Wednesday, January 7, 2009

It's Laundry Day at Sheridan Square!

Yippee! Living in a facility reserved for the elderly and/or disabled, we have laundry facilities on the first floor, which are scheduled for certain floors on specific days. Today, the 4th floor has the laundry facilities all to ourselves, well at least until 3pm, when it is open to everyone. There are 13 apartments per floor, except for the 1st floor which has 10, I think. Anyhow, after a couple of cups of coffee, a shower, and other bathroom activities, it will be off to the laundry room. Yeah!

Thought I might change the title this time, because things were starting to get a little whiny, but I am just venting, and rambling, and not staying focused, so what else is new. The fact is Northwest Airlines has exhibited extremely poor customer services, across the board. I do realize that in our world today there are many bad things happening, and I am not so naive as to realize that. As an activist for many causes over the years I have worked hard to right these wrongs where ever possible. I personally think that I have not been very successful, and rest assure that I don't expect anything positive from the letter I am sending to the CEO of NWA, Ed Bastian. It isn't as rambling as my posts here, and I tried to do better with my use of the English language, so as to not sound like Sarah Palin. I know that is an area that needs improvement, but so be it. I am what I am.

Just another manic Monday, December 22, 2008, and guess what, no luggage! Did they get lost, did they deliver it to the wrong address, did they bring it to the landfill, or did someone take it from their secure luggage storage area at LaGuardia? There were many unanswered questions, and NWA was it's usual wet brain self! I figured it out, there is a black hole, and worm hole down by the San Juan Trench, at the southeast corner of the Bermuda Triangle, and that is where the luggage ended up. Now I can be at peace with myself, Amen!

Not really, I was just kidding about the Bermuda Triangle thing. Monday started out the same as Sunday ended. The luggage was not delivered as promised. So, again I went online to check out the status, and discovered it didn't even show it was received. Then the phone calls started, with similar outcomes, but I did find out 2 things, the first being that it, my luggage that is, doesn't show up online, or onphone as "received" until the yahoos who are suppose to deliver it actually take the luggage to deliver it. Now, to any normal and sane individual that makes about as much sense as having air-conditioning in a home in Barrows, Alaska. The second thing was that my luggage was checked in at LaGuardia on Monday Morning. That is important, because the fools I spoke to justified why it was not delivered because it was just checked in that morning. Screeech... let's put the brakes on here, they told me Sunday that it was checked in on Sunday. I was in the company of idiots. When I pointed out this minor discrepancy, they were like, "Oh yeah, it was also checked in on Sunday." Da, who does this company hire? When I asked why it was not delivered on Sunday like I was promised, they really couldn't give me a straight answer. They justified it by saying it will be delivered today, but they couldn't tell me when. They also stated that they were busy, being the holiday and all, and they were busy delivering other customers luggage. Hello, what am I, dirt? When I asked to speak to a supervisor, they said 2 things, one, that there were no supervisors, and two, that they are customer service for reservations, so they only get their info from there computer, where ever they were located. I said I called the Luggage Status Information Line, and this is where it sent me. So what gives. The Luggage Status Line is only a computer generated line that gives me the same info found on the website. They have no real humans that work there, and when you do get to the live humans, they can use, "We are reservations customer service, so tough shit on you asshole for flying NWA!" None of them would give their employee ID number, or the phone number to the Luggage Services Office at LaGuardia, although I knew they had a phone.

This went on all day, with me never giving up hope that I would get my luggage that day, believing that they, NWA, would not lie to me a gazillion times in 2 days. Boy, was I wrong. My family was asking me If I wanted to go out and get some clothes at the local Smithhaven Mall, or somewhere like that. I kept saying no, it will be here any minute now.

Earlier in the day I sent an e-mail to NWA regarding the luggage situation, and received an auto-reply message from them. Here is entire e-mail, as I received it, including my message to them.
____________________________________
Auto-Reply from Northwest/KLM Customer Care (KMM19405770V82983L0KM)
Dear William Harasym,

This is an automatically generated message to acknowledge the receipt of your email. Please do not reply to this message.

We appreciate your continued patience while we review your concerns. We will be in contact with you within four business days. If you require immediate assistance, please contact Reservations directly at 1-800-225-2525. (It's funny they should mention this, because immediate assistance was not what I was getting. I was getting immediate jerking around.)

Northwest/KLM Airlines
Customer Care

_______________________
Tracking ID: KMM19405770V82983L0KM
Case Number: 6767085
Received: Dec 22, 2008 at: 03:56:22 PM
Subject: LS-Delayed Baggage

NW/KL Luggage Services Form:
Title: Mr
First Name: William
Last Name: Harasym
Reply-To Email Address: ***************@msn.com
Alternate Email Address:
WorldPerks Number: ********5091
Street Address 1: *** Smith St.
Street Address 2: Apt. ***
City: Sheridan
State/Province: WY
Zip/Postal Code: 82801
Country: US
Flight Date: 12/20/2008
Flight Number: NW0186
Origin City: CPR
Destination City: LGA
Ticket Number: *******0510949
Confirmation Number:
File Reference Number: LGANW***994
Date Filed: 12/20/2008
Last Name On File: Harasym
========
Message:
I flew into LGA, via a stop at MSP. I had a 4 hour layover there. After we finally got to LGA, my luggage was not there. A baggage service, they said it was on Flight 184, due in at 11pm or later. So we left, and they said once they got it, they would send it out to where I am staying at my brothers, at ** &%$ Ct., Shoreham, NY 631-***-****. She also said that it would be shipped out @ 10am, or 1pm at the latest on Sunday, 12-21-08. I am a veteran who is disabled with an inoperable brain tumor,and this is an 8 day visit for the holidays which maybe my last. So all day Sunday and today I kept checking the status of my luggage, with status pending. I did speak to some real humans both days, with the one on Sunday saying it was checked in there at LGA, and we should have it by 11pm Sunday. That has come and gone. Today the same BS. It was also checked in @ LGA today. I was on the phone with one human, and she said she just wanted to find out something, and then put me on hold for 25 minutes, and then dropped the call. So I tried again, and this human was kind of short with me, seeming to not really care, and they were passing the buck, as it was someone else's fault. I live on Social Security Disability, below the poverty level, so I can't afford to go out an buy a new wardrobe for my visit. My family chipped in to get me this plane ticket. This is getting really sad. You talk about commitment to your
customers, but I don't see it. And you even have the guts to charge for baggage that you can't even get from point A to Point B. I really do need my luggage now. And I am tired of being jerked around.
Call the above phone # to tell me it is heading my way, my luggage that is.
Best wishes always,
William Harasym
CC: Edward Bastian
========
Submitted: 12/22/2008 15:55:18
Form Navigation:
Field1: Baggage
Field2: Delayed Baggage
_________________________________________

OK, so my way wasn't working too well. Notice the date, 12/22/08, and here is there Real reply after lets say 9 days. Sure, they weren't all business days, but they were 150% over their maximum projection. Oops, another lie! I was already back in Wyoming at this point. Here is the response.
_________________________________________

Re: LS-Delayed Baggage (KMM19428529V31223L0KM) 12-31-08 5:49 a.m.

Dear William Harasym,

Thank you for contacting Northwest Airlines. On behalf of all of us at Northwest, please accept my apology for your missing baggage.

To facilitate our recovery efforts, and in order to properly evaluate your claim, we respectfully request that you complete the attached Baggage Tracing Claim Form. A detailed and accurate description of both your baggage and the contents is essential. The information you provide
will be entered into our world-wide computer for further search. We request your assistance in returning the questionnaire promptly, as this will increase our chances of recovering your property.

This form should be sent to Northwest along with copies of your passenger ticket receipt, baggage claim check, and copies of the original purchase receipts for any items valued over $150.

This information can be sent to us via:

* Email: Scan all documents in PDF format as attachments, or,
* Fax: 612.367.5603, or,
* U.S. Postal Service:

Our mailing address is:

Northwest Airlines, Inc.
Baggage Services, Department C5260
7500 Airline Drive
Minneapolis, MN 55450-1101

Email address available via www/nwa.com/talk

Thank you for bringing this unfortunate situation to our attention.

Sincerely,

Terry S. Walton
Luggage Service Online Support
NWA/KLM Airlines
_____________________________________

And, as Paul Harvey says, "Now, for the rest of the story."

This routine went on till dinner time, around 5:30pm, as my sister-in-law Jackie had fixed up some dinner of chicken cordon bleu, rice pilaf, fresh green beans, and some fresh cut fruit that came as a gift, and was made out to look like a flower bouquet. We discussed our upcoming strategy to deal with NWA, and the assholes that are employed by them. I know that there are some good employees at NWA, but their public image is piss poor. And now that my brother was home from his office, he volunteered to help me and try to get this resolved.

So, with Ken on his Blackberry, and me on the cordless, we just settled down for a long evening of BS (from NWA that is!) and Ken was fired up. So we both started calling, trying to get a few simple, well at least simple to us, questions answered. First, we wanted to know where the luggage was, second, when will it be delivered, third, what is the phone number to the Luggage Services Office at LaGuardia. I was getting no results, just status pending. Ken, who deals with customer service folks on a regular basis, and owns his own company that has a customer services unit, along with a couple of health food stores, also dealing with the public on a regular basis, had his own plans on how to attack this. He kind of fibbed a little, representing himself as me, and playing the sick veteran card, and how my heart medication supply was running low, and the backup being in the luggage and how he needed it ASAP! I never put my medications in my luggage, I always keep it in my carry on. Anyhow, that was his approach. He even had one of them hangup on him, as did I. Roy, a NWA customer service representative, who, when Ken confront him on saying this is the best he can do, said to him, "Well you best is unacceptable!" Roy, @ 6:45pm EST hung up. I truly believe these folks don't record these conversations for training purposes because 99% of them suck. But maybe that is their training, to suck and jerk you around, and to constantly lie to you. We tried to get out of them that if we drove into LaGuardia, can they guarantee my luggage would be their. They couldn't even do that. They couldn't do shit! Ken finally got Wendy on the phone, and told her the story, and even told her Roy, if that is even his real name, hung up on him. It took her a little while, but she was able to get the phone number to NWA Luggage Service Office at LaGuardia. She said she tried quite a few times to get through, but to no avail. There was still no record that NWA received the luggage as per their web status page, and automated phone scam, just that it was checked in at LaGuardia Monday and Sunday morning. We tried the NWA LaGuardia Luggage Office, but it was constantly busy. We needed to do something outside the box.

It was almost 8pm, and Ken asked me if I wanted to take a ride into LaGuardia, and see if my luggage was there. I said sure, what the hell, as NWA is one outfit you couldn't trust. So we headed in, and Jackie would continue to call, and see if the status was still pending.

Traffic was light, relatively speaking, on the L.I.E., and we made it in there in a little over an hour. We went to the same parking lot I was in just 48 hours earlier. We walked into the baggage claim area, and off to the left of that level is the Baggage Services Office, and the so-called secure area for unclaimed luggage, (Meaning it is luggage that they say will be delivered, but they try ones patience, and we end up coming back to pick it up, like us.) and a little guy with a tie and sports jacket that said, "So-and-So Security" was standing guard behind the line of ropes and stanchions. Saturday night while we were there, there was no security that I could see, and scores of people just walking around the area, taking bags, and no one was confronting anyone doing that. Tonight it was different. The S and S security guard in the sports coat asked what we were doing when Ken went behind the ropes, and me on the other side started looking for my luggage. He's like, "Djew can't be in here." and I'm like, Look Bubba, I am looking for my luggage that you folks have not delivered yet. He's say, "I do not work for airline, me just Security." Oh, I was confused thinking Bubba might be able to help. During this time I spotted my luggage, and it was right on the other side of the rope, so I go to take it, and Bubba tells me I can't do that, and I said watch me. So I grabbed it and pulled it over the rope, and Bubba says, "Let me check you luggage ticket," which I let him do. They matched, go figure. It wasn't that busy, so I said to Bubba I wanted to go to the Baggage Services office, about 100 or so feet away, behind the rope line, and file a complaint. So he let me through his secure rope line. There was no line at the counter, as it must have been between arrivals, so I walked straight up to the counter. The lady there, who went by the name of Ruth asked if she could help me. I said sure, I'd like to file a complaint regarding my luggage. Ruth's response, rather rudely, was, "You need to call customer service." I said I have been doing that for the last 48 hours with much success. And then I asked her if she could validate my parking because we had to come and pickup my luggage that NWA has kept saying would be delivered. Ruth said, can't do that, and I asked what can you do? she said nothing, call up customer service, and this was done in a rude and snarky manner, basically saying, without saying it, "Fuck You, we don't care about you, our customer, so get loss." Up till this point I had maintained my composure, and hadn't cussed or even shown any anger. But Ruth became the straw who broke the camels back. I then asked for her name, and employee ID number. She wrote down her name, Ruth, but no employee ID number. I said, "What about you employee ID number." She is like, I can't give you that, and I said, Yes you can. Then she just started walking away from me, and I said, " This is the worse fucking airline I have ever flown." Ruthie turns around and gives me the finger, middle finger that is, and says, "Fuck you, and Merry Fucking Christmas to you too." I was a little shocked, but I did cuss. So I returned a Merry fucking Christmas to you too." and I walked out the office. I met my brother on the other side of the rope line, with Bubba, who just witnessed the last half of my conversation with Ruth following close behind me, making sure his secure luggage area was secure. I wonder who was watching the area when he was in the office? Hmmm? As we walked out of the terminal, I told my brother of my confrontation with Ruthie Baby, and he just laughed.

We headed home, luggage in hand, or in the trunk of Ken's Cadillac CTS. Nice ride, but I am into cheap and simple, because that is all my budget can handle. Now, if after reading this epic you think I have diarrhea of the keyboards, raise you right hand! Just what I thought...

*-I redacted some personal information for security purposes. Thank you.

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