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Etihad: Unreliable Company

Beijing, China
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2 posts
16 reviews
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Etihad: Unreliable Company

I want to share the experience I had with Etihad.

They are highly inconsistent in the service.

Generally onboard service is ok, with good Entertainment system. The food is below average.

Transfer to AUH can be pleasant to nightmare:

- If you are lucky, the transfer is fast and does not take you more than 15min

-If you are on a busy day, 1h could be expected... so forget the short connection.

Delay:

I recently had the worst delay of my flight experience:

- Original flight DMM-AUH-PEK leaving Dammam at 17:30 arrival 19:45 in AUH and departure for Beijing at 21:30.

2days before the flight they informed me that the AUH-PEK is delayed by 13 hrs. So they decided to rebook my flight DMM-AUH to 04:35 aka horrible to get some sleep.

The next change change of plan again the flight AUH-PEK is now delay by "only" 10h, departure at 07:40 from AUH with arrival from DMM at 06:55...

Not trusting such a short connection, I request to book an earlier flight from DMM arriving at AUH at 19:45, I have to pay an extra 300 euros... ok fine.

I checked in at 15:45 in DMM, landed at 19:45, go to my hotel to sleep and next day I arrived in AUH airport, they informed me that the flight took off last night, at the expected time 21:30.

At the time of checkin in DMM 5hrs away from AUH-PEK they don't know they are going to have a flight?

At arrival in AUH, no one was waiting for me to inform that I could take the flight to PEK....

I ended up with a new route, AUH-BKK-PEK with 24h delay on original booking, and no luggage. The ground staff in AUH refused to upgrade me and offered me a food voucher of 32 DRH with correspond to a coffee and one pastry.....

They might have good plane, good service on board but if they don't respect schedule... well maybe they should do charter flight...

When I buy a flight ticket, I buy a service but mainly a schedule, and a 24h delay is not acceptable if the pb is not a technical pb.

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
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31,281 posts
6 reviews
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1. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

My only questions I have on this is (a) did you book and deal directly with Etihad, and (b) are you sure that all the flight changes were confirmed by Etihad - and do you have emails to back this up?

If so, this does look like a screw up somewhere with the airline. Well worth writing to their customer service. Make that a letter, to head office (look for the VP of Customer Service or similar), and be as polite and unemotional as you can, and include copies of the correspondence. Good airlines do mess up from time to time, and the good ones acknowledge that and should do something to make it up to you. A refund of the additional fare you paid and any additional expense you incurred would be in order (perhaps the minimum they could do), and you could suggest that - politely - in your letter.

You could also post in the Skytrax reviews. I was rather surprised to go there and see the reviews on Etihad decidedly mixed for a 4 star airline, so your view would add to that mix

www.airlinequality.com/Forum/etihad.htm

Edited: 25 April 2012, 10:52
Fredericia, Denmark
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37,532 posts
7 reviews
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2. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

Unreliable Company? Based on one experience - NO.

Nannup, Australia
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3,652 posts
27 reviews
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3. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

<<The ground staff in AUH refused to upgrade me >>

Why would they have to upgrade you?

Bangkok
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for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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15,671 posts
71 reviews
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4. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

hi,

I think there's some truth in there.. but also think that the title of "Unreliable Company" is a bit misleading..

I tend to agree that overall the notification process of schedule changes needs improvement.. but I temper that with the realization that email isn't perfect...

Any user can send a mass email to several hundred different account and I'm sure some percentage will either be blocked, sent to auto-spam filters of simply ignored accidentally by the passenger.

So, while it does work, it's not perfect by any means..

As to the idea of the floating departure time.. Moving from A to C to B then back to A.... it sucks, but it does happen.. airlines do have to make last minute adjustments as fleet issues come up, mechanical and crew issue come up, etc.. So, there's lots of reasons it may occur..

To me, in your case, before i went forward I'd want to know why or what was the driver to the issue.. Was it up-line weather? up-line mechanical? what? To me, the answer here plays into what I'd be inclined to do going forward as I think there's more on the carrier if it was a mechanical matter versus a weather issue.

The part about having to pay is odd in that *normally* when you're in an IRROP or Irregular Operation, the airline tends to either waive these fees or is more lenient with re-booking alternatives.

The part about not upgrading you I think was never really a part of a realistic resolution alternative.. So, to be upset or otherwise knock them for that is, to me, unrealistic.

As noted by others, the notion that they are unreliable is, from your perspective, probably rooted in a great deal of truth.. but I also have to realize that this experience does in fact represent only one out of some 150+ daily departures.... so to a point the survey sample here is very skewed.. doesn't mean it's wrong.. only means that it speaks to just one of their 150+ daily flights.

Travel Safe,

Dublin, Ireland
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194 posts
5 reviews
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5. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

<<Unreliable Company? Based on one experience - NO.>>

How many experiences does someone have to suffer before they're qualified to make that judgement as far as you're concerned?

Edinburgh, United...
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14,450 posts
16 reviews
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6. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

Obviously more than 1. That straigtforwardly follows from the very nature of reliability (or unreliability).

wales
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289 posts
19 reviews
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7. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

4star? Airline I wouldt give them one

Leeds, United...
Destination Expert
for Leeds, Bradford
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21,731 posts
338 reviews
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8. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

"4star? Airline I wouldt give them one"

____

Maybe you'd like to share your experience Evin, otherwise what is the point in what you have just posted?

wales
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289 posts
19 reviews
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9. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

All ready have a look at the April 19th posts .

Edinburgh, United...
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14,450 posts
16 reviews
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10. Re: Etihad: Unreliable Company

People giving an airline 1 star because they had to go to the galley for drinks is just one reason I'm glad TA doesn't have a section for airline reviews.