Air India's Questionable Service

To whom it may concern, Flight Air India - AI112
On the 29th May 2011

I am a frequent traveler and have flown with many airlines both in business class and economy class in the past number of years. I was shocked at the treatment i received on my first ever Air India flight and feel compelled to bring this to your attention and possibly bring it to the attention of authorities within the aviation business should we not get a satisfactory solution to the treatment which I encountered.

Before I explain the circumstance of my grievances I would like to point out a few facts, firstly I am regularly a business class passenger but I do understand the difference in expected service between the business class cabin and an economy cabin and I fully accepted that drop in service when I was booking my tickets. Secondly I had recently been ill and was eager to remain hydrated throughout the flight. Finally the awful service and treatment I received wasn’t actually from the young man who served my meals, but from his colleagues while they were seated at the back of the plane during periods in which they were not actively serving a meal or pushing various trolleys up and down.

My first experience of my treatment came when I walked to the back of the plane to go to the toilet and found 3-4 cabin crew members sitting chatting to each other. I wished to cross over to the other side to use the toilets but was told by a young man with terrible manners that I would have to walk the whole way around, as I walked away in bewilderment I could hear this young man and a female member of staff giggling and laughing, now while I obviously don’t know what they were laughing at it certainly made me feel self conscious. I find it impossible to explain how cabin crew would not have the good manners to briefly stand-up to let a paying customer cross the aisle to use the toilet.
My second and somewhat more prolonged experience was when I wished to order water to remain hydrated throughout the flight ( I asked for water 3 times during the flight from London to Delhi which I don’t think is excessive). On the first occasion I turned on the service light, only for a member of the cabin crew to turn it off without asking what I wanted. I turned on the light again, and finally a member of staff approached, with an extremely negative attitude. He may as well have said to me “what are you bothering me for”. I asked him for water which I received as he practically threw the bottle at me without as much as checking if that was all I needed or uttering a word. I really felt as if I was inconveniencing him. On the second occasion my light was on for a prolonged period before the same cabin crew member dealt with me in a similarly awful fashion. Finally on the third occasion which I asked for water the same crew member arrived with a large bottle of water for me, with an expression which suggest he was bored of me interrupting his conversation at the back of the plane.

While none of the above is truly an awful offense I couldn’t help but notice the prompt and courtous responses some of my fellow passengers’ received most notably a middle aged man, clearly of Indian origin. As one of the few Anglo-Irish people on the plane I couldn’t help but think that had I been of a different race (namely Indian) I would have been dealt with in a much more professional manner. I would expect this as a minimum from an airline which is every expanding and looking to truly internationalise their business. Surely this is not just an Indian airline for Indian people but an Indian airline in which all races would be dealt with in the same professional manner.
This experience has truly scared my image of Air India and while I could continue to type my anger on the page I believe it would add little extra. Surely you can see form the above that my experience with the airline was truly awful and I would call on you to at least rectify the treatment i received before my return trip on the 27th of June (Air India - AI333 & Air India - AI111) from Bangkok to London via Delhi. If I have not heard form you before then I will have little option but to bring this matter further, working on the assumption that Air India find this situation acceptable, which I certainly didn’t

Yours sincerely
Conor Brides

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