's better than getting a dozen responses of one-off personal experiences, some of it more than 10 years old.
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