Recently I took a flight on US Air that was supposed to have Wi-Fi. It didn’t. For me, and my team member who also was on the same flight, that meant a cross country trip during the day, a short connection, and very little time to get things done before an early dinner with a client.
To me, US Air, which promotes and uses GoGo as their inflight Wi-Fi carrier, and advertises their flights on line as having Wi-Fi on all their Airbus 321's, without any disclaimer about GoGo possibly not working, failed to deliver what was promised. Their contention is they flew us to where we were booked.
My contention. We chose your flight because of Wi-Fi, not for the great food, the wonderfully expansive leg room, and the absolutely amazing personalized experience one receives in the air from the flight attendants who are really happy you’re there that day. NOT.
We really chose the flight to get work done, because as a business traveler, Wi-Fi access doesn’t mean Skype calling, or downloading movies. It’s all about staying connected.
US Air’s Customer Service was uncompromising. No refund. No credit. Nothing more than polite email and telephone exchanges basically saying “no.”
But undaunted, I turned to Chris Elliott, travel writer, all around great guy, who looks out for the travel public. Using his relationships the same way I have in the past with VoIP carriers for troubled customers, he heard my story, went to the right people inside US Air and got the right attention given to the situation.
The facts were simple. GoGo’s repair teams should have been notified by US Air the night the plane came into LAX about a faulty access point. GoGo wasn’t. The next morning the CDMA radios were working as usual, but the in cabin signal couldn’t be transmitted as the access point wasn’t working, so GoGo had no idea until I notified them of the problem. That’s not how it should have gone done.
As a result, Elliott’s contacts inside US Air, while admitting no wrong doing, did step up and provide me a $200 flight credit good for travel in the next year. That wouldn’t have happened without Chris’ calm and informative manner. He heard both sides, stepped up the awareness, and got resolution.
That’s why Chris Elliott is the ultimate travel mediator.