Thai outrageous customer service

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  JohnHarper 16 Oct 2013
at 13:10
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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)

  • Anonymous

    Swissdiver
    Participant

    Finally found the time to read this month’s BT.

    There is a reader’s letter called “Family Farce”.

    In a nutshell he bought 11 business class tickets and then got his credit card stolen so could not present it at check-in.

    Beyond the fact so far I was never asked to produce my card, I was shocked to read that Thai asked him to buy another 11 tickets even though he presented the police report mentioning his stolen cards!

    This is in my view totally unacceptable. Worse, Thai replied to the published letter only quoting their T&Cs regarding credit cards! Not a word of excuse. Appalling! Don’t you think?


    BA4ever
    Participant

    Appalling, to say the least!!!

    Although knowing how outrageous airlines can be, I would check before flying if I had my CCs stolen and had a flight booked with one of them.


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    I had a similar problem, where my card was retained by an ATM because the machine was faulty, the night before a morning flight with Thai. Fortunately, I had a copy of my credit card scanned to my PC and just printed that off before leaving for the airport in Bkk. On checking in when they asked for the credit card, I presented Thai the photo copy, explained the situation and asked them if they would like to speak with HSBC Hong Kong (my bank). They were fine with me (as usual) and allowed me to board. Thai stopped this rule for a while in 2012 but have reintroduced this for some reason, I must say that I find Thai staff very accommodating, helpful and professional and other than ground staff in Manila, I have rarely had cause for complaint in my 28 years of flying regular with Thai.


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    I made a mental note some months ago not to destroy my current credit card when it expires – because I have some upcoming flights paid for using that credit card and I just *know* they are going to ask to see the card!

    Perhaps the letter-writer wasn’t au fait with the rules, otherwise s/he might have checked with Thai beforehand. However, it does seem harsh under the circumstances.


    FastFranky
    Participant

    I have flown with Thai Airways on numerous occasions, usually Business Class, both alone and with my family (5 pax), have always used a credit card for purchase and never once been requested to provide it at check in.

    I have found Thai ground staff to be unfailing polite, respectful and efficient and am really surprised at the above commentary.


    WestBay
    Participant

    The credit card check is done by several other companies (including Singapore Airlines) when they can not confirm the validity of the card at a time of on-line booking (in some Asian countries banks require entering into the verification page an additional one-time special number (so-called TAC) that is to be sent to you via SMS service upon a request from the credit card holder) . In such a case, the air carrier asks to produce the credit card either to the nearest office of the airline or at the airport).


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    To be fair, sometimes they do ask, sometimes they don’t but I think it depends on how well they know the customer, how many times in the past they have booked using the same credit card etc.

    Recently, I have seen a number of complaints about Thai in the Bangkok Post, all unfair and unwarranted, in my opinion. I wrote to Bkk Post in Thai’s defence and they did not publish my letter! So perhaps there is some unbeknown agenda there? Anyway complaints stemmed from claims of old planes, impolite staff and overpricing.

    These complaints, I believe, came from people who probably flew Thai 5-10 years ago and have not used the service since. Thai have improved tremendously and their new First Class is excellent. The food in all classes is very much improved (except flying out of Manila which is like dog food in business) and the service polite, professional, calm and enjoyable.

    Thai have been constantly updating their planes in recent years and although still behind Cathay/Singapore in some ways, I personally feel that their service is well priced. When you take in to consideration their ROP rewards scheme, I find them much better than most other airlines. In the past few years their free upgrade certificates for Gold Status plus their 50% discount air mileage awards (usually twice a year) has allowed me to have some fantastic flights at very low cost in comparison.

    The reservation staff in Bangkok work hard to assist and even a few months ago when my mother was taken into hospital in an emergency and it looked like she wasn’t going to make it, Thai had me on a flight from Bangkok within a few hours and an almost immediate connection to Madrid, the agony was relying on Iberia for the connecting flight, which took 5 hours waiting as they have cut flights to Alicante.

    If I have one request of TG it is to please bring back the cheese trolley on business class 🙂

    Other than that, thank you Thai Airways and all their staff 🙂


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    JasonMyers – 16/10/2013 02:42 GMT : Recently, I have seen a number of complaints about Thai in the Bangkok Post, all unfair and unwarranted, in my opinion. I wrote to Bkk Post in Thai’s defence and they did not publish my letter! So perhaps there is some unbeknown agenda there?

    I suspect it is more that “Flag carrier is rubbish” makes for better news than “Flag carrier isn’t rubbish”…

    My last international experience on Thai (in J) was pleasant enough – see my review here:

    http://seatplans.businesstraveller.com/airlines/Thai-Airways/user-reviews#comment_id_8079

    As you can see, this was pretty favourable overall, although as mentioned it is not a seat I would deliberately pick for a long-haul flight.

    The domestic flights I have experienced are pretty poor, though, and definitely not worth paying business class prices for given the poor seats, poor food on-board, lack of IFE, and even (at BKK) the inability to get any alcoholic drink – not even a beer – in the lounge! Or, indeed, on the flight!! Even Bangkok Airways will give me a beer on board for a small fee, and IMHO their lounge (which economy passengers get to use) is just as nice as TG’s (and has much more comfortable chairs – the ones in the TG BKK domestic lounge appear to have been stuffed with bricks). No prizes for guessing which airline we are using to fly BKK-HKT on Sunday…


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    Hi Ian, Yes I agree Thai’s domestic is not up too much but I believe they view it as just feeder routes for their international travel. I have been impressed with Bangkok Airways and even Thai Air Asia for short flights.

    I was rather amused at one letter in the Bangkok Post, where the writer was suggesting that Thai get with the times and become a low cost airline? Heaven forbid! Some of these low cost economy class passengers have no idea!

    On another note, I would love to see Thai open a new route to South America (being innovative, rather than following traditional markets) perhaps via South Africa (Cape Town – new route) to Lima (2 great ancient cultures) or even to Rio de Janeiro for the World Cup (avoiding flying via the USA where you have to get on/off the plane going through immigration/customs which is disgraceful and totally unnecessary).


    FormerlyDoS
    Participant

    Surely a stolen credit card is a case of ‘force majeure?’

    If he had a police report, the person who asked him to buy 11 more tickets (a) needs his/her head examining and IQ testing and (b) requires some re-training.


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    FormerlyDOS Perhaps not as Asia is a hotbed of cyber crime and if your using a credit card that cannot be verified, has never been used in the system before and for an unusually high amount of travelling passengers, I feel that the staff on duty were just being careful. Not nice for an honest passenger, but personally I do understand it, I have companies in the USA and Europe refuse to honour or deliver items to me that I have ordered online, because I live in Asia. If it’s booked on their system they do use verified by Visa and MasterCard however, if booked through an agency, who knows?


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    FormerlyDOS Perhaps not as Asia is a hotbed of cyber crime and if your using a credit card that cannot be verified, has never been used in the system before and for an unusually high amount of travelling passengers, I feel that the staff on duty were just being careful. Not nice for an honest passenger, but personally I do understand it, I have companies in the USA and Europe refuse to honour or deliver items to me that I have ordered online, because I live in Asia. If it’s booked on their system they do use verified by Visa and MasterCard however, if booked through an agency, who knows?


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    So far as I am aware, the requirement to present a credit card at check-in applies only to on-line bookings, not to agency bookings


    JasonMyers
    Participant

    Strange one then if they already had it verified???

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