I went to attend my mother’s funeral in Douglas IOM -where she lived with my brother- on Wednesday… leaving Tuesday 21 to return Fri 24.
I went on line to book flight deliberately making every effort to avoid flybe, which I flown a few times with serious problems every single time, same goes for a friend… and book an Air France flight out and back in… expecting Air France service and quality. Fool that I was !
When the flight details and confirmation came out of the printer I realised to my horror that I would fly flybe both ways ! Too late to do anything about it now…
All this is very disturbing as well as devious.
Owing to a French public transport flight and problems at Roissy CDG I missed my flight into Manchester…
My suitcase was never boarded and I wasn’t even called !
Still I go to the counter to change my ticket for the next flight.
At the counter there are two agents chatting. They wait to finish their casual conversation before I get attention. I ask about a flight into Birmingham which would have been ideal. ‘We don’t fly to Birmingham’ she tells me. Surprise since on my last trip there I had flown via Birmingham… Well… She didn’t which document it was and eventually couldn’t find it…
That cost me another £ 89 ticket plus a £ 59 penalty (for missing the plane ?) and £ 8 (because I paid my credit card) plus plus plus…
Did I want to go through with it ? (as if I had an alternative)
Abuse to say the least…
I once missed an Air France flight twenty years ago and the customer services attendant put me on the next flight free of charge in three minutes flat ! Now that is customer service !
By then I was murderous to have to put up with such slowness and incompetence !
30 minutes later I walk away from a counter with a new ticket to Manchester. My suitcase would follow if I just showed my document at check in… Only check in had no idea how to proceed… and wasted more of my precious time.
Eventually I walk into the flight departure salon to hear the next flybe flight into Birmingham announced for boarding (which would have made me get my ferry at the other end) !
I don’t think you can imagine my shock !
Neddless to say that I got into Birmingham too late and had to buy another train ticket to Lancaster another night ferry ticket Heysham to Douglas making it just in time for the funeral…
Little did I know then that this was only the beginning…
On the flight back upon checking in the lady in charge tells me my ticket does not include the luggage fee (not mentioned in my flight out) ! None of this appeared in my original Air France booking documents and with Air France is not charged and you get a free meal (charged with flybe) on board all at a lower price than flybe charges for the same flight.
Did I want to pay the extra ? Again did I have the choice with a flight due to leave in an hour ? Strangely the £ 8 credit card payment transaction supplementary fee did not apply here…
To top it all we left Manchester Airport late owing to a problem with a passenger… In actual facts flybe had confused tickets !
Some friends have flown flybe and vowed never to use them again.
Another one of my friends has five travel agencies and his answer is ‘This always happens with them… Never fly flybe. We avoid them like the plague’.
Question : why is flybe known as fly(may)be ? I know now.
My advice is ‘If you want to go to Hell fly flybe’.
I am asking for a total refund on all expenses involved and am taking this to consumer associations and the press.
I am copying this to Air France, consumer associations and the press.
PS : What’s more you don’t even have an email address for contact… I should have guessed.