Written on: 23/01/2011
I booked a flight with Emirates Airlines to fly from Tripoli to Jakarta, via Dubai on December 31, 2010 at 00:10 to be able to spend New Year's Eve with friends in Jakarta. I booked a room at the Sheraton in Jakarta and was looking forward to spending a nice evening there. To be sure of getting a seat I booked it well in advance, in mid-November.
I arrived at the airport in good time, and waited for the Emirates check-in desk to open. Tripoli airport is not the best in the world, no information desk and nobody really willing to do anything outside their job description. The desk didn't open, and the Emirates office was closed. There was no flight to Dubai.
I returned home panicked, concerned that I had spent nearly $1000 on a fake ticket. I called Emirates Airlines, and asked them what had happened, and they (clearly experienced in such incidents) insisted on only rescheduling me on a flight for January 1st. I couldn't even get on a flight the next day, as it was full. They wouldn't answer my question about what had happened to the flight I had been booked on.
A Google search revealed that the flight had stopped running at the end of November, some 4 weeks before my scheduled flight. NOBODY had contacted me to let me know, despite my having submitted both my telephone number and my email address when I booked the flight.
I travelled to Jakarta on January 1st. Good service generally on the flight, though the Dubai to Jakarta leg was absolutely packed.
I wrote to Customer Affairs Department at Emirates, sending them a copy of my hotel booking and they gave me a standard response that they would "investigate" my complaint. I asked them, that since this had happened, and that I had lost a five-star hotel booking, if I could have an upgrade on my return leg. No response. I wrote again a week later, asking for a upgrade on my return leg (which involved a ten-hour stopover in Dubai) as I would like to use the business-class lounge. No response.
A few days before my return flight on January 21st, I again wrote asking for an upgrade, or at the very least, an acknowledgement or apology for what had happened. I received a polite but somewhat terse email in response telling me that I, again, should be patient and wait for the result of their "investigation". "I refer you to our email of January 3rd" the email stated.
I finally wrote on January 21st, saying that it was clear that I was going to receive neither an upgrade, or any financial compensation, and an apology would now no longer be acceptable since I felt I had clearly been deliberately stalled to avoid being offered an upgrade.
I am so disappointed, as I was genuinely excited about travelling with Emirates, and truly I felt the service on board was very good. However, on all flights the business class section was nearly empty and it would have been so easy to give me an upgrade, and I would have been perfectly happy if I had been given that. Thus I am resentful and very disappointed with Emirates Airlines.