Delta sent me an email asking for some feedback about our flight. I got this response in my email today.
This is what I said:
The first leg of our trip was from Chicago to Atlanta. We took off on time from Chicago but landed in Atlanta behind schedule. Then we ran to our connection flight to our destination of Tulsa, OK. The flight was delayed because they were waiting for the crew to show up. We were finally in the air and ready to land and because of the storm we were rerouted in Little Rock, AR. I actually thought this part of the trip was well taken care of for us. Some other passengers were sent to really bad hotels but we were sent to a really nice hotel for a free night. We also received meal vouchers and a $200 travel voucher. I really appreciate how the pilot decided at the last minute not the land because it would have been too dangerous. The gentleman that helped us book a room seemed genuinely concerned about getting everybody a hotel room for the night. Delta redeemed itself but unfortunately the rest of the trip was not so good. On our trip back, we had a layover in Minnesota and then a flight back home to Chicago. We arrived at the airport early and got to the gate just to find out that they were overbooked on the flight or so we thought because they were looking for people to give up their seats. Our flight was not even boarded yet at the time we were supposed to be taking off. We found out later that the real reason that we were delayed was not because they overbooked, but because 3 flight attendants and pilot wanted to fly deadhead and there wasn't room for them. So Delta kicked off paying customers and delayed our flight because a flight crew wanted a free trip to Minnesota. We finally started boarding 20 minutes after we should have been taking off. On top of that, since only 3 people volunteered to switch flights they actually kicked a guy off the flight involuntarily. I don't get too upset if the delay is caused by a mechanical problem because I understand that safety is a priority, but delays caused by a missing flight crew or because a flight crew wants a free trip is not acceptable to me, especially if there no room for them and they are delaying a takeoff. Well our flight finally got into the air and we landed in Minnesota only 15 minutes before our flight to Chicago was scheduled to take off. The flight attendant told the gate number the Chicago flight was supposed to at and told us she hoped we made it. We ran through the terminal to the gate thinking we would get there barely on time anyway just to find out the flight attendant was WRONG!!! We were at the wrong gate and so we had to run through the terminal to the right gate thinking there was no way we were going to make the flight. Well it turns out that Delta's inability to take off on time worked in our favor this time. We finally got to the right gate just to find out that the flight hadn't even boarded yet due to engine troubles. Our 2:15 flight finally took off at 3:30. So where I am thankful that we didn't miss our flight, if the flight would have taken off on time, we would have because of the delay taking off in Tulsa and the flight attendant giving us the wrong gate information. This is not the first time we have had problems with Delta, but certainly the most upsetting.
This is Delta's Response:
Dear Mrs. Pitney,
RE: Case Number 3185831
Thank you for writing about your recent flight experience while traveling with your companions. On behalf of Delta Air Lines and our Connection partner SkyWest and Compass Airlines, I sincerely apologize for our flight delay and lack of assistance from one of our flight attendants. It is abundantly clear that your experience was far from a shining moment in airline travel and far from the level of service you had every right to expect. It was good to know that despite of a flight diversion on your departure flight your situation was handled appropriately.
Moreover, I understand the frustration you experienced when your plans were disrupted due to the delay of our flight for crew reasons departing Tulsa. Your report about the manner in which this was handled by our representatives concerns us. We clearly recognize that we cannot become complacent, and we are actively and aggressively seeking ways to improve all areas of our operation.
Also, it was disheartening to learn that our flight crew advised the wrong gate number for your flight. As our customer, you are in the best position to point out areas that need attention as our goal is to provide accurate information at all times. We will not tolerate discourtesy, and we do all possible to prevent anything similar from happening in the future. Your feelings are very important to us and please know your feedback will be shared with our Airport Customer Service leadership team for internal follow up.
Mrs. Pitney, as our valued customer, you are an integral part of our customer base and we are always interested in your feedback. Thank you for taking the time to write about the flight disruption and poor customer service. Your business is important to us and given the opportunity of serving you in the future, I am confident Delta will not only meet but exceed your expectations.
Henry P. Torrence, Coordinator, Customer Care
Delta Air Lines/KLM Royal Dutch Airlines