Iberia is a disaster- you have been warnedBack to Forum
Anonymous13 Jan 2011
It is my first post on this forum, however it is also my duty to inform all regular travellers of my recent Iberia disaster:
1. my booking through Iberia.com:
i booked 2x 1 way tickets in business from MVD to CPH in December. i received an initial email stating that this was a booking but not yet a confirmation but that a second email would follow. A second email did follow and i assumed that was that.
the day i was due to fly, i tried to check in online, but my record locator gave me an error. After a call i was informed that the ticket had not been issued. No effort was made by the airline to contact me, no email telling me of a problem, credit card company tells me there was not even an attempt to charge the card. Amazing…but there is better.
2. I reroute through SAO. No, there were no seats on the MVD flight and no, i could not speak to a manager. We arrived in MAD, the connection was tight. We got on the flight but there was no food, our meals had been removed. The pilots and crew were fed but not us. Stewardess took our baggage tags to check with the pilot that they were on board, we were told that they were definitely in the hold
BUT 3. no bags at CPH. I understand that bags do miss connections. However, Iberia baggage team seriously disappointed us-here we are in Denmark, my wife in a summer dress and flip-flops,i am in tshirt and jeans and we have a dinner party that night with a black tie wedding the following. No, they were not able to get our bags on the first flight the next day, no, they would not help, give us an allowance to buy any clothes/make up/cosmetics/medication beyond the e50 per day minimum (BA incidentally paid over £1500 when they lost my ex girlfriends bag on the way to a wedding in Toronto a few years ago) and NO, we could not speak to anyone in authority under any circumstances whatsoever.
My wife was walking around Copenhagen in puddles of slush in her flipflops, i wore a $150 tux to a society wedding, my wife top shop and borrowed cloths
Iberia win the worst airline customer service award of the decade and I will try and avoid them for the rest of my travelling life. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.13 Jan 2011
Generally agree – Iberia is hideous. Having said that, never have I seen such a roomy business class cabin as my A340 flight from ORD to MAD in November. Still, the service is greatly lacking.13 Jan 2011
I also agree according to your experience, although i think it is your fault that you didn’t realize that your card hadn’t been charged the amount, which if you had check you’d be aware that you don’t have ticket for this flight.13 Jan 2011
Did you ever get reunited with your luggage? Did you log an official complaint with the airline at the end of trip and get a response?
I used to fly Iberia quite frequently when working in Spain. Not the best experience especially the ground staff. Then again those where just short hauls from LHR.13 Jan 2011
Funnily enough, two of the best flights I ever experienced were MAD/GRU/MAD in Business Plus.
Those are the only 2 flights I ever did with IB in long haul and thus cannot make a serious evaluation of their nomal service, but I did enjoy them.13 Jan 2011
Thank you for your comments, much appreciated.
Comfortable or not, if there is a risk that an airline can turn a mistake into a nightmare I am going to avoid that airline.
Yes, the bags showed up on Sunday morning, just as we were leaving to the airport (despite my having phoned up the airline 30 minutes previously who told me the bags were still at the airport.)
Yes, I am writing to Iberia Customer Service, Iberia lost baggage and copied into the Chairman’s office at BA.
Thankful not to be a shareholder of the BA/Iberia merger- do BA know what they have got themselves into?18 Jan 2011
I think there’s plenty BA has already done to improve its own operation, while keeping costs under control.
Much of this experience will be highly relevant to Iberia, which has a similar “former State-owned” culture.
BA needs to go further before it has the authority to lecture others on how to delivery consistently great service, but there are beacons of excellence within BA which should be allowed to permeate all aspects of the airline, and I would hope this will happen at Iberia once BA take a more proactive role there.
I don’t dispute that Iberia can be a challenge to deal with, but I would make the point that where there is scope for improvement, there is also scope for value creation, and that is (among many other reasons) a good situation from which to start reaping the rewards of the combined entity. I would hope the move from wedgie beds to fully flat in Iberia Plus is an example of this.
And hopefully, BA might learn some things from Iberia, though quite what that might be I am currently at a loss to articulate. The main benefit for BA is access to Madrid which can be a springboard to connect the word via a hub which isn’t saturated.18 Jan 2011
”And hopefully, BA might learn some things from Iberia, though quite what that might be I am currently at a loss to articulate.”
Maybe a Business Club cabin as the one that Iberia offers to mid-haul destinations.19 Jan 2011
I’m flying IB LHR-MAD-VLC in a few weeks. That’ll be the second time I’ve used them within Europe in Business Class, and last time I thought they were nothing special, but reasonably good value for money.
In the light of these posting, I now await the flights with some degree of trepidation, although I accept that Julian’s experience was on long-haul.
As far as the biggest heap of doo-doos for lost luggage, LOT has to take my personal biscuit. I refer to my previous postings a few weeks ago, when they managed to lose the same bag (out of the two I was travelling with) on the outward AND return legs. Pretty impressive incompetence in my view. Having said that, I greatly sympathise with Julian and hope he never experiences those problems again. With any airline.
Happy, safe and quiet flying.
Simon20 Jan 2011
Julian, hindsight is a wonderful thing, but I tend to always check flights through the airlines on line systems prior to travel, if only to try and chose a seat.
My wife recently had a medical problem is the states which needed my insurers to intervene and alter flights. We had an email, from the insurers, claiming among other things, that she was booked on a Virgin flight, in Upper and gave the locator number.
I checked on line to book her seat, strange thing was that initially it showed correctly, but when I went to the seat selection upper class was empty, so 6K was selected.
About an hour later I went to check again and noticed that the date of the flight was 9th November 2011 and not 9th January 2011.
The point here being that even with a locator, I went into the system to check..
Hindsight is easy after the event, but without apportioning any blame, it would seem sensible to check locators with the Manage my booking section of airline web sites as it would then have showed exactly what has been booked and paid for.20 Jan 2011
I always thinks of Iberia as a budget airline.
The first and the last time i flew it was from AMS-MAD, last minutes decision that influenced by an emergency situation, the price was rocket high in Economy, no food and the service was below average, even air asia got a better service. But to be honest, as long as my bag and I arrived, i don’t really care.20 Jan 2011
I’ve avoided Iberia ever since I flew ‘business class’ with them 3 years ago. It was an overnight flight to Dakar, but the cabin was the same as European short haul, i.e. economy seats with the middle one kept free.
On the way back we were rudely refused entry to the lounge in Madrid because the flight arrived at 05:30 but the lounge didn’t open till 06:00.
The one saving grace was that the lounge had some of the best Spanish wine I have ever tasted.20 Jan 2011
Willie Walsh does have a record of bringing every brand he touches into disrepute, only this time he won’t have to try. I think he’ll fit right in, only this time with even more resistance from its employees.20 Jan 2011
Yes, yes, we know …. Willie Walsh is also responsible for global warming, the Wikileaks website, UK snowstorms, the resurgence of the Taliban, and the floods in Australia ……..20 Jan 2011