National Express – adding insult to injury

National Express SC13 FN07BYW
"Flight delayed, sir? £5, please."

[note – issue resolved in a very positive manner. Details here]

I had some fun and games getting down to Norwich on Friday (which will be detailed on another blog shortly), mainly due to French air traffic controllers being complete arses. Please, if you happen to know where one of these ignorant sods lives, please let down all of his tyres and see how he likes being delayed.

National Express assed to my misery somewhat by “fining” me for being on a delayed flight… and then allowed people who hadn’t changed their tickets onto the later coach for free. That isn’t on. Hence the following letter. Let’s see what I get back.

I booked a return from Stansted Airport to Norwich online a couple of days before travel. Unfortunately due to French air traffic controllers, my plane from Glasgow was delayed by three hours. I called your helpline who told me it was £5 to change my ticket to a later bus which I duly paid by debit card.

However, when I got to Stansted I found that several other people had fallen foul of the same delay and were boarding the bus happily without a changed ticket.

Given that this delay was due to matters outside of our control I felt that this was a nice gesture by your driver. However, I feel aggrieved at being charged £5 as I went through the “correct” channels. After a long delay (with no food due to EasyJet never being adequately informative about when the plane was actually going to turn up) this really added insult to an injurious evening.

Incidentally, your call centre staff and website also mistakenly listed my arrival time in Norwich as 02:40 when the bus arrived at 02:00 – which seems correct judging by the timings of earlier schedules. As a result, I ended up waiting in the freezing cold of the bus station for ages to be collected by a friend who’d expected me to turn up 40 minutes later.

I’m going easy on them as, in fairness, my ticket change and fee were within the sale conditions. I just feel “punished” for going through the correct motions to change the ticket when those who didn’t/couldn’t were given a freebie.

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