KLM, can you please help me?
The purpose of this blog is to share you the adventures I experience with Pablo the Beetle. But I will abuse this “media’ for once to tell the whole story of what happened with my KLM flight… Because phone calls, online form, etc are NOT working. Leaves me with my blog to communicate.
There is a reason why I get totally nervous with KLM. I never experienced troubles in the 9 times I have been flying with them. But this trip to Mexico changed everything!
1. A few weeks after I booked my flight, I received a modification of my booking. The Thalys was cancelled and I should take a normal train. I couldn’t get my trainticket weeks before as normal because only Thalys has that option. Well, that was why I booked that ticket! Just a little annoyance.
2. 29th of July 2010. The date of my departure. 5 minutes before I leave the house I receive a phone call from (+212 99 96686). KLM tells me I can’t get on the flight because it’s overbooked. I got totally in panic. But they assured me the flight next day with SN Brussel Airlines and AirFrance. And a compensation of 600 EUR. A few minutes later I received the mail mentioning this promise. This fast communication made me a happy customer! UPDATE He also told me how to get the refund (see 4.)
3. 30th of July 2010. Flight with SN Brussels Airlines sucked. No friendly people. AirFrance lost my luggage. No friendly people in Mexican airport to help me. 2 days without luggage. The insurance Mondial Assistance kept their promise to pay back the clothes I had to buy 🙂 KLM Netherlands was friendly with giving me the right number to get track of my luggage.
4. 31st of July 2010. I filled in the online form to get the promised refund. I followed the instructions that was told on the phone. It wasn’t always clear which option I had to fill in. But I couldn’t wait until I got back to Europe, that’s in 5,5 months! I got confirmed by e-mail, only thing annoyed me that I suddenly becamse I man in stead of female. Little bug of the form in the sexes.
5. 17th of August 2010. I received another automatic e-mail (yes, never an e-mail you can reply too = very annoying!) mentioning they took care of my refund request. They will pay 32 EUR?! This is NOT the 600 EUR they promised!
6. I call to KLM Netherlands, the phone number mention on my e-ticket! “No, we can’t help, you have to call Customer Service +31 20 54 59 780.” So I do. “No, we can’t help. I don’t recognize the reference number. You live in Belgium?! Check the website and call the number for your country.” So I checked the number, an expensive number in France (0,17 EUR/min) is the only one I can call. I live in Belgium! Oh, and Skype doesn’t accept this number. Bad luck for me! Wait, there is also an e-mail.
7. I click on the e-mail and get an automatic form. I fill it in, add pdf’s from the correspondence (including the e-mail with the promise of 600 EUR), click ‘send’. Fails. I try again in Firefox, maybe it works better than Safari. Again fail, I have to fill in every field. I check this, I did. I also try with removing the attachments, but nothing works. Bad luck for me again. No way to communicate by mail or phone.
8. Time to think for other solutions. I ask my mother, who’s in Belgium, to give a call to the expensive phone number. Result: 1,5 hour and my return flight seems cancelled. Ok, now I start to really freak out! I will be off road for 5 months. So I need to get this fixed before starting the roadtrip and being with difficult acces to internet. (Just enough to post on the blogs).
9. I start to Twitter about the situation, and I get a quick reply. I feel more relieved because I have communication with KLM. And they want to help! In contrast with their colleagues on the phone. Only when they tell me to call the Belgian KLM, my hope dissapears again.
10. 19th of August 2010 (5pm Mexican Time): I call KLM Mexico to check the status of my flight. Really nice, a free number and the option to talk in English! But at the end, they didn’t understand my reservation number and got rid of me telling to get in touch with KLM Europe. No more options for today ’cause everything is closed in Europe. Another day goes by…
11. Today. I call again to KLM Netherlands, because Belgium is not an option for me. Luckely Skype is cheap to call internationally! I ask the friendly guy on the phone to check my flight. “Oh, give me some minutes to get through the history of the booking. There are a lot of things mentioned.” I know!!! Just tell me if I have my return flight! “Sorry madam, I can’t tell you that”. You have to call to KLM Customer Service.
11. So I call to KLM Customer Service. 20 minutes left before they close. The menu keeps repeating itself. Getting really nervous. 10 minutes later I get in, yeah! “Sorry madam, you have a Belgian booking. I can’t help you. There is a law in the Netherlands that forbids us to give information about the booking.” “I just want to know if I have my return flight still on.” “I can’t give you that information. It’s confidential.” “But your colleagues of KLM Mexico and KLM Netherlands give me already some explanation.What should I do, give me a solution.” “Write an e-mail to KLM Belgium, you can find on the website.” “I know that one, it doesn’t work, I tried with different browers.” “You are the first one with that problem.” (I assume other clients don’t have a Mac – I know some companies don’t test website and forms on ALL browers!) “I don’t have anything else to say. Bye.” Great! Back to zero!
12. I hate getting negative energy like this, it consumes me. And I should spend my time on finding the VW Beetle and prepare my roadtrip. Not checking if my return flight is ok. So I focus to think in solutions. If I don’t have a phone number or an e-mail to explain my story, I decided to write this blog. KLM, please help and fix this problem!
13. My mother can only call the general number in Belgium and even they don’t have access to Customer Service. They said the form I filled in cancelled my flight. And KLM booked me another flight on the 14th of January, but that would cost ME 900 EUR?! I have loads of miles on my Flying Blue left. And anyway, I want the return flight I booked, without extra costs! If the online form has errors or your employers give me wrong information, that is not MY FAULT! And seriously, why is helping Belgian customers so hard?
It would have been easier if I just could find a solution with ONE person of KLM. But I am desperate. I want the refund that’s promised. And I want my return flight to be ok, without extra costs. Phone calls are not cheap. And my time is very valuable too. Maybe Mondial Assistance can help me? I have a phone number and e-mailaddress to get in touch with them easy… No serious. KLM could you just please take your responsability towards your customers and help me?
PS: The password of my Flying Blue number (1374 919 850) is not working. I did kept this in my e-mail, no idea why it doesn’t work.