Any of you who follow me on social media will know that I did not have the best experience with Turkish Airlines recently on our honeymoon. So, my opinion of them is pretty low. However, I will say that the actual in-flight service is very good. The planes themselves are big and comfortable and more spacious than other planes, the food is decent (as decent as airline food can be) and they give you blankets, toothbrush, toothpaste and slippers on long haul flights which I really appreciated!
My issue with Turkish Airlines lies solely with their customer service department. We
took 4 different flights with Turkish Airlines over the course of about 10 days, and unfortunately from flight number 1, we had issues. Our first flight was from Dublin to Tbilisi, but we had a 7 hour stopover in Istanbul. We were setting off on honeymoon and were very excited. Unfortunately on that flight we encountered two issues; 1 – my screen, although it worked, wouldn’t play any movies or TV shows, so I could swipe back and forth between different screens, but it couldn’t actually play anything. This is not the end of the world, but on a 5 hour flight, it is annoying. 2 – the cabin temperature for the duration of the flight became increasingly hot, as in, unbearably hot. By the time we landed, everyone was sweating profusely, fanning themselves, and I was feeling quite sick because of the stuffy heat we experienced on board the flight. Again, not a major issue, but more of an annoyance.
Skip ahead to our next flight from Istanbul to Tbilisi, no issues on board thankfully, but our flight was delayed. Then when we landed, we were stuck on the tarmac for another while. We were due in at 3am and we got in at about 5am. Again, I don’t mind the delays. But when we got to the conveyor belt to collect our bags, that’s when the real issues started. My bag came out with a couple of dents on it, not a huge issue, but it was a brand new suitcase that I had just purchased. However, when we saw Phil’s bag, we were so confused. His bag had a giant hole in the corner, it was totally destroyed. I still don’t understand how it happened to be honest!
Now all of these small issues; screen not working, crazy
heat in the cabin, flight being delayed, my suitcase being dented, I could cope with. They were all small issues and not the end of the world. However, Phil’s bag being totally destroyed, meaning we now had to find a store in Tbilisi and go shopping for new suitcase while ON HONEYMOON?? This, I was not ok with.
Before leaving Tbilisi airport, Phil walked around to see if there was anyone we could report our damagaed/destroyed bags to. Tbilisi airport is small and it was 5am. He did find a Lost Property kiosk but there was no one there. We were absoutely shattered after the wedding weekend and then the travelling so we just left the airport and went to our hotel.
We napped in the hotel, then I took pictures of our suitcases. I had already submitted a feedback report about my screen not working, so I sent a new one abut the suitcases, and attached pictures. I got an email back about the bags telling us to submit our complaint using a different method and they provided a link.
Now here’s where I got really annoyed with Turkish Airlines. I submitted the feedback about the screen not working on July 2nd, I also submitted the two cases about the suitcases on that day. I received a responses re the inflight screen on July 4th, asking me for my ticket number. Keep in mind I had already provided my name, flight number and even my seat number. After I responsed on July 4th, I never heard from them again until last night actually, July 18th.
We got responses about our bags very quickly, and no wonder, because both our responses said that because we didn’t report the issues with the bags at Tbilisi airport, they wouldn’t review our file and wouldn’t be compensating us. Needless to say, I was livid. I sent them back multiple responses advising that there was no where in Tbilisi airport to make that report at 5am in the morning. They kept sending the same response back, which only pissed me off further.
Now, I was pissed about everything, I was pissed about my screen not working, about the
cabin temperature, about our flight being delayed, aboutthe dent in my bag, Phil’s bag being destroyed, the lack of response to my feedback about the screen not working and their total unwillingness to take responsibility for our bags. I was emailing them any way I could trying to explain the overal situation and how we felt we were being ignored and I wanted 2 things – 1 to be upgraded on our flight with Turkish Airlines from Istanbul back to Toronto and 2 – for Phil to be fairly compensated. I just wanted them to cover the cost of the new suitcase that Phil had to buy (I sent them the receipt).
I sent multiple emails to no avail, I was being ignored. The night before our flight back to Toronto (July 10th), I still had not received any responses, so I called the customer service line. I was transferred to multiple people, eventually got through to one person and I explained the whoe saga to him. I advised that we were on honeymoon and I felt the least Turkish Airlines could do was upgrade our seats for the following day. I also expained that I was tired of dealing with numerous different departments of Turkish Airlines. He, of course, couldn’t help but promised me someone would call me before our flight the next day. No one ever called. I tried to get upgraded in the airport, telling multiple people the whole story, but to no avail.
Fast forward to us being back in Canada, I decided to try to use social media to help me and posted about this on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Turkish Airlines reached out via Twitter. A couple of days later I got an email saying I would be receiving $96USD for my damaged suitcase. Phil received an email the same day saying he wouldn’t be compensated. Yes, you read the right. It makes zero sense, why would they compensate me for my damaged bag but not compensate Phil when his bag was totally destroyed and he had to buy a new one?
That’s where we still are today. I have posted on Twitter a couple of times and they keep
messaging me saying “we have passed your feedback to the relevant area”. Phil has sent mulitiple requests asking why he isn’t being compensated but they aren’t responding.
The whole situation with them left a bitter taste in my mouth. I don’t understand how they can get away with destroying suitcase but not compensating someone. They eventually took responsibility for my damaged bag, so why wouldn’t they take responsbility for Phil’s?
All in all, even though our on board experience with Turkish Airlines was good, I won’t fly with them again. I feel we have been mistreated and they are just trying to ignore us hoping we go away. Your honeymoon is supposed to be this amazing trip, which it was, but this saga defintely took away from it somewhat.
So if you do ever fly with them, and your bag gets damaged DON’T LEAVE THE AIRPORT WITHOUT SPEAKING TO SOMEONE. Even if there is no one there, you had better live at the airport because otherwise you won’t get compensated.