AudAngry

Malaysia Airlines lies and cheats: How MAS ruined our Chinese New Year

I’m not new to taking flights, obviously.  I’ve had my fair share of good service and bad service.  Years ago, I had terrible service from Fireflyz and I wrote a scathing post about the experience here.  I still think it serves them right, and if you google ‘Fireflyz’ my blog post is the second link, right after the Fireflyz website.

Today Malaysia Airlines screwed us over and that’s why I’m writing this post.

We booked flights back to Penang for Chinese New Year for today, 26 Jan 2017.  With one toddler and one baby, we didn’t want to take the risk of getting caught in the highway jam.  We used our Enrich points to redeem us adults and Fighter’s tickets.  Penny is still an infant and we purchased her infant seat with cash.  Our flight was MH 1140, scheduled for 11.15 am, from KLIA.

We arrived at the airport at 9.45 am, a whole hour and a half before the flight.  Ample time right?  Considering that this is a domestic flight and we didn’t even have luggage with us to check in – we had sent our luggage off with my brother in law who was driving down to Penang.

Since Fatty is an Enrich Gold member we went to check in as usual at the Business Class counter.

This is the conversation that took place between Fatty and the counter staff.

Staff: I’m sorry, you checked in too late.
Fatty: Huh what do you mean too late? We’re here 1.5 hours before the flight to check in.
Staff: Yea, because check in is open 48 hours before a flight…. Other people already checked in before you so there are no more seats.
Fatty: So? I’m not late to check in what. And I have my tickets!

Then only the staff sheepishly admitted that the flight had been overbooked, and that she would put us on the next flight, at 4 pm.

I was managing the kids behind Fatty and overheard bits and pieces of their conversation.  By the time I came up to the counter, the staff had disappeared, presumably to talk to her supervisor.  Waited a bit for her and my blood boiled in the meantime wtf.  She didn’t come back so I took Fighter with me and tried to find someone else to talk to.

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Counter we were at.

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Which had this sign standing next to it. 60 minutes before? I have 30 minutes more! What are you going to say?

I went to another counter and demanded an explanation and got one – the second counter staff explained that an earlier flight had been canceled, and they had put the passengers on our flight, effectively kicking us off our flight even though we had done nothing wrong.

By then, she informed me that the first staff serving us had returned and asked me to go back and talk to her, probably very relieved to get me out of her hair.

We ended up not taking a flight back; instead we went back to get our car and drove all the way to Penang with no supplies – no potty for emergencies in the car, no milk powder, extra diapers or change of clothes.  Nothing that we would need for the kids.

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Stuck in the car suffering with no space between two car seats because our BIL drove our van back. Thanks to MAS, my shoulders and back hurts from not being able to sit properly for 4 hours.

TL;DR: Here’s what MAS did to us.

1.Gave away our seats to other passengers even though we’ve paid for them and booked us on the next flight, without considering the implication and inconvenience to us.  How are we supposed to wait for 6 hours in the airport with two toddlers?! They offered us lounge access – which is useless cos we already have it as Enrich members; this is not a compensation at all!!!

2. Did NOT inform us beforehand so we can change our plans.  If we had known earlier we wouldn’t have rushed to the airport so early.  As it is, we made our way to the airport so we can be stranded there for the next 6 hours.

3. Did NOT process a refund for us.  The counter staff told us it was their policy that passengers who want a refund have to write in and apply.  Later when we spoke to the duty manager, he told us that Enrich does not normally refund points, maybe only 1 person out of 100 gets refunded.  So we basically have a 99% chance of losing the points that we used for our tickets.      

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4.  Although Fatty told the staff to cancel our tickets and give us a refund, she printed out boarding passes for the 4pm flight anyway before hustling us to the duty manager.  In the haste, I just took the passes together with our ICs and passports and it didn’t occur to me until now that she effectively checked us in. EVEN THOUGH WE SAID TO CANCEL. So it becomes our fault now that we did not take the flight.

WHAT THE FLYING FUCK.

HOW CAN THEY KICK US OFF A FLIGHT WHEN WE ARE NOT LATE? HOW CAN THEY SIMPLY GIVE AWAY OUR SEATS LIKE THAT? WHY IS IT THAT THEIR INCOMPETENCY BECOMES OUR BURDEN TO BEAR?

If we were late to check in, I can understand assuming we’re a no show and giving our seats away.  But they CANNOT preemptively give away seats like that la FFS.  Those earlier passengers sorry dudes but they should be on standby, until we give up our flights. Not the other way round!

HOW CAN THEY ASSIGN A FLIGHT TO US FOR NO GOOD REASON WHEN THE LATER FLIGHT IS SUPER TROUBLESOME AND IMPOSSIBLE FOR US?

If we took the 430 flight, we would arrive in Penang at 530.  By the time we arrive home, it would be 7 pm at least.  Kids don’t need to eat dinner? Don’t need to sleep is it?

HOW CAN THEY REFUSE TO REFUND US IF WE USED POINTS? POINTS IS NOT MONEY AH?

So basically MAS just cheated us right!? Took our money and never delivered the service.  The duty manager told us to write in, but why should we even have to do that!? They caused us this extreme inconvenience and we are further inconvenienced by having to write in to get a refund.  Your fault you just freaking give us back our money la! And we won’t even get the refund for sure, according to the duty manager, because they already gave us another option, so it’s our choice to not take the flight.

WHAT NONSENSE IS THIS? IT IS NOT MY CHOICE TO FLY AT 4 PM. HOW IS THAT MY CHOICE? YOU GAVE ME NO CHOICE AT ALL, MAS.

HOW CAN THEY CHECK US IN ANYWAY WHEN WE SPECIFICALLY SAID ‘PLEASE CANCEL AND GIVE US A REFUND????

It is further putting the burden of blame on us right!? Cos then they can say, oh you already checked in ma, means you are taking the flight already. Let me be very clear: WE DID NOT CHECK IN. WE ASKED FOR A CANCELATION AND A REFUND. YOU, MAS, CHECKED US IN WITHOUT OUR PERMISSION.

I cannot believe the utter ridiculousness of this whole scenario.  It’s disgraceful, the utter disrespect MAS is showing to us.  They blatantly swindled us, then treated us with contempt by assigning a random flight that is at a terrible time for us, and issued no compensation or refund.

And if you think we’re the only unlucky ones, you are wrong.  I saw people talking on social media that MAS has been doing this over the last two days to unfortunate passengers.  Even the duty manager himself admitted to us that “today is not as bad as yesterday”, we can get the next flight considered good already.

EH SUCK MY NON EXISTENT DICK LA MAS. YOU ARE NOT A BUDGET AIRLINE. You can say, this happens with budget airlines all the time, and yes it does.  But the difference is at the price we’re paying, we’re getting service equal to or worse than budget airlines.  You are so disrespectful and incompetent and inconsiderate, I cannot.

When MAS went through all that missing plane sagas, we still continued to fly them.  Some people switched to other airlines on purpose but we still flew MAS when we could to support them.  We believed that those incidents are out of their control and it doesn’t mean that they’re a bad airline.

Now? Don’t make me laugh. To screw us and all the other passengers like this, you don’t deserve my faith, liking, respect. You definitely don’t deserve our patronage. If they were really apologetic and showed effort in trying to refund or compensate us, I could still accept it and move on. Just give me a reason to believe in your sincerity! Sadly, you did not.  Thanks for ruining the start to our Chinese New Year.  That was really fun.

You got your chance. Now this is my turn. I am going to blow this up as big as I can.  I’m going to share this blog post on all my social media platforms and I hope you guys can help me do the same.  Send to everyone you can.  They cannot be allowed to get away with such cheating and deplorable customer service. If they do, they will continue to do this in future.  I’m so angry I’m considering buying Facebook and Instagram ads to spread the word HAHAHAHAH.

Please comment here if you have been screwed over by Malaysia Airlines in this manner this festive season so they can take notice. I am going to lobby for a refund and compensation over the extremely shitty way they’ve treated us paying customers.

Thank you for reading! Sorry my post is so long and ranty.

Aud.

P/S: Looking at the comments coming in, OMG MAS is horrendous! WTF kind of service are they running!? Duh but I will strongly say PLEASE DON’T EVER FLY MALAYSIA AIRLINES IF YOU CAN HELP IT.  People say fly at your own risk, but besides the risk of flying itself, you also have the risk of getting effed over by unscrupulous scumbags so yea.

PP/S: Fatty’s account of this incident here.

UPDATE 7.35 pm, 27 Jan 2017:

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MAS reached out to me at 9.30 am today. I just didn’t have time to update until now.

I really appreciate that they have extended contact and tried to make amends!  But I can’t help feeling that it’s only because my blog post went viral (thank you so much for sharing it btw!!!).  I told them I don’t expect anything besides what I’m entitled to (a full refund) so I’m appreciative.

But I don’t want to be singled out for special treatment because of my blog post. I’m not the only person affected by their overbooking this CNY and I asked if they would make amends for everyone else affected this time.  I would ask for everyone else ever wronged hahaha but I think that would be too difficult and too much for them to stomach.  One step at a time.  Cross fingers for their reply!

UPDATE:

Malaysia Airlines have issued a response to my request. See the update HERE.

  • Ming Chu

    Hi Amanda, I think it was good that these things are brought to attention because in my opinion these type of post does let these big corporation know that they need to clean up their acts. As a national carrier that is trying to win back business from their most important customers (the Malaysian homebase) such treatments should not be tolerated unless they are not bothered to get back to becoming the main choice for customers. What’s the point of writing them tons of mails that basically goes into a blackhole? We as consumer should not be wasting our time to chase such basic customer service recovery processes which is why you are in the Customer service sector. Cheers!

  • Rei Heinz

    Indeed. You can be grateful for being able to travel and travel on an airline that doesn’t make you have to go measure your blood pressure.

  • Kevin Bernard

    Unfortunately overbooking is a standard practice on all airlines to counter last minute flight cancellations. This is why they provide the option of checking in earlier so that your seat is guaranteed before you reach the airport.

    It sucks it happened to you but you also should’ve checked-in earlier to have avoided this problem.

    I don’t fly MAS for a host of other reasons but this is not an airline problem, it’s standard industry practice.

  • fourfeetnine

    Yea all these people pointing fingers at us for “not checking in online”, “not going early enough” regardless of the fact that we were actually on time. Are they serious? This is plain victim blaming. The same type of people who would blame a rape victim for her dressing.

  • fourfeetnine

    Happy CNY to you too!

  • http://www.sgrmse.com sgrmse.

    i flew mas return last june. spent two weeks in the uk for my birthday. boyf decided to book a non-stop. i was grateful. but the nightmare that ensued on my route back has left me traumatised & if i can help it, i will choose NEVER to fly mas again.

    – at first, an announcement came on that the flight would be delayed.

    – everybody was already at the gate. the announcement came at the hour the flight was supposed to commence (not board).

    – so we waited until the “new boarding time.” (they said one hour.)

    – the hour came & left.

    – the second hour came & left. an angry mob formed at the counter.

    – nobody was addressing the crowd as a whole.

    – each time someone went up to ask a question, there’d be “new info” & everybody else would clamour around the person & be like: what’d they tell you.

    – in the end, after so much pestering about why the flight has delayed till so long, an “announcement” (the male mas staff just raising his voice loudly- not something over the pa) was made that the plane was not leaving kl so essentially, flight cancelled.

    – everybody was shell-shocked. it’d been a WHOLE DAY. so issued meal vouchers & accommodation, whatnot. we had to go back down to re-collect our bags… i went down, fml, they “lost” my bag.

    – nobody could answer me where my bag was. heathrow is freakin’ huuuuge. the baggage people said look one more time, so they took me to the belt “one more time.” still nothing.

    – told me to go “upstairs.” i had to stand in a giant ass line that wasn’t moving. it was everybody from the cancelled flight. (think it was a 380 plane. double-decker. FULL LOAD. families, elderly… everybody in this GARGANTUAN line!!)

    – again, no answers with the bag. couldn’t leave the line because i’d lose my place. whole day, nothing to eat. i wanted to faint. finally, i got a hold of a heathrow staff who then went to get one of the baggage handlers. he came up to tell me my bag was on the “replacement flight” to kl. the flight i’d be put on “first thing tomorrow.” so i thought fine ya. no worries.

    – next morning, bright & early everybody at the airport, GUESS WHAT? no such replacement flight. my bag flew out THE NIGHT BEFORE WITHOUT ME (f my f-ing l) & everybody who was made the same promise as me kena stranded.

    – heathrow staff had to be the ones to control the crisis, addressing us as a group.

    – major meltdowns. people yelling, crying (because tired+angry)… it was bad yo. & in the end… i extended a week because i wasn’t going to keep going to the airport every day to “standby” or be told “no flight/seat for you.”

    ** they sent the bag to my house at 1am. my father was woken from sleep to collect it AND MY BAG WAS SEVERELY RIPPED. walao.

    the end.

    malaysia airlines, selamat tinggal. it’s not me. it’s you.

  • fourfeetnine

    I felt personally insulted because you used words like ‘bimbo’ and ‘ah lian’. But I accept your apology. I don’t think this is blowing it out of proportion.

    Not reached out to MAS? I personally spoke to the duty manager who told me we will not get our refund. How is this “not reached out”? I don’t see how this is “not ending good” on the Internet either. On the contrary, MAS has reached out to me to rectify our experience, which would not have happened otherwise.

    If you reread your comment, you’ll notice you are contradicting yourself. First you said I was petty and shouldn’t “blow it out of proportion”, meaning my blog post is an overreaction. Then you say it won’t end well for me cos I’m against “the big boys”. Are you saying I or any other consumer should be scared of MAS? Thanks for your support, I’m just surprised you don’t find bad customer service as appalling as I do.

  • Manpreet

    I had the same awful experience with MAS just 2 days ago. We got to KLIA 3 hours prior to our flight to Perth. We had checked in online 48 hours prior. For some reason my husband got his boarding pass but I didn’t so I called their customer service (absolutely crap customer service since they decided to outsource it). They told me than since I am travelling with an infant they had assigned a bassinet seat to me (which I had already requested earlier when booking the ticket) but for some unknown reason they can’t check me in and told me to check in at the airport. They sent me an email confirming my seat number. So back to the airport 3 hours prior to the flight and they tell me that I am not checked in and therefore offloaded from the flight. Same story. Overbooked and they have to offload. And then they presented me with ridiculous options such as let my husband travel first and I can take the flight the next day with my child. Or they can put me on a flight to Melbourne and connect me to Perth. At that point I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Anyway long story short I did not budge and told them that they should prioritise me given we have a 20 month old and going home with our luggage etc was not an option, plus we already had our hotels booked etc. No mention of compensation either. After an hour they gave us 2 seats and we eventually got on the flight but it was such an agonising start to our holiday! Completely agree with you that we support the airlines through hard times and yet they treat passengers with such disrespect. Shame on you MAS!

  • Phoenix

    Same here, I had a bad experience with MAS too. My flight is transit type, MAS sell it as a package (KL–> A–>B), and I have been using same method to fly for many many years, everything goes well.

    This year, as usual I done my online check in, then I go to drop my luggage at counter. All the while, my luggage will be check in directly from KL to B, but the counter lady suddenly told me my luggage have to take out at A and re-check in at A airport again. I argued with her, and she called her colleagues…managers.. and the she still insist want me to take out my luggage at A, with the reason, 1st flight allow max 30kg weight and 2nd flight only allow 10kg, so it cant check in direct. With few times argument, then I give up and I let them proceed with their said.

    After I boarding, I realized that OMG the gap between first flight arrival and second flight departure is only 1 hour, the counter close in 45 minutes before departure. After that, the 1st flight landed with 10 minutes delayed, walking from flight to luggage area takes at least 5 minutes, then the staff announce “passenger for flight MH bla bla bla please bla bla bla” I already cant hear what she said and Im just watching the conveyor belt aiming my luggage. I waited 15 minutes for the luggage, I run to check in counter at 3rd floor (which Im at 1st floor), I was so nervous and I speak with my speech not in order. Lucky that my case not going so bad, the B counter guy allow me to check in, and he said, only RM1/kg charge for additional weight, which KL should have arrange this for me.

    Honestly all this while my friends telling me MAS service is poor and now their management getting worst, but I thought its about flight delay for the worst, and my experience with MAS wasn’t so bad until this round, I would agree that MAS management is really having disaster, pretty big issue within them.

  • Y2K

    You keep quoting that other airlines also overbook. But here’s the difference: I have been on several Singapore Airlines flights which is overbooked.
    In every case, when I arrive, they asked me if I would like to VOLUNTEER to be on the next flight and for my troubles, they offered on the spot a ‘reward’ or ‘compensation’ of $XXX for my inconvenience. No need write in, and no such thing as first come first served, after all, someone who was earlier in the line might want the $$$ and don’t mind the wait.
    So there is a huge difference between how MAS handles it, (too bad, off you go, good luck to you) compared to an actual first class airline which takes preemptive action whenever there is a possibility of bumping someone off.

  • Y2K

    Self check in is available up to 40 minutes before the flight departure time. They arrived at the counter 90 minutes before departure. If this was the problem, then MAS counter staff screwed up in telling them there are no seats and they are pushed to a different flight. Still a MAS screw up.

  • Y2K

    So why didn’t MAS staff give them the correct info as per what you said instead of bumping them off their flight? They were there 90 minutes prior to departure and Self check in closes 40 minutes prior to departure. Stop trying to confuse the problem which is MAS has no clue on how to handle overbooking.

  • Y2K

    I have flown over 100,000 air miles last year too, none of which with MAS and I can tell you none of the other airlines I flown with do what MAS does.

  • Y2K

    Patriotism? Funnily enough, I am honest about my feedback on MAS because I am a patriot. I do not cover up their screw ups and problems and accept mediocrity because MAS can be a spectacular airline we can all be PROUD of, not this mess of an airline. Because I have seen how great they were in the past and I know they have the capability of being one of the best again. But pretending everything is OK when it is not, that is not patriotism, that is just nonsense.

  • cecilia ng

    We were booked on flight yesterday, chinese new year eve from Sin-kul, kul-hkg. MAS called me 2 hours before flight to inform they were overbooked and offered my family to fly Singapore Airlines directly to Hong Kong. They did their best. I am happy with them.

  • fourfeetnine

    That’s so good! Maybe they’re trying to turn this around. 🙂

  • Sahir Siddiqui

    Overlooking is common especially during peak travel times. You may be over blowing it a bit – if you read the terms of the ticket, it’s probably what you agreed to. It’s unfortunate MAS didn’t communicate it properly – but then communication has never been a strong point of Malaysian culture. When off loaded an overbooked flight, there’s generally some compensation provided – which should be agreed on before you walk away from the counter. Cancellation of tickets is not generally done at check-in counters – you need to go to ticketing counters for that.
    Gong Xi Fa Cai.

  • fourfeetnine

    You’re missing the point. Overbooking is normal but not the way MAS handled it. The fact that their communication was so bad is unacceptable. And no compensation was ever offered at the counter – how could it be “agreed on” then?

  • Mac

    Really sorry to hear what happened and that this has ruined your CNY.

    A little tips to make sure you won’t face such horrible situation in the future. But first, Malaysia airlines is no longer MAS. It is now MAB and is now ********** owned and operated. That should explain most of it. They can screw you because they can!

    1) never use points to change for air ticket during festive period. Each ticket has priority code. And the higher tier tickets are less likely to get “kick out” of the flight in such situation. Unfortunately a points redeemed ticket are hanging around the bottom tier. I know it wrong for them to give your seat to other passengers but it does happen and not only with this airline.

    2) always book the entire family in one booking. Single passenger is more likely to be kick out first in the event of an over booked flight. Having whole families together makes airline reluctant to remove the group from the flight.

    3) don’t ask for a full refund first up. If you didn’t use points and purchase with a credit card with travel insurance or you have taken up travel insurance. You better off claiming the insurance if you really decided not to travel. Get the supervisor or manager to issue a letter stating that you could not get on the flight as its over booked etc.

    4) ask for a ‘denied boarding compensation’. Most airlines (premium airlines) will have compensation for those voluntarily not get on the flight in the event of over booked. Some offer money, accommodation, free upgrade or even airline credit for your next ticket etc.

    Again, I’m sorry to hear your horrible experience and I hope the above tips help you in the future.

  • Priscilla Tee
  • Nur Faridah Yaakob

    My case was similar to yours but the only difference is the ticket price is deducted directly from my bank account (CIMBClicks). I rang MAS Customer Service Hotline thrice but to no avail. They said no records were found but I argued with them that my bank statement clearly indicates that my payment was successful. How come I have paid and no ticket issued after that, right? Their tone and usage of words is uncalled for, definitely.

    After those futile attempts talking to MAS Customer Service, I rang CIMB Customer Service instead. Explained to them nicely on what had happened. The CS confirmed with me that payment was indeed successful and the person resolved the issue with MAS internally. If I didn’t call the bank, my money burned and my issue also will be swept under the carpet. Thank God for the CIMB CS for helping me to sort out the issue.

    After the bank intervention, the CIMB CS kindly contacted me either I want my money refunded or proceed with the purchase. I opted for the latter cos the ticket was meant for Raya (I bought my tics few months in advance) as refund will be very mafan and I am too lazy to deal with another fiasco. MAS didn’t even contacted me at all regarding this issue and upon my final call with them for closure, MAS simply told me, oh, your money is floating in our other account… Like seriously.. I have been trying to explain many times but to no avail.

    Anyway, I am sorry of your predicament. Maybe you can try to give a call to your credit card hotline and they can try to speed up the refund process. I share the same sentiment with you too. It is a shame that our airline has turned out this way. After the incident, I still fly with MAS but not as often as I used to before the incident. Happy Chinese New Year. Xian Nin Kuai Le!

  • chocosummer

    lol. spelling nazis.

  • fourfeetnine

    Matters when it changes the meaning. Like maybe I meant to say you love to eat duck but end up saying you love to eat dick. Don’t think you’d be too happy.

  • Blaen

    This seems like a bit of an over-dramatisation. I doubt the writer’s CNY was ruined in any way.

    Fair enough, I’d be frustrated that I got bumped to a later flight, but that’s why it’s always advisable to check in early. The later it is, the risk of the flight being full due to overbooking is clear and present – this goes across all airlines, it’s not a MAS practice specifically.

    But look at the facts, and as the writer said: if she took the 4.30pm flight, she’d arrive in Penang at 5.30pm. After all the complaining and the journey back home to get into a car to instead DRIVE up to Penang for the 4 hours plus, her time or arrival would’ve been thereabouts or maybe an hour or so earlier (assuming no CNY traffic on the highways – which should be a clear and present consideration to take note of before even making the decision to drive instead) – I don’t see how the decision to drive, factoring in all the variables and potential risk of taking the highway during holiday season, is the smarter choice.

    Just get on the flight at 4.30pm on the 26th, Thursday, which isn’t even on CNY eve. You’ll land at 5.30pm on THURSDAY and get a good night’s rest for your reunion dinner on FRIDAY. CNY NOT ruined.

    TL;DR:
    1. MAS messed up, which isn’t great and frustrating – we all recognise this – blogger is due an apology and compensation, which has been obtained, but not before:
    2. Blogger over dramatises and uploads post with misleading title for attention – in this age of the internet where social justice warriors get worked up over little issues, of course it goes viral without the masses considering the situation objectively – corporation (because all big corporations are automatically baddies) is forced to apologise (which is fair) but the PR damage as been done, all due to misleading headlines which nobody can dispute because anyone who disagrees with it will incur the wrath of the keyboard social justice warriors.

  • Shaun Khee

    Mas was suppose to keep only the better staff in the new company?

  • Ken Wun

    Well if it were an ill-fated flight, you would have thanked God. It is not the end of the world so you need to compare those who lost their lives in those flights. Your emotions did run high but after a while you should cool down after reading the replies. Mas is not 100% perfect so don’t expect this. They have been losing money for donkey years at the expense of the politicians until today. It is just for convenient that we have a national airline. I had a top Telco company experience that also sucks as they used the computer systems to suspend my accounts even though I was a loyalty member for 20 years & a good paymaster. I had to cancel it & took another telco instead because my business required the line all the time. Just got a bad experience, be smarter in future & move on. It is good to know you yelled out your frustrations this way. Thank you for letting us know how bad they are again.

  • NotMasFlyerAnymore

    MAS is fucked up long time ago. Hard to imagine SIA and MAS used to be in the same carrier. Try other airlines. Either they accept the change or they get changed.

  • Doge van Wowe

    Did they sent email telling you your flight has been changed or what? And yeah, if previous flight has been cancelled they have to ge them on the next available flight. Happened to me with KLM. I was booked on the 11am flight, then they try to get me on the 4pm flight, not available as well cause overbooked, but they got me on the last flight of the day at 8pm with business class upgrade for free. I was alone so it’s different. Don’t worry, everyone is frustrated with the MAS management, not just the public. 😉

  • fourfeetnine

    Thanks for the legal assessment – it really put things into perspective and taught me a couple of things.

  • fourfeetnine

    OMG yours is one of the worst I’ve read! Wish you had taken his name and photo. >:(

  • OneD

    You sound like a rational person. I like that you’re viewing this whole scenario from an objective POV. I agree with your rationalisation on the situation at the airport as well as your comment on social media influencer’s effect on corporations.

    1. MAS made mistakes in two ways: bumping passenger into next flight before confirming next flight’s attendance, and the subsequent poor handling of the situation by the staff at the airport.
    2. The writer could have handled this better too: Given the situation, there was no real benefit driving to Penang except the feeling of being in control, which is often the result of acting on impulse.

    Personally, I would have accepted the 4:30pm ticket once the staff said there was nothing they could do more for 3 reasons:
    1. Expected arrival time of driving up and boarding the flight to Penang is about the same.
    2. Sitting at the airport lounge with 2 kids is more comfortable than being in the car with them (not to mention one of them has to drive so really, there’s only one adult taking care of 2 kids in the backseats).
    3. Could have spent the time at the airport to write a formal complaint to MAS while waiting & played with the kids.

    It’s also hard to comprehend that the writer & her husband were willing to spend the time writing such a long article after sitting in the car for hours, but refused to file formal complaint when asked. Okay, maybe not so hard for the writer since she did have a resolved situation with another airline by making a noise. Stirred a scene online – essentially the same principle as shouting at the airport to get attention, but disguised as a more civilised act – company has to act quickly to bring the noise down. But it was quite a disappointment that her husband, who is a well-known entrepreneur, to do the same too.

    I thought as a fellow businessman he would understand the importance of brand-image for a company. Ruining a MAS brand image is not doing any help to improve the company. That particular post also added no value to his readers as well. He is an influencer himself, his Bloggerati profile boosted his entrepreneurial success and business thoughts articles. Could have used this opportunity to present what he is known for – entrepreneurial skill – for his reader, maybe sharing his two cents on how MAS could have handled this better. But he went on a rant, so that was quite disappointing to see.

    If one of the user of his company’s product were dissatisfied with his company’s service, would he prefer such person to write a formal complaint so he could resolve the situation, receive feedback, improve his company’s services, all done without damaging his company’s reputation, OR would he prefer the person, who is an influencer to write a post with the intention to go viral and thus ruining his company’s brand?

    Anyway, bloggers have their own followers. Their post are written for her audience, and titles are meant to be attention-seeking. I believe this is not a platform that would appreciate our comments. Nevertheless, thanks for sharing your view. I am writing comment for the first time on this blog to let you know that you’re appreciated.

    Happy Chinese New Year.

  • Daniel Moshee

    So it’s your fault. Case closed.

  • fourfeetnine

    Sorry to expose your hatefulness to the world but online check in is NOT mandatory. 2. Passengers traveling with infants cannot check in online.

  • DX

    I had the same issue with MAS just 3 days ago too. My family (5 of us) booked a flight to Siem Reap via MAS. We arrived at the airport over 2 hours earlier than boarding time but was told that 1 of us had to be re-routed due to the plane being overbooked. Since MAS did not offer more than 1 flight from KL to Siem Reap daily, their offer of re-routing was via a 3-hour transit at Hanoi, essentially changing a 3 hour journey into a close to 9 hour journey. We tried to reason with the staff at the check-in counter but they kept on saying that there was nothing they could do as this was caused by their reservation team. I ended up having to split up with my family and taking the longer flight and the MAS staff was not helpful at all. It felt like they were trying to quickly issue us new boarding passes. Moral of the story: either prepare to spend a lot more time when flying MAS or just avoid the airline entirely. Just a friendly advice to anyone reading this…

  • tiff

    Thank you Audrey for blogging this and allowing the rest of us to share our experiences with MAS. I wish to input here as well, so to allow MAS to know how horrendous their services and ground personnel are.

    I flew with MAS from Singapore to Auckland, transiting Kuala Lumpur on 9th and 20th January 2017. That was my second time flying with them on a long haul with transiting flights, and due to their lack of professionalism, I have thus decided not to fly with them again for the same.

    The first was in 2014 amidst their 2 unfortunate incidents. All 4 flights (Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, London) were all delayed. But their service recovery at KLIA were excellent, the airline dispatched dozens of ground staffs to ensure we were well taken care off and guiding us to board our connecting flights quickly. The service recovery were polite, prompt, all with smiles and even providing free bottled water. Hence, despite the flights delays (up to 2 hours) and the 4 hours baggage delayed, I had no qualms to flying with them again.

    However this time round, that’s not much of customer services to speak off. 10th January Landed in Auckland at around 2pm (was supposed to land at 1.05 pm) and then found out that my baggage was delayed as well. It was to arrived at 12 midnight on the same day, which essentially meant baggage to arrive the following day only. I was travelling solo, had no fresh set of clothes nor any necessities therefore I had to do some shopping.

    20th January
    The flight departed from Auckland 45 minutes late.
    Flight landed at KLIA at 7.15 am instead of the scheduled 6.45 am. And this is only the landing time, I disembarked at about 10 – 15 minutes later.

    My next connecting flight was 8.05 am therefore I walked very quickly to the connecting gate – which involved in taking the airport inter-connecting train. I reached the connecting flight gate at 7.40 am, there was no one there.

    Shortly, a broadcast with my name and 4 other passengers were told to go to another gate. Rushed to take the airport inter-connecting train again to only find out that there was no flight to my destination. Naturally I went to the customer service counter to seek for assistance. This is also the beginning of the nightmare to try to get myself home.

    Person 1 – Airline personnel, a young lady nicely confirmed that the 1st flight gate was the correct one

    Person 2 – young lady passed my case quickly to her colleague whom politely told me to quickly proceed to MAS customer service desk

    Person 3 – MAS customer service staff, upon reiterating my case to her. She was rolling her eyes at me, tsking at me and barking at me on why did I missed my flight?

    After making a couple of phone calls she came back with a total complete changed of attitude (no longer barking and with a awkward expression) while advising me the next step. This is because she has learnt that it is the airline’s fault due to the earlier flight delayed. No apologies from her upon learning the error on their end.

    I was not the only passenger there being barked by MAS staffs, all the staffs there were portraying a haughty presentation of themselves. When any passengers posted any inquire to them they rudely bark at us. Such appalling attitude from them, are they not paid for their job?

    I was told to collect my baggage as they had offloaded it and then proceed to a reservation counter. On my way to claim my baggage, to my horror, I then realised I had to exit immigration. I was worried therefore I seek assistance with a airport ground staff.

    Person 4 – airport ground staff, an uncle. I explained that I need help and told him of my predicament. He did nodded with acknowledgement but with the ‘just my luck’ look that he’s being approached for help. I was then informed (more like being brushed off) to proceed and let my passport be checked. As I was walking and still checking out on which counter to proceed, I was barked to go to the correct lane by the uncle. Thanks.

    Person 5 – immigration staff, a young chap. Explained my predicament again and was informed the same – he had this awkward look as while upon learning its MAS’s hiccup. All right, so I have officially exited the airport and entered Kuala Lumpur.

    Person 6 – could not spot my luggage at the baggage collection belts. Approached the customer service counter, she was in the MAS kebaya uniform hence not sure she represents MAS or airport ground staff. Mentioned to her my predicament and she told me which collection belt to proceed. Did not see my baggage which is as expected, as by then it has already been an hour since my flight landed. I was actually wondering why did she not advise where is the baggage claim counter but directed me to approach any ground staff in the turquoise green jacket.

    Person 7 – and so I spoke to one gentlemen whom had the same displayed disinterest and directed me to the baggage claim counter. By then I have reiterated my predicament so many times that I was too tired to be bothered to inform it was MAS flight that delayed therefore I missed the connecting flight. I just informed that I need to collect my baggage as I missed the connecting flight and this gentlemen just repeated to confirmed I missed my flight with the look that I messed it up myself. Well, sorry to have interrupted the group chatters and thanks.

    Person 8 – lady at baggage claim was professional enough and got my baggage. Upon inquiry she directed the reservation counter which I had to proceed next. Thank you.

    Another shock, I was actually exiting the arrival hall to MAS departure check-in counters. It then dawned on me that the ‘reservation counter’ I was suppose to proceed to was for me to get another ticket back home. Which also meant I have to ensure I am being compensate on the going home ticket – which I already knew it would be a challenge from my ‘journey’ thus far.

    Person 9 – dragged my luggage and repeat predicament to lady at counter whom had the same disinterested look and was given a queue number. I must emphasis these disinterest looks are really expressionless and it seems that all their eyelids are extremely heavy not to mentioned there were no service smiles as well.

    Person 10 – my queue number was called and yes same expressionless look lady. So the normal procedure of a detail explanation of my predicament and she then informed she has to charged me a penalty (300++ can’t be bother to take note of the current) of the ticket as in the system indicated ‘no show’. Of course I debated with her again that the missed flight was due to the previously delayed flight. So she nonchalantly informed she can’t do anything as the system states ‘no show’. Woah. I was screaming internally that it was not a no show lady! I knew there was no point in speaking with her and asked whom can I speak with then.

    Person 11 – I was to proceed to another MAS check in counter to speak with the personnel there. Approached the gentlemen among the group of staff, shared with him my predicament and of course were met with the disinterest look and the “problematic customer found me” look. He checked his system and tell me it was a ‘no show’ and CHALLENGED me repeatedly TO TELL HIM that why did 122 passengers could board the plane but me. So I mentioned that the Auckland flight to KL was delayed? By then our conversation has already caught the attention of the other staff whom he was sharing joyful chatter with prior to my interruption.

    Person 12 – A lady (an auntie whom seems to be a seniority) promptly interrupted our conversation to clarify with me that I reached KL via Auckland and not directly from KL. I said yes. She then said this is a different story then.

    At the same time the haughty gentlemen picked up the phone to perform an internal check if the flight was indeed delayed. After putting down the phone he directed me to nearby check in counter and instructed the staff to book me on the next flight back to Singapore. Of course he has learnt that the flight was indeed delayed – No apologies and no more direct conversation with me.

    Person 13 – check in counter lady with disinterest look (what’s new) performed the standard checked in procedure and asked question with no service presentation.

    Person 14 – the colleague next to her whom seems to be a seniority auntie as well spoke politely to me to confirm some details instead.

    During the check in, person 12, the previous seniority auntie (whom actually is the angel and savior in this dramatic journey to home) suddenly appeared before me with a breakfast coupon! I kept thanking her profusely and honestly I was on the brink of tears and I really wanted to hug her.

    I was surprised of my emotions as well but I do not think this is in any way dramatic. I had solo traveled for such a long time (10 hours at the least) and to be met with such circumstances during the transit. It was suppose to be an easy transit flight home. However, I ended up talking to SOOOOO many people with mostly terrible services and exited immigration with my baggage in towed?! It also seems that experienced ground staff took more pride in their role and have much much empathy towards customers. It was the same in the 2014’s experience, seniority staff were leading all the customer recoveries in the open.

    I myself have posted this incident on my personal Facebook account on the same day I reached home. People have reached out to me that MAS is notorious for their delays. During my delay flight to Kulau Lumpur, passengers were also lamenting about the delay and how MAS is well known for delays.

    Since we are on the topic of MAS service, I would like to point out that in my 2014 flight to London, I experienced being chided loudly by a air stewardess. Granted I should stop using my mobile during landing but that rude attitude was really uncalled for. She was chiding me from BEHIND. I was unsure whom she was referring to, I looked around to find her looking passed her shoulder at me with a haughty look – she was 1 seat row away. When our eyes met she chided me to acknowledged. LOL. Say I am holding grudges, but a terrible experience do hatch in people’s mind.

    Flights and baggage delays were extremely terrible, however MAS horrendous customer services tops the cream. I can’t help but wonder where did the year 2014’s good practices went to? Was it because the hoo-haa has since died down therefore it is okay to have poor services?

    Anyways, despite their attractive promotional air fares I have totally lost confidence towards traveling with MAS. I might consider for direct flights with preparation on flight delays. However, no more long haul and transit flights – it is extremely exhausting and nerve wrecking to handle all these shits when one have traveled for so long.

    Tiffany.

  • crystalchee

    I heard “MAS overbooked” incidents few times before from my mom’s friends and my colleagues…. But so far never heard it happened on Air Asia.. Only heard Air Asia always delay flights.

  • Tshui Yeng

    Since last year end, I’ve also banned MAS from my list especially the case happened to my sister. She bought the ticket (not redemption like Bob mentioned but still has no privilege at all) to HK and it was a connecting flight SIN-KUL-HKG. MAS canceled its SIN-KUL flight due to insufficient passenger and rescheduled to a much earlier flight without prior notice. Even when my sister checked in 48 hours prior to the flight time, she was not notified about that.

    Therefore, my sister went to check in later only to find out she has missed her flight. As you know, for connecting flight, the airline is in charge of the schedule the connecting flight. They didn’t even make the effort to catch a flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur so that my sister still managed to board the flight to Hong Kong. “That’s the best we can do” is the only answer they gave.

    And what’s worse is that, they claimed that since my sister has missed the SIN-KUL flight, she is not eligible for the KUL-HKG flight even though she managed to take another flight and reach KLIA on time before the scheduled flight. WTF, right!? At last, my sister had to purchase another new ticket (not MAS of course) to Hong Kong. Well done, MAS! Is this all you can do when you find a flight is non-profitable and cancel it for your own benefit and cause trouble to your loyal passenger like us?

    All in all, MAS has disappointed me in every aspects – flight delay and change without prior notice, in-flight comfort and service etc. I can’t even find a reason to go for it anymore. Anyway, MAS, I wish you luck (fuck) ahead of 2017 and so on…

  • Fiona Lim

    Hahaha until now MAS has not gotten back to me on my damaged luggage from 6 May 2017 as it needs “extensive investigations” and they ignore my emails. Their baggage service counter at KLIA aslso turn me down with their staff busy playing handphone and cannot help me.

    So disgusted with them.

    Ms Fiona Lim

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