I was complaining on the phone to Denny Conrad
about our problems with airlines on the last trip
and he told me if we didn't have any flight problems
it would be boring. I'd probably take boring gladly.
It amazes me that an airline, in this case
Continental (who advertises they are owned by
their employees,) just might take a little more care
of the people they "serve."
Here's the rest of the story. We flew into Ft. Lauderdale
to catch the flight to Nassau. It was raining, we were
provided large umbrellas for the walk to the ramp (that
was nice) - but because it was raining so hard we were
not able to see someone take one of our two bags OFF
the plane. None of our baggage should have been removed
since we had declared our final destination - one of the
'out islands.' That is their rule they tell me. So the
clothing bag was removed. Should have been a simple
matter - put it on the next flight from Ft. Lauderdale
to Nassau. That didn't happen either.
When it did arrive, some eight hours and several flights
later, the lady at the 'lost baggage' desk for Continental
in Nassau did take it to the airline we took to Mangrove Cay,
Western Air. They refused it. She took it back to
the Continental desk. A couple of phone calls,
she took it back to Western Air.
They still refused it. At one point Western Air
offered to send the bag for $50. (the cost of a one-way
passenger ticket.) We said fine, send it. The General
Manager of Emerald Palms, Brendan Foulkes, wasn't pleased
with that and contacted the President of Western Air
and our bag arrived at the Mangrove Cay the next morning.
Western Air says they have no agreement with
Continental to send any baggage not accompanying
the passenger. Continental says that's a lie. Of
course it was Continental who caused the problem
by taking the bag OFF in the first place. Rather typical
of today's business attitude, not my fault, I'm not
responsible, and screw you.
That's not the end of the story - when it did arrive,
a taxi driver, Patrick, picked up our lost bag at the
Mangrove Cay airport and drove it to the ferry dock.
Our guide, Jason took his boat over to the ferry dock,
picked up the bag and brought it across the byte to
the dock where the Emerald Palms van picked it up and
delivered it to our door. Absolutely wonderful service!
(All paid for by Emerald Palms!)
I called the customer service number listed on
Continental's tickets and was told, "gee,
that's too bad and it's not our fault, Western Air
should have taken the bag." And "wow, how unfortunate
that your bag was removed. That shouldn't have happened."
Not once was "I'm sorry" mentioned, nor anything else
to try and save the situation. It's obvious they don't
care. Too bad.
Fair warning, if you are flying WESTERN AIR in the
Bahamas (they 'serve' San Andros, Andros Town, Mangrove
Cay, Congo Town, Bimini, Freeport and Nassau) insist
your baggage accompany you - and if it doesn't make
connections, make sure you know exactly how to contact
them from your destination. Ask for the name of the
person at the counter. Write it down. Make sure
they know exactly what your destination is, and how
are they going to get your luggage to you.
It is very frustrating and exasperating to be in
bonefish heaven and not be able to fish for two days.
Absolutely perfect, no wind days yet!
It is unfair to the traveler and the guides who were
booked and lost two days pay.
As far as flying Continental? Avoid it at all
costs. They obviously don't give a damn.
~ The LadyFisher
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