My head is spinning after reading Amy Zimmerman’s complaint about Aeroplan, Turkish Air and Swiss.
I think I need to sit down for a minute.
In June, Zimmerman and her husband were on a return flight from from Athens to Istanbul. In the good old days, their tickets would be fairly simple and might involve a little interlining, but pretty easy to figure out. Airline policies were similar and when they weren’t, employees were flexible.
Today? Not so much.
“Our airline tickets were arranged with total mileage for business class through Aeroplan,” she explains. The routing was Athens to Istanbul via Turkish; Istanbul to Zurich on Swiss and then Zurich to Miami on Swiss.
“When we presented our ticket at the Turkish Air counter, we were informed that only one bag for check-in was allowed at no charge for the two business class seats,” she says. “The remaining two bags to be checked through to Miami, were charged $300.”
In business class? Seriously?
Yes, seriously. Aircraft type and her luggage weight might have played a part. (One of my editors, who has access to a GDS, looked this one up and found that she should have been allowed two bags.)
But read the restrictions for yourself. It’s possible, if her bag was heavy enough and the plane was small enough, that Turkish was following its own rules.
“The free cabin and checked baggage allowance may vary according to reservation class and departure runway,” Turkish warns, adding, “Please check your ticket for information regarding your free baggage right.”
But wouldn’t the Swiss rules trump the Turkish policy? Consider the following, also part of the Turkish policy:
MSC (Most Significant Carrier)
most significant and/or longest part of the journey.
If Turkish Airline is MSC in your journey then Turkish Airline’s free baggage allowance will apply, if another airline is MSC in your journey than the free baggage allowance of that airline will
If another airline is involved in your whole journey; the most significant carrier’s (MSC) free baggage allowance rule will be applied. MSC is assigned according to which airline operates the apply.
Oh, but wait. How about the DOT rules, which have specific restriction on how luggage postill licies need to be applied. Don’t they have any relevance? My editors are arguing about this one.
Is your head spinning yet?
Zimmerman phoned Turkish, asking about its luggage policy. A representative told her that two bags were allowed for each business class ticket.
“I called Aeroplan to ask if there was anything on the mileage ticket that called for one bag only for 2 business class seats. Their response: “I never heard of such a thing’,” she says.
“I then called Turkish Air customer service,” she says. “I was on hold for 1 ½ hours, only to be told that any numbers that showed on my boarding pass receipts were not the electronic ticket numbers which I needed in order to issue a complaint online.”
She didn’t bother calling Swiss, but I can only imagine what it would have said. Bureaucracy anyone?