• Report: #540826

Complaint Review: United Airlines

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  • Submitted: Wed, December 16, 2009
  • Updated: Tue, December 22, 2009

  • Reported By: Dallas Native — Dallas Texas USA
United Airlines
Internet United States of America

United Airlines Cannot reach anyone in customer service that speaks English! Internet

*Consumer Comment: English at UA - never had this issue arise

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I had a problem with my United Airlines ticket where I felt I was overcharged.  I called customer service and after going through "press this button for this" numerous times, I finally got someone that was in India or Pakistan. 

I tried to explain to the person my problem but he barely spoke English.  I find that even if these people from these countries do have some grasp of the language, they do not know how to communicate well nor are they able to deal with a somewhat complex situations.

On top of that, I find that they are arrogant as I believe this is their culture.  I cannot understand why a company as large as United outsources their customer service call center to a foreign country.  If you want my business you had better make sure I am able to communicate with someone in English.

Anyway, I explained the best I could to Abdul or whatever and he said he would check into it and call me back.  He never did.  A few days later, I spent another 30 minutes going through voice mail hell again and being put on hold.  Finally spoke with another person from the Middle East.

He as the previous person was arrogant and tried to get into a debate, which turned into somewhat of an argument.  I find these people really like to argue with you and again I think this is a cultural thing.  Was still not able to get him to understand what I was trying to get across.

I looked online and in the Yellow Pages for a United Airlines number where I could speak to someone in English but every number I called, I got routed right back to Pakistan or India.

Finally, I found out about a government website where you can file a complaint against an airline and you can actually get something done this way.  Here it is:  http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/.

I sent a letter to this agency and low and behold, a United Airlines employee that actually spoke English called me from Illinois.  In about ten minutes we had the problem resolved.  Complaints with this agency are actually kept in a database and when you read somewhere about the number of complaints filed against airlines, this is where they get the data.

So the airlines really care about complaints filed with this agency as I got results fairly quickly.  From now on when I have an airline complaint I will just send a letter off to this agency and wait for a phone call from someone that actually speaks English.  Imagine that!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/16/2009 04:56 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/United-Airlines/internet/United-Airlines-Cannot-reach-anyone-in-customer-service-that-speaks-English-Internet-540826. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

English at UA - never had this issue arise

AUTHOR: Pj-chicago/global - (U.S.A.)

I read your complaint and it seems slightly racial - though having had other companies with outsourced support in foriegn places - it can be challenging... but I think this is a little exaggerated...

Though as for UA - I have ALWAYS spoke to a USA based agent - and I fly frequently and call often to change seats or inquire as to other flight options to make changes to my itinerary (almost monthly or more often)...

Summary - I guess your "mileage" will vary...


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