The flight attendant was rude. Your luggage was lost. The in-flight movie was Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2. We've all had a bone to pick with an airline at some point, but most of us feel complaining is useless.
While some travel issues are unavoidable and best handled with patience, others should be addressed.
Here are three steps for effectively voicing your complaint and getting satisfaction:
- Take your complaint to the airline. Give them the opportunity to make things right. They're the only ones who can refund your money or issue you a credit, so it's best to start there.
- No satisfaction from the airline? Move on to Uncle Sam. File a complaint with the Department of Transportation's Aviation Consumer Protection Division.
An analyst investigates every complaint. Serious issues are sent to the airlines for resolution, but all problems are added to a public report of complaints that is published monthly.
- Want your complaint to reach an even bigger audience? Try social media. Tweet it. Yelp about it. Post it on Facebook. Create a blog and collect stories from other fuming passengers. Don't underestimate the power of getting the word out via the Internet. The message might reach the airline, but more importantly, it will reach other travelers.