“I’m Sorry, But There’s Nothing We Can Do”

Yeah, uh, WHAT kind of CUSTOMER SERVICE IS that!!!  From the Front Page Sections, translated…

Awhile ago, my wife and I went to D.C. to attend a conference, the day before the conference, we’d arrived in San Francisco, the very next morning, we’d rushed to the airport, to get on US Air flight toward D.C.  About thirty minutes before boarding, US Air had declared, that the flight was canceled.

Then, a female worker handed out a stack of cards to the passengers, asked the customers to call the number on there, to arrange for other flight options.

I’d told this worker, that I was a foreigner, that I didn’t have a phone with me, that it was, their responsibilities, to arrange for another flight for me, for canceling the flight I was supposed to take.

She’d used her own cell phone, dialed the call for me, but, had me tell the other person.  After dialing for over twenty minutes, someone finally picked up, it was a Sunday, I told the airline worker over there, that I must arrive in D.C. by Monday morning, hoped she would find me an alternative flight.  She’d put me on hold for about twenty minutes, then told me, “Sorry sir, there’s NOTHING we can do.”, then, hung up.

The worker from the airport took one look at me, found a computer, keyed everything in, in the end, she’d also said, “Sorry sir, there’s nothing we can do.”

I went downstairs, to the American Airlines counter, to try it again, the male worker typed on his computer a long time, then told me, that the quickest he could get was a flight on Tuesday morning.  I’d told him, that he must be joking, that I was only going to be there, for the closing ceremonies?

He’d repeated that same old line, “Sorry sir, there’s nothing we can do.”

I’d had it, I’d raised my voice now, a female supervisor came over, asked what was going on.  I’d told her, that three workers told me, that “there’s nothing they can do”, that their company shouldn’t be so irresponsible.

She’d tried on the computer for me for a very long time again.  Finally, there was two more seats left on United Airlines, but I couldn’t sit next to my wife, and the flight would be taking off at ten o’clock at night, arriving in Washington D.C. at six the very next morning.

After we’d arrived in Washington D.C., we’d dragged our tired bodies to the hotel, told them, that because our flight was canceled, but we did call the hotel, to let them know, that we were going to arrive early Monday morning.  And, the lady at the counter told me, because you weren’t here, we’d resold the room to someone else.  I’d objected, we’d paid for the room already, how can they resell it again?  She just, shrugged.

At which time, I’m already beat, and, I’d asked her, if she could just, give us a room, to freshen up, to take a shower, to get dressed, so I can make the opening at nine.  She said, that the hotel was fully booked, but, we can go shower by the showers of the pool.  Followed by that same old line, “I’m sorry sir, there’s nothing we can do.”

And, all I can do with my wife was wait, and, finally, at almost nine, there was a room for us.  After this long and torturous day, my youngest brother who lives in Washington D.C. came by, I’d told him the nightmare I’d lived in the last twenty-four hours, and, my tone of voice showed my displeasures toward the U.S.

My youngest brother told me, “Living here, we’d gotten used to it; you’re in Taiwan, not knowing how hard it is, you’re all spoiled.”

After he’d told me that, all of a sudden, my moods lifted.

This shows, how easy it is, to DEFLECT something, with a simple, “I’m sorry, there’s NOTHING we can do”, and, you’re, OFF the hook, and this still has NOTHING to do with customer service skills, it’s just how the culture worked, because, in Taiwan, if something like this had happened, the airlines would’ve put the passengers whose flight had been canceled, into hotels for the night, without charging them a dime, but, this couple were in the States, and, that, is the cultural differences, and, the workers are not being mean, it’s actually because there IS nothing that they CAN do!


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Filed under Cost of Living, Expectations, Interactions Shared with the World, Life, Observations, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Reality Clashes with Dreams

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