Sunday, March 23, 2008

Mental Note: Don't ever fly on KLM again!

I have flown on KLM two or three times, and in Air France two or three times also. Before and after AF adquired KLM. However flying with KLM has never been a pleasant experience and today they just confirmed it.
I flew to France for a short break last tuesday on Air France and I returned today on KLM. To start with the problems they charge me for my skies! When I went to France on Air France I was able to carry my skies for no extra cost. But when returning the lady at the check in told me that in KLM I'm only allowed to carry 20kgs in total, since my skies weight about 7.5kgs + ski boots 3kgs + clothing I was clearly over the limit. Notice that KLM and Air France are theorically the same company, so why the hell rules are different? Since I didn't have a choice I paid (60 euros!), and I expected to be the last of my problems. I should have expected more troubles since they only give me a ticket to Amsterdam and they told me to check in again in Amsterdam (my route was Paris-Amsterdam-Oslo), but since I'm optimistic I didn't think about that.
When in Amsterdam I was directed to the transfer center where a lady explained to me that my flight was oversold by 15 persons, so they would try to find me a place.... way to go, they could have just given me a inflatable boat and told me to sail my way back to Norway....
I arrived at the gate, and the lady there found me a spot, so I thought the worst is over, what could go wrong now?............ Of course, lots of things....
Before departure, a lady came and ask me how many pieces of luggage I had check-in and I told her two. She asked me for the numbers since they were about to unload one package because they didn't know who was the owner (Dear Airline managers, you ask all these questions when you book, then you ask them again when you check-in, and in my case they asked me again when I paid for something that it was supposed to be free, so HOW THE HELL YOU DON'T KNOW WHO WAS THE OWNER!?).... I checked my luggage numbers and what do you know? They were about to unload my skies.... At that time I was really beginning to wonder about the possibility of sailing my way back...
Finally we got to Oslo, and I was just starting to feel better when...... they lost half of the plane's luggage..... don't ask me how, don't ask me why... one would think that finding luggage in a small plane like the 737 is not a big problem, specially since there were no connections between Amsterdam and Oslo but they managed to do it.... So, me and half of the plane were waiting and asking questions at the luggage service and they gave us some forms to fill-in. Boy, I was pissed off at that time, and I just wanted to go home and forget about all of this. Luckily I started filling the form and waited for about 40 minutes because somehow they found the other half of the luggage.
So in short, remembering my previous experiences with KLM and topping everything with today I decided that I will avoid flying on KLM as much as I can, and if I was you I would do it too.
Weird side note, how the hell Air France and KLM are so freaking different? I mean, everytime I 've flown on Air France I have had a very pleasant experience but everytime I go on KLM problems start. Dear Air France Big Kahuna, could you tell your KLM colleague/underling/whatever to improve their service? Since now you own KLM I guess you have some kind of power to change things. A very humble request.

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