I'd like to share two disappointing experiences with you. The first experience was an overseas flight with my wife and 1-year-old daughter during, which we encountered five inconveniences including a toilet leaking into our legroom. The events are described in my letter to Lufthansa (excerpt):
1. In order to give our daughter as much sleep as possible prior to long flights departing in the morning, we usually check in ourselves and our baggage the evening before the flight. I called Lufthansa customer service on Saturday September 1 to check whether this was
possible and how late the check-in counters will be open that evening. The customer service representative informed me that this is possible and that the counters are open until about 20.00. This was obviously incorrect because all Lufthansa check-in and service counters were
closed when we arrived at approx. 19.00.
2. The next morning check-in turned out to be unsatisfactory because Lufthansa was unable to provide me and my wife seats next to each other on the FRA-LAX flight. I was instructed that this can only be done in Frankfurt. The attendant's attitude was very negligent and she called me rude.
3. In order to obtain adjacent seats for me and my wife, we had to consult Lufthansa customer service at Frankfurt. There were about 50-60 people in line for Lufthansa customer service and only a few customer service representatives were present. This obviously ruined our plan to have a relaxed layover in Frankfurt.
4. On board the airplane we had another substandard experience. An apparent lavatory malfunction caused a stinking liquid to wet the carpet by our feet by the bulkhead. This made us feel uncomfortable and limited the available space for our daughter to move around. I was
also forced to wear shoes the entire flight to avoid contaminating my feet, socks and shoes. The flight attendants did what they could to cover the smell, cover the contaminated area with napkins and close the lavatory in question upon my request. Nevertheless, this caused a great deal of discomfort and a threat to the health of our daughter.
5. When we finally arrived at LAX, one piece of our luggage was unfortunately missing.
The second unpleasant experience was the way Lufthansa dealt with the issue. After several phone calls and exchanging letters and e-mails, I received a discount coupon.
I understand that an airlines responsibility is limited to getting a passenger safely to the destination, but when substandard things pile up like like they did in our case, I'd expect more than an attempt to sell more flights! What are my rights as a passenger as far as demanding adequate service goes?
Attached is also the response from Lufthansa and the coupon they gave me (which naturally doesn't apply to taxes&fees).