WestJet incapable of working with partner airlines?

Discussion in 'Other Airlines | North America' started by igloocoder, Nov 4, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. igloocoder
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    igloocoder Silver Member

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    So here's my experience from the past few days. I've never had anything like this happen before and I've flown on more than one or two flights, airlines and tickets with multiple airlines on them.

    I book a ticket YEG-YYC-LHR-PRG and return. YEG-YYC is on WS (BA codeshare flight number) and the rest is on BA. The ticket is booked from ba.com. 24 hours before departure I hit BA's online checkin and find out I can't checkin yet because its' not 24 hours before departure of the first flight on their iron. Conveniently the error page tells me the WS PNR so I go over to westjet.com and use that PNR to try to online checkin for the first segment of the trip. The online checkin process starts grinding away and displays to me my name to select for checkin. I choose it and click next only to be presented with "an error has occurred <blah> <blah> <blah>". Nothing specific was in the error message. I try off and on for a couple hours always with the same result. I call WS support and am told by them that "IT says they have the system offline for a couple of hours. Try again after that"...which sound pretty suspicious. So I try again for a few hours with no success. 12 hours after checkin opened I still was getting the same message. I reached out via twitter and was told that I couldn't checkin because "there are partner airlines on your ticket." Okay....whatever....this is obviously a problem that *no* other airline has ever encounter or fixed...but whatever. I resign myself to standing in the queue at the airport to do my checkin.

    Meanwhile, my flights on BA have opened up and I've been able to checkin on those flights and get prime seat selection. Since they're the longer flights I'm a happy camper.

    Departure day comes and I get to the airport and there, miraculously, is no queue. I go right up to the checkin agent and start the process. He gets me sorted out for the first segment on WS and then starts to slow down. He asks some jumbled set of words that sort of mention "...your frequent flier..." so I tell him that I'm crediting to BA and using that number and that I've already successfully checked in on those flights and have printed boarding passes. He says "oh, that's good. You're good to go then" and sends me on my way.

    Flight to Calgary was uneventful (although I never realized how antiquated the IFE on the WS planes were). I get into the lounge, enjoy my wine and then head off to board. My section gets called and then it all goes to hell. When they scan my printed boarding pass the system flashes red and I'm told to go to the side. After some consternation and about 3 BA reps looking at the system I'm told that "we didn't expect you on the flight today". I double check my brain and sure enough it's the right day for my flight. I few minutes later I'm told "It looks like WestJet off loaded you from the flight so we're working to get you back on it". WTF Buttercup? So I was off loaded, my seats were given away and now BA was scrambling to see if they had space on a flight for me. Turns out there was one remaining seat on the plane and it happened to be in my booked class. By this time we were getting close to departure so the BA reps told me to check at LHR to make sure the return segments weren't messed up too. Luckily BA confirmed that there were no issues with the return but the agent there couldn't fathom how or why WS would offload me.

    I haven't flown WestJet in almost 7 years. I know the hillbillies and rednecks in my part of the world swear by them but I suspect that few of them do multi-airline trips. Is this kind of ****up normal by WS standards?
     
    pointshogger likes this.
  2. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    You shouldn't have checked in with BA directly. That can screw stuff up on underline itineraries pretty nasty.
     
  3. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    I do it all the time with AC partners and have never had an issue ...
     
  4. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Friends don't let friends fly WestJet.

    Nearly typed "WestJest."
     
  5. igloocoder
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    igloocoder Silver Member

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    As have I. If I weren't to do this the only option I have then is to not check in until I arrive at the airport since WS doesn't support it. At that point I forgo any options I have for early seat selection. If these two airlines are partners then you'd think that they'd have thought about the possibility that this situation might happen....you know...booking flights on both partners on the same itinerary.

    I agree. Will be avoiding them for another 7+ years I suspect.
     
  6. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    I have been tempted, however, when I am in the mood for a sing along! :p :rolleyes:
     
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  7. igloocoder
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    igloocoder Silver Member

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    So I made my return voyage the other day. BA out of Europe and WS out of YVR. Online check-in via the BA website went off without a hitch for all 3 segments. Boarded and flew my PRG-LHR segment without issue. Waited for almost 6 hours in LHR T5 (saw Mr Ramsay at his namesake restaurant in T5). Eventually got to boarding and what do you know, I get to the gate agent and the scan of my boarding pass returns an ominous red light. The gate agent quickly searches by last name on the system, and tells me "Sorry Mr. Igloocoder, we've upgraded you to a business class seat. I hope a window is fine." In 10s I went from fearing another reason to need to drink to looking forward (or reverse as the seating plan had me facing) to tucking into multiple bottles of Tattinger.
     
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  8. DebraI
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    DebraI Silver Member

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    I just flew from Edmonton to Glasgow (the milk run), and on the overnight flight from Halifax to Glasgow (only 4.5 hours) the two flight attendants up front wouldn't shut up. I even paid extra for 'Plus' (laughable) to try to get some sleep. They literally talked the whole flight, other than the short periods they were serving customers. I've never seen more discourteous flight attendants in many years of travel. I ended up complaining and they gave us both a flight credit that I will likely never use, as I probably won't fly WS for a long time to come. The $500 r/t fare (inc. taxes) to Glasgow and back from Dublin was just too great to pass up, and at least I got about 10k AA miles out of it. But wow... they really have to step up their game if they are going to try to compete with the big boys on the overnight flights.
     
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  9. pointshogger

    pointshogger Silver Member

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    Would love to see WestJet join an airline alliance. Though it's probably a pipe dream. At least more codeshare partners like Alaska Airlines.
     

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