Ticked Off With Turkish Airlines

May 15, 2015

in Odds & Ends Stories

I had booked my honeymoon travel tickets from Mumbai to Nice and back to Mumbai via London with Turkish Airlines. Let me start by saying that this has been the worst flight I have taken in my life. My honeymoon started as a flop because of Turkish Airlines. The staff was rude and arrogant.

I thought I had booked comfort class as my agent said that he booked me in it. While checking in I didn’t realize that they had given me an economy seat. After the flight took off I realized that I am in economy. We thought there was a mistake at the check in counter and we would get some clarity at Istanbul Airport. At the airport the guys at the counter were too busy chatting with each other to answer us properly. Their response – “What do want us to do now? Your ticket was not premium economy.” I asked him if my ticket was comfort class or not as my agent had charged me for comfort class. His response – “Why are you asking me then, talk to your agent and ask him.” He then turned his back and resumed his chat.

On the flight from Mumbai to Istanbul, the steward and stewardess were high-handed and were not willing to hear us out if we had any queries or wanted to make a request. We had ordered Hindi veg which we did not get. We had an option of chicken or fish, if I remember correctly.When we told them that we had requested Hindi veg, their only response was, and I quote – “It’s not mentioned in our system; there is nothing we can do about it.” Please let me know if this is an acceptable response or not.

While one of the stewardesses was passing by I tried calling her as I needed some water. She looked at me and just said, “I cannot attend to you right now,” and walked away. She didn’t even bother coming back. She crossed me a few times after that and didn’t even acknowledge me. Is there any particular reason for them to be this high-handed?

I was supposed to fly back to Mumbai from London Gatwick on 26th April, 2015, and from Istanbul to Mumbai on the 26th itself with a few hours of layover in Istanbul. My wife and I decided to stay in Istanbul for a couple of days and fly to Mumbai on 28th April from where she would fly to New York with her mother who was meeting us in Istanbul. The ground staff in London Gatwick Turkish Airlines counter was of no use. They charged me an absurd amount (469 Euros). Understandable that it’s a last minute flight, but try to help rather than just be rude saying, “Talk to your agent if you want. My system is showing this.”

Also while booking the tickets at London Gatwick, I informed your over the counter staff person, who was punching in my details to book my ticket, that I was unhappy with the service we got while coming from Mumbai. Her response to that was, “Why are you telling me; send a mail if you want.” You just really work on your skills with customers.

While checking in my baggage, I asked a ground staff person if I will be allowed a box that I was planning on carrying in as cabin luggage. His response – “Why will I have a problem with anything that you want to carry? If security allows, then try if you want.” I showed him the box as it seemed a little big. Got through security and everything. In the plane, the box didn’t fit in the overhead compartment. When I requested the stewardess to help me, she tells me that I can’t keep the box in as it’s too big and that I will have to check it in with my other luggage and can’t carry it in the cabin. Your ground staff cleared it. After a little argument with them they finally put it somewhere behind. After that let’s just say I was met with a lot of hostile attitude. I can’t even articulate my anger and disappointment with Turkish Airlines.

Let’s just say that this has been the worst experience of my life, and definitely I’m going to make it a point to I try to reach each and every media source to share my experience about this ridiculous airline, and make it a point that at least my friends and family won’t have to go through the experience I had to go through. Cursing myself for selecting Turkish Airlines for my honeymoon. Rest assured that I will not be flying with Turkish Airlines.

Thank you. (For the horrible experience.)

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Eva May 15, 2015 at 8:20 pm

From my understanding EU261 applies and TK should provide you with a partial refund because of your downgrade from premium economy. If this was indeed a mistake on behalf of the airline, you should definitely pursue this, otherwise tar and feather your travel agent.


Beth May 16, 2015 at 9:41 am

It seems like the problem was with your travel agent. When you checked in, did you look to see where your seats were? What did your travel agent say when you confronted him/her with having been booked only in economy?

Yes, the airline didn't exactly show great customer service, but what did you expect? They can't just upgrade you because you say your travel agent screwed up. That's not their fault or problem.

Complaining because a box wouldn't fit in the overhead? Guess what – it happens all the time. What you should have done was look online for the overhead baggage requirement and measure your box. And the ground staff are so busy they probably didn't notice or maybe they even thought you were going to gate-check your box. Not their fault.

And then complaining because the price for a ticket was exorbitant when you bought it at the last minute? That's how the airline industry works – any airline would have charged you through the roof for it.

I don't know how often you travel, but it seems like a lot of these problems were your own making and the only thing the airline is guilty of is not smiling when they told you 'no'.


Chris May 18, 2015 at 9:13 pm

Reading this story, it seems like it's definitely the fault of your travel agent. Also, you seem to complain to the wrong people when you have a problem. Complaining to a ticket agent about a flight you had days ago? That's like complaining to a painter about how well the plumber did his job.

My advice, go find your travel agent and ask him why your flights worked out so poorly. And when you do have complaints against airline staff, try customer service instead of random gate or ticket agents. They have specific jobs to do and don't have the time to start investigating wayward complaints from travelers.


abhilash vithlani June 1, 2015 at 2:10 am

All the airlines have a Facebook page. Go screw them there. You get immediate attention.


PESMITH August 5, 2015 at 3:56 pm

Unless you are on a route originating from the US, it seems that taking a non first tier airline has risks. Your experience was terrible I'm sure and you were treated shabbily. No rap on departing from Mumbai but I've taken TA from the states and the experience was great. I have had friends take TA from India and Thailand and the experience was the total opposite. Actually very similar to yours. And yes, hammer them on FB.


Unknown September 18, 2015 at 9:13 am

I guess you could say that flight was not very NICE!


sara January 5, 2016 at 11:36 pm

I also flew with Turkish Airlines. I can understand completely with your irritation. The staff we had were extremely rude and definitely behaved as though they were above us. Which was ridiculous when we were so polite and they just spoke and acted with irritation and frustration along with snobbery!
It was infuriating the way they looked down at us; I could see clearly how differently they behaved and spoke with the turkish passengers themselves. What's the point of being an air hostess if you're unhappy serving some passengers. Plain old rudeness. Thankfully the plane back was much better, with decently mannered air hostesses.


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