I purchased my airline tickets for a family vacation on July 3, 2014 through Priceline. Because we only travel with carryon luggage, I went online to perform our web check-in and print our boarding passes to Mexico on 11/21/14; that's when the problems began!
We were unable to complete the web check-in with either Delta or Aeromexico using the corresponding Airline Confirmation IDs. I went directly to the Priceline webpage and chatted briefly online with a representative who directed me back to the airlines.
My first phone call was to Delta at 1:50pm for 5 minutes at which time I spoke to Melverie. Melverie informed me that the flight was operated by Aeromexico and that Delta did not have access to Aeromexico computers. She advised me to call Aeromexico.
The second phone call was to Aeromexico at 1:55pm for 13 minutes. Sadly, I did not write down the name of the gentleman that I spoke to; however, my conversation with him was frustrating. He informed me that it was a Delta flight and that I would need to check in at the airport at the Delta counter. I informed him that Delta isn't in the same terminal as Aeromexico and that this was concerning. He assured me that I needed to check in with Delta as Aeromexico wouldn't even have a counter open on that night.
Knowing something didn't sound right, I placed the next phone call to Delta at 2:08pm. This time I was on the phone with Glen for 33 minutes. After much going back and forth, Glen assured me that the flight was operated by Aeromexico and that I needed to call Aeromexico and demand to speak to a supervisor. In the meantime, I asked Glen to verify my returning flights since according to my itinerary, they were all operated by Delta. He verified my returning flights and we ended the phone call.
NEXT phone call is again to Aeromexico at 2:56pm for 9 minutes. This time I spoke with Alejandro and requested to speak to a supervisor. He kindly asked me to hold while he looked into things. He comes back on the line and tells me that everything is fine with the reservation but that their web check-in hasn’t been working all day and that I will need to check in at the airport with Aeromexico at terminal B. I asked him why the first Aeromexico representative told me what is stated above, he said he did not know but that everything looked fine.
Satisfied that everything is "fine" we head to the airport later that night and begin the process of standing in lines at the Aeromexico counter. First Aeromexico counter representative states that she can check us in for the SMF to GDL flight but that she is having a "problem" that her supervisor needs to help her with. So she sends us to the priority lane where we are assisted after a few minutes by the "supervisor". I ask the lady what is going on and she informs me that we are not booked on the GDL to PVR flight. She types away on her computer and places a few phone calls and returns to say that her supervisor, Margarita, will need to help her issue the tickets. However, Margarita is helping de-board the plane that just landed and will be down in 15 minutes.
45 minutes later, we're still standing at the counter and I place my final phone call to Aeromexico at 1:09am for 17 minutes in which I speak with Fernando. Fernando assures me that he sees the reservation and cannot understand why the counter is having problems ticketing the flight. I offer my phone to the supervisor at the counter who is busy checking others in. She turns her monitor around and shows me her screen. The reservation code she had on the screen is NZEJAC and does indeed NOT show a connection from GDL to PVR. I ask her where she got that code, since this is my first time seeing it. She says that is what came up when she typed in the Aeromexico code EVOZEH. I communicate this to Fernando who is just as baffled as I am. He says that all he can do is put a note in the computer. At this point, my husband, kids and I are so frustrated that I say out loud, “what the *** am I supposed to do?" to which Fernando replies in a curt tone, "please moderate your language, this phone call is being recorded." I cannot recall what I said at that point because I felt my temper flaring at the thought of my concerns being dismissed. I hung up the phone and the counter supervisor finally comes back over and tells me that I need to be patient. At this point, my husband, who has said nothing up until then, finally speaks up says, "we've been patient enough, we see you helping others and it's been an hour since you said your supervisor was coming down." She proceeds to tell us to go through security and go see Margarita at the counter upstairs.
We go upstairs as instructed, stand in another line, and finally meet Margarita. She asks us if the counter representative downstairs gave us our GDL to PVR boarding passes, to which I can only reply, "No". She shakes her head seemingly confused, quickly prints our passes and we board the plane within minutes.
END OF THE STORY? OF COURSE NOT!!!
On Saturday, November 29th, I attempt web check-in for our returning flights. I am unable to do so, just as I wasn't able to the previous Saturday. I had a "feeling something wasn't right" so on Sunday, November 30th we head to the airport in PVR early to check in.
At the Aeromexico counter, Octavio Alva Flores checks us in for our PVR to MEX flight and then quietly types away at his computer. After a few minutes I ask what's wrong. He informs me that he can't see a Delta flight 8104! He lists off 2 other Delta flight numbers, one which departs MEX to LAX at 7:30pm and another at 9:00pm. He looked on both manifests and even did a name search. All searches revealed that we were on NO flights from MEX to LAX!!!! Octavio now directs us to the Delta counter.
At the Delta counter we explain the situation to Octavio Lopez. He proceeds to inform us that there is NO Delta flight 8104 and that the 2 flights that Octavio Alva Flores mentioned were actually operated by Aeromexico. He suggests that I contact Priceline since they were technically the travel agency from whom I purchased the tickets. I explain that it's Sunday and don’t have phone service. He could see my tears & frustration and offers to fly 3 of us from PVR directly to LAX on the next Delta flight which left at 4:00pm, in less than hour. I explain that we can't leave anyone behind and he offers to fly us out the following day arriving in SMF at approximately 9:15pm. He got us hotel accommodations in Puerto Vallarta and a cab ride to the hotel.
That evening I placed several phone calls to cancel appointments that we had scheduled for Monday afternoon (our original arrival at SMF was for 12:28pm). My husband and I called our employers to inform them that we would need another day off. All in all, we made it safely back to Sacramento after a harrowing and stressful 30 hour delay. We paid $116.40 for a hotel in LA that we never saw, $12 for an extra day of parking, and over $200 in additional cab rides and food during the delay; not to the mention the waste time.
Determined to get to the bottom of what went wrong, I called Priceline this morning and spoke with Danielle. She tried directing my phone call to the airlines, stating that because the changes to our itinerary had been made directly with the airline, Priceline was not responsible. I explained to her that the only reason ANY changes had been made at all was because Priceline sold me 4 tickets to Delta flights that DID NOT exist. Her reply was a disgustingly dismissive, "but you got home, right?" At this point I demanded to speak to a supervisor. After an hour on hold (total call time of 1 hour and 13 minutes) I hung up and started this letter; which ultimately became my letter of complaint to Delta & Priceline (was unable to file with Aeromexico due to issues with their website).
DECEMBER 5, 2014
UPDATE: Spoke with Delta executive offices; they were very apologetic but deferred the burden of the error to Priceline, stating that Priceline should have notified us. Here is the direct language from their email
RE: Case Number 14396348
Thank you for your email sharing your experience while traveling on AeroMexico, SkyWest and Delta Air Lines. I am glad we were able to speak today briefly and I have outlined our conversation below.
I'm really sorry that you did not travel as anticipated and the service level you received was not what you and your family expected. Our records indicate that you purchased tickets through a travel agency on AeroMexico ticket stock and as indicated in our conversation, any updates or changes to your itineraries should have been communicated to you by the travel agency.
Your outbound flights were completed with AeroMexico and the tickets were reissued by our agent on Delta Air Lines ticket stock of 0062140162971-2974 for your family. I can only imagine being advised by AeroMexico that Flight 8104 on November 30, 2014, did not exist made this experience more intolerable.
I am happy to hear that our agent was able to get your tickets reissued for the following day and provide hotel accommodations for your family. I am sure it was no fun missing work and having to change your plans since you were departing a day later than expected.
On December 9, 2014, I place my final phone call to Priceline after not getting a response to my letter of complaint. My phone call today to Priceline was intolerable. I spoke with Kat (Priceline supervisor) who stated that they sent me emails in August stating that changes had been made. I confirmed that I did indeed receive the emails, but that the emails didn't provide the details of the changes. That instead there were hyperlinks to my Priceline itinerary, which showed that Delta Flight 8104 departed Mexico City on 11/23/14 at 9:50pm landing in LAX at 12:05am. TO THIS DAY, THE ITINERARY STILL SHOWS THAT!!!! Priceline never updated my itinerary!!! Kat stated that it was MY responsibility to call the airline the date of the flight and verify the status. Can you imagine having to directly call every airline to verify each flight, each time? PRICELINE IS ACCEPTING NO RESPONSIBILITY!!!
Product or Service Mentioned: Priceline Flight Booking.
Reason of review: Poor customer service.
Monetary Loss: $1000.
Preferred solution: Full refund.