chuvaness
Why I never fly domestic
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Part 1: Cathay Pacific/NAIA

In 2005, we were invited to a Louis Vuitton event in Hong Kong. Four of us were booked on a Cathay Pacific flight departing at 12:30 noon from NAIA 1.
Alex Vergara and I agreed to carpool on the way to airport and arrived around 10 AM at the airport.
Upon checking in at Business Class, we were told that the 11 AM flight prior to our flight wasn’t full—would we like to take that instead of the 12:30?
Alex and I looked at each other and said why not?
We had barely enough time to plant our asses in the lounge as were nearly boarding.
The other two in our party, however, arrived at NAIA around 11:30 AM, only to find out that our original 12:30 noon flight was delayed to a much later flight.
Alex and I were lucky! Arriving in Hong Kong earlier than planned meant we had extra time to relax before attending cocktails that night.

Cathay Pacific 747-400 at NAIA Terminal 1
Photo: Paulo Ordoveza

Part 2: Singapore Airlines/Changi

Jeroen and I were checking in for a 2:10 PM flight to Manila when the ground staff looked at our tickets and told us our fight was actually booked for the next day. Say whuuuu????
My head started to spin. How could I make this mistake? Our flight was booked for July 22, not 21.
What do we do now? Do we go back to the city and try to book a hotel? What do we do for the next 24 hours?
I did not say a word. I didn’t freak out like Claudine Barretto. I let Jeroen talk to the Singapore girl, who then told us the 2:10 flight wasn’t full—she could actually squeeze us in today!
Whew! I can’t tell you how relieved we were to be able to go home that same day.

Singapore Airlines
Photo: Jerry Wong

Part 3: Philippine Airlines/Caticlan

Luckily this did not happen to me or Claudine Barretto. I’m sharing it because it could happen to you and PAL needs to know something is really wrong with their customer service.
Read about what happened to Roxanne Lu as she tried to board a Manila-bound Philippine Airlines flight from Caticlan: it’s called Airline Bullying.

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Izzy_bizzy9

Unless the Passenger Bill of Rights is passed, we can never be too assured of our local carriers that are notorious for cancelling flights and bumping off passengers. I am glad there are people like Roxanne who shared what she experienced because it will urge more people to speak up and eventually fight for the rights that they deserve. I have an ongoing issue with Airphil Express because they moved our flight to HK a day earlier than our scheduled date. The repercussions are great as we will be losing our domestic flights, hotel in cebu, transfers and the other… Read more »

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Guest

That was crazy. I don’t know how I would have handled being treated that way. 

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maean

yep, knew that 🙂 I was jst pointing it out to somehow who said that PAL shouldn’t be blamed here. Mabuhay miles were even used.

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a08

Air phil sucks talaga grabe!tsk..

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Guest

Hi Cecile,   I read your article on “Why I never fly domestic” & the blogpost on “Airline Bullying” and would like to share my experience and hopefully you can help us get out message across.  This was the message we sent to Cebu Pacific via their FB site.      “For Cebu Pacific:   On May 6,2012 at 7am I went to the BCD airport to send off my 6yr old son. It was his first time to travel alone.    We went first to your ticketing ofc who then instructed us to proceed to the counter. I signed a waiver… Read more »

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Acid

flight delay is one thing… commandeering a flight is another.  didn’t you hear about the time a PAL manila-aklan flight was told to land in caticlan, because the most spoiled son of the owner was in the flight and insisted. of course this caused chaos and delay for the rest of the caticlan bound flights, as well as the suspension of the poor pilot’s license.  

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CVS Reply:

totoo ba yan? kawawa naman the son if that’s not true

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maean

Thank you again Ms Cecile for sharing this story! 🙂 Thank you for everyone who have shared it and made everyone be aware about this. We just hope this won’t happen to anybody else. I would like to share my sister, Roxanne Lu’s post in her fb yesterday:  Roxanne Lu 22 hours ago Let me just say that I am incredibly grateful to all who read my post on Airline Bullying and, although I did not expect this at all, for sharing to your friends and family, as well. I have received personal messages from friends and strangers sharing their… Read more »

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maean

dont you think I know better that my sister talked with PAL head office rather than Airphil diba? 🙂

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Chris Paglicauan

Being in the airport is already stressful ha. Add pa these inefficient airlines and your stress level will be beyond you already. Tapos the government pa has the guts to promote tourism in the Philippines. This is really, really sad.

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Guest

Its frustrating that the Philippines does not only have the worst airport in the world but the worst airlines as well. Its so sad that no matter how we rant about all these malpractices, millions of Filipinos still go gaga on Piso fare. We really do not have much choice unless the right authorities are taking actions.I even have my share of airline bullying from Cebu Pacific (12 hours in the airport + I got charged $100 for re-booking international flight As a budget traveler, I have tried RyanAir and EasyJet for our Europe trips but not a single delay or… Read more »

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afford moto

My Japanese boss  doesn’t want to fly PAL anymore during his monthly visit here in Manila.
He is gracious enough not to tell us that directly. We didn’t even now the problem he had with it. He just said “abunai” or dangerous in direct translation.

Even if there are available seats in PAL for the direct flight to and from Japan he would fly Delta Airline or JAL or JetStar(recently) even if he would make a 4H or 8H stopover in Taiwan. He just wanted to avoid PAL at all cost.

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CVS Reply:

there you go

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secretsofmaruja

Pwede naman pala hindi magmura sa counter eh. But Claudine-Tulfo issue aside, grabe naman yung nangyari kay Ms. Roxanne. No one deserves to be subjected into that kind of stress.

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Guest

PAL to me is a hit and miss airline. So I will tell my story of flying PAL when I was 14 (1994). My brother, my aunt and myself took PAL from Mania to San Francisco. While we were inline waiting to get to the counter (in NAIA), a ticketing counter agent approached us and asked if where we were going. And we said we were going to SFO. He told us that the flight is overbooked. So he offered us a Plan B, take the Los Angeles flight instead. If we took plan B, he will upgrade us to… Read more »

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Guest

WOW. Just, wow. I can’t imagine going through that and fighting as hard as she did. Kudos to her for sticking to her guns even if they were bullying her into complete submission. I probably would’ve given up and cried in a corner. She also stayed relatively calm and polite throughout the ordeal, whereas the majority of us would’ve probably started swearing and being rude. Bow ako sa kanya.

What was infuriating in her experience was the supervisor’s refusal to help and the LIES. That made my blood boil.

Is there a way to get make DOTC aware of what happened?

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Guest

Ang nakakainis…ginagawa kang mukhang tanga ng kapwa mo Pinoy. Grabe!

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Walter Robles Reply:

Um, would it make any difference if that supervisor wasn’t Pinoy? 

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Guest

Um, would it make any difference if that supervisor wasn’t Pinoy? 

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Guest

really sad 🙁 u know what’s worse is that whenever i go home (i’ve been residing abroad for the past 10 years), i see the huge difference between how our fellowmen in the service industry treat us and how they treat the foreigners.. i mean seriously, as soon as they realize that the tall non-pinoy guy standing right behind me is my husband, they change demeanor kaagad!!!    on another note, ur friend, mr. carlos celdran (im also a big fan!) posted today why he only flies PAL.. hehe! interesting na parang sync kaayo (and yet, hindi!) about PAL today 😉   P.S. i read… Read more »

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EmilyGo

I’ve witnessed this way too many times. napaka sad 🙁

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M

This is why I never fly PAL:
http://thenextmela.tumblr.com/post/16283121628/i-hate-you-philippine-airlines

They sent me an e-mail about the issue but it made me even madder… they lied about some things (like saying they’d added a note in their system, pero duh based on their employees actions wala naman). And I don’t think they’ve issued a refund up til now, even though they said they would.

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Tralala

Air philippines pala pinag-uusapan..magkaiba ang pal sa air philippines..sister company lang po sila.. Never silang synergized… At yes ! Nagkaka aberya din sa PAL…pinopoint out ko lang na di sila nag ooperate as one. PAL ang bineblame pero air phil ang nagkamali.. [Reply]CVS Reply:May 9th, 2012 at 9:44 AMnoted and updated 🙂 [Reply]maean Reply:May 9th, 2012 at 10:06 AMhttp://www.philippineairlines.com/news/airphil.jsp If you book MNL-Caticlan thru PAL, they have a disclaimer that the flight is operated by Airphil. They’re one and the same.  [Reply]maean Reply:May 9th, 2012 at 9:59 AMif it’s not PAL. Then why did the email said from reservations@philippineairlines.com ?!?! … Read more »

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maean

if it’s not PAL. Then why did the email said from reservations@philippineairlines.com ?!?! 

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Guest

Iñigo Zobel is now the president of Air Philippines. I hope he’d do something to improve its services.

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Anony

Is there another link of the Airline Bullying aside from facebook? not all of us have an account with them

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Guest

Shared the Airline Bullying note on my feed. This is really happening in corporate businesses, not only with local airlines. With a country that prides itself of producing the best customer service providers for international clients, it’s saddening that we cannot get that same customer service that we provide from our fellowmen. I say provide more training in instilling good customer service. Add this to the employees’ metrics as a basis for raises, pay grades, more benefits, etc. Also, although these companies already have auditors, they should have one that measures the practices done by employees, preferably, pose as “mystery… Read more »

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Guest

The problem is not that members of staff are untrained to provide quality customer service, though.  That is just a byproduct of the real problem which is these huge companies not caring about their customers, however grand their Mission Vision and Philosophy statements are.  These companies (PAL, Cebu Pacific, Globe, PLDT come to mind) think they can get away with these abhorrent actions because people will still end up procuring their products/services because there is no real competition in the Philippines.  We just don’t have alternatives to these companies.  

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