I have just endured the most harrowing trip of my life thanks to American Airlines. My adventure started on September 19 when I started my journey from Cairo, Egypt to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. I boarded BA (a One World partner of AA) to connest with AA6142 in London and then AA0821 to Ft. Lauderdale.
The trip was rather pleasant except for the fact my luggage did not arrive in New York. I went to AA to ask for their help. I was informed that my bag was following me and in fact would arrive in New York at about the time my flight to Fort Lauderdale was leaving the Big Apple. I was also told that I should fill out a lost baggage report when I arrived n Ft. Lauderdale. I did so and was informed my bag's location, London. In other words someone was lying to me about where my bag was. But about two days later, I did get my one piece of luggage. It had been robbed of a pair of pants, a small piece of jewelry bought as a gift and a ring I had removed to avoid security problems. This was reported to American Airlines. Their concern was not that I had been mislead about the location of my suitcase or that it had been pillaged. Their ONLY concern was that I might file a claim for the lost items. They mentioned items they would not cover regardless of the Warsaw Convention.
On 18 October, I started my return flight on AA 0664 and my baggage was booked to Amman, Jordan on AA 7200. I was to check in separately for AA 7200 at Air Jordan at JFK. To my surprise, after traveling to a different terminal, I saw a sign that noted the Air Jordan flight had been cancelled. No one ever appeared at the Air Jordan ticket booth or counters to offer assistance. I traveled back to Terminal 8, informed American of my problem only to be informed that their computers showed the flight to Amman was on schedule and in any case it was not their problem but Air Jordan's, although I had been booked on AA flight 7200 and my tickets had been issued by American Airlines. I traveled back to Terminal 4 to recheck (no one at American could be bothered to call Air Jordan (a One World Partner and the operator of the American flight) to see what was happening. I got to Terminal 4 to find the flight cancelled and no one from Royal Air Jodan available. I went back to Terminal 8 to confront American Airlines.
At first the employees at American tried to tell me once again that this was not their problem even though they had checked my bags on the Royal Air Jordan flight, sold it to me as AA Flight 7200 and my tickets were American Airlines tickets. Finally an employee saw the logic of my position and did book me on a flight to Cairo via London. The problem was with my luggage. No one was quite sure where it was. I am in my apartment in Alexandria after filing the necessary forms in Cairo, but I am still without luggage, and no one seems to care.
I would write this experience off as my nightmare trip of a lifetime except for one thing, the ONLY concern shown by American Airlines was to protect their collective butts. Honesty played no part in their representations to me. They were not concerned that I as one of their customers was suffering because of THEIR errors. Every request for hep was initially resisted, probably in the hope that I would just go away.
Perhaps the big shots at American Airlines should consider customer service as part of their job and accept responsibility when they cause inconvience for their clients. If they paid the same attention to customer service as they do in nickleing and dimeing their passengers, they might find prople would actually want to fly them again. I have worked in the hospitality business and know that had I been treated with honesty and efficiency, a bad situation could have turned me into a regular customer rather than yet another disgruntled one. But, I honestly believe American Airlines believes its travelers to be dumb cattle deserving to be treated as such. It is a shame. It is perhaps a bigger shame that they call themselves "American". It is not the type of company I like to see representing American business.