Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
British Airways CDG-LHR/LHR-ORY: Nightmare Travels  
User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Posted (2 years 4 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 9396 times:

Sorry, no pictures.

17 April 2012
CDG-LHR
BA323, Airbus A320, G-EUUJ
Seat 3F, Club Europe

On a quick business trip to London, and being a die hard A.Netter, I prefer to fly than take the Eurostar. I usually divide my custom between the BA flights to/from LHR and the AF Cityjet flights from ORY to LCY.

This time it was BA's turn... and it may be my last!

Arrived at CDG about 1h15 minutes before flight time. Huge lines at the Club Europe Business class check in and even longer ones for economy. BA's computers were down, so they decided to check in pax and baggage manually. It took forever and was a bit chaotic. Obviously the 17h55 flight was going to be delayed.

Finally obtained my boarding pass (had no luggage to check) at around 18h30. Went through the CDG Acces N°1 line which I think is among the best of any airport, as you get personally escorted through passport control and directly to the front of the security checks. Since so many on this site complain about CDG personnel, I paid particular attention and found them fine, even friendly. Both the Acces N°1 escorts (dressed in chic pastel outfits) and the security personnel were cordial, and after passing security (they asked to see inside my bag - forgot to take out the liquids), they smiled and wished me a pleasant flight ("Bon voyage").

Made my way to the lounge which is the Admirals Club lounge at CDG2A. Nothing special there. I don't particularly like that lounge... and it is a bit of a walk from BA's boarding gates.

Boarding, by bus, was at about 19h10. Waited a bit on the bus, then headed out to the aircraft. Given the problems with check in, there were some additional ones reconciling checked luggage with people who were actually on board. The captain had to read out around 8 luggage tags to make sure they corresponded to people on board... There appeared to be about 6 that were unaccounted for.... The Captain repeated the numbers, no reply from the full flight. Then someone suggested maybe they read the numbers in French (duh!!!), but BA had no personnel on board who could speak it... So the captain, together with CDG ground crew, managed to sort the situation out, and narrowed it down to 3 bags unaccounted for that had to be offloaded. At 20h30... push back... over 2 1/2 hours late!

The rest of the short flight was uneventful, but my seat wasn't particularly clean. The seat pocket was sticky and disgusting!!! The salmon salad was ok.

Arriving at LHR, again a remote stand, we needed to take the bus. I arrived at passport control for the shock of my life... Huge lines both for UK/EU passport holders and non-UK/EU nationals. I have a US passport. Compared to the efficiency of CDG and their Acces N°1 which is always open when I go through, Fast Track at the "fabulous" (NOT) Terminal 5 at LHR was closed (apparently only open in the morning (????????)). The line took 2 1/2 hours to clear... no joke. I got to the front of the line around 23h00 UK time and all passport control desks except one closed!! And the line was still huge! In all my years of travel, close to 2000 flights and over 2,000,000 miles, I have never experienced something like this!!! A complete nightmare! GOOD LUCK WITH THE OLYMPICS, BA and LHR!!!

Finally made it to my hotel in Mayfair after midnight or after 1 am Paris time!

The flight back
19 April 2012
LHR-ORY
BA338
Airbus A319 G-EUPC
Seat 2F Club Europe
was less hectic although we were over one hour late leaving LHR. And in an apparent rush to leave late, they were unable to load catering on board... so just drinks for this hour flight (which is OK), but still not very professional IMHO.
Arrived at Paris Orly and cleared passport control in literally 60 seconds!!!

BA and LHR have lost my custom on this route which I fly at least once a month. I am now only flying to City Airport with AF Cityjet.

Some people on this site complain about CDG, but I find LHR a much more uncivilized place.

28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGCPET From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2012, 204 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (2 years 4 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 9283 times:

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Arriving at LHR, again a remote stand, we needed to take the bus. I arrived at passport control for the shock of my life... Huge lines both for UK/EU passport holders and non-UK/EU nationals. I have a US passport. Compared to the efficiency of CDG and their Acces N°1 which is always open when I go through, Fast Track at the "fabulous" (NOT) Terminal 5 at LHR was closed (apparently only open in the morning (????????)). The line took 2 1/2 hours to clear... no joke. I got to the front of the line around 23h00 UK time and all passport control desks except one closed!! And the line was still huge! In all my years of travel, close to 2000 flights and over 2,000,000 miles, I have never experienced something like this!!! A complete nightmare! GOOD LUCK WITH THE OLYMPICS, BA and LHR!!!

I have to agree with you that the passport control is a complete joke at T5 when long haul flights have just arrived before you. Was the IRIS scanner passport thing there? They are normally quite quick to use and the majority of people don't use them for some reason. It's sad to see you've had a bad experience with BA but you're definitely not the first. Have you tried BA Cityflyer from City to Paris? They might be a good one to try!

GCPET



If it's not Boeing, I'm not going!
User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (2 years 4 months 2 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 9065 times:

GCPET, have BA started flying from City to Paris? I don't think they have.
For a brief period over five years ago they were flying LCY - CDG with Avros, but it seems Paris is the only major European city BA Cityflyer doesn't serve from LCY.


User currently offlinesignol From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2007, 3003 posts, RR: 8
Reply 3, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8412 times:

Thanks for taking the time to write.

To be honest, the 2 issues that you had, BA's computers in CDG beign down and LHR passport control.
The computer issue, seemed to be dealt with fairly, if doing everything manually does take time.
As for passport control, BA have no control over how many agents, or whether fast track is open. That is down to BAA (the airport operator) and the UK Border Agency.

True, the seat should have been cleaner, but at least the fod was ok.

A shame you have ruled out BA in future travel, and that is coming from a former AF employee!

Thanks again

signol



Flights booked: none :(
User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8376 times:

Signol, agreed... partially.
My criticisms of passport control, fast track, etc were directed specifically at LHR, not BA. But unfortunately it is a combo of sorts. If I could fly BA to LCY, I would likely continue to fly them. And I haven't ruled future BA flights when transfering at LHR (next month I'm flying PAR-LHR-GRU in Club World). But LHR as destination with BA is no longer a desired option for me.
I also found that BA's failure to have at least one French speaking crew member on a CDG flight an additional cause for delay as the flight crew could not communicate efficiently with the passengers.
And this is coming from an Executive Club Silver Cardholder, soon to be Gold.


User currently offlineplanejamie From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2011, 576 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 7944 times:

Can I just point out that immigration at LHR through all terminals is crap, the immigration officers are often surly and you were arriving at a relatively peak time in the evening. Don't blame BA for BAA's mistakes - I agree there is a problem there but it could be much worse. I've stood in long lines on AF coming into MAN, on BD coming into LHR to transit, on CY coming into RUH - there are immigration queues at nearly all airports now. I do agree that at Paris CDG the immigration counters have been nearly empty (arriving at 2E/2F) whenever I've been there, but like I say - queues can happen anywhere it's a fact of air travel now.

As for BA being late, well they didn't deliberately f**k up their computer system just to annoy you, chances are the staff working there were 10x more stressed than you that day. Doing everything manually does take a long time and getting out with a 2hr 20 delay isn't bad all things considered.

As for the lounge, well it's AA's lounge. Whilst I think BA should maybe have their own lounge (like they do at most places) , it would be pointless given the typical business traveller will probably only spend an hour in there and will get fed on the plane. Because it is the AA lounge, it's near the gate AA use. Add to this the fact that normally BA might have had a closer gate but due to computer issues decided to board via bus to avoid clogging up a jetbridge stand delaying another arrival because of the manual boarding process.

If you're really that upset/annoyed at BA - then send them a complaint e-mail, because in the great scheme of things, having a slightly sticky seat and a sub-par lounge isn't the be all and end all (as those are the only things in their control). I've had far worse experiences on other airlines and if I'm honest, a sticky seat is the least of my worries. Try having your flight cancelled when you're a 16 year old flying alone out to RUH via LHR on BD because of snow, trying to find your bag in terminal chaos, having no announcements and having the BD staff go home shortly afterwards - you can read the full story here: BD Y/J MAN-LHR-LHR-RUH (by planejamie Sep 16 2011 in Trip Reports) -- that's a reason maybe to avoid flying an airline. Granted having a French speaker on board could help but it's not a requirement, they sometimes do but if they're flying British Airways to Britain they should in theory be able to speak English because otherwise god help them when they get here and discover very few people speak French in comparison to the number of French that speak English!

Again, send a complaint to BA, you might get some miles/compensation and would be better than expressing your anger on here. I did that with BD and eventually (a year later) received a full refund and a personal e-mail back answering many questions I had about BD (not just the one off event... I'd had some pretty bad flights with them a few months before)


User currently offlineplateman From United States of America, joined May 2007, 923 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 7784 times:

I agree you are mad at BA because the seat was a little sticky? All airline seats are not totally clean when they run such short turns. ....

The short immigration lines are a BAA/UKBC issue, not BA.
And computer issues? S*it happens, but sounds like BA handled the system professionally.

Don't make a TR to complain and say you will never fly BA again, when they did nothing wrong, besides give you a "sticky" seat



"Explore. Dream. Discover." -Mark Twain
User currently offlinecomeflywithme From Argentina, joined Sep 2006, 265 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 7742 times:

If you refuse to fly BA again after one poor experience on one of their shortest routes then I suggest you're a very hard to please customer.

A nightmare? Don't be ridiculous.


User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 7255 times:

Personally I cannot believe that people criticize my post when I specifically state at the end "BA and LHR have lost my custom on THIS route". This is not the first and only less than stellar service BA has provided on this route compared to the AF Cityjet service, but this was the worse.
Just a sticky seat, NOOOOO, read the report. No meal service on the delayed return flight? No French speakers or thinking of perhaps finding French speakers? That would have expedited matters greatly and we probably wasted an additional 20-30 minutes just because of that! And most French flying BA to London are usually connecting to elsewhere. And with a severely delayed flight with most passengers on board connecting, we parked at a remote stand at LHR and bussed to the terminal (adding more delay). In fact, last few times I have taken BA to LHR from CDG, I arrived at remote stands (I remember for a while people on this site criticized AF at CDG for having many remote parkings, but that has now significantly dropped).
I left my office in central Paris at 16h00 CET and arrived at the hotel in central London after midnight GMT.... that's a nine hour journey when it usually takes considerably less. Not a nightmare? You didn't experience it, I did! And it was!
But this is not my only sub-par BA performance flight (last summer a three hour delay out of LAS..., a flight in Club World LHR-LAX when the seat wasn't even clean with macadamia nuts on the floor and bits of the previous passengers amenity kit on the seat and upperdeck armrest, disgusting food - have a picture somewhere).
But like I said, I will continue to fly BA as I am pretty tolerant (already stated that I booked a CDG-LHR-GRU next month and a CDG-LHR-SAN later in the year, both in Club World).
But a BA to LHR (as final destination) is a nighmarish combo.
AF Cityjet to LCY (where the lines are never too long and move very quickly) will be my future choice FOR THIS CITY PAIR (PARIS - LONDON, which once again I fly at least once a month).


User currently offlineshamrock321 From Ireland, joined May 2008, 1597 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 6918 times:

As BA staff I'm with TYCOON on this one!

Immigration delays at LHR may not be BA's fault but it is their problem! They will loose custom if it takes 2 hours to clear immigration! This really needs to be sorted before the olympics and BA cannot ignore it!

Sticky Club Europe seat? Yes it is difficult if not impossible to clean/wipedown every seat but if you are paying a premium fare to sit in a premium cabineven on a short route then you should expect a clean seat! No catering on a short flight? again not a massive issue, you will hardly starve but again if you are paying a premium fare to sit in a premium cabin then you should expect the service you have paid for!

At BA we ''treat everyone as an individual'' and this individual has clearly had a number of problems which need to be addresed!

Manual check-in should not delay a flight for 2.5 hours either!


User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3245 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 6907 times:

Sounds like you had a pretty bad ride with BA. To be honest, if you're going city centre to centre, stick with Eurostar. They might be more expensive, but it saves a lot of hassle, even compared to the LCY option.


http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights:STN-SNN-STN,MAN-LHR-ARN-OSL-TOS-LYR-OSL-CPH-LHR,LCY-ARN-AMS-LGW-DXB-
User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 6890 times:

Thanks for your understanding shamrock321.

Gabrielchew, I used to take the Eurostar with great frequency, but having equally experienced delays, cancelled trains and lack of catering in premium classes, I no longer opt for the Eurostar. And who wants to risk getting stuck in a tunnel for hours!
Plus, I'm an airline freak (aren't we all?) since I was a child... so I prefer flying...
LCY isn't that bad since most of my business is in the City, so a cab from LCY to the City is almost as quick as St Pancras Station to the City.
And despite recent experiences, I always like flying in and out of Heathrow just for plane spotting... But I think from now on, I'll use LHR only for connections....


User currently offlineplanejamie From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2011, 576 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 6598 times:

Quoting comeflywithme (Reply 7):
If you refuse to fly BA again after one poor experience on one of their shortest routes then I suggest you're a very hard to please customer.

A nightmare? Don't be ridiculous.

I support this, like I say, you want a bloody nightmare, read what I had to put up with at LHR with BD in December 2010. That's a bloody nightmare. Basically, you're just throwing your toys out of the pram because of (in comparison) a small problem. Yes, manual check-in took a while, no they don't have to have a French speaker on board and they sorted the problem out in the end. You might have had a 3 hour delay out of LAS or something but as you sound like a "frequent" or regular BA flyer, out of all the flights you've had with BA, how many have been a "nightmare?". They simply haven't got the time or money to employ a full set of cleaning staff to wipe down every single seat and getting cabin crew to wipe down the seats would upset the unions.

I've had friends fly CityJet and they have said it's been far worse in terms of cleanliness and how friendly the staff are in comparison to BA.

If you don't like it, take the Eurostar or fly EasyJet or stick to AF CityJet if it's really that god dammed fantastic, rather than coming on here and complaining about your "nightmare" experience with BA. I bet you're one of the only ones on that flight to actually kick off like this, yes many may have missed connections but what gate that flight gets assigned isn't BA's fault either. When I've been delayed on BA coming from RUH and sitting at LHR (pre 5C) for a gate for 20 minutes, I had someone personally great me at the end of the jetway and escort me through flight connections and immigration there (I was connecting to MAN) and through Terminal 5 with a packed flight connections security in under 20 minutes and I made my flight bang on time (they didn't delay it at all). When I've been ill on a BA flight (not at fault of BA) I've received excellent service and personal care. In my many many BA experiences from Check-in to Arrivals, I've had friendly staff and in general if you make the effort to say "hello" and smile or just make a little bit of polite small talk, then you'll find they are friendly and personable. If you just grunt at them and make little effort, they're human, don't expect much back (you wouldn't smile and be cheery/try and make conversation if someone did that to you).

Take your complaint up with BA, send them a link to this trip report if you have to and if I'm even more honest, without photos, you have nothing to support what happened. You might get some compensation out of it rather than a heated discussion from the rest of us.


User currently offlinefca767 From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2006, 1757 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 6567 times:

In my opinion T5 is the most non-user friendly terminal that i've been in...

I went to the satelite terminal and you're not allowed back...even for the employees working there, they have to go all the way to C so that they can get back to the main terminal if in B...I on the other hand had to go through arrivals just to get back up to departures...
I like how Changi is, their new T3 connected to the other terminals airside and landside so you can go between them and not worry about having to go into arrivals just to get back to your gate.

T5 is just too bulky and un-interesting.

But here's my video that i got from it
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Venq0aG16VU


User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1091 posts, RR: 31
Reply 14, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 6510 times:

Thanks for the report.

Although I appreciate you had a terrible time, it seems like this report may have been written as a result of the experience. That is not what the Trip Report forum is for really. If there had been photos, or exact departure/ arrival timings, I could have swallowed that you had intended to write the report from the outset. It gives a poor representation of an airline if everyone only writes a report when it goes wrong. In the same way that SKYTRAX is a farcical system too.

That isn't to defend BA, but it is to protect the integrity and neutrality of this forum. It is widely known that some airline staff also write reviews for the airlines they work for, but these users are generally known within the forum. Furthermore, pictorial evidence can allow users to formulate their own opinion.

I think you may have over-embellished with 'nightmare' . If you want a nightmare, refer to my latest report on QR in which they abandoned me for 14 hours without food, water or blankets, ignored medical advice on my situations and damn well nearly reduced me to a sobbing wreck. That... is a nightmare!

It is a shame BA did not live up to expectations, and it seemed they had been offering a good, somewhat consistent service through the numerous BA TR's that show up on this forum. I agree there should have been multi-language crew.

The UK is deeply ashamed at the current status of immigration into the country. This is becoming a major issue, and is a total disgrace. No-one argues against that. Improvements have been promised, and it should be noted that BA, along with other UK Airlines, have written on numerous recent occasions to UKBorder Force for urgent action.

Thanks all the same

Luke

Quoting fca767 (Reply 13):
I went to the satelite terminal and you're not allowed back...even for the employees working there, they have to go all the way to C so that they can get back to the main terminal if in B...I on the other hand had to go through arrivals just to get back up to departures...

Not technically true. There is a stairwell and an underground corridor that leads back to Main Area A, just outside Boots. Staff and passengers can use this, though it is hard to find. You can find details of it on Gabriel Chews report. Not sure which one. For 99.9% of passengers, if your flight aint in that part of the airport, you shouldn't be there, but understandably aviation enthusiasm got the better of you.

[Edited 2012-04-21 14:35:24]


Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offlinelhr380 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 6449 times:

Quoting fca767 (Reply 13):

No you don't? I get the train back from B without going via C as staff and without using the tunnel.


User currently offlineG-CIVP From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2001, 1321 posts, RR: 10
Reply 16, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 6066 times:

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
Although I appreciate you had a terrible time, it seems like this report may have been written as a result of the experience. That is not what the Trip Report forum is for really.

The contributor has a valid opinion and has described his experience. There is an absence of photos but this doesn't undermine the substance of the report.


User currently offlineTYCOON From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 393 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 6031 times:

Thank you G-CIVP...
What should I have taken photos of? There were people taking photos of the long custom lines at LHR, but were immediately and very rudely told to stop, with one LHR personnel overseeing the deletion of photos taken by someone.
Of a sticky airplane seat? How would that show anything? Of no meal being served? A photo of an empty tray table would result in the BA cheering section accusing me of having taken the photo after the tray was cleared!
Honestly, it seems to some on this site that all criticism is valid (of US airlines, Gulf carriers, Ryanair, AF, etc...) but if you DARE criticize a mediocre airline such as BA, than the pom pom girls come out in force and criticize your integrity...


User currently offlineeurowings From UK - England, joined Sep 2011, 298 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5999 times:

You paid for a business class product and yet didn't receive food on the return flight. That's a clear failing against what BA promised and I notice that some comments here have overlooked this.

Yes, LHR's immigration facilities are not managed by BA, but they do reflect on the airline at their principal hub. Most people associate European airlines with their key hubs like LH (MUC, FRA), KL (AMS), AF (CDG), LX (ZRH) so I don't see why LHR should be any different, particularly as BA have a terminal almost exclusively for their use.

[Edited 2012-04-22 05:21:39]

User currently offlineElPistolero From Canada, joined Feb 2012, 1017 posts, RR: 4
Reply 19, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 5873 times:

I don't understand why so much criticism is being directed at the person who posted this trip report.

Personally, if a trip involving an hour-long flight turned into a nine-hour experience, I would label it a nightmare too. And I would probably swear off the airline as well. In fact, I have (in my case, KL - havent flown them since...errr...2005).

No food in a premium cabin = fail. What do you take pictures of? Empty seat tray? Pictures at immigration. That's just a bad joke. You can't even touch your phone in there. Apparently its a security risk. More likely, if the images of those lines show up in public, it'll be a PR risk too.

Quoting planejamie (Reply 12):
Basically, you're just throwing your toys out of the pram because of (in comparison) a small problem.

The problem may be small from the company's (and an outsider's) perspective, but how would one react when they're in the middle of it? Ultimately, it doesn't matter how minor or major an issue is. What matters is how it affects customers. If the customer feels that his experience is good enough to throw the toys out of prams for...then the customer didn't get what he was expecting, and is therefore right to look elsewhere.

Frankly, anyone reading the TR knows the original poster has a right to feel aggrieved. Service was poor. There were shortcomings that you wouldn't expect in a premier cabin. That is all that counts. What you and I think is, well, what you and I think. And nothing more.

Quoting planejamie (Reply 12):
If you don't like it, take the Eurostar or fly EasyJet or stick to AF CityJet if it's really that god dammed fantastic, rather than coming on here and complaining about your "nightmare" experience with BA.

You are entitled to your opinion. By the same token, so is he. If you don't like this trip report....then with all due respect, go read something else / antagonize someone else.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
it seems like this report may have been written as a result of the experience.

I agree with your sentiment, insofar as one should never post in anger, but at the same time, all TR are based on the experience. If a TR can be motivated by good service, then it stands to reason that it can motivated by bad service as well. Neutral opinions are rare - everyone has their favorites. This TR is, hopefully, a non-representative sample, BUT a sample all the same, of BA service. I'm glad its here. It gives you an idea of how some trips with BA can be, and that is, in my view, the entire purpose of a trip report. It sure beats the life out of the standard US Y TR or an ULCC trip report where theres....well, not much of a report involved, on account of (close to) zero service.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
The UK is deeply ashamed at the current status of immigration into the country.

Ha! UK travellers might be, but I don't think the UK government is. I travel to the UK at least 2-3 times a year. Every year, it gets worse. So many wickets. So few people. Budget cuts, I suppose. Don't see it improving - not now, not ever.There's a generational shift too - I find the middle-aged ones a lot more efficient, polite and welcoming than the younger lot, so in some ways, I expect the service will get worse too.

Quoting planejamie (Reply 12):
Take your complaint up with BA, send them a link to this trip report if you have to and if I'm even more honest, without photos, you have nothing to support what happened.

Well, that alone is a good enough reason to quit BA. If a customer tells you the seat was sticky and dirty, or that there was no food on a flight, or that the computer was not working, then I think the last thing any company should be doing is demanding a photo and saying "I don't believe you". The presumption that the customer is lying and has to prove he is telling the truth is (especially when it can all be cross-checked with your own staff)... well, it's not in the customer service manuals in North America - I ll tell you that.

As for the BAA vs BA angle, yes, we all know that its the UK Border Agency that is at fault, but the main tennant (BA) and not the pax, should be working to rectify that. By the same token, I flew TK (the aviation enthusiast in me had to sample this "rising" airline). They were great in the air. TAV was awful on the ground. Custom lost, till things improve. Not TKs fault, but they pay the price, so its in their best interest to find a solution. (By the looks of it, they aren't too interested).

[Edited 2012-04-22 07:50:02]

[Edited 2012-04-22 07:50:35]

[Edited 2012-04-22 07:52:48]

User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8535 posts, RR: 54
Reply 20, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 5772 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Interesting read, thanks for sharing.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
I prefer to fly than take the Eurostar

- Me too, why take the train when you can fly?

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
BA's computers were down, so they decided to check in pax and baggage manually. It took forever and was a bit chaotic

- Computers make life so easy, however when they go down life is quite difficult and everything takes much more time, I'd not blame BA for this, it;s not something anyone wishes for.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Made my way to the lounge which is the Admirals Club lounge at CDG2A. Nothing special there. I don't particularly like that lounge... and it is a bit of a walk from BA's boarding gates.

- The lounge is ok, not great and lacks space, but it's a place to relax, have a few drinks and snacks, had some nice sandwiches there. I don't think it's that far from the gates either.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Arriving at LHR, again a remote stand, we needed to take the bus

- Unlucky, since T5C opened I've not been had to take the bus once!

Overall, not a great experience but I think you see a tad on the picky side to me, nothing personal, that's just how this reads, more of a complaint than a TR.

Rgds

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1091 posts, RR: 31
Reply 21, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5682 times:

Quoting G-CIVP (Reply 16):
The contributor has a valid opinion and has described his experience. There is an absence of photos but this doesn't undermine the substance of the report.

I am overjoyed the poster has written about their experiences, that is what the forum is for clearly, but I just think that the forum should not purely be used to voice bad experiences when they arise. If user TYCOON regularly put in reports, good or bad, about BA then fair game. Perhaps he/she does - I couldn't find any in the search function.

Quoting TYCOON (Reply 17):
What should I have taken photos of? There were people taking photos of the long custom lines at LHR, but were immediately and very rudely told to stop, with one LHR personnel overseeing the deletion of photos taken by someone.

No, no. That isn't what I mean. I mean the majority of users set out with pictures from the start of a report. They intend to write the report starting from the check-in desk. Pictures are not a requirement at all, but they help. 'The more detail the better'! as per site guidance.

Quoting TYCOON (Reply 17):
but if you DARE criticize a mediocre airline such as BA, than the pom pom girls come out in force and criticize your integrity...

I don't think this language, especially the capitalisation, is necessary. I also don't think describing forum users as 'pom pom girls' is apt either. You expressed your report in a dignified manner, but I question whether this reply is.

Let me reiterate, I am not supporting BA at all - I think their service sounds disgraceful for this run, I am just trying to ask you whether you had intended to write a report, good or bad, on this journey. If you hadn't then it might open up the floodgates for people to voice all their complaints about airlines they've had substandard experiences with in the past, and shoddy immigration facilities etc.

Quoting ElPistolero (Reply 19):
insofar as one should never post in anger, but at the same time, all TR are based on the experience.

Not refuting. Agree perfectly...

Quoting ElPistolero (Reply 19):
I'm glad its here. It gives you an idea of how some trips with BA can be, and that is, in my view,

Me too... I was a great fan of QR, and published those superior experiences. I had a terrible experience with them, and published that too.

Quoting ElPistolero (Reply 19):
I find the middle-aged ones a lot more efficient, polite and welcoming than the younger lot, so in some ways, I expect the service will get worse too.

I find them all rude. When I crossed the empty border at CPT, I got a massive smile and a friendly welcome. We've alot to learn.



Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offlineG-CIVP From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2001, 1321 posts, RR: 10
Reply 22, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5640 times:

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 21):
"...but I just think that the forum should not purely be used to voice bad experiences when they arise. If user TYCOON regularly put in reports, good or bad, about BA then fair game. Perhaps he/she does - I couldn't find any in the search function".

However, the forum shouldn't be just 'good' experiences. I can see the point you are making, that trip reports should be balanced and the contributors should be not unduly bias. In this case, it is clear the contributor has had a bad experience. Whether the contributor has a venedatta against BA, I can't comment.

As for taking photos for trip reports, they do make trip reports more enjoyable to read. However, I would stress that photos are prohibited in Immigration Halls at LHR, if not at all UK airports. Happy to be corrected on the latter.


User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1091 posts, RR: 31
Reply 23, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5617 times:

Quoting G-CIVP (Reply 22):
However, I would stress that photos are prohibited in Immigration Halls at LHR, if not at all UK airports. Happy to be corrected on the latter.

I believe they are prohibited, and wouldn't suggest the OP attempt to take photos in this area either.



Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offlinedc9northwest From Switzerland, joined Feb 2007, 2286 posts, RR: 7
Reply 24, posted (2 years 4 months 1 week 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 5558 times:

Hi TYCOON,

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
On a quick business trip to London, and being a die hard A.Netter, I prefer to fly than take the Eurostar.

Of course, we've all caught this bug for aircraft.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
BA's computers were down, so they decided to check in pax and baggage manually. It took forever and was a bit chaotic.

I was never checked-in manually, but KL had their computers down and boarded us manually at AMS once. It took longer but not excessively so... Of course, manual check-in is even more difficult.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Since so many on this site complain about CDG personnel, I paid particular attention and found them fine, even friendly

I'm not surprised at the priority escorts. Did you show your passport at security control?

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Boarding, by bus, was at about 19h10. Waited a bit on the bus, then headed out to the aircraft. Given the problems with check in, there were some additional ones reconciling checked luggage with people who were actually on board.


I've missed my flight once partly because of how slow they loaded, unloaded and reloaded luggage once, in CDG... This was the day after I had to deal with the rudest AF agent I've dealt with, after yet another missed flight which in an organized place I would have at least had a chance to catch... CDG 2D to 2B... no way. 2005.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
Then someone suggested maybe they read the numbers in French (duh!!!), but BA had no personnel on board who could speak it

Not good by BA; it wasn't a flight to Lithuania or another small country; I'm sure they could find a French speaker to crew the flight if they wanted....

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
The line took 2 1/2 hours to clear... no joke. I got to the front of the line around 23h00 UK time and all passport control desks except one closed!! And the line was still huge! In all my years of travel, close to 2000 flights and over 2,000,000 miles, I have never experienced something like this!!! A complete nightmare!

Yes, that sounds pretty bad. Generally non-EU/EEA passport control in Europe can be quite tedious. I've seen long lines in FCO too, while EU/EEA had no line at all.

Quoting TYCOON (Thread starter):
BA and LHR have lost my custom on this route which I fly at least once a month. I am now only flying to City Airport with AF Cityjet.

I'd also choose AF Cityjet to LCY all the time.

I flew only once through LHR and while it wasn't too bad, it was actually quite similar to CDG in the sense that I certainly used a bus between terminals. T2 I think it was was not too airy and bright. But this was back in 2000.

Anyway, Tycoon, I appreciate seeing your report. I want to see what positives people see in CDG. I believe you never had a problem with CDG.

Well, tell you what... I'll use my US passport next time. If I get better service... I will draw conclusions then. But if I get better service on a US vs a Romanian passport, then the conclusions will not necessarily be positive... It's too bad it's hard to do a blind study on the subject.

Regarding abrelosojos' CDG report... reading/seeing the French media every once in a while, I have no doubt it was true. The stuff they get away with writing/showing is incredible. I find there's not a country in Europe more xenophobic/racist than France.

That said, I've never had poor service on AF due to destination, so I wanted to praise AF for that.


25 TYCOON : Thanks for your comments everyone. I hadn't initially intended to write a trip report in all honesty... this was my first. I am still writing a trip r
26 richierich : I don't know why posters are attacking TYCOON either. An opinion is an opinion. It sounds like he had a bad experience or two per this TR, and perhap
27 speedmarque : Hello Tycoon, Out of interest, how was the issue regarding no meal dealt with onboard. Apology? Anything from senior cabin crew member?
28 TYCOON : Hello speedmarque, Actually the flight attendant handling the business class cabin was very apologetic. In all honesty, I appreciated his professional
Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic British Airways CDG-LHR/LHR-ORY: Nightmare Travels
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
Africa 7: British Airways LCA-LHR, Business B767 posted Sun Mar 4 2012 11:18:12 by gabrielchew
No A380 To London: HEL-CDG-LHR/LCY-ORY posted Sat Jul 17 2010 12:56:10 by FlyingFinn76
British Airways J SEA-LHR-AMS Longer-Better-Ruder posted Thu Apr 30 2009 19:49:05 by RoseFlyer
British Airways NCL-LHR-HKG Long posted Mon Mar 14 2005 00:54:45 by BA025
British Airways Club LHR - PHL - LHR posted Wed Mar 3 2004 19:50:52 by BCal DC10
British Airways - MAN-LHR - Part 1 posted Sun Feb 29 2004 16:19:57 by Ryanair737
British Airways: AMS-LHR-AMS posted Thu Nov 14 2002 11:15:37 by DutchDeltaDude
Trip REPORT:BRITISH Airways DXB-LHR posted Tue Jan 9 2001 13:47:28 by Airlinefreak1
Trip Reprt:British Airways DXB-LHR-DXB posted Sun Dec 17 2000 12:55:11 by Airlinefreak1
British Airways ORD-LHR-BCN (long) posted Wed Sep 20 2000 01:55:22 by Mls515
Trip REPORT:BRITISH Airways DXB-LHR posted Tue Jan 9 2001 13:47:28 by Airlinefreak1
Trip Reprt:British Airways DXB-LHR-DXB posted Sun Dec 17 2000 12:55:11 by Airlinefreak1
British Airways: BOS-LHR-CDG And Back posted Mon Apr 7 2003 19:01:55 by LH423
Africa 7: British Airways LCA-LHR, Business B767 posted Sun Mar 4 2012 11:18:12 by gabrielchew
No A380 To London: HEL-CDG-LHR/LCY-ORY posted Sat Jul 17 2010 12:56:10 by FlyingFinn76
British Airways J SEA-LHR-AMS Longer-Better-Ruder posted Thu Apr 30 2009 19:49:05 by RoseFlyer
British Airways NCL-LHR-HKG Long posted Mon Mar 14 2005 00:54:45 by BA025
British Airways Club LHR - PHL - LHR posted Wed Mar 3 2004 19:50:52 by BCal DC10
British Airways - MAN-LHR - Part 1 posted Sun Feb 29 2004 16:19:57 by Ryanair737
British Airways: AMS-LHR-AMS posted Thu Nov 14 2002 11:15:37 by DutchDeltaDude
Trip REPORT:BRITISH Airways DXB-LHR posted Tue Jan 9 2001 13:47:28 by Airlinefreak1
Trip Reprt:British Airways DXB-LHR-DXB posted Sun Dec 17 2000 12:55:11 by Airlinefreak1

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format