On Saturday I called Polaris Traveler and spoke with someone regarding my difficulty in booking my flight from LHR to ACC. I called back at 1135 on Monday May 24th and spoke with a woman..(the name was unable to be understood, sounded like Elmira). I told them I was unable to book my ticket and was wondering if they were able to – she said she could not do it without the person physically present. I understood that – I simply wanted to know if it was possible to purchase a ticket because of the difficulties I’d been having and due to the fact I was once advised I couldn’t book the ticket through a travel agent because it didn’t originate in the US (having already purchased my Columbus to Heathrow ticket.) She proceeded to give me the same response. I then told her I understood she couldn’t book my ticket without me being present, nor did I expect her to. She said they just needed me to be present with a credit card.
I then asked, “What credit cards do you take?” She replied: all of them. I then went on to say OK, well, I’ll bring my *card* with me – here is when the breakdown occurred – then the agent said, well – whatever British Airways accepts – I explained they take Visa and Mastercard and explained my problems in the past. She AGAIN deferred back to her default response that she couldn’t do anything without the owner of the card present. Now, I can’t expect her to fully understand my situation – however, a key to quality customer service is being attentive, willing, patient, and kind to your consumer – at this point she was unwilling to listen, I said “I’m sorry, you’ve just lost my business” then she hung up on me. Fortunately, for me – there was another person in the room that I was in who witnessed the whole thing. I was reassured that I wasn’t rude – and decided to call back and speak with a different person.
When I called back, the same person answered. I immediately asked to speak with someone different – she refused and stated she was just speaking with the owner, Michelle, and continued on saying that she was the only person who could book the ticket. Again, I asked – “can I speak with her?” She proceeded talking – then asked if I wanted to still speak with her. I answered yes – when Michelle got on the phone I recapped the situation – she told me I had spoken with her previously and I was refused business because it was just too difficult of a ticket. The claim on the website is that this organization is equipped for anything – it exudes customer service and the ability to cater to anyone. I, unfortunately, was drawn in by this and sorely disappointed. “We have a staff of highly seasoned travel professionals with an average of over 15 years experience in this industry per person. We have been there, and we know the answers to your questions.” If they’d truly been there, there would have been more of an effort made to truly understand and assist me with my situation.
With that mess under my belt – I just want to outwardly say – I FULLY understand people have bad days. Trust me, I know – I have bad days too – I only post this because it is part of my journey…and to warn – if you have another choice, don’t go there – Polaris Travel in Lewis Center. And – so you can live this adventure with me! I do feel better, though..and the BBB has been informed.
…..and, if you work in customer service – whether it be with your direct consumer or your peers…please – be kind to your webfooted friends…and humans too – we all just want to be loved and understood 😉
6/12/2010 I’ve been thinking about this post since I posted it and whether or not I’d be ashamed if people judged me for it – so I wanted to clarify – when making international reservations – be careful who you go through, etc. and I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this particular company from MY experience. According to their website, they have thousands of pleased customers, I’m just a lemon 😉