Malta BA must jack up its serviceBack to Forum
When there is a monopoly on a route airlines tend to be complacent or downright arrogant about (not) providing any decent service.
I had to fly from LGW to MLA last week and it was clear that although the LGW services are OK (lounge needs an upgrade a la T5, security check needs to be manned and monitored by BA staff – see my last story), the same cannot be said about the Malta team.
THe check in lines are chaotic, even though there were clear signages for Club / Gold / Silver etc.
The check in clerks are not very competent in identifying who is at the head of the queue, allowing a few queue-jumpers to get ahead of us. We tried to complain but also had to look after our own luggage, and keep our place in the queue. It happened a few times, and Priority is really a joke.
The same happened to the security check – there were separate queues for Emirates and a couple of airlines, but not for BA.
When we eventually got to the boarding gate, yes you have guessed it, there was no priority sign or queue.
So some of us managed to form a queue on the left hand sign. We waited for more than 20 min before the clerk announced babies first…then Gold/Silver etc.
As soon as the announcement was made other pax (clearly not priority) started queuing on the right hand side. We looked on with amazement thinking surely the BA staff would sort that out.
NO WAYS! They actually started processing the pax on the right hand sign. I looked at their tickets and could see that they were not Club pax. So I asked the staff member and she said Priority on the left!!! But the queue on the left was not moving at all because the other staff member was processing boarding for a family with babies!!!! What a joke!
Is there any point in complaining?
But you judge for yourself.4 Aug 2017
I agree with you about Malta. I’ve flown out of there twice over the past couple of years and it is chaotic with no regard for priority. It does sound like a bit of a DYKWIA rant, but it is a pet hate of mine. I remember the check-in experience where people waltzed up to the desk with no regard for the queue and the staff did nothing about it. Is it a cultural thing? It happens at many outstations I suppose. I’ve never tried the new Gatwick lounge yet, but I’ve only heard good reviews so a bit perplexed to hear that you think it needs upgrading already?4 Aug 2017
@SangFung. I think you are being a little unfair in your comments about the new BA First and Terraces lounges at Gatwick. They are both excellent and so much better than the North Terminal offerings. In fact, much better than the awful dungeons purporting to be premium lounges in LHR T3!
Regarding MLA…I use it frequently. I agree the Third party Air Malta check-in is a shambles. The staff have little knowledge of the BA product, which must be the responsibility of the local BA manager, who, I gather, is based in Rome! Fast-Track is only fast until the two queues merge. But, the new third-party lounge is superb… Overlooking the runway and with a well-furnished sun terrace.
When it comes to the boarding gate, again, the Air Malta staff contribute to the shambles. They do actually announce premium boarding first over a totally unintelligible PA system and then open the gates to everybody, with no priority to premiums.
SangFung….have you told the Exec Club of your concerns? Your feedback is the only way to improve things.4 Aug 2017
I am sorry to have to amend my reviews about the lounge. I think I was confused between the Malta lounge (third party open to a lot of airlines) and the newish Gatwick offering. Yes, it is bright and airy and there are a lot of lovely magazines and newspapers as well. Titles that are not available at T5. I do agree that the T3 lounge is shockingly bad.
However, my observation relates to the general chaos and nad layout of the Gatwick departure areas. Quite messy even.
Malta? It is a cultural thing, I do agree. In fact, apart from the main hubs, BA struggles to maintain the same level of service. WItht he exception of Geneva. Or HK.4 Aug 2017
BA does not have any staff at Malta.
So I don’t know why you would expect the BA Team to sort things out.
I lived in Malta for 10 years, British style behaviours do not work very well in the Southern Med.
Having said that, Ryanair and easyJet managed to provide priority boarding without any problems, when I used them.4 Aug 2017
Such a shame for the OP.
Disliked the Hilton at LGW. Finds LGW inferior. Didn’t like the lounges (albeit inability to work out which one). Problems with priority boarding.
I look forward to hearing what happened next. Did the engine drop off? Choked on the food? Bags missing? Landed in Greenland (hopefully) etc etc.
Tune in next week for the next episode of “SangFung does Malta”.5 Aug 2017
SimonS1 – Why do you say ‘choked on the food?’? We all experienced positive and negative service by various airlines, and my post was to highlight the issues that I personally had in Malta. Can it improve the service? I don’t know since most airlines just don’t listen to their pax. Can I help others? Probably not, but it is like a TripAdvisor post – the reader takes what he can and make his own decision. Do you find satisfaction in wishing bad things on others? To answer your questions – No. No. No. and No.5 Aug 2017
Come on guys, BT is not FT, let’s chill a bit and give SangFung a break 😉
SangFung, I don’t know how experienced a traveller you are, but my experiences inform me that airline sector doesn’t care much for individual passengers (unless you are a celebrity) and the experience is often poor. I have a Gold card and most BA employees/contractors don’t give a **** (insert 4 letter word of your choice) about me. You have a Bronze card – I guess I don’t need to explain the rest 🙂
Having reviewed your posts, it seems you are not entitled to any EC261 compensation, so your options are
1 – complain to BA and get a very nice and polite template letter which basically will tell you that they do not care if you live or die
2 – write it off to experience and try another airline next time – there is a good choice to Malta, including Air Malta, easyjet and Ryanair – for the latter few years, I used easyJet and found their service to be delivered efficiently and with good value for money5 Aug 2017