Tuesday, May 28, 2013

My disappointment over Tiger Airways - SEAIR's flight cancellation

When the Piso fare was offered by Tiger Airways (in partnership with SEAIR) last February 2013, I didn't think twice about booking a trip with them. And since I wanted to visit Davao this year in time for Kadayawan, I was lucky to find seats that offered P1 for each route (MNL-DVO-MNL). My total was PHP675.04 (fare price + fare fees & taxes + service fee +  special services a.k.a. extra baggage allowance). So when I got my booking details, I paid for my ticket at Cebuana Lhuiller that same day. Come 10:22 AM, I was already paid in full. So when I got home, I immediately called SEAIR's hotline to confirm my payment. 2 days later (after following up my trip details a few times), they finally emailed my itinerary. I also asked the CSR if there were hidden charges, which she answered 'no' to. I mean, the rate was unbelievably cheap so I had to ask. It was just too good to be true. Then again, it was.



And on May 2, I received this unfortunate email from Tiger Airways...




As soon as I read the email, I called up Tiger Airways. I had to ask if I could get my ticket rebooked instead. But all I got for an answer was that a "full refund" was the only option for this particular cancelled flight. I was already stressed at that point. I even asked the first CSR that I talked to if there was a specific person that I can contact, which she couldn't supply me. I even had to tell her about my paid hotel booking. Still there was nothing to be done. Hassle, right? I mean, it was already a great inconvenience despite being offered a full refund.

Anyway, here's the details of what I got out of the CSR's that I talked to during my ordeal with Tiger Airways-SEAIR:

NOTE: Cancelled flight's reason: OPERATIONAL REQUIREMENT as released by the Airport Management.

When I asked what that meant, the CSR's could no longer explain further.

So I ranted and told a fellow travel blogger from Davao about my misfortune, and he advised that I call CAAP re the matter. So I did. I got to speak with a certain Mr. Cayabyab (after being passed on from one personnel to another), and told him about my situation. But he was only able to tell me that the dispute should be taken directly to the airline concerned, since it's no longer in their hands. That's also the time when he adviced that I check the Air Passenger Bill of Rights. And so I read the bill. At that point, I was more disappointed since CAAP couldn't help me either.

Screenshot from Gov.ph site

I later on found out that one more fellow travel blogger got his Davao flight cancelled as well. I was also able to hear from a reliable source the truth behind the cancellation. But I won't divulge that information anymore. I was just really disappointed with how Tiger Airways-SEAIR dealt with this matter. I mean, I was really looking forward to going to Davao and meeting friends. I've already booked my hotel and now they've cancelled without any option to rebook. They didn't even offer to pay for my hotel deposit. Sure, there's a full refund. Then again, they haven't done anything favorable for us affected passengers. That PHP1 fare that was offered clearly reflected a very bad marketing strategy and more!

Anyway, I'm about to get my refund from Cebuana Lhuiller this week, since I can walk a little faster now. So let's see if they'll issue the full refund, including their Convenience Fee of PHP125. 

Right now, I'm currently looking for seat sales as I really want to push through with my trip to Davao. Here's to hoping that I don't get anymore cancelled flights. Lesson learned though --- if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is.

How about you? Have you had any airline cancellation stories that was an inconvenience to you? Pleas do share them with us! 

Explore & Be Free!
Mai

UPDATE: May 30, 2013

I went to Cebuana Lhuiller, Roces Avenue yesterday (the branch where I paid), but was informed that my refund will be received from another entity. The Cebuana representative told me to call a certain number, and so I dialed it today.

The company (vaguely heard the name though but it sounded "something" travel agency) took my details and was informed that my refund total only amounted to P555.04. The PHP120 Service Fee was already excluded from the whole thing --- the one that I paid for when I booked online. So not only did I lose that PHP120, I also lost PHP125 from Cebuana Lhuiller's Convenience fee, which Tiger Airways won't be paying for. That's P245 down the drain! 



But as not to ruin my whole morning, I decided to have my refund deposited instead of picking it up at the agency's Makati office (hassle at gastos pa sa commute!). The lady told me to call should I fail to get my refund after 3-4 weeks. TAGAL NOH? So much for offering low fares TIGER AIRWAYS! Never again. You not only succeeded in making me pay for a hotel stay that I may not get to use anymore, you made me spend PHP245 for nothing. 

UPDATE: July 2, 2013

Thank God I finally received that PHP555.04 from the travel agency! I actually called the agency yesterday to follow up on the payment since it hasn't been deposited on my account yet (after 4 long weeks). But I finally got the refund today. So thankful that I got that back at least. But I won't be booking any more flights with Tiger Airways. Such a hassle availing of their services.

34 comments:

  1. I got the same reason from Air Asia when we booked our tickets to Davao for November. I'm still clueless what does it exactly mean. My boyfriend and his family got their tickets during a seat sale promo whereas mine is a regular priced ticket. Nonetheless, all of us received an e-mail last week that our flight has been rescheduled. Until now, there's still no e-mail regarding our new flight schedule. It's so difficult to be kept in the dark especially when you have to plan your leaves. :/

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  2. I know right? And oo nga sis. I've been scouting for cheaper fares pero sa subok ko ng airlines. Ako rin sobrang looking forward pa naman to meeting you and the other PTB's. Sana talaga matuloy ako. :)

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  3. Looks like all our airlines have shortcoming. This is bad in promoting tourism and travel in the country.

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  4. Ouch! That sucks big time :( Tiger Airways is not serving flights in my area but based on your post, I won't be boarding them if I had another choice. I hope you find a cheap flight from another airline soon so your hotel booking won't go down the drain as well.

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  5. I had bad experience with them as well, a flight to PH from Guangzhou, and to make the story short when I and a friend went to the airport they said that the flight will be delayed. advice us to wait for an hour or two (walang definite time of waiting) and then after two hours of waiting sabi nila ok na but then when we showed out ticket print one of them told my friend that her flight is cancelled, of course she is so furious we demanded an explanation suddenly the worst reason I have ever heard in my whole life, "we prioritize those who paid their ticket on a regular prize" wow really!!! so they are selling the same ticket for a promo and a regular prize, we were so angry that yes we even shouted at the staff, but we still end up buying a regular prize ticket for her since mine was bought on a regular prize. they are really crazy that was the last time I boarded tiger airways. even if they say they are the cheapest I dont really care, they are one of the lousiest airline in asia.

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  6. They are "rebranding" daw so there might be a chance that they would be improving their service. But then, that is never 100% sure. Also, most airlines today are experiencing problems, especially with customer service :( I still hope you get to buy your tickets in another airline.

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  7. I think that no matter how "bulok" their service is, they will still have returning customers because we are given with such limited choices only -- to fly to different destinations with tight budget.

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  8. We should really have a lot more choices, I have personally boycotted Air Phil (PAL Express) for rebooking my flight one day later without my consent. So, I have to take alternatives that's available.

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  9. wow! this incident really is a pain in the neck for anybody. If ever hindi ako magpa-pa-book sa Tiger air.

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  10. tsk tsk very disappointed indeed I hope tiger airways should be careful next time in handling this kind of scenarios ...

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  11. Tiger Air sure proved to be a disappointment. Offering promotions which are not followed faithfully is disappointing enough, what more with a cancelled offer. I can just imagine how you feel.

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  12. GRRR! This is so disappointing! I hope the Tiger Airways management would read this post and grant you a free trip.

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  13. Oh! That sucks! I've heard so many reviews and complaints about Tiger Airways. Hope they can do something about it.

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  14. Such not a good service at their part. Tsk tsk tsk. Other people must know this shady service of them.

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  15. Now with the many "anomalies" that have been striking Cebu Pacific, I think it's better to fly via Tiger Airways.

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  16. Glad you shared this one. My friend had a bad experience as well but in her case, it was Air Asia who's at fault. They had this cheap promos but cancelled it twice. Now that's the downside of availing these things. You'll never know what will happen next.

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  17. Hala :( Sobrang hassle nga nito Mai :( I am now thinking of staying with cebu pac or airphil

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  18. wow hussle indeed my husband and his friend got some problem with tiger as well and after that they never fly with tiger haha You know foreigners. That's very sad and very bad for their name.

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  19. thanks for sharing the kind of service they had.

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  20. Finally, you got your refund though all the hassle for P555.04 pesos.

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  21. Two more weeks and I'm flying to Kalibo with Tiger Airways as my carrier. I hope everything will go smoothly.

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  22. Their service really sucks! If that happens to me, I won't really dare to have a ride once again.

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  23. That is just a bad customer service and so unacceptable. Why do they have those offers and to not being honored in the end?

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  24. that was really unfortunate, but then again we do not know what would happen if you continue in your journey... you've been delayed for a purpose. looking forward though in your visit to our city. Yahweh bless.

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  25. OMG. This is just so bad. Hassle and stressful. That's true, nowadays whenever I encounter too good to be true promos, I just give them a pass. I first heard of Tiger Airways when I was in Australia, good thing we did not consider their airlines. They have really cheap ticket prices so we doubted it and now I'm thankful we did.

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  26. This is really a disappointment after all you've been through and all the hassle. They should have focused more on getting a better service especially on case like this than marketing.

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  27. argh! so kumita sayo ang Cebuana as well as Tiger Airways? bad!


    one of my friend bought a ticket from a different airline.. and it was cancelled too.. though the airline offered for another flight (which is later of the same day) my friend refused and she was given a full refund..


    I can just imagine the hassles you've been through because of the inefficiency of this airline company..

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  28. i share the same sentiments. last september 2012 i booked 5 round trip tickets to bangkok in tiger airways, our flight was scheduled on november 2012 but to my dismay when i checked the website 2 weeks before our flight it was cancelled. i called the CSR and gave me the same reason i.e. operational requirement by the airport management. I told them that i'm not accepting their apology and that we need to go as scheduled. i talked to their supervisor and he offered to transfer us to another flight. lucky for us we were able to travel as scheduled. Make them feel guilty when they cancel your pre-planned vacation. it helps. =)

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  29. Kaya siguro hindi tumagal ang Tiger Airways before because of these instances. Poor Service. But I hope you'd still push through visiting Davao. I'm from Davao. I bet you'll enjoy it here...

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  30. My flight was also cancelled. And until now, (2 months after) NO REFUND yet! I will never ever book in this plane again.

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  31. Hi Eunice!


    Was your flight entirely cancelled (with refund) or is still subject to be rebooked?

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  32. gooodness! Grabe ang hassle na dulot nitong tiger airways! Pffft
    I hope there's promo pa so you can still join the kadayawan and hey im so so looking forward to meet you!!!

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  33. This indeed disappoints customers and they should not expect to be praised for their services. They should offer compensation of some sort.

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  34. What a disappointment. I will never ride in Tiger Airways if they'll continue that kind of work. Cancelling the flight without any valid reason is stupidity!

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