• Report:  #2026

Complaint Review: American Airlines - Nationwide

Reported By:
- Tempe, Arizona,

American Airlines
Nationwide, U.S.A.
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My husband and I traveled back with our baby, who was then five months old, from San Juan to Antigua. The flight should have left at 10.00pm on 5 December 1999. However, close to the departure time they announced that there was a delay due to late arrival of the plane from Antigua. At 10.45pm they announced that there was a further delay because the crew had not arrived.

Another announcement followed shortly with the news that they couldnt find the pilot. Eventually at 11.45pm they announced that the flight would be cancelled because they couldn't find a pilot. My husband had several business meetings on Monday and he didn't have a chance to call his office until Monday morning. We would expect that it would be courtesy of American Airlines that we could make a phone call to make necessary arrangements.

However, we had to pay the overseas phone call. Furthermore, due to this cancellation my husband had to take unpaid leave, which in effect costs us another US$250.00.

I wrote a letter to American Airlines and complaint. I didnt receive a response and called early March to customer service. According to them they had mailed a letter on 8 February.

Since I hadnt received the letter the customer service agent told me their response. We would not receive any compensation because no flights are guaranteed, it was due to weather circumstances that the flight was cancelled and they can not afford to have a standby crew. I could not believe this answer. After a long discussion I still did not get a satisfying reaction and decided to try other ways to get our compensation.

3 Updates & Rebuttals


response to airline comment

#2Consumer Comment

Sat, December 11, 2004

Joe from Ohio mentioned things changed after sept 11th. he failed to look at the date the report was filed. it was filed in 2000 and happened in 1999. it seems this consumer had bought a ticket for something, and did not get what they paid for. it sounds very legit to me. When i was in Peru, there was a hurricane and the airport back here in the states was closed. The airline which was based in central America put me up in a hotel, appologized, and did everything they could. It seems funy a third world airline is so much better than one here in the USA ?



#3Consumer Suggestion

Tue, November 30, 2004

I think you may have been mistaken when you thought you were told that the airline could not find "THE" pilot, probably you were told they could not find "A" pilot to operate the aircraft on that flight segment. I work for an airline and have done telephone reservations/customer service, airport customer service, and I am currently a flight attendant so believe me, I have heard it all. Because of the delayed arrival of your inbound flight the pilot was probably approaching or over his limit of hours he could legally fly and could not continue on that flight. Since it was late at night it doesn't surprise me that AA was unable to locate another qualified and available pilot on such short notice. Which brings me to my second comment. Why on earth if it was SO important that you be back the next day for work did you book a flight for 10 PM the night before? You were asking for trouble when you did that. I travel alot, and my airline does not tolerate being late or absent from work even if it was due to a flight cancellation or delay. Next time, plan ahead, take an earlier flight or even plan to return a day early. There can always be unforseen circumstances in any travel situation and the best way to be prepared for them is to anticipate problems and plan your schedule accordingly.


09/11/2001 Fall Out, keep in mind as a direct effect of the Terrorist Attacks on The Trade Tower and the Pentagon

#4Consumer Comment

Fri, October 22, 2004

I can understand your frustrations. However please keep in mind as a direct effect of the Terrorist Attacks on The Trade Tower and the Pentagon, airline travel as you may have enjoyed prior to the attacks will never the same. If you look in the Wall Street Journal and the USA Today they have been lately writting some very disturbing articles concerning the shotcomings of the once BIG 6 Airlines in the U.S. *American,United,Delta,NorthWest,Continental and US AirWays. All these airlines have been cripled by the terrorist attacks, all 6 airlines have had to lay off over 109,000 jobs, cut nearly a of their seats and chopped workers pay and benefits in a desperat attempt to stem losses of $28 billion over the past 3.5 years. So it should not surprise any airtraveler that you are goin to have to make adjustments. I'm sure the 106,000 laid off airline employees woul like very much to have the option to return back to work and try and stop some of the loss of revenue that thier companies are experiencing. They have had to make some very hard choices in order to continue to make it through these tough times. Unlike the unfortunate missed flight you and your husband had to endure, at the end of the day both of you still had your jobs intact and no drastic life altering decisions had to be made, you wont't be standing the unemployment line or any soup lines!! Be thankful that your husband was only docked $250 As one of my Military Instructors once told me when I was a young recruit. " Before you go badmouthing someone, you need to make sure you all the facts, in order to make an informed decision" If you are going to continue to conduct business that requires you to utilize air travel do your home work, realize that many airlines are working on a extremely reduced workforce, who are facing cut backs and possible permanent lay off's, so it's to be expected that you are not going to get the 5-star treatmet you once recieved.

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