I had a nice day outside with my family and just returned home to find a response from SWISS to my DOT complaint. While not wholly unexpected, its arrogant tone and outright fabrication of facts is deplorable.
Here’s the full letter–
Dear Mr. Klint
We received your correspondence from the Department of Transportation, in regard to your booking using your Aeroplan miles for travel on SWISS.
The reservation you purchased on November 30, 2017 was an erroneously published fare that was not calculated, published, or sold by SWISS. The affected itineraries were all mileage award tickets booked via Aeroplan on Air Canada ticket stock for one-way and round-trip travel in first class, despite the fact that award bookings are not permitted in First Class by SWISS as evidenced on the Aeroplan Miles Flight Reward Chart attached hereto.
Your ticket was issued without SWISS’ knowledge or approval. Swiss did not make any changes in our reservation system or have any procedural changes that would have authorized the bookings. The fare you purchased was clearly made available by Aeroplan in error. Pursuant to Rule 005(F) of SWISS’ tariff, which is part of the contract of carriage between SWISS and its passengers, “SWISS reserves the right to cancel reservations and/or tickets issued with an erroneously quoted fare . . .” and “void the purchased ticket . . .” please see attached SWISS tariff.
As soon as SWISS became aware of the erroneous fare, SWISS cancelled those tickets, and promptly contacted Aeroplan. Unfortunately, SWISS has no control over tickets issued by its interline partners. We are happy to see that Aeroplan has contacted the passengers affected by this to personally arrange first or business class redemption on another Star Alliance carrier or reinstate miles free of charge.
We realize, in light of the competitive nature of the airline industry, there is no guarantee of continued patronage and we are appreciative of your support.
Lies, Lies, and More Lies
First, while SWISS places all the blame on Aeroplan and Air Canada, it was the one who released the award space. I worked for Star Alliance and I’m very familiar with the StarNet system. Air Canada or Aeroplan cannot access SWISS space that SWISS does not release. Thus, Rosemary is lying.
Second, this was not an “erroneously quoted fare”. Quote signifies price and the price is not at issue here.
Third, the smug arrogance is disgusting, especially in the final paragraph. Rosemary is a tool and I hope that every one of you receive this take her to task for her disingenuous response. The “our sign is a promise” logo on top begs the question, of what…?
I’m working on a response to SWISS and the DOT and will share that with you later in the day. I will systematically tear apart the pathetic lies and distortions.
To the peanut gallery: if you want to attack me for fighting for consumer rights, save your breath. I make no apologies for standing up against airlines and loyalty programs who believe they can unilaterally cancel fares without any notice or ramifications. This is what I do. And SWISS’s outright lies makes me willing to pursue this matter even more vigorously.
Can’t wait to see how this turns out. I’m on your side. Keep fighting the good fight
Why face all this bad press. They opened space by mistake, then closed it. Just honor the ticketed bookings and make sure you don’t open space by mistake again. They still get paid at a negotiated rate for the ticket.
I got the same BS response. I quickly pulled it apart with FACTS in my response to her.
here here. I got the same form letter and also pointed out those untruths shall we say. I told them about the fact that I was ticketed and picked seats on their airline. I also made non-refundable airplane tickets since no one contacted me about a flight cancellation (I had to proactively call Aeroplan and get my flight changed). I told them they should be responsible for that pursuant to US law but don’t know if that’ll hold water. I also offered to let them let me pay back the miles and get my flight re-instated but doubtful that’ll work. Keep up the good fight!!!
Matthew, you’re fighting an uphill battle. You may have experience working for Star Alliance, but Rosemary is an “Expert.” EXPERT. Imagine how good you have to for your job title simply to be “expert.” You definitely have your work cut out for you on this one.
My wife should work for Swiss; she’s an expert at everything too.
Expert relates to a position seniority smoke mirror “employees advancement” programme Aka blow smoke up your @ss” expert is the lowest normal position btw.
looks like a day of BS responses! This email on AF cancelled business class tickets was actually sent by KLM Service Desk (yes I know KLM/AF are pretty much one and the same, but makes me wonder why its not AF?)
Due to a system error, your ticket/s for travel on Air France in La Première/First Class which was recently purchased has/have to be cancelled and will be fully refunded, consistent with DOT guidelines and policy.
We apologize for this inconvenience.
An Air France representative will attempt to contact you by phone.
If you have any questions in the meantime, Please feel free to contact Air France.com websupport at 1-800-992-3932 to help you in this matter.
We thank you for your understanding and wish you a pleasant day ahead.
“Rosemary” has been very busy sending out form letter lies today.
Bwaaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaa haaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, she signed off as “expert”?? That sounds like some authentic call-center gibberish.
Who in the hell calls themselves “expert”??? “Expert” what? At being “Rosemary”?
Thanks for reading my rant.
As they say in the military…. “Weapons Free”
This is my first time commenting, so please don’t mistake me for those who have attacked you on previous posts. Just dropping in to leave my two cents: I wholeheartedly support your mission here, but personal attacks on the other people involved — such as calling Rosemary a “tool” — do nothing to help your case. Name-calling makes your response seem emotional and irrational, not deliberate and well thought out. Furthermore, whoever is writing these letters is probably parroting the SWISS company line, not stating their personal beliefs (I guess that makes them a “tool” in the literal sense of the word, but it doesn’t seem like that’s what you were trying to convey).
Thanks for your comment. By all definitions, I think it is fair to call Rosemary a tool. However, I agree that addressing her in that manner or in any derogatory or allegedly derogatory way in official correspondence would be counterproductive. You will see that my response to the DOT and SWISS is quite tactful.
And as such, you should probably delete the links to her LinkedIn account below, and scrub her name from these blog posts. Doxing someone for doing her job is disgusting and BoardingArea should not ever support this.
Doxing? I learned a new word!
I’m not sure what the harm is, though. I know she is just a “loyal foot soldier” but it is just a link to her public Linked-In profile. I hope no one is going to call her at home…but I am removing those comments.
You’re putting a lot of trust in random online Internet strangers to not go out and harass her because she wrote you an email. But hey, doxing has never ever ever led to anonymous online harassment before, so you should be good.
As you said yourself below, the letter is written by/heavily reviewed by SWISS legal counsel, not necessarily the thoughts of this woman herself. Doxxing is enough to get banned from Reddit and the comment sections of most major blogs, websites, etc — shouldn’t be any different here. Google has thousands of reasons why doxxing isn’t okay — namely, it’s a huge invasion of privacy. You choose to put your personal info on the internet by running a blog, but it’s not your place to facilitate sharing of personal information about other people without their consent.
@David: In the interest of goodwill and to ensure that this poor woman is not harassed, I have removed her personal information below.
Her last name is Expert. Just like my wife would say mine is from the way I act :D.
Award Expert vs Expert: who will win?
There needs to be put a stop to the mistake fares. Contracts needs to benefits both sides, not one side(An airline), if ticket is issued they have 24 hours to cancel, otherwise they need to honor it.
If the practice of mistake fares not stopped, airlines will start canceling tickets saying they made a mistake by selling it cheap, when they could sell it for more at a later date. If this were to come true, I bet all the people who complain here would start taking Matthew side.
I hope that we will get to see an end of it, if you do go to court don’t settle it outside with non disclose agreement and we will not know what happened.
Waiting for your response Matt. Well done
Is there really such a thing as an expert, Matthew?
I question that in this article which I wrote:
Good luck to you on your perseverance in getting what you want…
I may not the “Thought Leader” but I think I’m an expert on many nuances of travel. 😉
It is interesting that the letter One Mile at A Time received was identical.
We were not the only ones. Others received the identical letter as well, clearly written and/or reviewed by SWISS corporate counsel.
What does this accomplish exactly? Or more importantly, what do you hope this accomplishes? Should we shame her on social media for doing her job? Should we find out more about her and call her personal telephone number? How about harass her on Facebook and twitter. This is disgusting. You should be ashamed of yourself for even thinking of finding her.
I completely agree. This is disgusting. A new low for this blog
I find it very interesting that so far this seems to be only affecting the Aeroplan tickets. I wonder if there are provisions in the star alliance agreements that prevent Swiss from cancelling the rest of these as they would clearly like to. In any event that is certainly going to hurt them if this ends up in court.
Matthew I love ur winning argument here ! They look silly…
what wud u say is the best argument to get the air france la premiere tickets reinstated… Not sure if this helps but i got the tickets thru delta one way… thanx so much for ur help
So according to this customer service manager, you should direct your anger at Aeroplan for ignoring the limitations of the contract limiting mileage redemption to exclude F. Doesn’t that necessitate a response from the accused party?
Go get em. Few others have the time or experience to fight these liars.
I’ve been following this blog now for a few weeks as I am interested in how this plays out. I must say though that attacking an Employee who is just doing their work is low. It shows very bad character and my opinion that you are a travel professional just went down the drain. A professional would never resolve to personal attacks nor posting personal infos on the internet. The case has nothing to do with her.
You can take your anger out on SWISS or Aeroplan as company, but not on people just doing their job.
I still wonder how this will play out, but please live the professionalism that you claim you have and don’t be that d**k that yells at the check-in agent for them just doing their job.
I called her a tool, which she is. This is a descriptive adjective, not a personal attack. It expresses disappointment that she would be the mouthpiece for lies and misinformation. There is no personal info posted. The comment that included a link to her profile on Linked-IN was deleted.
Even if it’s 5mins out the damage “might” already be done. Just look at the comments that have been posted about her.
Also consider that the Airline might be reading your blog too and with personal attacks like that they will be much less lenient (altough I don’t know at this point how they can make good in this issue) and willing to make exceptions.
I’ll keep following this story as long as you stay professional.
Your claim against Swiss makes a lot more sense than your claim against Aeroplan. This is where you should be fighting the fight, that said, the more you talk about how Swiss was really to blame, the worse your case against Aeroplan is going to be.
Guys there’s a difference between the more modern use of “tool” and his use here. Tool refers to her being the vehicle, the instrument, the conduit, for delivering the message.
Also, she’s the other tool, too.
Stop just looking for things to be offended by.
“Expert” hahaha oh my what a joke of a company, thanks for the laugh and keep up the good fight Matthew.
We too are recently a recipient of what I’m convinced was an oversold flight and the airline cancelled our 3 tickets (54 hours after booking and a week before departure) claiming they didn’t mean to sell that low of a price. Today I see an ad in my Facebook feed for just a bit higher but on different dates from them! Totally deflating when calls, emails, and comment submissions to the company are ignored without response.
At least Delta/American fess up when they are to blame and throw some miles at us.