So how was your Delta week? I’m sorry I had to leave you post-less on Friday, but I had just arrived bleary-eyed in Florida for the wedding of two good friends. I’ll have that trip report some time this week, but I thought I’d stick with the Delta theme for now. This time, it’s an excellent customer service story that earns Delta the coveted (by someone, probably) gold star.
Friday night, most of us, including her fiance, were enjoying dinner on the water when we received a message that she was back in Paris.
Back in Paris?
Oh yeah. After a long weather delay, they had departed only to find they had a non-functioning de-icer (that’s what the captain said, at least), and they would have to go back. They circled for awhile to shed some weight and finally landed after midnight. Now, our friend was stuck in a long line waiting for one of the two Air France employees on duty to help her.
Knowing she was on a Delta ticket, we sprung into action and started making calls. In the end, the Air France people did nothing. They put her on a flight that had her arriving into Tampa at 7p because everything else was “completely full.” She would miss the wedding and her reading. Fortunately, the Delta reservations folks were fantastic. The two people we spoke with on Friday night confirmed that there were better ways to get there and despite the claims of the Air France personnel, the earlier flights were not full. They booked her on a flight arriving Tampa at 444p, and all we could do was hope for the best.
On Saturday, she arrived early into Atlanta (her new connecting point), and shot us a text message. Realizing that this might make an earlier flight possible, we got on the phone with Delta again. For the third time in a row, I had help from an excellent Delta customer service rep. She confirmed that there was in fact an earlier Tampa flight, but it only had one seat left. She should run to the gate and see what she could do. She did mention that there was a flight to Sarasota that was wide open (and also much closer to the wedding location), so she could try for that one with no additional charge since the problems the night before were in no way our friend’s fault. The agent made a note in the reservation explaining the situation and encouraging the gate agents to put her on the plane to Sarasota.
In the end, she made the wedding with the added bonus of having time to shower. (That was much appreciated by all.) Nice work, Delta. I think about how impossible this would have been on an airline like United. I can only imagine the torture that we would have faced speaking with inflexible and unhelpful reservation agents in India. It never would have happened.