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OA260
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Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:02 pm




Hello fellow Anetters and welcome to my series of my reports covering my one month of travelling. This trip was a last minute decision. I was spending some weeks in Athens with my family and my first idea was to buy my Cousin an iMac for his Birthday and Christmas present. My Aunt decided that she didnt want him to have such an expensive gift at the moment and wanted to maybe go halves on it next year. Respecting her wishes I then suggested I take him to London to see my Mum as a surprise. My Mum has not seen her nephew for 6 years and so it was to be a surprise for both of them.

I went online to BA.Com and booked the tickets. I decided to take BA over A3 as they are using the B767 and my Cousin has never been in the BA Lounges. I then called my Cousin on the phone and told him to log onto the computer and gave him a booking reference to put into the computer. He thought he was checking a flight for me   He started to read and then of course saw his name . ''Errr Anthony ........... ! LONDON ! WOW ... thanks so much ''. Mission complete   He was so excited and went right away to his FB page to post .

I then called my Mum the conversation went like this "Hi Mum , just to let you know I will be popping to London to stay with you for a few days as Anthony is going away with his girlfriend for a few days and I have some days free and want to do some shopping. '' My Mum '' Ok will be great to see you since it was only last month I saw you . We can go out for some nice meals and shop oh and I might get you to install an aerial for my TV as its not working properly, the BT Broadband box arrived also and it will be better if you install it''. So she was happy and I was pleased that I would be able to get these things done for my Mum.

The morning arrived and my Cousin and I drove to the Airport at around 5am . The roads were clear so we were there in around 40 minutes. We parked the car and made our way to the Terminal building.


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file.jpg

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DATE: 08/DEC/2011
AIRLINE: BRITISH AIRWAYS
FLIGHT: BA 631
ROUTE: ATHENS - LONDON HEATHROW
CLASS: EURO TRAVELLER
SEAT: 27 A C
AIRCRAFT: AIRBUS A320
REG: G - EUUS




http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-4.jpg

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We proceeded to the British Airways check in desk and they were only just starting to set up. We were among the first ones to arrive.

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The desks were opened and we started the check in process . Thats where the fun and games started and I use that term in no positive way !


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-8.jpg


We put our two suitcases on the scales and handed in both passports. After a few minutes boarding passes were issued and bags tagged. I was then asked for my credit card with which I booked the tickets online at BA.COM which I provided.Then a Swissport supervisor looked at my Cousins passport after the check in agent had said something to her. We couldn't make out what was said. I asked if there was a problem and the agent said "security check" in a rude and snappy manner nothing else. Then she asked us to step aside and the supervisor took my Cousins passport away. We stood there for about 5 minutes not knowing what was going on and becoming quite anxious. As you all know I travel all the time and have never encountered such treatment.

Eventually the supervisor came back and abruptly told us to follow her to the Police check. Our boarding passes and bags were left at the desk. I asked what was happening but the supervisor refused to answer and again rudely said "security check". I also advised her that my Cousin also has a Greek ID card and would she like to see that but she ignored me.By this time both my Cousin and I were very scared as to what was going on. A Police officer told us to follow him and the supervisor walked off not even telling us what to do about our bags. We arrived at the Police office and I enquirered as to what was going on. The Police were very rude . Apparantly the supervisor had told them she thought it was a fake passport! My Cousin has never had any issues before. The passport is machine readable and photo is clear and of perfect likeness to my Cousin.

During this time my Cousin was interrogated and asked lots of questions. He explained that he was visiting London to see his Aunt and do some Christmas shopping. My Cousin then asked what the problem was and a less senior officer was very rude and ignorant . We couldn't believe what we were hearing . My Cousin showed them his Greek ID card and said he has done his Military Service and couldnt understand the way we were being treated. My blood was boiling at this stage and I let rip at the senior Police officer. He knew I meant business and started to change his attitude. We were shortly after handed back our passports and told to leave.

A nicer more polite officer who seemed quite embarassed escorted us back out and explained to us that the check in supervisor had told them it was a fake passport and apologised for the treatment. I went back to check in with my Cousin and informed the check in agent who had originally checked us in what had happened and we wanted to make a formal complaint. I told her about the treatment we received. I also voiced my disgust at the way the Swissport supervisor treated us. We were made to feel like criminals. You could see the worry on their faces at check in as I was like a bull in front of a red flag! They knew this was one day they would not forget in a hurry.

I asked for the name of the BA station manager and was given a Mr P. I was then handed our boarding passes and we made our way to the lounge.




http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-10.jpg


Whilst on the way to the lounge we were thinking over what just Happened and I was very upset close to tears. We entered the lounge and right away the lounge agents could see I was distressed and asked what on earth has happened.

I explained to them and they were quite concerned. I asked to make a formal complaint , I actually should have got the supervisors name but was still in shock.Shortly after my Cousin received a call from his parents and they were really upset. They insisted we make a formal complaint to the chief of Police at the Airport and to BA. I approached the Lounge agents who called someone I'm not sure if it was the Airport Police or the BA ticket desk. Around 10 minutes later a lady who I believe was a manager or supervisor from BA in BA uniform arrived with two Police officers , one in plain clothes and one in a chiefs uniform. We raised our complaints and expressed our disgust at the treatment and the offensive behaviour during our interrogation.

The lady from BA said she wanted to apologise but also tried to defend the Swissport supervisor which was very unhelpful to be honest. I then advised her that I used to work for an Airline myself so am well aware of procedures and security checks and I have no problem with any of these checks. What I advised her was that we were treated like criminals , refused information and given no respect or dignity by BA and their agents Swissport during the whole ordeal. The reason why we had endured this was because one employee and her comments to Police. It was not her place to decide the validity of the passport and she should have merely got a second opinion from the Police. I showed the BA lady my Cousins passport and also to the chief of Police who both couldn't answer why the agent took such an action. The passport as I stated above was all correct and in good condition. Anyway after a discussion with the Chief of Police and the lady from BA who was present during the whole conversation my Cousin and I received an apology from the Police. We were told that we were entitled to respect and dignity and that the officers in question would be spoken to . The Chief of Police said that they are supposed to be professional and welcoming to all passengers and we had been let down by them. I was told that Mr P ( the airport manager) was going to have a chat to us at the gate and to make our way there at 08:30.


To be honest the whole lounge experience was ruined and because of this situation we only had around twenty minutes to use it .

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As asked we made our way to the gate and waited at the boarding area.


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The BA lady was there and acknowledged us but Mr P. ( or who I thought was Mr P , later to be in fact another supervisor from BA ) was talking to a Gentleman he seemed to know and upgrading him to Club Europe. The BA lady chatted to him and looked over at us but he did not make any effort to meet with us. Boarding was on final call so we were told to board the aircraft.

We were greeted by a friendly FA at the door and I cracked a smile although I didnt really feel like being nice to anyone at that stage. My thoughts were that I cant blame BA London staff /crew for their being let down by their colleagues and agents. This was a special trip and I needed to get over it and not let it ruin my time with my Cousin. I think I was more upset for him than anything. It wasnt a nice thing to happen to him . The flight soon filled up and was 99% full. We were lucky as we had the middle seat free.
 
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OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:03 pm

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Soon the doors were closed and it was time to make our way to take off :

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OA260
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Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:05 pm

A powerful take off on this fully laiden aircraft and we got some nice views.

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Olympic Stadium :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-63.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-64.jpg

Our home town of Piraeus :

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Nice bridge :

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Soon after the crew came around and handed out breakfast:

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-83.jpg

The meal was lovely and my Cousin loved it also . It kind of put us in a good mood although the crew were not overly friendly. They did their job with no smiles or genuine enjoyment.

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My Cousin fell asleep before I woke him up to see the amazing views :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-91.jpg
 
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OA260
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Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:06 pm

Later a drinks run was done which was quite nice :

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Soon we were over the UK and it was time to land but we had to circle for what seemed like ages. In the end we were around 45 minutes late.

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As we came in my Cousin was excited to see English soil after all those years. He also said I wonder if I will have any problems again here . I said I very much doubt it , he was obviously still worried after the bad experience back in Athens. I tried to make light hearted jokes and he seemed to enjoy them.

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Soon it was time to disembark and I took the opportunity to take some more photos of the cabin.

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We made our way into T5 my first experience which was on first impressions very nice.

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We approached immigration and I was watching them scan our passports. Nothing was said and our passports were handed back and the guy behind the desk said '' thank you ''. My Cousin seemed relieved also .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-125.jpg

Our bags came off quickly and we made our way to the train to Heathrow Central.

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After that we took the bus from the Central bus station and made our way to my Mums.

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After an hour we arrived at my Mums. I told my Cousin to stand in front of the door and ring the bell. My Mum opened the door and you could see the surprise on her face. She was quite emotional and hugs and kisses all round  

We told her to get ready as we were going to go to Harrods and Oxford/Regent Street to see the lights and do some shopping. After a while we arrived in Central London. The weather was not great it was windy and raining but it did not spoil our enjoyment of the lights.

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Soon we arrived at Harrods and we got some lovely Christmas items and bakery treats  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-161.jpg

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My Cousin wanted to see the tribute to the late Diana Princess of Wales.

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We then made our way to China Town for a lovely Chinese meal :

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After a nice time and heavy with bags of shopping we made our way back to my Mums house. We relaxed for a while and I set up my Mums broadband router and installed a new aeriel. We then all went to bed as the next day we had another big day of shopping in Marks and Spencers.
 
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OA260
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Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:08 pm

The next morning we woke up and my Mum made us Nespresso Cappuchinos with the machine I gave her. We also had some nice hot croissants that we bought from Harrods the night before. We then made our way out to go shopping. First stop was Jimmys Spice as you know its a favourite of mine.


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Xmas dinner very nice :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-787.jpg

But curry will always win  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2475.jpg

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Some aircraft flying over Epsom :

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Soon it was time to go shopping in M&S . My Uncle and Aunt had wanted us to take some things back and so we had a lot to buy  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-387.jpg

Seems we came on the right day . We spent around £300 and got 25% off so it was great value.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-655.jpg

Soon we were so tired we had one more stop to make and that was to get a Sony Bluray player from the Sony Centre. After that we couldnt carry anymore so we went back to my Mums house.

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BA Mobile check in :






That night we went out to Sainsburys Supermarket as I always do with my Mum. I help her stock up with all the heavy items which she buys every few months. We got back around 10pm and then went to sleep .

The next morning we woke up and finished the last bit of packing. We couldnt fit everything in so we ended up borrowing my Mums cases and we now had 4 in total .

We then said goodbye and made our way to the train station.

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So after an hour we arrived at LHR. We took the train from the Central station to T5 .



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DATE: 10/DEC/2011
AIRLINE: BRITISH AIRWAYS
FLIGHT: BA 632
ROUTE: LONDON HEATHROW - ATHENS
CLASS: EURO TRAVELLER
SEAT: 39 A B
AIRCRAFT: BOEING 767
REG: G - BNWB




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We approached the check in desk which showed on the screen that it was open and as we did so a girl stood up grabbed her bag and snapped '' IM CLOSED ''. Nice way to greet passengers I must say . We then went to a check in two desks down and were asked how many bags we had . The check in agent was not welcoming or smiling and she was very dis interested. Boarding cards were handed over and we proceeded to the security area.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1481.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-950.jpg


Before we headed to the lounge we stopped at the shops to get my Aunt a gift.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2011.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-685.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-863.jpg

We made our way then to the lounge. This was to be my first time in a BA Lounge in T5 .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1278.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1680.jpg

We were impressed by the bakery items on offer.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2284.jpg

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My Cousin and I were impressed with the lounge also and the space to sit and relax.


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-392.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1473.jpg

Would be rude not to try  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1307.jpg

After a nice time in the lounge it was soon time to head to the gate :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1729.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-222.jpg
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:09 pm

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-763.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1070.jpg



Soon after families were boarded and people needing extra time ( always amazes me people in this line that have a walking stick then as soon as they are past the gate agent they look like they are ahtletes in the 2012 London Olympic Games   ) Silver and Golds were invited to board.

I was very excited to get on a B767 as its been a long long time since I was on one . As we approached the door the crew smiled and welcomed us onboard.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-250.jpg



First part of this aircraft is leather :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1998.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-217.jpg

The rear is old fabric :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1202.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-853.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-408.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-880.jpg

I have to say for its age this is not a bad looking cabin. It was comfortable and clean . The seats were comfortable and legroom decent.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2489.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-290.jpg
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:11 pm

Soon it was time to push back :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-255.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1569.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-296.jpg

These TV's have had their day and all flickery and ghost shadows on them.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-531.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1260.jpg

Nice new Terminal coming on nicely :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-738.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1666.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-510.jpg

Soon the crew were released for their duties and a drinks service was offered :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2228.jpg

The FA was a French guy who was very friendly , chatting and mixing well with the passengers.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1614.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1761.jpg

Then the meal arrived and I have to say it was lovely. It was just the right amount and tasted great.
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:13 pm

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2354.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1641.jpg

More drinks were offered :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-303.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-654.jpg

Then Coffee which was actually pretty decent for Y Class airline blend  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-613.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-764.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1139.jpg

I dont usually watch that much TV on aircraft but I really enjoyed this movie :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1012.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1915.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1478.jpg

Soon it was time to land into ATH :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1833.jpg

We landed and past the former OA A340's . The saga is still going on .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-819.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1839.jpg

We pulled up on stand next to a QR aircraft :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-877.jpg

We disembarked and thanked the crew for a pleasant flight and made our way to immigration. We handed in our passports and no issues this time and were waved through. We waited for all our bags and soon they were off.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-2193.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1507.jpg

We made our way to the car park and drove home. Arriving at the house and time to un pack all the goodies .  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/BA767/file-1911.jpg


So thats the end of my report. Bit of a mixed experience for me . I have calmed down alot since then and didnt expect ever writing a TR like this one thats for sure. You dont expect these things on Intra EU flights. Just shows you the things that can go wrong.

After I returned I wrote to the British Embassy in Athens / AIA Airport / British Airways and Swissport. The next time I was at ATH for my SQ flight to IST I met with the head of BA Athens and she was very pleasant and took the matter very seriously. A very professional lady who was truly shocked at the way we were treated. She advised me to leave it with her and she would investigate it .

Some time after I received a letter from her and the other parties involved :


British Airways response :




AIA Response :




British Embassy response :




Swissport ????

You got it nothing ! My email was sent direct to two managers at Swissport in Athens and they have ignored all contact. They have carried through on the lack of customer care that I have received from them and their employees at ATH. They dont even have the decency to respond, A simple email to advise they were sorry for the way we were treated or that they would be investigating my complaint would have been enough for me. By ignoring my complaint they have shown a side of Swissport that I never thought existed. Until now I always had a good impression of them . I fly Swiss alot and their handling agents of course are Swissport. By ignoring me they have actually added insult to injury and I know think they are a company that dont give a damn about their customers or the airlines that contract their services.

After Christmas I received a call from BA customer relations in the UK as promised by the head of BA in Athens. The agent on the phone was very pleasant and couldnt appologise enough. She said she had read and investigated the complaint and said that British Airways would like to try to make amneds for the terrible experience and situation we were put in . She asked if I had any BA flights booked within Europe or Lonhaul to which I said I didnt. I was advised that they were proposing to upgrade my next flight on both sectors. After this she then offered me 40,000 AVIOS points which equals to two free round trip flights ATH-LHR-ATH and she said maybe my Cousin and I would like to take another trip courtesy of British Airways or I can use them anyway I deem fit. Before closing the call she wanted me to pass onto my Cousin their regret also to which I said I would.

I decided to accept this offer and within a few hours they were credited to my account. I have to say I was pleased with the customer care from BA. I really didnt expect much from such a big carrier who get lots of complaints but they really took it seriously.

So all in all Im happy but I never want to go through that experience again . Im watching Swissport very carefully in future especially that supervisor who if I ever see her at check in again will never be allowed to deal with me or touch my documents. BA at ATH are aware of that . I have been told to contact the BA ticket desk imediately if I ever have any issues in future. They all know me there now  

BRITISH AIRWAYS PRODUCT :

Setting the issue I had aside . BA were ok nothing amazing they were a mixed bag. Check in at LHR T5 was not a good experience but the lounge was lovely. The flight ATH-LHR was also ok and the crew were nothing special. The LHR-ATH was totally different with a lovely crew .

I have dropped to BA Silver and it will expire , I have no plans to renew it . BA dont offer me the product I require and I feel my money is best placed with Star Alliance carriers such as LX / A3 / TK / SK who I feel offer much better value for money .

I know this may upset some BA fans and staff but its my $$/££ and I am the customer who chooses where it goes. I like the new rehashed logo of '' To Fly to Serve'' but I think the glory days they are trying to project are no longer there. There is also a touch of snobbery which I see attatched to BA and it shows on some ( not all ) of their staff and Executive Club members.


Some hard hitting comments I know but just my experience and perceptions .

I will of course fly BA again but they will never be my airline of choice again.


I look foward to hearing all your comments ( good or bad )   and thank you for reading this TR .


Kind regards

OA260 / Philip  
 
Genius12
Posts: 216
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 3:49 am

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:53 pm

Very nice report! Sorry to hear of the debacle at check-in, however, and I agree that it sounds completely unacceptable. Swissport's lack of response is equally unacceptable.

Good to see that the BA lounge in Athens has been refurbished to the Galleries standard and is no longer a Terraces lounge.

Those shorthaul 767s really are rather creaky on the inside - BA have announced a refurbishment programme for their 767s, and the first aircraft (a longhaul configuration) is currently being refurbished.

I rarely fly Euro Traveller, but I must admit that the food looks pretty good on a Band 4 flight. It's a shame they can't provide something similar on the shorter flights.

[Edited 2012-02-07 10:56:29]
 
gpbcroppers63
Posts: 317
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 10:17 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:59 pm

Thanks for describing your experience in detail Philip. The report does not make good reading for Swissport and I think the fact that they haven't even acknowledged your complaint is nothing short of disgraceful. Knowing you as I do, I know you're not one to complain about small, nit-picky things so this must have been a really bad experience. It seems BA didn't really redeem themselves on the outbound flight or at LHR check-in either. The return flight and T5 lounges sound a lot better though!

It is amazing that in 2012 (or 2011 as this was) the police and check-in agents can't check a passport electronically to make sure it is valid. I know they have to be on the lookout for forgeries but treating you like criminals when you've done nothing wrong is disgusting. I'm glad that ATH, the British Embassy and BA took your complaint seriously and that BA provided you with excellent compensation. I hope you'll be putting those Avios to good use!   As for Swissport, no comment necessary!

All of that said, I really enjoyed your report. Your pictures were excellent as usual and the food on BA looks pretty reasonable on both sectors. The 763 is always fun to fly on within Europe. I'm glad you enjoyed your time with your Mum and that she had a lovely surprise when she saw your cousin. Here's hoping that the experience will be better for him the next time he flies.

Thanks again for the great TR mate!
According to one of my colleagues, my problem is that I'm addicted to travel!
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:08 pm

Quoting Genius12 (Reply 8):
Very nice report! Sorry to hear of the debacle at check-in, however, and I agree that it sounds completely unacceptable. Swissport's lack of response is equally unacceptable.

Hi many thanks for the reply. I agree thats nearly worse than the event itself not to even appologise.

Quoting Genius12 (Reply 8):
Those shorthaul 767s really are rather creaky on the inside - BA have announced a refurbishment programme for their 767s, and the first aircraft (a longhaul configuration) is currently being refurbished.

Yes indeed but I liked it I have to say . I heard that they may put the B787 on the ATH route   That might tempt me back lol..

Quoting Genius12 (Reply 8):
but I must admit that the food looks pretty good on a Band 4 flight.

Yes I couldnt fault the catering at all.

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 9):
The report does not make good reading for Swissport and I think the fact that they haven't even acknowledged your complaint is nothing short of disgraceful.

Hey Gareth . Indeed but they had plenty of chances to reply and change my opinion of their company. A simple letter saying we messed up we are sorry we will do training and coaching wth the people concerned would have been ample.

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 9):
Knowing you as I do, I know you're not one to complain about small, nit-picky things so this must have been a really bad experience.

Yes you know me things dont bother me that much , you notice more minor things than me so it has to be bad for me to kick up . It was a horrible experience to be honest. Writing this today has upset me a bit just looking back on it all.

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 9):
It is amazing that in 2012 (or 2011 as this was) the police and check-in agents can't check a passport electronically to make sure it is valid. I know they have to be on the lookout for forgeries but treating you like criminals when you've done nothing wrong is disgusting. I'm glad that ATH, the British Embassy and BA took your complaint seriously and that BA provided you with excellent compensation. I hope you'll be putting those Avios to good use!   As for Swissport, no comment necessary!

Indeed and the Greek Police whilst you cant generalise over a few bad eggs need to look at themselves . Indeed we met three Police at the Airport when we had the meeting at the lounge and they were very pleasant and didnt bother to argue they were quite embarassed.

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 9):
I'm glad you enjoyed your time with your Mum and that she had a lovely surprise when she saw your cousin. Here's hoping that the experience will be better for him the next time he flies.

Yes it all worked out well and it was a great reunion. And yes those AVIOS will be used for something ''special''
 
Baexecutive
Posts: 594
Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2005 9:29 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:49 pm

Sorry to hear of the troubles you encountered at the hands of Greek authorities.

Very glad to see BA Customer Service come out tops by giving you a very generous amount of Avios points.

One thing I would like to address with you is the statement you made regarding BA and 'glory days' can you elaborate as I'm not sure what you mean? You chose to fly BA and were transported safely and on time (as far as I know), fed (hot meals) and watered in lounge and onboard by professional staff (as far as I know) and last but not least your bags arrived, also safely.

My question(s) to you is, what is meant by 'glory days'? and exactly what else could BA have done that they are not already doing?
 
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eurowings
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:55 pm

Hi Philip,

Thanks for the report. It seems you had a mixed experience with BA.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Eventually the supervisor came back and abruptly told us to follow her to the Police check. Our boarding passes and bags were left at the desk. I asked what was happening but the supervisor refused to answer and again rudely said "security check". I also advised her that my Cousin also has a Greek ID card and would she like to see that but she ignored me.By this time both my Cousin and I were very scared as to what was going on. A Police officer told us to follow him and the supervisor walked off not even telling us what to do about our bags. We arrived at the Police office and I enquirered as to what was going on. The Police were very rude . Apparantly the supervisor had told them she thought it was a fake passport! My Cousin has never had any issues before. The passport is machine readable and photo is clear and of perfect likeness to my Cousin.

Oh dear, that doesn't sound too good at all. I have to wonder why on earth the check-in agent suspected something was wrong with the passport as it all seems very odd for an EU country! The police's behaviour is of course a major concern in itself - did your Cousin consider writing to his local MP in Greece? Not that you would expect that treatment anywhere, but especially not in your own country of residence! As for Swissport not responding; all I can say is very poor. Everyone else concerned seems to have responded appropriately.

It seems you had a decent set of flights though, the meals look good (certainly better than the meager offerings on shorter flights) and it's always a delight to fly on a widebody within Europe.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I have dropped to BA Silver and it will expire , I have no plans to renew it . BA dont offer me the product I require and I feel my money is best placed with Star Alliance carriers such as LX / A3 / TK / SK who I feel offer much better value for money .

I know this may upset some BA fans and staff but its my $$/££ and I am the customer who chooses where it goes. I like the new rehashed logo of '' To Fly to Serve'' but I think the glory days they are trying to project are no longer there. There is also a touch of snobbery which I see attatched to BA and it shows on some ( not all ) of their staff and Executive Club members.

I wouldn't worry about commenting negatively on them - I have noticed a little bit of snobbery about them. Personally, although I don't have anything against them I've always preferred BD over BA for a number of reasons, and flying from MAN, other carriers are always almost more attractive in terms of fares, schedules and convenience than BA.

Thanks
EuroWings

[Edited 2012-02-07 11:57:30]
"Freddie Laker may be at peace with his Maker, but he is persona non grata with IATA."- HRH Duke of Edinburgh
 
LH4116
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:57 pm

Hi Philip, great report!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I was spending some weeks in Athens with my family and my first idea was to buy my Cousin an iMac for his Birthday and Christmas present

Wow you must really love your cousin. First the iPhone 4, and now an iMac! Oh well, a weekend to London is equally nice I'd say  
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
He was so excited and went right away to his FB page to post .

Hehehe, well who wouldn't! 
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I told her about the treatment we received. I also voiced my disgust at the way the Swissport supervisor treated us. We were made to feel like criminals. You could see the worry on their faces at check in as I was like a bull in front of a red flag! They knew this was one day they would not forget in a hurry.

Now that's just criminal behavior from them, to treat someone who's been a loyal customer with them for years. It's not the check-in agent's business to determine the passport's validity, and she should really be ashamed of herself, all of them should!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Soon after the crew came around and handed out breakfast:

Breakfast looks really generous. Didn't expect BA to serve such a substantial meal in Y on this route. Suppose no point in flying Club then, and besides the middle seat was free. Although the champers is missing, hmm...  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 4):
But curry will always win

Looks really good. Is it the same place you always go to?  
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The check in agent was not welcoming or smiling and she was very dis interested. Boarding cards were handed over and we proceeded to the security area.

Again, very poor job BA! I hope they weren't so rude back in the days when you were Gold?

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
After a nice time in the lounge it was soon time to head to the gate :

The lounge looked really fab! I have to visit the T5 Lounges soon. Such a shame that you don't have that gold card anymore, would've loved to try out the Galleries First. Maybe I should bring a sign  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 7):
Then the meal arrived and I have to say it was lovely. It was just the right amount and tasted great.

Again food looks fantastic, no point in flying Club here either! Any idea if Club also had an enhanced meal service?

Thanks a lot for sharing, Phil. Pleasure reading as always.
//Jonas

Quoting OA260 (Reply 7):
I dont usually watch that much TV on aircraft but I really enjoyed this movie :
Quoting OA260 (Reply 7):
Arriving at the house and time to un pack all the goodies
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:14 pm

Quoting baexecutive (Reply 11):
Very glad to see BA Customer Service come out tops by giving you a very generous amount of Avios points.

Yes indeed and that was a welcome move on BA's part.

Quoting baexecutive (Reply 11):
One thing I would like to address with you is the statement you made regarding BA and 'glory days' can you elaborate as I'm not sure what you mean? You chose to fly BA and were transported safely and on time (as far as I know), fed (hot meals) and watered in lounge and onboard by professional staff (as far as I know) and last but not least your bags arrived, also safely.

My question(s) to you is, what is meant by 'glory days'? and exactly what else could BA have done that they are not already doing?

And as I stated which you would need to take onboard and stand back as an employee and see it from a customer point of view . ( always good customer care to take critism in a positive light thus allowing for improvements ) , the check in agents were not friendly at all. This is the first point of contact with BA that many passengers experience I think you would agree that the experience should be warm/pleasant and helpful?

Secondly the crew ATH-LHR didnt smile or interact with the passengers in a positive way in sharp contrast to the return LHR-ATH . Consistancy is everything. Over 100 flights with Swiss and I never had anything to complain about the crew and their attitude.

You are front line you represent your company for which they employ you to do . Im sure that you personally are to be put in the latter with regards my comments about the crew LHR-ATH but equally when a passenger pays their money and chooses to fly BA they expect a pleasant crew on every flight. So as you pointed out the bags were delivered/food/safe arrival ( 45mins late but not an issue for me delays happen ) but not delivered with a smile . There is always room for improvement and your colleagues will let you down and you need to accept critism. I am very loyal to my company and still see things I feel are not acceptable and take on board all critism.

One thing I have learnt in my role dealing with corporate customers and non corps in a customer relations position is that you have to eat alot of humble pie and admit where you fell down.

Quoting EuroWings (Reply 12):
Thanks for the report. It seems you had a mixed experience with BA.

Hi many thanks and indeed you are right.

Quoting EuroWings (Reply 12):
Oh dear, that doesn't sound too good at all. I have to wonder why on earth the check-in agent suspected something was wrong with the passport as it all seems very odd for an EU country! The police's behaviour is of course a major concern in itself - did your Cousin consider writing to his local MP in Greece?

I know we could have taken it further but I and my Cousin were satisfied with the meeting with the chief of Airport Police. They at least appologised more than Swissport have to date.

Quoting EuroWings (Reply 12):
I wouldn't worry about commenting negatively on them - there is some snobbery about them and some people seem to think they can do no wrong.

Im not worried I knew there would be the wrath of BA staff and fans but thats life not every experience is going to be a good one . Im not saying that BA are bad I gave positive opinions about their management/customer care and lounges. Also the return flight LHR-ATH so anyone can tell Im no BA hater ! I tell the truth as I experience it from a customer . If you snub customers opinions be it a crew member sitting at home or an executive behind the desk at LHR then I cant say anything more . I have friends of mine who are BA crew and they are lovely people. I hear equally about their thoughts on some not so good ones they work with but thats none of my business.
 
LGWflyer
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:15 pm

Hello Philip! A nice trip report, thank you for sharing!  

I am sorry to hear of you and your cousin's treatment by Swissport, that was terrible! Well I am glad you got it sorted out in the end with the 40,000 AVIOS points. I hope to see another TR with those points used!  

Anyway I hope you enjoyed your stay in London!

Cheers

Thomas  
3 words... I Love Aviation!!!
 
gabrielchew
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:26 pm

Interesting report Phil, shame it wasn't all a bed of roses.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
''Errr Anthony ........... ! LONDON ! WOW ... thanks so much ''. Mission complete He was so excited and went right away to his FB page to post .

If they update FB striaght away, you know they're impressed!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):

The lady from BA said she wanted to apologise but also tried to defend the Swissport supervisor which was very unhelpful to be honest. I then advised her that I used to work for an Airline myself so am well aware of procedures and security checks and I have no problem with any of these checks. What I advised her was that we were treated like criminals , refused information and given no respect or dignity by BA and their agents Swissport during the whole ordeal.

THat's the whole problem. Not that she thought the passport was a fake, but the way she handeled it. Hope BA had a go at her and Swissport

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Soon after the crew came around and handed out breakfast:

Looks nice

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
They did their job with no smiles or genuine enjoyment.

Well, TBH, i'd be worried if the crew were experiencing "genuine enjoyment" at handing out breakfast trays in Y for the umpteenth time that morning!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The rear is old fabric :

I was always confused as to why they didn't bother finishing the plane in leather - looks so scrappy

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
She asked if I had any BA flights booked within Europe or Lonhaul to which I said I didnt. I was advised that they were proposing to upgrade my next flight on both sectors. After this she then offered me 40,000 AVIOS points which equals to two free round trip flights ATH-LHR-ATH and she said maybe my Cousin and I would like to take another trip courtesy of British Airways or I can use them anyway I deem fit

A good outvome then!
http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights: LGW-OPO-LGW,LHR-FCO-CTA-LIN-LCY,LHR-AMS-GRQ-SEN,LTN-CPH-LHR-ORD
 
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:26 pm

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Hi Philip, great report!

Hey Jonas  
Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Wow you must really love your cousin. First the iPhone 4, and now an iMac! Oh well,

Well we grew up together and are very close , he is the Brother I never had so he gets spoilt alot but he is a good kid and did very well in his grades all his life. I told him if he past all his grades at top level then he can have what he wants. Good incentive and has worked all these years  
Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Now that's just criminal behavior from them, to treat someone who's been a loyal customer with them for years.

Indeed but I dont think the BA status came into as it was a passport issue and a Gold or Silver card shouldnt matter to BA and their agents anyway all passengers in such an instance should be treated with respect.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Breakfast looks really generous. Didn't expect BA to serve such a substantial meal in Y on this route. Suppose no point in flying Club then, and besides the middle seat was free. Although the champers is missing, hmm...  

Yes they did well on that for sure. In Club they get a more substantial breakfast IIRC .

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Looks really good. Is it the same place you always go to?  

Yes as always  
Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Again, very poor job BA! I hope they weren't so rude back in the days when you were Gold?

I have to say previous BA flights when I was Gold were all very pleasant . To get one shoddy check in agent is one thing but two of them two desks apart . Not good.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 13):
Maybe I should bring a sign  

Indeed ''available for guesting '' lol....

Quoting LGWflyer (Reply 15):
Hello Philip! A nice trip report, thank you for sharing!  

I am sorry to hear of you and your cousin's treatment by Swissport, that was terrible! Well I am glad you got it sorted out in the end with the 40,000 AVIOS points. I hope to see another TR with those points used!  

Hi thanks for the reply.   Yes Im sure they will take me somewhere nice. Maybe the next BA experience will be amazing heres hoping.
 
gpbcroppers63
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:58 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 10):
Hey Gareth . Indeed but they had plenty of chances to reply and change my opinion of their company. A simple letter saying we messed up we are sorry we will do training and coaching wth the people concerned would have been ample.

Cannot argue with you there. Swissport dropped the ball on this one majorly!

Quoting OA260 (Reply 10):
Yes you know me things dont bother me that much , you notice more minor things than me so it has to be bad for me to kick up . It was a horrible experience to be honest. Writing this today has upset me a bit just looking back on it all.

Yeah you're a pretty laid-back guy generally so I knew it was bad when you told me about it. It's just not the right way to treat people at all, especially paying customers!

Quoting OA260 (Reply 10):
Indeed and the Greek Police whilst you cant generalise over a few bad eggs need to look at themselves . Indeed we met three Police at the Airport when we had the meeting at the lounge and they were very pleasant and didnt bother to argue they were quite embarassed.

The police in any country often need to look at themselves. There are nice ones of course but too many seem to be on a power trip.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 10):
Yes it all worked out well and it was a great reunion. And yes those AVIOS will be used for something ''special''

Glad the reunion was nice and I look forward to hearing how you will spend your Avios!  
Quoting baexecutive (Reply 11):
One thing I would like to address with you is the statement you made regarding BA and 'glory days' can you elaborate as I'm not sure what you mean?

I would have thought it was fairly obvious. I know Philip has already given his response but here's what I understood by it: BA just don't offer the same level of consistency as they used to. I know all airlines have bad apples but Philip was merely commenting on his experience of how BA have changed over the years and how he views them when comapred to other airlines. It's all down to personal preference of course but if you have members of staff who seem unfriendly and disinterested, you aren't going to have such a positive impression of a company.

Quoting baexecutive (Reply 11):
You chose to fly BA and were transported safely and on time (as far as I know), fed (hot meals) and watered in lounge and onboard by professional staff (as far as I know) and last but not least your bags arrived, also safely.

I would expect the same from any airline. I know you don't get food or lounge access with Ryanair but I would expect them to get you there safely, on time, with your bags and with professional staff. Just because you had all that doesn't mean that the flight had the "wow" factor and that's what was being in referred to here. I would hope that BA would provide a better overall experience than an airline such as Ryanair considering the price difference.
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LH4116
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:14 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 17):
I told him if he past all his grades at top level then he can have what he wants. Good incentive and has worked all these years

Nice to know that the hard work runs in the family  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 17):
Yes Im sure they will take me somewhere nice. Maybe the next BA experience will be amazing heres hoping.

40K Avios is really generous of them to give. I think you better spend them on some upgrades to First. Buy a reasonably priced ticket in Club World to North America, and upgrade for 20K per segment. Great value I'd say, and I would love to see a BA F report from you.

//Jonas
SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
 
FLIEGER67
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:17 pm

Hey, Phil,

a well written story and also nice pictures, nothing else expected.
But that handling/passport issues at ATH sounds really terrible, nothing what you want to expect any time.
The 763 looks much more interesting than the Airbus plane, sure a good catch.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)
Tripreporter.net
 
shamrock321
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:21 pm

Again another amazing trip report OA, been busy recently and cant wait to catch up with your last few reports! Slighlty embarrasing as BA staff to read about passengers being treated like this! Takes nothing to be courteous!
 
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:54 pm

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
Interesting report Phil, shame it wasn't all a bed of roses.

Hey thanks for the reply. Indeed not what you expect on a weekend shopping trip to London.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
If they update FB striaght away, you know they're impressed!

Yeah I know he had something up like ''London calling ''  
Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
Not that she thought the passport was a fake, but the way she handeled it. Hope BA had a go at her and Swissport

Exactly there you have it . I used to work in the business so I have no issue at all with any staff member saying I want to double check this passport its the airlines and handling agents right but there is a way to treat people whilst you are carrying out the process. Whether she thought it really was a fake Im in two minds about as inspections by UK authorities and arriving back into ATH didnt look twice at it and it was scanned . I thought at first they were wondering if he skipped his military service as even with a UK passport you are not excempt but he has completed it and got his release papers.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
Well, TBH, i'd be worried if the crew were experiencing "genuine enjoyment" at handing out breakfast trays in Y for the umpteenth time that morning!

Haha well I dont expect them to be skipping down the aisles like pansies ( ok bad example ) lol... but they had overnighted in ATH at a nice hotel so its not crew fatigue .

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
I was always confused as to why they didn't bother finishing the plane in leather - looks so scrappy

True but I wasnt that worried about the internal look it wasnt run down IMHO .

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 18):
Yeah you're a pretty laid-back guy generally so I knew it was bad when you told me about it. It's just not the right way to treat people at all, especially paying customers!

Yeah Gareth you know me I often say to you ''does it really matter '' when something you say you dont like and you say im too easy going lol...

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 18):
The police in any country often need to look at themselves. There are nice ones of course but too many seem to be on a power trip.

True I have had experiences in other countries with rude police but I dont paint them all with the same brush. There are good Greek Police and bad ones. My Cousins Girlfriends Father is a Police officer. That gave me some hope if we had been thrown into a cell LOL....Im laughing now but it was scary .

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 18):
I would expect the same from any airline. I know you don't get food or lounge access with Ryanair but I would expect them to get you there safely, on time, with your bags and with professional staff. Just because you had all that doesn't mean that the flight had the "wow" factor and that's what was being in referred to here. I would hope that BA would provide a better overall experience than an airline such as Ryanair considering the price difference.

And there you have it . Nail on the head Gareth . You know me I often give out about things not being done properly at work and I go the extra mile for the client. It annoys me when someone with a genuine complaint or feedback gets snubbed. You listen to the client/customer and you say ''Yes I see your point we could have improved there and we will certainly take it onboard''.You let the person know you genuinely are taking onboard what they are suggesting and not treating them like an annoyance.

BA have an ad campaign '' To Fly to Serve'' it conjures up an expectation which if not met does dissapoint. They see themselves as better than FR and other carriers so in turn they are expected to deliver.

We are all human and have bad days but its a good thing that I do all the time I think to myself ''Did I do my job well today , did I treat everyone the way they should have been treated and what could I have done better to turn someones experience into a good one ''. We have quality scores at work and someone may score that they had a bad experience with the service and product but the thing Im proud to say is that when they come to scoring me personally Im always in the over 90% range and thats why I love my job.

If you are dealing with a client/customer and they are annoyed at the service they got its your job to turn them around so at the end of the dealings you have they go away and say '' Hey they messed up but that guy really did care and took me seriously. '' Thats customer service and it applies to everything .

You look at my nearly bad experience on OA when I came back from IST and the FA came to me and said ''Im sorry that was a bad experience for you what can I get you to drink'' That totally turned me around and it didnt take any effort or cost anything yet she turned a bad experience into a good one. A smiling / welcoming FA can mean alot ! If someone has the attitude that if they dont smile at me Im not smiling at them then they are in the wrong job . Worse is if a passenger does make the effort and they are ignored.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 19):
Nice to know that the hard work runs in the family  

Indeed installed into us all in my family from an early age .

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 19):
40K Avios is really generous of them to give. I think you better spend them on some upgrades to First. Buy a reasonably priced ticket in Club World to North America, and upgrade for 20K per segment. Great value I'd say, and I would love to see a BA F report from you.

Haha trust you Jonas you have them spent already   Good options there for sure though.
 
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CrimsonNL
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:57 pm

Hi Phil! My what a story about the ATH incident.. Extremely bad service. If the police treats you bad it's one thing, but at least the ground staff should have stayed polite!

I ended up on the BNWB myself just a few weeks later, also just for the sake of logging the BA 767. I think she was the first 767 in the BA, fleet but I can't find any accurate data on it. For such an old bird I thought she looked alright but the age definitely shows!

Thanks for sharing and regards,

Martijn
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:59 pm

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 20):
Hey, Phil,

a well written story and also nice pictures, nothing else expected.
But that handling/passport issues at ATH sounds really terrible, nothing what you want to expect any time.
The 763 looks much more interesting than the Airbus plane, sure a good catch.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)

Hey Markus and thanks for the reply for sure it is . At least people will be warned if they ever got themselves into such situations anywhere.

Quoting shamrock321 (Reply 21):
Again another amazing trip report OA, been busy recently and cant wait to catch up with your last few reports! Slighlty embarrasing as BA staff to read about passengers being treated like this! Takes nothing to be courteous!

Hi thanks for the reply . Glad you replied as you are an example I can refer to as someone who enjoys their job and who I know would provide good customer service as I once experienced in your former job   Hope everything is going well for you and keep smiling at those passengers  
 
The777Man
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:12 pm

Hi Philip!

Nice report and the flights on BA look very good! Nice with a meal on those flights and it looks great.

The experience in ATH seems really bad and should have not have happened at all! Didn't she look at the passport and compare the picture with the person in front of her ?? Since the passport was in very good condition, Swissport should not have questioned the valitdy to begin with.

I still think BA handled the issue well after the circumstances but Swissport should be ashamed. Not surprising to me though since they are a handling company.

The777Man
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AlwaysOnAPlane
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:23 pm

Hey Phil.

I was glued to this report mate. Well you know, sometimes when things go bad in travel, these make the most interesting trip reports.

What an experience you and your cousin got thrown into at ATH. NOT good!! Some of these staff, you give them some responsibility and they get some sort of power surge. What is the need to turn into someone who is happy to ruin what is supposed to be a nice break with family? Anyway, I'm glad to hear you nailed them on it. It can take some time and effort but it's good to get things off your chest and hopefully bring these rude staff to task over their actions.

Anyway, Looks like the rest went well (aside from the LHR check-in). Really kind of you to treat your cousin this way. I'm sure you made his day when he looked up the booking.

Nice scenes from London too and you making the most of the shopping. Maybe you should take a trolly with you to put those bags in.  .

Great to see some more 767 action. I think the leather section looked a bit more to my style than the fabric. Is this aircraft flying this way between re-fit or has it been this way for a while? Interesting layout...

Well, I have to fully agree with your summary of BA. They are a real mixed bag of a company with all kinds of personality working for them. I seem to encounter a few of these Highly Strung BA staff in my limited number of flights with them. Enough for me to put BA quite far down on the list of choice. I fly them now and again just to keep my eye on them  . When you look at the product they offer, I really don't understand why people get so attached to them? I often wonder if it's the strong fact of British national pride towards British products that keeps the UK population choosing to always fly BA, warts and all? Each to their own, but in my experience, and also on paper there are much better options around (as you say TK-LX-SK)

Thanks for this interesting read Phil.
Enjoy spending those Avios...
Cheers, Lee.
 
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:36 pm

Quoting CrimsonNL (Reply 23):
Hi Phil! My what a story about the ATH incident.. Extremely bad service. If the police treats you bad it's one thing, but at least the ground staff should have stayed polite!

Hi I totally agree you kind of expect it from Police but not from a check in agent and their supervisors who are not the authorities .

Quoting CrimsonNL (Reply 23):
I ended up on the BNWB myself just a few weeks later, also just for the sake of logging the BA 767. I think she was the first 767 in the BA, fleet but I can't find any accurate data on it. For such an old bird I thought she looked alright but the age definitely shows!

Arr ok interesting . Are you doing a TR ?

Quoting The777Man (Reply 25):
Nice report and the flights on BA look very good! Nice with a meal on those flights and it looks great.

Hi thanks for the reply. Yes BA in general were good.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 25):
The experience in ATH seems really bad and should have not have happened at all! Didn't she look at the passport and compare the picture with the person in front of her ?? Since the passport was in very good condition, Swissport should not have questioned the valitdy to begin with.

Indeed and even when she was offered a second form of ID the Greek ID card she ignored us . She could have taken that and compared it she didnt even bother to take it to show the Police we showed the Police.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 25):
I still think BA handled the issue well after the circumstances but Swissport should be ashamed

Indeed I cant deny that for sure.
 
lhr380
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:42 pm

Aside from the Swissport treatment which was deplorable, a very enjoyable read as always.

I really do need to get on a Euro 767, and glad to see they still have Cloth seats at the back as I always preferred to sit in the cloth seats over the leather ones when they were on the 757. Best try and get on one soon before they get the upgrade.

Also,a real shame your flight did not go from the B gates as out of the 4 lounges in T5, that is the one I enjoy being in the most (Though im only ever working there   )
(The views on this site are my own and no one elses)
 
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Tue Feb 07, 2012 11:37 pm

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
Hey Phil.

I was glued to this report mate. Well you know, sometimes when things go bad in travel, these make the most interesting trip reports.

Hi Lee thanks alot Im glad you liked it .

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
NOT good!! Some of these staff, you give them some responsibility and they get some sort of power surge. What is the need to turn into someone who is happy to ruin what is supposed to be a nice break with family?

Yeah I cant say what she was thinking or why she did what she did only she knows. If the Police or BA Manager said it looks dodgy I would have accepted their words and been glad then at least I could have got my cousin to get a new Biometric passport at the British Embassy in Athens. We wouldnt have a problem with that . But the treatment was disgusting.

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
Anyway, I'm glad to hear you nailed them on it. It can take some time and effort but it's good to get things off your chest and hopefully bring these rude staff to task over their actions.

Oh yeah I have no issues now Im telling my story people might think Im angry but Im not really its finished and I accepted the offer from BA. Its part of my month of TRs and this is the next one in line so thats why its posting now . Swissport didnt reply Im not looking for a reply now its finished Im just telling what happened. I posted a thread in Civil Aviation to see if they had a customer charter not because I was bitching at Swissport . If I need that I can email the Daily Mail lol....

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
I'm sure you made his day when he looked up the booking.

Yes he was so happy and despite everything he had a fab time and we know laugh about it . I said next time he goes away he is not to bring his fake passport   You need to laugh at these things now otherwise it will get to you. He also got a slagging from his mates about being an illegal .

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
Nice scenes from London too and you making the most of the shopping. Maybe you should take a trolly with you to put those bags in.  .

Yes love London always a nice time.

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
I think the leather section looked a bit more to my style than the fabric. Is this aircraft flying this way between re-fit or has it been this way for a while? Interesting layout...

I usually would say the same but the fabric was really comfortable.

Quoting AlwaysOnAPlane (Reply 26):
I often wonder if it's the strong fact of British national pride towards British products that keeps the UK population choosing to always fly BA

Haha you know its funny some things I am very patriotic about the UK on and other things not. Being born in UK of foreign parents I sometimes feel myself torn but my family laugh at me as sometimes Im very British and other times very Greek or Indian its weird . I like to take the good parts of all of them and am very proud of all my backgrounds and cultures but not blindly.

Quoting lhr380 (Reply 28):
Aside from the Swissport treatment which was deplorable, a very enjoyable read as always.

Hi thanks alot for the reply.

Quoting lhr380 (Reply 28):
I really do need to get on a Euro 767, and glad to see they still have Cloth seats at the back as I always preferred to sit in the cloth seats over the leather ones when they were on the 757

Yes very nice aircraft and I couldnt fault the aircraft itself. Just the TVs would need replaced . I liked the cotton also and usually I prefer leather .

Quoting lhr380 (Reply 28):
Also,a real shame your flight did not go from the B gates as out of the 4 lounges in T5, that is the one I enjoy being in the most (Though im only ever working there   )

I will have to keep that in mind sometime. I will expect the Champagne on ice  
 
flyboy_se
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:47 am

Hi Phillip,

What a disgusting behaviour from the parties involved. This is no way to treat a customer, security check or not.
I hope BA is tough on Swissport and do not allow these agents to supervise or check their flights. It is good that BA took your complaint seriously and tried to compensate you.
The problem with handling companies is that you never know what to expect. They dont work for the airline, they dont get same benefits, so they simply dont care if it is BA, LX, LH or whatever airline. This is where the airline comes in and need to supervise their handling company to provide friendly, consistant service to all customers at all times.

I agree with you on BA, and my flights with them are always hit or miss. Mostly it is behaviour from the staff. It doesent matter if you have a good hard product if your soft product is lacking.

Anyway, as i said, good on BA for taking your claim seriously and compensating you. I know from experience that it is a nightmare to sort what is a genuine claim and what is a fraud ( you would be surprised how many fraudalant claims come in from people expecting free flights and upgrades).

As for Swissport, shame on them for not even acknowledging your complaint. Have you tried writing to their head office?

All of the bad experience aside, thank you for a wonderfull TR. Always a joy to read.


P
I prefer to be crazy and happy rather than normal and bitter
 
infodesk
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:05 am

Hi Philip,

Gosh, what a story. I was glued to it!

First, the passport issue: what an unbelievable scenario. I particularly feel for your cousin who was obviously looking forward to the trip so much. To be put in a situation like that, well, it would have spoilt eveyrthing for me and I would have been tempted to turn round and go home. You were quite right to take the case as far as you did. The letters you received were all pretty standard apologies, nothing special there, so I am glad that BA eventually offered you the miles, fair enough. To not receive a reply from Swissport is disgraceful.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I was then asked for my credit card with which I booked the tickets online at BA.COM which I provided.

This has never happened to me. Was this also part of the "security issue"?

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Whilst on the way to the lounge we were thinking over what just Happened and I was very upset close to tears. We entered the lounge and right away the lounge agents could see I was distressed and asked what on earth has happened.

Never mind close to tears, I'd have been in floods!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The BA lady was there and acknowledged us but Mr P. ( or who I thought was Mr P , later to be in fact another supervisor from BA ) was talking to a Gentleman he seemed to know and upgrading him to Club Europe. The BA lady chatted to him and looked over at us but he did not make any effort to meet with us. Boarding was on final call so we were told to board the aircraft.

Appalling, considering you were told to be at the gate to meet him.

And now for the positives:

A great catch to get the 767 on the return, I love the old school big leather seats at the front of the aircraft.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Nice bridge :

I remember that one from some of my Greek flights. The routing you took seems identical to when we flew back from JMK, as that took us over St. Moritz. Sadly the weather was bad and we didn't see the Alps. You were luckier!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Soon we arrived at Harrods and we got some lovely Christmas items and bakery treats

More cakes.....mmmh.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
My Uncle and Aunt had wanted us to take some things back and so we had a lot to buy
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Seems we came on the right day . We spent around £300 and got 25% off so it was great value.

These two sentences made me laugh. How many hours of my life have I spent queuing at the refund desk?! I remember the good old days when there wasn't even a time limit on returns. I never come out of M&S empty handed!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
After that we couldnt carry anymore so we went back to my Mums house.

  

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
and I might get you to install an aerial for my TV as its not working properly, the BT Broadband box arrived also and it will be better if you install it''.
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
That night we went out to Sainsburys Supermarket as I always do with my Mum. I help her stock up with all the heavy items which she buys every few months.

Your trips to see your Mum sound just like mine!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Arriving at the house and time to un pack all the goodies

The best bit!

Aviation, cakes and M&S, that's my kind of trip  

Happy flying and enjoy those miles
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
PlaneHunter
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:36 am

Hi Philip,

very interesting report! It's totally unacceptable how you were treated. These passport checks are certainly necessary, but it's a shame that you were treated like a criminal from the very beginning. At least you got these points as a compensation.

BA's product doesn't look bad. And you had a real 767 veteran!


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
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airbuseric
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:41 am

Hi Philip,

wow, what a story. But just to ensure you, I think you're fully right with your opinion on this happening! Unbelievable how rude some people can treat you, especially since they are at a supervisor level. It shows that some people are definitely not suitable for their job.

Aside from that, and that you received a basically average to good service on BA itself (the LHR check-in can be one of those all time failures of course, but on this trip you took it maybe more seriously), plus the very good way BA picked up things regarding your complaint, I think indeed kudos to BA are in it's place here. I'm not surprised, this is how it should be taken!

Swissport is kind of fail, also in my opinion. In AMS they started a cargo business a few years ago, super large growth, big customers etc. Now they wanted more and more from the staff, without adding extra manpower, but accepting more carriers. Finally the airlines and the staff were unhappy and called sick, resigned, airlines left... Swissport AMS is DEAD. Nearly! It's maybe weeks or months till they can close office. Their own fault, surely it is!
It's a different part of that company I tell about, but higher management level might be on same decision making how to run the business at each airport.

Regards
Eric
"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
 
roberts87
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:13 am

Hello Philip,

A very nice trip report as usual, but what a terrible experience at ATH. Good to hear that ATH and BA responded to your complaints and dealt with it, but what disgrace on Swissports side. It's like Customer Care 101, when someone has a serious complaint, you respond.

The BA 767 sure is great to fly on, within Europe. Yes, they're getting a bit worn down, but I found my ride FRA-LHR in October to be extremely comfortable, especially in the forward economy cabin. And London is great during Christmas time!
 
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:34 am

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
Hi Phillip,

Hi P   Great to hear from you .

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
What a disgusting behaviour from the parties involved. This is no way to treat a customer, security check or not.

Yes indeed certainly lacking in customer service thats for sure.

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
I hope BA is tough on Swissport and do not allow these agents to supervise or check their flights.

Well I have heard of airlines in the past banning certain employees from a certain handling agent checking in their flights.

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
They dont work for the airline, they dont get same benefits, so they simply dont care if it is BA, LX, LH

True we saw a similar trend for a few weeks here at DUB some years ago with SHP and LX which was stamped out very quickly by LX management and SHP were brought into line.

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
Mostly it is behaviour from the staff. It doesent matter if you have a good hard product if your soft product is lacking.

Very true sometimes you can forgive a hard product if the soft product is great but rarely the other way around.

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 30):
As for Swissport, shame on them for not even acknowledging your complaint. Have you tried writing to their head office?

True but no like I said its over and I have no reason to contact them again . This is all being highlighted now as it was the next TR to be posted . So unlike some say Im not all angry 3 months later , Im telling my story and Im not bothered about Swissport replying anymore they had their chance to and they chose not to. End of .

Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
Hi Philip,

Hi Hannah ,

Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
First, the passport issue: what an unbelievable scenario. I particularly feel for your cousin who was obviously looking forward to the trip so much. To be put in a situation like that, well, it would have spoilt eveyrthing for me and I would have been tempted to turn round and go home. You were quite right to take the case as far as you did. The letters you received were all pretty standard apologies, nothing special there, so I am glad that BA eventually offered you the miles, fair enough. To not receive a reply from Swissport is disgraceful.

I know but in my true style it wasnt going to ruin the whole trip we were looking forward to it too much . I doubt I will have any issues at ATH in future with BA they know me very well now lol...  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
This has never happened to me. Was this also part of the "security issue"?

Yes BA do it I had to show my credit card at DUB once when they flew DUB-LGW and also RJ did it at LHR before I checked in for LHR-AMM-BEY . I guess its a fraud check .

Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
Never mind close to tears, I'd have been in floods!

Haha true it is very upsetting when that happens. There is not much that brings me close to tears and Im a tough cookie so it just shows you how bad it was !

Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
These two sentences made me laugh. How many hours of my life have I spent queuing at the refund desk?! I remember the good old days when there wasn't even a time limit on returns. I never come out of M&S empty handed!

You sound like my Aunt we were exhausted as kids being taken around M&S in Marble Arch for hours .

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 32):
Hi Philip,

Hi Udo ,

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 32):
very interesting report! It's totally unacceptable how you were treated. These passport checks are certainly necessary, but it's a shame that you were treated like a criminal from the very beginning. At least you got these points as a compensation.

Thanks for your reply and support . Much appreciated .

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 32):
And you had a real 767 veteran!

So it seems I didnt realise the age of it til recently.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 33):
Hi Philip,

Hey Eric ,

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 33):
wow, what a story. But just to ensure you, I think you're fully right with your opinion on this happening!

Thanks alot its good to know and much appreciated . People who know me know I dont make these things up and I cant remember the last time any of my TRs had such a negative story. I always enjoy my experiences.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 33):
Unbelievable how rude some people can treat you, especially since they are at a supervisor level. It shows that some people are definitely not suitable for their job.

Indeed shame to see such a low standard of customer care.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 33):
Swissport is kind of fail, also in my opinion. In AMS they started a cargo business a few years ago, super large growth, big customers etc. Now they wanted more and more from the staff, without adding extra manpower, but accepting more carriers. Finally the airlines and the staff were unhappy and called sick, resigned, airlines left... Swissport AMS is DEAD. Nearly! It's maybe weeks or months till they can close office. Their own fault, surely it is!

Thats very interesting always good to learn more about a company and in the last 24 hours I have learned alot from people about Swissport. Good and bad. I always looked at them as a top quality pleasant handling agent before this.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 34):
A very nice trip report as usual, but what a terrible experience at ATH. Good to hear that ATH and BA responded to your complaints and dealt with it, but what disgrace on Swissports side. It's like Customer Care 101, when someone has a serious complaint, you respond.

Hi Robert many thanks for the reply.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 34):
Yes, they're getting a bit worn down, but I found my ride FRA-LHR in October to be extremely comfortable, especially in the forward economy cabin. And London is great during Christmas time!

Yes I agree its still a lovely aircraft to fly on and the old world feel about it was quite pleasant actually.  
 
Andy33
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:39 am

Quoting OA260 (Reply 27):
Great to see some more 767 action. I think the leather section looked a bit more to my style than the fabric. Is this aircraft flying this way between re-fit or has it been this way for a while? Interesting layout...

There are 7 short-haul 767s in BA's fleet (along with 14 long-haul configured ones). All 7 have this mixture of leather and cloth seating. The cloth covered seats are permanently allocated as EuroTraveller (economy) class, while the leather covered ones are convertible between Club Europe (business) and Eurotraveller according to demand. When they are used as economy they are 2+3+2 , in business mode the middle seat in the central block squeezes up to almost nothing (and isn't used) while the other seats all get slightly wider, making an effective 2+2+2 layout. The changeover is done during normal turnround time on the ground between flights at Heathrow - its a matter of pulling levers on each block of seats.

There was/is a plan to refurb the shorthaul 767s because the 787s are still nowhere near arriving, and if it is done the cloth seats will be removed and replaced by brand new spacesaver seats, but the convertible ones will be overhauled and refitted. The uncertainty is due to the planned BMI acquisition as this might require more longhaul 767s but provide ex BMI 321s for the shorthaul work instead. BA/IAG have said that they intend to increase long haul flying using Heathrow slots acquired with BMI. No doubt the BA fleet planners do actually know which way they will go but aren't letting on yet!

At the moment some shorthaul 767 rotations are being covered by a long-haul 767 - I'm actually booked on one of these next month, but there's no guarantee a short haul 767 won't turn up instead.
 
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:52 am

Quoting andy33 (Reply 36):
There are 7 short-haul 767s in BA's fleet (along with 14 long-haul configured ones). All 7 have this mixture of leather and cloth seating. The cloth covered seats are permanently allocated as EuroTraveller (economy) class, while the leather covered ones are convertible between Club Europe (business) and Eurotraveller according to demand.

Thanks for that detailed info and good to know .

Quoting andy33 (Reply 36):
No doubt the BA fleet planners do actually know which way they will go but aren't letting on yet!

I agree I think they know exactly what they will do . I heard eventually the B787 will come to the ATH route but Im not sure if thats still correct and I guess it depends on the situation on the LHR-ATH at the time.

Quoting andy33 (Reply 36):
At the moment some shorthaul 767 rotations are being covered by a long-haul 767 - I'm actually booked on one of these next month, but there's no guarantee a short haul 767 won't turn up instead.

Yes a mate of mine got a longhaul to ATH and was super impressed. A nice sub for sure . Bit like when you get a Midhaul BMI DUB-LHR but 10 x better .
 
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rogerbcn
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:49 pm

Hola Philip!

Woawwww! I was impressed by your report, it must have been really a nightmare at your home airport...

How on Earth can the check-in agents, supervisors or not, decide on the fake of a passport? I assume if they see something fishy on a travel document they should call the police officers and you deal with that once you go through passport control, especially when flying to non-Schengen countries. I assume I am wrong then.

I thought you were entitled to all the responses you got back, but as said before, they look pretty standard to me; glad to hear that BA has given you 40,000 avios which is a pretty good compensation for all the hassle. What a shame Swissport did not even answer your complaints, it is the worst part of it; I understand someone can have bad days but they should be prepared to come forward on those situations and say something to you. Not answering customers complaints is the worst thing an oriented customer company can do... really bad on them.

Why did not BA upgrade you on the first place as a first sign of recognition on the flight?

Back to the trip itself, really nice to get that B767 on the way to ATH, I have flown them sometimes from BCN, last week when I went to the airport, one of those was sitting there, maybe it was yours. They use them to fly to BCN when the load requires high capacity.

Your stay in London was really one of your own: shopping and eating... are you sure you are on your regular diet?  

Thanks for posting your experience.

Salut!

Roger
"At reise er at leve" H.C. Andersen (Travelling is Living)
 
FlyingFinn76
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:02 pm

Hi Phil,

First, let me start by saying what a kind soul you really are for your family & loved ones. You really must like your cousin a lot - or maybe that's just your way of cheering him up, after all Greece probably isn't the best place to be living in right now. Anyway a very kind act from you to give him the possibility to spend a few days in London, plus of course to see your mum after all those years (and I'm sure your mum enjoyed it every bit as much as he did!).

Oh and those BA lounges - looking excellent as usual. Shame about your Executive Club status, but then again I can fully understand that, and with that Avion business that program has certainly taken a turn for the worse! I too prefer *A a lot, as a matter of fact just last week I renewed my Gold for another year, now good until 10/2013  .


Now having gotten that done it's time to comment on that disgraceful behavior at Athens. Phew - that Swissport employee should be fired on the spot, that is no way to treat paying customers, status pax or not! What ever happened to the good old "Innocent until proven guilty" principle - sure she had the right to suspect the passport fake, but that's no reason to act like a total ass and condemn you until the police have proved that it indeed is a fake one - which it of course wasn't. And the behavior of the police sounds quite bad to me as well.

Very good for BA, the consulate etc. to apologize and take affirmative action after your formal complaint - that's the way good and successful companies manage their customer relations. 40K points isn't too shabby at all, a shame you didn't have a long haul flight booked as the upgrade would've been very nice indeed.

And VERY, VERY disgraceful for Swissport to completely ignore your complaint and give you... nothing, not even an acknowledgement that it had been received and understood. Unfortunately this is far too common, I have lost count of the times I've sent of all kinds of complaints or suggestions and never received any response at all.

Keep up the good work.
 
lukeyboy95
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:21 pm

Oh No!

Not a good way to start a trip. There is nothing worse than being treated like you have done something wrong. On programs I often see that even people suspected of drug trafficking or immigration breaches and treated civility until such time they can be proved guilty or not. Really this wasn't on, especially since your were two civilised people. Could there have been anything about your cousin that would trigger such an unjustified reaction?

At least it seemed to be handled excellently. Good on your for persevering. People make mistakes and it takes a bigger man to fully apologise.

Thought the BA flights looked spot on TBH. Meals looked great and ample and the equipment quite comfortable. Lounge was really nice looking too.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 16):
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
They did their job with no smiles or genuine enjoyment.

Well, TBH, i'd be worried if the crew were experiencing "genuine enjoyment" at handing out breakfast trays in Y for the umpteenth time that morning!

haha, you do get a grumpy one now and again!

Thanks for a roller-coaster report Philip!

Luke
Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
 
mikedlayer
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 5:06 pm

Great trip report - thanks.

The way you were treated in Athens was unbelievable. I have flown through there before with BA and I must admit the Swissport handling agents their end were incredibly frosty. Barking at me "check in isn't open go away"...and then opening check in seconds later by which point we were at the back of a nice queue.

Its damaging the brand.
 
CaptainRed
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:07 pm

Hi Philip,

what an interesting report. Bad to read about that experience at Athens during your check-in. It might be ok that they double check a passport or so but the way it was handled was totally unacceptable. I understand how something like that can ruin your whole flying experience. Good thing that you filed a proper complain, and according to the responses you got your complain was taken seriously. But indeed disappointing by Swissport to not answer at all, not good.

If not the ground staff, so at least the flights with BA seemed to be ok, nice food. And that lounge in LHR also looked pretty nice. And looks like you had a great time in London, so at least in that respect your trip was successful  

Thanks and again and greetings
CaptainRed
 
jetblast
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:46 pm

Hello Philip

Excellent read although I'm not too happy with the treatment by Swissport in ATH. It is damaging to our airline...at least you knew that they were contract agents but as far as the everyday passenger is concerned, they are BA staff. As such they form a bad impression of our company!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 31):
This has never happened to me. Was this also part of the "security issue"?

We commonly check credit cards for fraud check at check-in...if the ticket is being purchased by someone who is not traveling there is a box to tick on ba.com when booking. Otherwise we ask for the card at check-in.

Hope your next trip with us is better.

Brian
Speedbird Concorde One
 
planejamie
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:47 pm

Nice report, I have to agree with your views on Swissport there, how awful, this surprises me a lot especially for a company operating for BA. I hope BA do act on your complaint and sort out Swissport there!

As for the police, well I hope they do the same, some are just power mad and well treating people as they would like to be treated seems to come second these days.

I am appalled that you had a bad experience with BA! I urge you not to give up flying with them, and I think maybe writing a letter of complaint about the Terminal 5 check-in agent and the crew LHR-ATH as well. I've had many many BA flights and never once have I encountered a rude or uninterested crew. Likewise with check-in (okay, I always check-in at MAN with BA) the staff have always been friendly and chatty whilst being professional, from check-in to arrival. I'll give BA more credit here, they gave you essentially two return flights and a free upgrade for a problem that wasn't directly their fault so you can't be unhappy with that (BD, LH and AF have never done anything similar in fact never responded to written complaints and ones made in person/on the phone to my Dad and so we now have a tendency towards BA which up until the past couple of years weren't as great as they were).
 
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OA260
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RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Thu Feb 09, 2012 1:54 am

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
Hola Philip!

Hola Roger  
Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
How on Earth can the check-in agents, supervisors or not, decide on the fake of a passport? I assume if they see something fishy on a travel document they should call the police officers and you deal with that once you go through passport control, especially when flying to non-Schengen countries. I assume I am wrong then.

Well I guess it is the check in agents job to spot and report anything them deem they need to but it is not their call to actively say to the Police its a fake which the Police confirmed to us was the case. The Swissport supervisor had no doubt in her mind according to them and that was backed up by three Police officers ( the nice ones ) we encountered afterwards  
Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
What a shame Swissport did not even answer your complaints, it is the worst part of it

True but they had their chance and as I stated I dont want to hear from them now .

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
Not answering customers complaints is the worst thing an oriented customer company can do... really bad on them.

Very true one thing in my own company we get feedback on and customers being ignored is a big no no .

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
Why did not BA upgrade you on the first place as a first sign of recognition on the flight?

Well I guess if they were going to they couldnt as the flight was 99% full in all classes.

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
Back to the trip itself, really nice to get that B767 on the way to ATH

Indeed Roger it was a nice ride home.

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 38):
Your stay in London was really one of your own: shopping and eating... are you sure you are on your regular diet?  

Yes love London and had a fantastic time . We didnt tell my Mum the whole story we kind of just mentioned it as my Uncle had said something . We didnt want to upset her as she would get worried you know how Mothers are. Yes I was naughty that weekend but didnt go too mad  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
Hi Phil,

Hey P thanks for the reply.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
You really must like your cousin a lot - or maybe that's just your way of cheering him up, after all Greece probably isn't the best place to be living in right now

Indeed he is like a Brother to me . Life for him is not too bad lucky compared to most Greeks they have a ok lifestyle but he cant get work so has gone back to study. He speaks three languages , done a University course in engineering and still cant get a job ! What a waste . We dont want him to move and his girlfriend is in Athens so we shall see what happens. He may not have a choice time will tell. I do anything I can to support him and my Family and if that means buying him a new phone or PC or taking him away for a few days then its the least I can do . Family is everything to me .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
Oh and those BA lounges - looking excellent as usual

Indeed the BA lounges were lovely .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
as a matter of fact just last week I renewed my Gold for another year, now good until 10/2013  .

Congrats to you thats great news.  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
What ever happened to the good old "Innocent until proven guilty" principle - sure she had the right to suspect the passport fake, but that's no reason to act like a total ass and condemn you until the police have proved that it indeed is a fake one - which it of course wasn't.

Yes exactly and that was my point. If you are an illegal or asylum seeker or whatever they think you are then you are still to be treated with respect and courtesy throughout any investigation. Not take an attitude and look down on you and treat you like crap because you feel you can .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
And the behavior of the police sounds quite bad to me as well.

Indeed they showed their ugly face that day although as stated three others showed me a good side so lets say a few bad eggs .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
the consulate etc.

The British Embassy in Athens were great and I think they dont get the credit they deserve sometimes. They do a great job.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 39):
And VERY, VERY disgraceful for Swissport to completely ignore your complaint and give you... nothing, not even an acknowledgement that it had been received and understood.

Well it does create an impression when you hear nothing at all.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 40):
Could there have been anything about your cousin that would trigger such an unjustified reaction?

Hey there thanks for replying . Well he is 6ft tall , very pleasant personality , dresses smartly and clean appearance. Speaks fluent English and can hold a conversation with you like you would with another English Man. Has Greek ID and Greek driving license and a valid passport. Has travelled to USA/Germany/Ireland and UK on same passport also. So if that triggers something then we are all screwed !   ( Not that we should generalise about peoples looks anyway ) . He looks like your average Greek modern youngster.The thing was she ignored the offer of other forms of ID and didnt even offer to take them to show the Police. Only when we were in there did he get the chance to show those. When she went away she could have asked to take those too and we would have had no issue with anything she wanted to take.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 40):
Meals looked great and ample and the equipment quite comfortable. Lounge was really nice looking too.

Yes that was all positive.

Quoting mikedlayer (Reply 41):
Great trip report - thanks.

And thank you fo the reply.

Quoting mikedlayer (Reply 41):
The way you were treated in Athens was unbelievable. I have flown through there before with BA and I must admit the Swissport handling agents their end were incredibly frosty. Barking at me "check in isn't open go away"...and then opening check in seconds later by which point we were at the back of a nice queue.

Thats interesting to hear and thanks for sharing that .

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 42):
And looks like you had a great time in London, so at least in that respect your trip was successful  

Yes we had a lovely time and as I said it wasnt going to ruin a special trip .

Quoting jetblast (Reply 43):
Hello Philip

Hello Brian and I cant tell you how refreshing your reply is.

Quoting jetblast (Reply 43):
Excellent read although I'm not too happy with the treatment by Swissport in ATH. It is damaging to our airline...at least you knew that they were contract agents but as far as the everyday passenger is concerned, they are BA staff. As such they form a bad impression of our company!

You got it 100% . I know its Swissport but Joe public can see the sign above the check in with BA logos and branding and to them its BA . Same in the lounges/boarding areas etc...

In my own company we have outlets that are company branded and look like our own but they are ''franchise''. We have our own also but the client / customer doesnt know the difference. If they say they had a bad experience then you say '' Its not one of ours '' then they turn round and say ''Well its looks like one of yours and has your branding everywhere ''. Sometimes it can damage your brand image.

Quoting jetblast (Reply 43):
Hope your next trip with us is better.

Im sure it will be and I have to say my issue is not with BA at all. If anything its alerted BA to something that they can now be aware of and make sure their brand image is protected. They state that in the letter that they are watching Swissport.

Again thankyou for your reply it was very much appreciated and I can tell from your attitude that you care about the company you work for.

Quoting planejamie (Reply 44):
Nice report, I have to agree with your views on Swissport there, how awful, this surprises me a lot especially for a company operating for BA. I hope BA do act on your complaint and sort out Swissport there!

Thanks alot . Im sure BA will keep monitoring performance of their handling agent.

Quoting planejamie (Reply 44):
I am appalled that you had a bad experience with BA! I urge you not to give up flying with them, and I think maybe writing a letter of complaint about the Terminal 5 check-in agent and the crew LHR-ATH as well.

I wont give up flying with them . A pissy check in agent or grumpy FA is not something I would take pen and paper to complain about. Look at my previous TRs and see how many times I have had to give out or complain . Very very little. Im not a person to write in for minor things or non issues. If Im putting pen to paper then it must be bad .
 
deltamartin
Posts: 981
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 5:48 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:39 am

Hi Philip!

Nice tripreport, as usual.
Too bad about that handling at ATH, but BA seem to have done their best to make up for it!
It was nice to read about your experience with BA, those T5 lounges are indeed great.
How nice of you to take your cousin to London!

Martin
 
emrecan
Posts: 845
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2000 7:20 am

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Thu Feb 09, 2012 9:34 am

Hi Philip.. It is really great to read your TRs. It is a big shame what the police did to you but it ended good.
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 20983
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:01 am

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 46):
Hi Philip!

Hey Martin ,

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 46):
It was nice to read about your experience with BA, those T5 lounges are indeed great.

Yes the lounges are great for sure .

Quoting Emrecan (Reply 47):
Hi Philip.. It is really great to read your TRs. It is a big shame what the police did to you but it ended good.

Thanks for the reply and indeed it was a shame .
 
signol
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: British Airways B767-Lounges+ Swissport Disgrace!.

Thu Feb 09, 2012 4:12 pm

Hi Philip,

another report to your usual standard. A shame the experience has left a sour taste in the mouth, and that may well have been the straw that broke the camel's back, as you say you'll never choose BA again all things being equal. A shame, but justified, given the horrendous treatment you and your cousin received. Even if there was suspicion of a forgery, it could have been dealt with so much more politely, telling you the issues. After all, whatever happened to "innocent until proven guilty"?! Still, the BA staff have made it up to you somewhat. I hope your cousin can benefit as well from the miles  

The flights themselves look completely standard, normal service, nothing exceptional. I've not flown Swiss or Turkish, but from reports on here their staff seem to always go the extra mile, even in Y. They deserve your business.

Thanks again

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI

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