An Australian couple was trying to return home after touring Europe when they noticed their airline of choice had placed their kid on another flight. However, all their efforts to resolve the issue as quickly as possible turned into an unexpected complication.
Holidays provide relative ease and a much-needed break from the stress and pressure of work or just everyday life. These are the periods when an individual can rest, recharge and spend quality time enjoying time with one's family.
Since the main purpose of a holiday or vacation is to provide time away from physical and mental stress, any hindrance to that might defeat the purpose.
A Qantas Airways Ltd. aircraft on the tarmac at Sydney Airport in Sydney, Australia, on Wednesday, July 6, 2022 | Source: Getty Images
An Australian couple thought they had spent the perfect holiday on their trip to Italy until an unusual incident left them frustrated and seething.
THE AIRLINE PLACES A COUPLE’S BABY ON A SEPARATE FLIGHT
Australian couple Stephanie and Andrew Braham had left their country on a tour around Europe with their 13-month-old daughter. After completing their journey, which ended in Rome, Italy, the couple decided to book a flight back to Australia.
The couple booked their flight back home with Qantas Airlines; however, the flight got canceled. Afterward, they rebooked a different flight but soon discovered their toddler had been booked onto a different plane.
Boeing 787 Dreamliner Qantas Airlines Aircraft going to Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport, Fiumicino (Italy), on July 14 2022 | Source: Getty Images
However, what seemed like a minor mistake that could be fixed quickly soon turned into a full-blown saga. After noticing that their daughter had been placed on a different flight, Stephanie and Andrew called the airline's offshore call center to get it rectified.
However, the couple's temper started flaring when they were placed on hold for 20 hours, 47 minutes, and 13 seconds over a 24-hour period without any tangible response from the airline.
Stephanie and Andrew had to make 55 different calls to Qantas' offshore support center before they could get someone on the line willing to attend to them.
Stephanie and Andrew Braham speaking during an interview | Source: Youtube/TODAY
Yet, the couple was furious when they spoke to a representative, and the airline refused to accept liability for the mistake. "They said they hadn't done anything wrong because they did book her a ticket. Initially, they denied any liability. That's Qantas." Stephanie declared.
After multiple trials and complaints, the airline eventually agreed to book the family new flights home. However, the condition under which the couple would get a new flight home created another unexpected issue.
Passengers trying to board a plane at the airport | Source: Youtube/TODAY
ADDITIONAL PROBLEMS FOR THE AUSTRALIAN COUPLE
Although Qantas agreed to book another flight for Andrew, Stephanie, and their baby, they told the couple it would take almost two weeks after their scheduled departure date.
Spending more days in Rome after their original scheduled departure day meant the couple would have to pay extra money for accommodation and other things.
Passengers trying board a plane at the airport | Source: Youtube/TODAY
This particular piece of information infuriated the couple. They were desperate to get home as soon as possible without having to spend a huge sum unexpectedly on another two weeks of accommodation.
Andrew declared his anger because he was meant to be back in Australia. But now, he was looking at more weeks in Rome that had been forced on him and the family due to the incompetence of Qantas airlines.
Although the airline had given them a departure date, Andrew revealed he would not believe anything until he and his family boarded the plane and it took off.
Luggages being prepared to get loaded onto airplanes | Source: Youtube/TODAY
QANTAS RELEASED A STATEMENT ON THE ISSUE
After the couple's plight gained attention, Qantas airline released a statement to apologize for the problems they caused. The airline also blamed the mix-up on a backend administrative error between them and partner KLM that automatically moved the 13-month-old to another flight.
A spokeswoman for the airline also disclosed the airline was trying to reach out to Andrew and Stephanie by providing reimbursement for their accommodation.
Luggages getting loaded onto airplanes | Source: Youtube/TODAY
However, Andrew and Stephanie's issue was not the first time Qantas would come under fire for placing a child on a separate flight from the parent. Another woman had called out the airline on Reddit when they booked her and her young child onto separate flights.
"Qantas just booked my three-year-old onto a different flight to me (his mum). Is there any end to their incompetency? Currently on hold trying to fix this farce." she declared. Like Andrew and Stephanie, the woman had also been struggling to contact the airline's offshore call center.
Questions to Ponder
Andrew and Stephanie did their best to try to sort out the problem as soon as they noticed it. What would you have done to hold the airline responsible if you were in their shoes?
Do you think Andrew and Stephanie reacted very well by staying patient until they resolved the issue? How would you have reacted if your child got placed on a separate flight from you?
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