Lufthansa Customer Service = Garbage!‏


My brother and mother flew to India last minute because of a death in the family. They booked their tix with Lufthansa.

I changed my mother’s flight back to Toronto from India so that she was coming home a month later. My brother however wanted to keep his original return ticket.

The day my brother was supposed to fly back he tried to check-in online and found out that they had changed both my mother’s and his tickets.

When I called the Canadian Lufthansa Office to straighten this out. The manager there told me the flight was now full and he couldn’t create an additional seat for him. The soonest he could fly out would be in a week.

The manager told me that there was also no way to determine whether the agent handling my call made a mistake because no notes were written down. Why would the agent write it down? When I suggested that Lufthansa should rule in favor of the customer, I was told the customer is “NOT ALWAYS RIGHT”. I was dumb-founded by his answer.

He did tell me that we would waive the change fee for moving my brother’s flight to the following week. WOW…what generousity.

We have a lot of family in Canada that flies internationally, we will NEVER be flying Lufthansa again. Mind you I doubt any senior managers at Lufthansa care what is going on in their Peterborough office where the manager there is not accountable to anyone.

It doesn’t take a genius to realize that the airline companies NEED to be treating their customers like gold in order to stay in business in an age when there are LOTS of choices and customers are more likely to stay loyal to companies that are either cheap or have good service. Lufthansa is NEITHER.

15 Responses to “Lufthansa Customer Service = Garbage!‏”

  1. 0

    Camaroguy says...

    Sorry to hear about your experience.

    When you changed your mothers flight back to a month later, did you not have to pay an additional fee? or difference in fare anything? they would have told you how much the difference is per person.

    When you split your tickets did you get separate booking #’s to ensure that both flight were indeed on different return dates?

    for them to waive the change fee after the fact is in fact a nice gesture, they didnt even have to do that for you. (I realize its not the outcome you wanted) how ever we (consumers) have a responsibility to ensure when making changes of that importance that everything is in place.

    I am quite sure should the situation arise that you would give them another try if you have no other options.. IE: they had a sale on, had a direct flight in stead for around the same price as another carrier, have points for them or airmiles etc.. (why did you choose them in the 1st place)

    sorry for your experience, hope your next one is better.. please stay informed of what you do and keep documentation.

  2. 0

    PB says...

    That’s just it. The agent told me it would be $150 for the change, which made sense to me because its for one person. So I didn’t question it. I told the agent that it was only for one passenger (not both) because they both had the same booking reference number. It wasn’t until we look at the confirmation (which we didn’t get right away) and tried to check-in that we realized. Keep in mind this all happened within 24 hours.

    I am very diligent about these things but sometimes when there is no evidence of the change being made - there is only so much we can do.

    I just couldn’t believe how discourteous and condescending the manager was. Sometimes I think if this was the US, the outcome and my attitude towards the airline would be different.

    I still will not travel with Lufthansa again. There are many airline carriers that would be happy to have our business. I don’t mind paying a few hundred $ if the service is good.

  3. 0

    Joe B. says...

    Lufthansa used to be a name brand when it was something to be proud flying with them, now it is another nickle and dime airline. To bad not many competing airlines for that part of the world.

  4. 0

    Radeyah says...

    I also has a bad experience with them when i went to India last summer. My flight got canceled twice and my parents and I were stuck in Germany for 7 hours:@.

    On top of everything my mother was very sick and all they said was sorry we can’t do anything.

  5. 0

    athletixbc says...

    I have flown back and forth to Europe to visit family a couple of times a year on average. I have flown Air Canada, British Airways, Lufthansa, Air Transat, Air France, and even a couple now defunct smaller carriers. Of all of those, I have always found Lufthansa customer service is far superior to any of the others for trans-Atlantic flights. In fact, Lufthansa is the only airline willing to bail me out when I got stranded by British Airways at Heathrow a few years back. They always do the best they can given the situation.

    I’m sorry you had these problems, but it sounds like you had an issue with one low-level customer service person who inadvertently changed both reservations by mistake. You can not reasonably expect the manager you spoke to to cancel or postpone someone else’s flight to fix the agent’s error. You have to admit had he done that then the other customer would have been upset and they didn’t do anything wrong. Either way, someone would have been upset. His hands were tied and it was a no-win situation for the airline so he did the best he could.

  6. 0

    Jeff K says...

    I’ve flown Luft. numerous times and just like the earlier poster, I’ve really been impressed by their level of service. Air Canada’s staff are way rude, Qantas nice service but horrid seats and legroom to name a few. I hope this is just an isolated incident, I am sorry to hear of your bad encounter.

  7. 0

    Nita says...

    Hi guys,

    being from Germany and living in Canada for 2 years now, I have been going back and forth quite a lot. I always found Lufthansa and Air Canada to be the nicest airlines to fly with - in any regard.
    I hope this was just an isolated incident as well - and I am fairly sure that that’s what it is.

  8. 0

    lalita1985 says...

    Someone posted “You can not reasonably expect the manager you spoke to to cancel or postpone someone else’s flight to fix the agent’s error.”

    While I agree that they can’t cancel someone else’s flight they could have offered to pay for accomodation for the week until the next flight as it was their mistake.

  9. 0

    Julie says...

    Hey PB,

    You should have looked into a family bereavement fare as you were traveling to India for that reason. I’m in the same situation where I just booked a flight to leave for London, England in a few days to scatter my mom’s ashes. When I called customer service ( after a 30 minute wait by phone), I was told that a bereavement fare exists only for passengers traveling form The U.S. to Europe?! How discriminatory….

    Oh well….they probably lost tons of money because of the volcanic activity in Iceland and don’t want to pay out anymore…

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  11. 0

    PB says...

  12. 0

    Coree says...

    Hey PB,

    It’s a real shame you had to go through that experience with Lufthansa. I personally find they are one of the better airlines in terms of customer service and bereavement fares.

    Sometimes in situations like that it is hard to remember that some things the airline simply cannot do. If space is not available it is simply not available. The agents are there to assist passengers and generally are prepared to look at different date or flight options.

    As for the person who suggested they pay for your hotel for a week… That seems a bit unreasonable. It is not their fault (anymore than it is yours) that you need to make a last minute change.

    It is a difficult situation, though. I personally had a very good experience with Lufthansa when my grandfather passed away. The lady I spoke to was very nice and helpful and I didn’t even need to get documentation for the bereavement fare. There are bad apples in every company, though.

    I hope your next experience is much better, PB.

  13. 0

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