Years ago I had written about the subject SQLAuthority News – Airline Review – Paramount, Kingfisher, Go Air, Indigo, Jet Airways, Indian Airlines, Spicejet; today this blog post confirms that there is no change in my ranking. There is one change I would like to propose: Remove Spicejet from ranking completely!
My recent experience with Spicejet has been nothing but terrible. Here are the details. I went for a Performance Tuning Assignment to Jaipur few days ago, and while coming back, I opted for Spicejet as it was the only direct flight to my city. I had whole family with me as I stayed over weekend at Jaipur for some sight-seeing. Jaipur is fabulous city and the most attractive part of Jaipur is the people – very nice, polite, helpful and kind people. I am proud that I visited such a wonderful city and met such great people. Such a wonderful experience was ruined by Jaipur Spicejet staff at airport. As I mentioned earlier, I had my whole family with me – my wife, my daughter (11 months), my father and my mother.
Luggage Screening Issue
As soon as we headed towards the Spicejet Ticketing Counter, the problems began. Till we reached the counter, they did not inform us that we need to do separate baggage screening. We had to reload our luggage to trolley and do the same exercise again with baggage screening, and no help was provided by the Spicejet staff. If you know the Indian System, there are always people available to help you with luggage and this process on any airport and here with an infant in hand, I had to do all the work myself with my father (who is a senior citizen). We were finally helped by someone from another airline to load the luggage back.
Same PNR Seating Issue
We did not get seats together even though we reached there 2 hours early. It was very strange as the flight was starting from the Jaipur and there were not much people at the location. After requesting to ticket counter person, he finally managed for us. I am sure he could have done that for us if he wanted to without our request.
Boarding or No Boarding
On right time, there was announcement for boarding and we were called to board the aircraft. For 15 minutes, we were just standing at the gate. Even the security person got frustrated with the ground staff for the same issue. He suggested looking at the crowd and infant in my hand that Spicejet people should announce boarding if they are ready.
After 15 minutes, the ground staff told us that there is “bird hit” and the boarding will start in next 15 minutes.
Bird Hit – 15 Minutes
After 15 minutes, the ground staff told us that there is some technical issue and 15 more minutes are required.
Technical Issue – 15 Minutes
Ground staff told me that they are finally ready and they will start in next 5 minutes
30 Minutes Delayed SMS
We all got an SMS that the flight is delayed by 30 minutes; the ground staff told us that everything is fixed now and they will start the boarding soon.
All this time, we were getting increasingly frustrated.
Continuous False Information
The ground staff continuously provided incorrect information. After about an hour delay, they announced that their engineer has, in fact, just arrived and they will start looking at the aircraft now. This really got many people angry as so far we were told that they had everything has been fixed and we are about to start. When we asked the same information to ground staff, they said this is the information: “Take it or leave it.”
Hungry Infant in Hands
Due to security reasons, liquid food was not allowed to bring in the aircraft and the flight duration was suppose to be only for 1 hour. We did not have much food for my infant kid and she got very much hungry after she was done with her first serving. I explained this situation to ground staff of Spicejet and requested if they can help me in getting my checked in luggage. They said it is not recommended as flight will start soon and if I even go downstairs they will have to reissue my boarding pass, and it may not have same number or I may face “other” issues. My heart skipped a beat thinking about keeping my daughter hungry for next hour but I just thought if this was all getting over in next hour, we will be at home and things will be fine.
Next 2 hours
Nothing happened… No movement, no information, no Spicejet staff around; the only food stall in the airport ran out of the food and drinks, and the only thing was available was FRUSTRATION. With lots of request, Spicejet finally provided a small water bottle and juice. The hungry and thirsty passengers literally ran for water and the chaos was created at airport. When I tried to take help of the Spicejet staff, he said that he is helpless. This is what I should get for flying in low-cost airlines!
Frustration and Statements
The Spicejet ground staff made some statement. I wish I have recorded it to prove what they were really suggesting there. They did not care about customer and insulted everyone as much as they can. They treated us like people in a camp, where they were left to die. I just do not feel comfortable to write here the statement made by them.
Finally, after 4 hours, there was no sign of flight taking off. People were hungry and suffering. My daughter went to sleep after drinking water and only water (any father around to feel my pain!!). Spicejet at last served the food to us. We were given sandwiches, juice bottles, and some nuts. The sandwiches tasted really old and seemed to be uneatable. I still ate some and my mother ate a part of the sandwich. We both immediately felt something fishy in the food which also gave some signs of a stomach upset, and I asked my wife and father not to even touch the food. The sandwiches lead to food poisoning and due to the same, for the next two days, I had a fever with a temperature of 104°. The last time I had fever was 3 years before when I used to stay in USA.
With More Power came More Irresponsibility
Finally, after 4 hours of delay and lots of issues, suddenly they started to board people in the flight. I was happy and stood in the line to board having my daughter in hand. The boarding process was dead slow and when my turn came, the most senior executive of the Spicejet, who was standing at counter validating the tickets, let other people get in front of me and did not allow me to walk in the counter. She continued to entertain others and when I objected, she just refused to respond. I told her that in last 4 hours, I did not complain a single time and kept quite; why is she allowing others to cut the queue in front of me and not paying attention that I have sleeping infant in my hand from last 10 minutes. Can anybody guess her response? She shrugged her shoulders! I just could not take it anymore and I retorted: “I need an answer why I am not allowed.” She did not say anything again and let me go with my family. She once again stopped my father and asked why he does not have boarding pass. My father told her that she has just inspected his pass and gave it to me. She did not believe it. I had to walk back and once again show the pass to her. I ask her name and do you know what she told me – “You can complain where you want to complain.” I told her that I do not like the tone of her voice. She told me - “Thank you Sir, proceed with what you want to do and thanks again!” I think I had enough of bad experience in a day, and I just walked into the aircraft.
Pilot and Customer Fight
As if all of the above incidents were not enough, there was big argument was going on between the Captain of the flight and a customer who came in late. This whole hullabaloo made the flight to start even more late. I just spent my time pacifying my daughter, talking to my wife, and helping my parents.
I still cannot forget the remarks where I was suggested by a Spicejet employee that having an infant is my problem. I still cannot forget the tone with which I was asked to complain wherever I want. I am really upset by the service of this airline. I do not feel good writing this blog post either, but still I felt that it is important to share my experience.
Can anyone suggest where I can complain against this airline and take this matter ahead so that no one ever faces such a difficulty again?
Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com)