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KLM Kick EU Regulation Pax Rights  
User currently offlineDelta777Jet From Germany, joined Jun 2000, 1247 posts, RR: 3
Posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 3844 times:

Hi,
I just came of from a trip which went via Amsterdam. My inbound to AMS was 1.5 hours (waiting time in aircraft) late and i missed the onward connection. There was no other connection available and KLM booked me on the flight next morning. Hotel Acco., Meal Vouchers etc. have been declined. KLM staff was saying they dont need to compensate or assist in any way if in their system shows that the reason for delay was weather. I dont know if this statement is true ?

Further more the funny thing was that there was a flight from Lufthansa with a scheduled departure time one hour later than ours and even this flight arrived earlier in Amsterdam than the KLM one.

Can KLM still say it was due to Weather if the ground handling company did not manage to get a de icing unit in time and if pilot choose to use the most far runway due to better wind (runway available 3.300 meters A/C: Fokker 100)and another runway in Amsterdam which was also some 20 minutes to taxi ?

This adventure was costing me some 120 USD extra and I m wondering for what ?

Since I m using KLM frequently I asked what happend with their policies and they was claiming that this new strict rules came with the Air France merger.

[Edited 2006-03-11 19:16:39]

[Edited 2006-03-11 19:26:58]


Fly easyJet
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineLamedianaranja From Venezuela, joined Nov 2004, 1246 posts, RR: 21
Reply 1, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3793 times:

Quoting Delta777Jet (Thread starter):
i missed the onward connection

The new EU regulations do NOT apply to missed connections, I'm afraid. It applies to delays, cancellations, denied boarding ans lost baggage.

So a delay due to weather is beyond the airlines control. You should have been given some vouchers, but only assistance in finding a hotel.

Runways are assigned by the traffic controllers, not by the pilots. This runway in AMS you used, 18R, is the preferred runway for landing under most weather conditions.

De-icing always causes delays, as there's never enough capacity to de-ice all the aircraft at once. Especially if it has to be done at the remote ramp, just before take-off.



I wish that all skies were orange and blue!!
User currently offlineDelta777Jet From Germany, joined Jun 2000, 1247 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3772 times:

Yeah, it seems to look bad for me. I was thinking that I booked a journey from A to B and I arrived 15 hours late finally. So no matter what, airlines just can say it was beyond their control that another airline have priority access to a decing machine and all the cause of delay is because of the weather. I was thinking that de icing is some kind of standard procedures and not something extra ordinary which is beyond control. So airlines just say it was bad weather and passengers can assist themself.


Fly easyJet
User currently offlineSabena 690 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3747 times:

Airlines always show their "true face" when something goes wrong.

In this case, KLM should have put you in a hotel. Whether they have to or not. KLM is still a full-service airline and not a second Ryanair.

We are still dealing with a connection. In theory, KLM sold you a FRA-xxx (via AMS however). It's still the responsibility of KLM to get you at your final destination. When you can't make a connection for whatever reason, KLM should have put you in a hotel at their cost, not at yours.

The only thing you can do is write to KLM customer service. Do you still have the receipt of your hotel and the receipts of other expenses?

Write a nice letter to the customer service, include those receipts (and make sure that you have a copy of them), and explain the situation in a kind way.

I had to do this already on several occasions, and was always compensated with vouchers (for future flights).

Good luck!

Regards
Frederic


User currently offlineDelta777Jet From Germany, joined Jun 2000, 1247 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3739 times:

Thanks for the advise Frederic, I will do so !
I was thinking what kind of letter to write since this EU rules are quite complex to read in terms of delays with connection flights.

I was initially thinking the law is on my side and then the letter would look different of course, but in this case mhhh.........



Fly easyJet
User currently offlineSabena 690 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 3712 times:

Hi Delta777Jet,

I wouldn't mention the EU-rules (yet). Just explain your situation, and see how they handle it.

You can still use the EU-legislation for in case they don't want to offer you any form of compensation after your first letter.

It's a pity that they just didn't compensate you for hotel. Personally, I really don't like to write this kind of complaint-letters, but sometimes it's just necessary. I'm glad however that most of my e-mails and letters are to thank the crews after an excellent experience!

Regards
Frederic


User currently offlineSK601 From Belgium, joined Jun 2005, 976 posts, RR: 4
Reply 6, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 3640 times:

Quoting Delta777Jet (Thread starter):
KLM staff was saying they dont need to compensate or assist in any way if in their system shows that the reason for delay was weather. I dont know if this statement is true ?

I work for KL and although I disagree with a lot of things that's going on, I can assure you that the delay statements that are given are 200% true.

Quoting Delta777Jet (Thread starter):
Hotel Acco., Meal Vouchers etc. have been declined.

As for the hotel: if the reason of the delay is beyond the control of the airline, hotel accomodation is only given to passengers with C-class tickets, full fare economy tickets (Y or S fares), Um-pax, WCHS/WCHC pax, and Skyteam Platinum and Gold elite passengers. All other passengers will have to pay for the hotel accomodation. This applies to all passengers with a missed connection. If your flight is cancelled, KL MUST provide hotel accomodation, no mather what reason!
Concerning the meal voucher: according to the KL guidelines, you must get a Service Recovery Package, with a foodvoucher, phonecard and €50 travel discount coupon.
Unfortunately many of my collegues don't give out these when they see the delay reason is "Others", meaning beyond control of the airline. You are at least entitled to get one of those.

Also, as far as hotel accomodation is concerned, the KL agent must direct you to the hotel information desk in the arrival hall and issue hotel discount coupons for stranded passengers.

Passengers who miss a connection will be booked on the next available KL flight, even if there is an earlier flight with a KL competitor. Passengers usually don't understand this, mainly because almost nobody reads the restrictions that go with the ticket and MOST tickets are non-endorseable, also in case of INVOLUNTARY rerouting! If you have an endorseable ticket, or an PE/GE member it's usually possible to be rebooked on an other airline. Be aware that some C-class tickets are also non-endorseable!

As stated by Lamedianaranja, KL didnot kick EU rules. (unfortunately for you!) Do write a letter to customer relations about your experience, but don't expect anything. KL is not know for their great after sales! A good travel insurance will help in these cases, and if you bought your ticket with a credit card then you can contact your cc-company, 'cause some cc-companies will cover those extra costs (for example the AMEX Gold card)

Too bad you had a negative experience, however these things happens often unfortunately.


User currently offlineFermarta From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 3536 times:

Quoting Lamedianaranja (Reply 1):
The new EU regulations do NOT apply to missed connections, I'm afraid.

Wrong. See Article 2h) and Article 8.1.a) and b) of EU Regulation 261/2004.
Definition and use of term "final destination" in case of delays.

By the way, Iberia always provides hotel accomodation for passengers that miss their connections because of a delayed Iberia flight, no matter what caused the delay.


User currently offlineHB-IWC From Greece, joined Sep 2000, 4498 posts, RR: 72
Reply 8, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 3444 times:

I strongly believe that an airline's true sense of customer service can be measured in situations of irregularities, and, while I do not believe that airlines should have an obligation to take financial charge of misconnecting and delayed passengers in just about every situation, I feel there is an icreasing tendency among some airlines and its front line employees to hide behind external reasons "beyond the airline's control" not to have to cough up passengers' expenses pertaining to operational irregularities.

Sure enough, the weather is beyond the airline's control, but one can reasonably expect Amsterdam to have so many freezing nights and snowy days, when de-icing becomes necessary. AMS, or any other airport for that matter, should, as such, be reasonably able to calculate the optimal amount of de-icing equipment. Now, when year after year, the airlines, handling companies and/or airport authority are found to be lacking adequate de-icing capacity, then surely someone is to blame?

In another example, the powers that be at Air France must have an idea or two about the current situation at its CDG hub with regard to extended connecting times. Yet, Air France continues to offer and sell tickets with minimum connecting time, when it is all but impossible for passengers to make such connections. Is this a situation beyond the airline's control? Should we blame the passenger for even considering such a short connection, let alone buying the ticket? Or should Air France bare the responsibility for even putting the option out there?

Understandably, airlines tend to interpret above mentioned situations in a way that suits them best, whereas their actual attitute ought to be one of common sense. Sadly, KLM has failed me as well as a couple of colleagues and friends on multiple occasions, insisting on a strict adherence to the rules whereas any amount of common sense would have clearly demonstrated the airline's shortcoming. As a result, I tend to be a bit wary when it comes to planning future trips. Based in Asia, I have the luxury of an array of local carriers which still tend to put a premium on customer satisfaction.


User currently offlineDelta777Jet From Germany, joined Jun 2000, 1247 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 3408 times:

Good to know that EU rules covering this problems in case KLM dont want to offer a refund of the hotel and food costs or only to premium members. I m happy to be at least Gold already on my next trip. I will write the letter today. SK 602: Your statement is wrong that KLM always mention the real delay code. Did you ever think about that the handling agent at the departure airport file the delay code ? In case they made an error (in my case the de ice to late), then its clearly a handling agent error. Its easy to blame the weather to avoid any problems. I believe that KLM employees in Amsterdam dont know about it. But as I mentioned as a employee with brain I would guess something is wrong if another airline, same route, later scheduled arrival time (1 hour later) comes in earlier in Amsterdam and I would offer a good loyal customer a hotel room. They can easily check that I fly this route once a week and can easy calculate that 69 EUR for a hotel is affordable that they can keep me as a customer in the future. I saw on the KLM website that the employees should have a commercial way of thinking.

By the way, even crappy Alitalia paid my hotel when I was last stranded in MXP due to late arrival from Cairo.

During our waiting on the appron a CRJ from Lufthansa came in, got a quick handling done, use the most convenient runways, get immediate de ice from the same suplier and take off direction Amsterdam with just 30 Minutes delay and that is 100 % the truth.



Fly easyJet
User currently offlineSK601 From Belgium, joined Jun 2005, 976 posts, RR: 4
Reply 10, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 3226 times:

Quoting Delta777Jet (Reply 9):
SK 602: Your statement is wrong that KLM always mention the real delay code.

I was actually referring to the agent in AMS. Me, and my collaegues, will not tell you something else than information provided in our computer. It's never fun to tell passengers that they have to spend the night in AMS and travel the next day and than it's at least nice if we can tell them that KL will pay for a hotel. The information is provided to us by the Operations Control Center. Front line staff has NO power to overrule the delay codes from the OCC. To be honest I have my doubts sometimes about the "others"-code.

Quoting Delta777Jet (Reply 9):
But as I mentioned as a employee with brain I would guess something is wrong if another airline, same route, later scheduled arrival time (1 hour later) comes in earlier in Amsterdam and I would offer a good loyal customer a hotel room

As stated above, front line staff may not overrule this, it's a useless discussion with the managers; I tried it many times the last couple of years that I work here, never with any success  Sad , managers can be soooo stuborn. BTW I have NEVER seen a manager talk face to face with a stranded passenger in all the years I work here, except Sept. 11.

Quoting Delta777Jet (Reply 9):
I saw on the KLM website that the employees should have a commercial way of thinking.

Yes, I know.....but KL management don't give us the possibilities and tools to do it!

Quoting Delta777Jet (Reply 9):
that is 100 % the truth

I have to deal with these situations on a regular basis. I don't question your story...., but the perception of the passengers is funny enough always different than the company's!

Quoting Delta777Jet (Reply 9):
I will write the letter today

As a wrote in my previous reply, KL customer relations is not the best around. I often have the idea that they think:"yes, another booking, ticket paid, finished!" After-sales, especially in cases like yours, is more important than getting someone to book a ticket. KL is thrifty and will do all possible not paying out any compensation. Personally I had a situation last summer when relatives flew to AUA. The flight was cancelled 5 hours before departure. No compensation, hardly any assistence (luckily I had to work that day so I was able to arrange a decent re-booking) and a standard letter with an apology.

Am I a frustated KL employee??? Yes, somehow I am. KL is a OK airline to fly with, if all will go as it should be. I flew many times and besides a delay here and there no major problems. But if a problem occurs, KL is NOT good in repairing these problems. This stuborn attitude and following the rules VERY strict and the focus on cost-cutting and less and less on the passenger, made me decide to quit this job (after 7,5 years) and move-on to another department. Why do I stay with KL? Because they DO take care of their employees!  Smile


User currently offlineCyba From Cape Verde, joined Nov 2005, 206 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3197 times:

I'm sorry this happened to you. I agree that you should write a letter but I wouldn't hold my breath about it. If you feel strongly enough about this issue, I suggest that you vote with your wallet and never fly KL again.

I think KL's "don't-pay-anything-unless-you-absolutely-have-to" policy is too short-termist. The same can be said for the ground staff many of whom seem to have received their training in Soviet prisons. I have had bad, downright rude treatment from KL ground staff on a number of occasions including denied boarding, lost luggage etc . After suffering this a few times, I made an easy decision to never fly KL again. I now fly enough to have top status with both Oneworld AND Star alliance but will never ever fly on KL via AMS based on my previous experience. Thankfully there is still enough choice in Europe for this not to be a problem.


User currently offlineSK601 From Belgium, joined Jun 2005, 976 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3170 times:

Quoting Cyba (Reply 11):
I suggest that you vote with your wallet and never fly KL again.

Telling not to fly with XXX-airlines is something I wouldn't do. The airline will not be impressed at all. They know passenger will walk away from them and they also know that other airlines will have passengers saying the same. If you tell them you will never fly AAA-airlines again, then AAA-airlines knows that a passenger from BBB-airlines will say the same about BBB-airlines. You loose on one hand, you win on the other.

As for KL: Almost every day a few passengers tell me they will NEVER fly KL again, what wonders me is that sales are up every year, with the exception of the after Sept.11 period.

This will not mean that you shouldn't sent in the complain. KL received many complaints a few years ago, when they decided not to serve alcohol anymore in m-class on European flights. Because of the huge number of complaints about this it's back again! (and also a bit because of the AF influence)


User currently offlineDelta777Jet From Germany, joined Jun 2000, 1247 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (8 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3145 times:

With the story to loose passengers, yes its true, but my next return flight with KLM is already next Wed. and the 15th Segment this year with them. The price on them is just the matter what counts for me, but if needed I will pull them to a court to get paid the hotel costs at least. Within europe I m looking only on price and service on board and this two items are okay on KLM. On long hauls I m travelling always in C-Class either discounted or standard and used only once Air France new 777 between CDG-SIN and was a bit shocked about their service. I doubt that KLM is better in C-Class ?!? The choose here is OneWorld with British Airways, as they have in my opinion the best C-Class in terms of comfort and also very nice lounge facilities with showers etc. As long as KLM have this cheap tix on my weekly flights I will use them. Now I will choose the morning flights so that I have alternative connections. If I m continue like this I will reach Gold quite quickly and later Platinum this year and then KLM is paying for HOTACs according to them in case of problems  Smile


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