Emirates Airlines’ response to my very long complaint

Following on from my previous complaint (and a further addendum after they responded back with a less than satisfactory response), Emirates Airlines has responded. At least they apologised for missing out on addressing my full complaint (here’s the link to it – Me and my wife had to crawl like dogs on Emirates Airlines (among other problems)).

Their previous response on 10 November was poor:

Naturally I was sorry to learn of your disappointment with the seats you were assigned on your Emirates flight EK347 from Kuala Lumpur to Dubai, on 12 October.
Firstly, I would like to assure you that we do place a great emphasis on the high quality of service that we provide to our passengers, both in the air and on the ground, and it was therefore concerning to read that we did not meet your full expectations on this occasion.
Due to the points raised I have checked our records which indicate that you were allocated seats 38FG which you had pre-booked in our London office on 05 August and the same were selected when you checked in on-line prior to your flight. Nevertheless, we appreciate any disappointment felt as a result of the seats that you have chosen not being to your satisfaction and I wish toapologise for any inconvenience caused.
Mr Sia, regrettably I was unable to view your full complaint on the website provided in your correspondence due to restrictions installed on our office equipment. Nevertheless, it is not our intention to dissatisfy our customers and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on our service.  I would like to assure you that our passengers’ views and opinions are of enormous value in helping us refine and improve the quality of service.

To that, I immediately responded with: 

This response is most disappointing and suggests a lack of regard to investigating my problem. This also suggests I may need to report this to trading standards and/or BBC Watchdog in order to get a proper response.
Why do I feel this way? Because it took two weeks for a response that effectively said that you can’t click on links to view the full complaint which I couldn’t fit into your 3,000 character limit due to the severity of my problem. This is a serious problem that created a great amount of emotional distress for my family.
Now that I have this response from you though, I can include the full complaint in this email and I request that it be thoroughly investigated.
Full complaint follows: Me and my wife had to crawl like dogs on Emirates Airlines (among other problems) … This is an incredibly long complaint letter that I’ve spent a great deal of time crafting with the wife to ensure all the relevant details are included. Since Emirates Airlines has a 3,000 character limit, I’m forced to use this method to air my (considerable) grievances.

I received their most recent response today (17 November). And I’ll need some time to investigate whether 10,000 Emirates Skywards Airmiles for each of us is actually worth something more than the paper it’s printed on (initial checks suggests that it’s not due to the lack of opportunities to actually use them but I want to make sure I won’t just be uttering hot air when I get back to them). 

Dear Mr Sia,
Thank you for your further correspondence dated 11 November 2014.

Firstly, I would like to apologise for having omitted to address your further comments regarding your recent Emirates flights.

This was due to technical restrictions which I explained in my response dated 10 November.

I believe that I have addressed your seating allocation on flight EK347 from Kuala Lumpur to Dubai based on our records, and therefore I am unable to comment further, other than to apologise for any inconvenience that you experienced.

I note however that our cabin crew managed to swap your seats with other passengers and your family travelled in bulkhead seats.

At this point, I wish to clarify that bulkhead seats are desired seats and generally reserved for those passengers travelling with infants. However on some occasions these seats are also allocated to passengers who may require the bassinet row due to other reasons, i.e. a medical requirement. Such requirements are not always visible to other passengers.

I also hope that you can appreciate that there are times when operational reasons can force changes to the aircraft scheduled to operate a fligh. Whilst we always do our best minimise equipment changes, our Network Control Centre must naturally focus on ensuring effective use of our aircraft at all times and in recognition of this fact, we always state that operating aircraft are subject to change, without notice.

You indicated your disappointment with bulkhead seats location.

I wish to advise you that we fly the best and most comfortable wide-bodied aircraft, with seat pitches in all classes that are also amongst the most generous in the industry.

Please rest assured that we do appreciate the importance of providing care and assistance to passengers travelling with infants and therefore offer adequate facilities. I regret however if the bassinet for your baby compromised your comfort onboard.

Furthermore, I was concerned to learn of your disappointment with the overall service displayed by our cabin crew members onboard your recent flights. I wish to inform you that we do emphasise to our staff members on the importance of observing passengers’ requests and following our service standards. May I also clarify that negligence, or any lapse in service, on the part of staff members is not tolerated and we take a serious view of such feedback.

Moreover, our cabin crew are instructed to minimise their activities both in the cabin and in the galley after the main meal service, especially on night-time flights, so as to not disturb those of our passengers wishing to sleep. I trust that you will appreciate that our cabin crew were acting in accordance with our company policies and procedures. I can only apologise for any discomfort felt.

It is regrettable that your daughter did not receive a meal service onboard your flights, despite being booked.

I wish to advise that our onboard ‘Baby Meal’ service is the provision of baby food jars, which our cabin crew will provide and heat upon request. We do not carry a range of baby food jars and milk formulas to cater for all infants. Nevertheless, whilst we do provide baby meals, it would always be our recommendation, when travelling with young babies, that parents/guardians provide their own baby food as they are aware of their own child’s taste preferences.

We also note your comments regarding the distribution of children amenity kits. I wish to explain that these are distributed on demand and when our cabin crew walk in the cabin with these, passengers are welcome to request them.

We also appreciate your constructive comments regarding designating the storage of supplies onbord.

May I assure you that your feedback has been forwarded to the respective Cabin Crew Managers, for review and internal action as deemed appropriate.

Mr Sia, I am truly sorry that we did not live up to your expectations on this recent occasion and I would like to assure you that it is never our intention to have dissatisfied passengers. Therefore as a gesture of goodwill I have arranged for 10,000 miles each to be credited to your and your wife’s Skywards account.

We hope that we shall be given another opportunity to welcome you onboard Emirates in the future.


2 thoughts on “Emirates Airlines’ response to my very long complaint

  1. 10k miles isn’t a lot, but it will help as you accumulate more miles over time. At least they made a token gesture and hopefully you guys can figure out the best strategy for flying with Gabby in the future.

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