Qatar disapointment

14 replies

SteveCF

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 15 Aug 2012

Total posts 67

As many will be aware, Greece had terrible bushfires with many people victims of terrible burns. The Australian medical community rallied and sent Burns doctors and nurses to provide medical treatment, when they arrived the local hospitals didn’t have the required equipment. 

At short notice over a weekend we pulled together the required equipment and a nurse  flew with the devices so they could perform literally life saving procedures.
At the airport however, Qatar would not budge on the excess baggage fee and the nurse paid 950.00 of her own money so the equipment could go. She had all the documentation and proof of what the equipment was for and yet Qatar would not budge.
From reports it was not a full flight and some of the Qatar staff apologised because the team leader who had the authority to waive the fee was so unhelpful.
So many people sacrificed at personal cost and time to help these patients, what a shame Qatar couldn’t come to the party.


Poll: Do you think Qatar was

moa999

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 02 Jul 2011

Total posts 835

I suspect Australian airport staff being an outstation are contractors, not actual Qatar staff, and if the computer says no, they likely have little option.


You may have had a better luck contacting Qatar in advance over social media where you can at least reach a decision maker.

BTW Good on you for helping out.

SteveCF

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 15 Aug 2012

Total posts 67

Thanks moa999, unfortunately timelines weren’t great.

However the other Qatar staff said the team leader had the authority to waive the cost and they were very disappointed in how it was dealt with.
We have emailed Qatar on behalf of the nurse with no success at this point.
Let’s see what happens, but you could well be right, computer says no so no it is.

aggie57

QF

Member since 04 Apr 2014

Total posts 138

Congratulations for pulling that together on such short notice! Efforts like that need to be recognized for the help they give people in difficult situations.

nige00160

Member since 07 Jan 2016

Total posts 43

It may also be worthwhile sharing your story with some of the mainstream media outlets in Athens. One of the journalists may pick up the story and seek a more detailed explanation from the local Qatar representative.

pearsonlive

Member since 10 Jul 2015

Total posts 9

Whilst it is a great thing you've done at such short notice, you would have been well aware that the equipment was over the baggage allowance. Maybe next time, contact the airline in advance to allow them to fully understand the nature of the trip and the reason for the excess baggage.

Eagles94

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 02 Jul 2018

Total posts 9

Well done SteveCF on your generous actions.

Agree on some comments that maybe airport staff and duty manager could have waived the fee and that perhaps calling Qatar before could have avoided this .
However I'm more interested in Qatar's response and actions now .

mannej

QF

Member since 21 May 2014

Total posts 173

It is worth noting that airlines have removed a lot of the flexibility away from check-in staff when it comes to things such as waiving excess baggage fees. Unfortunately it is a case of if it isn't arranged for in advance, you will have situations such as what the nurse did. I doubt that QR would be the only one who would act in this manner.

However the efforts to get the equipment over the Greece must be commended, as the fires were fairly horrific.

Chris Chamberlin

Member since 24 Apr 2012

Total posts 1,096

It is worth noting that airlines have removed a lot of the flexibility away from check-in staff when it comes to things such as waiving excess baggage fees. Unfortunately it is a case of if it isn't arranged for in advance, you will have situations such as what the nurse did. I doubt that QR would be the only one who would act in this manner.
However the efforts to get the equipment over the Greece must be commended, as the fires were fairly horrific.

Qatar Airways unfortunately adopts a strict set of procedures for almost everything and gives most employees no leeway to make decisions outside of what's 'allowed'. It's disappointing to hear that the one person who had that authority chose not to make an exception for a very worthwhile cause, however.

Dredgy

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 02 Apr 2017

Total posts 164

a) Thanks for helping in a worthwhile cause. It's great to see Australian's helping out in the world.

b) I hope your organisation reimbursed the nurse while sorting out with Qatar. She definitely shouldn't have to cover the cost!
c) Qatar should absolutely have waived the fee. They are a very rigid procedural airline, and perhaps you should have contacted them in advance, but if the plane was capable of taking the load and there was someone there who had the authority to waive the fee, then they made the wrong decision.

Pay my own way

Member since 28 Jul 2018

Total posts 1

I'll also be interested in QR's response. My own experience of QR is that its staff are totally inflexible. While travelling on a QR J Class sector I completed a FF Application form. Some six months later I received the membership details and saw that my name was incorrectly spelled. I emailed their Customer Relations department and requested that the change (their error) be made. My request was refused and I was asked to email my passport page showing my name. Obviously this was not acceptable and I declined on the grounds of security. Various QR staff members would not move from their position, despite it being their error. Eventually when my passport only had six months validity and I was about to apply for a new one I forwarded the details to them. I was then told this this documentation was insufficient and that I would also have to forward a copy of my driving licence. It seems that their procedures are far too rigid.

mannej

QF

Member since 21 May 2014

Total posts 173

I'll also be interested in QR's response. My own experience of QR is that its staff are totally inflexible. While travelling on a QR J Class sector I completed a FF Application form. Some six months later I received the membership details and saw that my name was incorrectly spelled. I emailed their Customer Relations department and requested that the change (their error) be made. My request was refused and I was asked to email my passport page showing my name. Obviously this was not acceptable and I declined on the grounds of security. Various QR staff members would not move from their position, despite it being their error. Eventually when my passport only had six months validity and I was about to apply for a new one I forwarded the details to them. I was then told this this documentation was insufficient and that I would also have to forward a copy of my driving licence. It seems that their procedures are far too rigid.

For example should one want to change their name on QFF due to marriage, they are required to send proof (i.e the Marriage certificate).

SteveCF

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 15 Aug 2012

Total posts 67

a) Thanks for helping in a worthwhile cause. It's great to see Australian's helping out in the world.
b) I hope your organisation reimbursed the nurse while sorting out with Qatar. She definitely shouldn't have to cover the cost!
c) Qatar should absolutely have waived the fee. They are a very rigid procedural airline, and perhaps you should have contacted them in advance, but if the plane was capable of taking the load and there was someone there who had the authority to waive the fee, then they made the wrong decision.

Hi Dredgy, we are working to see if the airline will reimburse at the moment. Still no luck. We are looking at covering the cost and working through compliance at the moment as our industry is heavily regulated.

lafleche

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 08 Jun 2016

Total posts 24

As with previous comments - can't change their strict 'follow the rules' mentality, so the 'post incident' actions are now key. Twitter has always been a terrific tool to get companies to sit up and take notice. Such a public forum and this is terrible PR for Qatar. Don't know if you've done that - but worth a shot if getting nowhere through official letter writing channels. Just make sure to copy a number of newspapers or journos on your post.

Wonderful initiative by you and your colleagues, btw.

Joe

Member since 03 May 2013

Total posts 101

I'm currently on a trip to Europe and Middle East and flew Qatar J. Amazing in-flight and unfriendly rigid mafia like on the ground. Back to QF/EK for me which is a shame. For an all round service Qatar is average. I won't be flying Qatar again. I think for an all round oneworld/QF service Emirates(on QF paper), Qantas, Qatar in that order.

Last editedby Joe at Aug 31, 2018, 04:50 PM.

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