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PostPosted: November 18 11, 9:49 am 
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Sucking on the Rally Nipple
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So I got to the Buenos Aires airport last night about two hours before departure and went to check in.

How many bags are you checking?
One, I'm only allowed one, right? This (I hold up my second bag) is small enough to be carry-on, right?
I guess so, she says.

It is, I already know that because I've checked it as carry-on many times, but let's stop right there. One checked bag? On an international flight to another [expletive] continent in another [expletive] hemisphere for a ticket that costs well over $1000 for which you still have to pay [expletive] extra for beer or wine you are only allowed one checked bag? [expletive] ridiculous. A second bag costs $70.

Passport please. (writes my name and passport number down on piece of paper). When did you last enter Argentina?
August 14th.
That's more than 90 days, go see immigration.

Thus begins a story in of itself that isn't very interesting, but it took a long time to settle a very simple procedure. Still, I return to the check in desk with more than an hour before the flight is scheduled to depart.

The United desk is abandoned. Every single one of the sons of [expletive] is gone. Nada. So I look for a United help desk. Doesn't exist. Does not exist inside the airport. Go to the general airport info desk and ask for the number for United's office. Call number, office closed, have to call 24hour help line (international calling rates apply naturally) to change ticket because it's obvious that even though this plane will still be parked at the gate for another hour I'm not going to be getting on it.

Call, get connected to India.

Yes sir, we can change that ticket, I will try to put you on the next flight. I'm showing that the next flight is tomorrow so rebooking and fare difference will apply.
How much will that be?
$1200
Oh no it won't.
Sir, I'm showing that the plane is still at the gate, why don't you get on it now?
I've already explained this to you, there are no United employees to check me in.
Let me speak to my supervisor.
/disconnected.

Call back, again get India, repeat conversation, this time get a bit further though.
Okay sir, I can rebook you on tomorrow's flight but you will have to surrender your boarding pass at the airport beforehand. I can't rebook you while you have a boarding pass for this flight because the flight hasn't left yet.
What boarding pass? I was never given a boarding pass.
I'm showing that you are checked in.
How is that possible?
Let me speak to my supervisor to see if I can uncheck you in.
/disconnected.

At this point I do that math and realize that these two calls have just cost me about $150. Wonderful. So I go find a wifi connection and call back on Skype. After holding for 45 minutes I get a person in the US.

Forget everything those last two people told you, you must have been dealing with one of our contractors (brilliant, even the company's own employees know that it's [expletive] stupid to farm that [expletive] out to India.)
I repeat my story.
I hear you sir, but the only way you can rebook without paying $1000 is to talk to the ground staff at the airport.
But there are no staff at the airport. There is literally no one I can talk to and hasn't been for the last 3 hours.
Yes sir, that is strange.
Uh huh.
Sir, only the ground staff can rebook you without charge because in the system it looks like you were just a no show.

Yada yada yada....

I can wave the rebooking fee but you will still have to pay the fare difference.
How much is that?
$984. Will that be on the same credit card you used to book the original flight.
Yes.
Would you like an aisle, I can give you 28B, right next to TWO EMPTY SEATS.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 9:56 am 
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Holy hell that's obnoxious. Broke & and inconvenienced is no way to travel.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:03 am 
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How did you not murder somebody?


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:11 am 
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Sucking on the Rally Nipple
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cards2468 wrote:
How did you not murder somebody?


If there had been somebody there to murder I probably would have.

I'm showing up to that [expletive] like [expletive] 4 hours early today.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:16 am 
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gone fission
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And that is the main reason I avoid United Airlines and O'Hare like the absolute plague. The only times I have consciously flown through O'Hare or used United within the past 15 years are when flying somewhere for a job interview where the interviewing company picked my flight and it happened to be with United and going through O'Hare.

Every time I've spoken to a United employee they were pissed off, rude, and in general a complete and utter douche-goblin.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:19 am 
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Now that I think about it, United is the airline that sent my bags to Paris instead of Munich and then to DC instead of Phoenix a few years back. I've flown them twice and had awful experiences both times.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:26 am 
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Wow. That's pretty incredible. So, you ended up paying over $1000 extra to put up with this and fly out a day late? I hope you are planning to demand a refund upon your return. I'd ask for the phone bill too.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:26 am 
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I fly United pretty often through work. Fortunately when getting flights moved I never have to call them since I call our travel department and they take care of it. I actually like flying them just because I'm a big fan of the CRJ200
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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:31 am 
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On our honeymoon, when we were trapped in Bangkok with no way out because 5000 protesters had taken over the only international airport in the country, United was our airline and we immensely regretted it.

First, we called United and they were unaware that the airport was closed. They told us to just get on our scheduled flight.

Then, when they figured out that this was an occupation, and cancelled flights, they told us to just wait there for the airport to reopen. (The protesters held the airport for about 3 weeks, refusing to leave until the PM stepped down, and police/army were on their side).

When we explained that wasn't an option either, and asked United to put us on a flight of one of their numerous Asian "alliance airlines," they said no, because that would cost them money. What's the [expletive] point of having an "alliance" with other regional airlines? None.

[expletive] United.


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PostPosted: November 18 11, 10:33 am 
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Sucking on the Rally Nipple
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Arthur Dent wrote:
Wow. That's pretty incredible. So, you ended up paying over $1000 extra to put up with this and fly out a day late? I hope you are planning to demand a refund upon your return. I'd ask for the phone bill too.


Yup. Then I got to haul my ass all the way back into the city and stay at the only hostel I could get a room in which was full of obnoxious brazilian douchebags so I got about 4 hours sleep and now I get to head all the way back out to the airport and do it all over again.

United will be receiving a strongly worded letter, no doubt.

But in the meantime, you have absolutely no recourse. You just have to fork over the cash or you have no way to get home. They've got you hostage.


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