work: You think you know what the Best Airline is?

Well sorry to say so but, think again!
I have come to the conclusion that Airline choice is only a matter of kharma, or something like that.

The reason why I am writing this is that all my clients think that they know what the best airline is, but the funny thing is they all prefer different airlines. A good bunch of them think that LH (Lufthansa) is "the best and no questions about it", others really like BA (British Airways) much more that any other airlines. You'll then have those wanting to fly only KL or AF (KLM - Air France), and to be honest I really don't see the point here, but still, to each their own.

So who is right, and who is wrong? Nobody, almost.

The funny thing is this. When I have a LH fan travelling on IB (Iberia), AZ, AF or other, something inevitably goes wrong. When I have an AF fan travelling on LH, OS (Austrian Airlines), SK (SAS) etc, something inevitably goes wrong there too. And if the nature of the problem is not attributable to the airline itself (aircraft technical failure, overbooking, missed connections), then rest assured that there will be fog in Vienna, ice on the runway in Frankfurt, snow in Paris, a ground personnel strike in Milan or a fire at Heathrow.

I don't know why, but I just see it happen so many times. A client had to travel to HEL (Helsinki) last Tuesday. He asked for LH straight away, but as my job requires I let him note that, though KL left a couple of hours earlier in the afternoon leaving him less time to work in Helsinki, it cost around €800 instead of €1200. So he reasonably opted for the KL solution. He called on Tuesday morning: his flight from BLQ (Bologna) to AMS (Amsterdam) left an hour late, and he was stuck in AMS having missed his connection. KL would not let him travel on the next AY (Finnair) flight to Helsinki, but on the later KL flight. [Because in the former case, KL would have had to issue a FIM (Flight Interruption Manifest) and paid AY for that leg of travel, which they don't like doing]. In addition to that KL staff at AMS blatently lied to him telling him something on the lines of: as you have an electronic ticket, we cannot do that. Now, honestly, he was in AMS, the main hub of KL, if they can't do what they want there, then where can they? Ok, he had a restricted fare, which doesn't allow you to travel on another airline with that ticket, but in these cases, the airline that issued the ticket can choose to do so. I was amazed that they didn't do so in this case; I can understand if you have a cheap €300 ticket, but with an €800 ticket, they could have made the effort.
He asked me not to make him travel on KL ever again.

My colleague had a clinet in Berlin yesterday. He always travels AZ but this time, as he needed to stop in Frankfurt on the way out, he flew LH. Ready to return to Italy, yesterday, he arrived at TXL (Berling Tegel) in good time, having finished his business earlier than expected. He telephoned my colleague to ask her to get him on the earlier flight back home. No problem, he had an expensive unrestricted fare; she cancelled his 17h00 flight from TXL to MUC (Munich) along with his onward connection to BLQ (Bologna), rebooked him on the 15h00 flight and sent him to check-in. Suprise! At check-in LH staff told him he could forget about it as the TXL to MUC flight was overbooked. What's the problem right? Just book him back to his original flight huh? Well no, his original flight was now all waitlisted.
We tried and tried, and finally managed to get him onto a TXL to VIE (Vienna) flight with onward connection to BLQ, that was lucky. But the passenger wasn't at all impressed.

This is why I have come to the conclusion that it is just a question of kharma. Some passengers just go well with one airline, and othes with another one.

I have to be honest though. Overall, when I sum things up at the end of the year, I do have a little less problems with BA and LH.

Have a safe trip.


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