Claim Denial: Expensive Eyeglasses Lost on Plane
Atlantic Northern Airlines (ANA) had an unhappy customer. Kristen Linder-Bowls flew from Washington, DC, to Los Angeles. The flight stopped briefly at Denver International Airport, where she got off the plane for half an hour. When she returned to her seat, her $400 prescription reading glasses were gone. She asked the flight attendant where the glasses were, and the attendant said they probably were thrown away since the cleaning crew had come in with big bags and tossed everything in them. Ms. Linder-Bowls tried to locate the glasses through the airline’s lost-and-found service, but she failed.
Then she wrote a strong letter to the airline demanding reimbursement for the loss. She felt that it was obvious that she was returning to her seat. The airline, however, knows that an overwhelming number of passengers arriving at hubs switch planes for their connecting flights. The airline does not know who is returning. What’s more, flight attendants usually announce that the plane is continuing to another city and that passengers who are returning should take their belongings. Cabin cleaning crews speed through planes removing newspapers, magazines, leftover foods, and trash. Airlines feel no responsibility for personal items left in cabins.
Your Task. As a staff member of the customer relations department of Atlantic Northern Airlines, deny the customer’s claim but retain her goodwill using techniques learned in this chapter. The airline never refunds cash, but it might consider travel vouchers for the value of the glasses. Remember that apologies cost nothing. Write a claim denial to Mrs. Kristen Linder-Bowls, 534 Cadillac Avenue, Venice, CA 90034.