US Airways Sucks

Plain and simple. I met the CEO on a flight a few months back when he was dealing with all the BS, and he seemed like a nice guy, but our experience with them over the past few hours leaves no doubt that they just don’t get it.

Kristie bought a couple of tickets on US Airways for us to go to her friend’s wedding and we ended up changing flights and cancelling those tickets. So now I need to fly to DC and we just wanted to use the credit (about $600 less change fees) to buy the new ticket. On the phone with Orbitz, they wanted $130 change fee per ticket. We were just trying to buy the new ticket. They decided to release the ticket to US Airways, so we got on the phone with them. I am a gold member with US Airways, so there should not have been any problems really – seems straightforward right?

We just spent the last hour on the phone with them, most recently speaking with Hernalyn (ID #2HS), supposedly a supervisor in their customer service department. She seems to think that there is no one above her in that department, so she has the final say for the entire airline regarding their policy.

Here is the deal: The original trip we wanted credit on was booked for Kristie and I as 2 tickets. Kristie merely wanted to apply the credit from the money she spent on them to the purchase of my new flight, but they would only let us re-issue the one ticket that was made in my name and would not apply the credit from the other ticket. This would mean she was stuck with that credit for her prior ticket because she has no plans for any other travel which would use this. Regardless, to us it is very simple, we have a credit with the airline for tickets that were cancelled and we want to use it.

To them, this one transaction, on one credit card does not equal one credit, but 2 cancelled tickets that can only be used for 2 more tickets in the names of each people. So if Kristie and I were to break up (we’re not) this would mean she would never be able to use the credit for the tickets. This is a silly policy and it is anti-consumer, perhaps even reason for a lawsuit.

At least now I understand why they are in bankruptcy and having such difficulty, apparently US Airways sucks so badly at understanding CUSTOMER SERVICE that they forget who the customer is and who they are supposed to be servicing. Why is it that most major corporations have customer service departments that are designed to frustrate their customers and prevent them from getting the monies they rightly deserve. I won’t get into the problems we had with Cingular here, but it really does show why corporations are perceived in such a bad light and why customer service reps are getting a reputation that is actually lower than that of a used car salesman.

BTW – Hernalyn did not care that we were not satisifed at the end of the call, she did not care if we blogged about this to the world, she did not care if we ever flew US Airways again and she did not care if we influenced the businesses with which we were involved to never use US Airways either. In short, they don’t care about keeping their customers in the customer service department, even though a large portion of their marketing budget is spent on keeping customers happy. So one phone call with a $20/hour supervisor ends up costing them a couple of thousand dollars a year from our lost business and even more from those people we know.

Not very smart. I predict they won’t be around very much longer, so that gold status I have in the frequent flyer program means nothing. I guess I will just fly American or JetBlue now. So, if you are from US Airways and you are reading this, I have a goatse for you to look at…

  1. #1 by Anonymous - November 11th, 2005 at 13:26

    I am here to look at goatse.

  2. #2 by david - November 12th, 2005 at 13:41

    In a nutshell, that’s why I always fly jetBlue. Great customer service, cheerful (without being obnoxiously so) staff, and their planes are clean too.

    I was going to fly down to visit my folks in Florida and due to Wilma had to change the flights three times – no problem and never a charge.

  3. #3 by Chris Heuer - December 2nd, 2005 at 08:10

    Too funny – as an update, it seems that someone over at US Airways (probably Hernalyn, the sucky supposed supervisor we dealt with that provided horrible customer service) felt that the best way to deal with this issue was to personally insult me rather than deal with the issue properly. (she also did not realize we can delete comments other people make) Strangely enough I had left this alone for a while, but now I am going to pick up the torch again and let even more people now. She/He went as far as creating a new blog under the name PZ_log. Must have been created just for this because she (or whoever it was) does not have the balls to stand up and be responsible for their own words. I posted a screen shot of the user’s new profile on Flickr

    Guess this just goes back to my point that most people just don’t understand how to properly present a point of view that is different to someone elses. Rather than dealing with the situation as a once valued customer who is now pissed off and trying to reason that the policy is a good one (its obviously not, so I dont suppose they could do that) she actually said to “stop crying like a little baby” because we “had bought the cheapest ticket and wanted to be treated like we had bought the most expensive”. If you read the post this is not the point, this is not what we are mad about and the comment totally gives away the persons personal involvement in the matter.

    The point is, take away the damn hundred bucks for the ticket (which really costs the airlines about $5 to rebook for the phone call) and let us use the money for the 2 tickets that were purchased by one person on one credit card to buy one new ticket.

  4. #4 by Kelly Cormier - December 13th, 2007 at 20:24


    Believe it or not, I have exactly the opposite problem. I booked two business trips to San Diego for December. I have Multiple Sclerosis and have recently experience a relapse that prevented me from traveling so I cancelled the tickets resulting in a total $1300 credit. I have another conference I need to attend in February and the doctors will allow me to do so but only with a caregiver traveling with me to assist with my medical needs. The total for our new airfare would be $452 and one of the tickets equals about $619. Even though they would be making alot of money off of the deal, they still want allow the use of the credit for my caregiver to travel to help care for me.

    It is defeating, I hope you both are able to work this out. I learned today that there is a specific person at my airport whom I can appeal to and I intend tomorrow to contact our States Department of Consumer Protection and Attorney General. Wish me luck, would love to hear an update of your issue!

    Kelly Cormier
    Niantic, CT

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