I know this should really belong to the travel section. But, just wish to give it a better exposure.
I have been a pretty loyal customer of EVA Airlines for around twenty years. Back then, my brother's girlfriend was working for EVA. But, I stick with them even after that factor was long gone. In general, I found them to be very acceptable, even found their service delightful most of the time.
This is the first time I have done on-line booking on EVA Airlines' website. It is a round trip ticket, departing from LAX on 11/13. I tried a few days ago, in office, which didn't go too well, for lack of several pieces of information.
Yesterday, 11/1, I made another attempt. All went smoothly. Got to the page for credit card info and all that. Click on CONFIRM. Told to wait a moment. So I waited......and waited. The IE browser screen turn blank.
After a few minutes, I was pretty sure IE crashed. So, that browser window
was closed. Another attempt was made to make a reservation for exactly the same flight. Hang again after the credit card information was entered.
Moments later, my email received two confirmations for the exact same flight. And, they have indicated that I am going to be charged for both on my credit card! Called EVA Taipei office. They told me, sorry you must call LA, because the ticket is for departure from there.
11/2 1AM. Call EVA LA office (310)362-6600, with a phone card having 25 minutes left. Waiting about 20 minutes till a living being come on-line. Not in a good mood and with little time left, I spit out my frequent flyer number and all the other details to this otherwise nice lady. Also told her that I use a phone card and only have a few minutes left. She tried to guide me through the Refund Application on their website. I was on their Chinese web page. Somehow, she seemed to see different content than I do. Anyway, I couldn't complete the process. Because clicking on CONFIRM just pops up a message saying I have some illegal character entered. The one minute-left, was heard. So I ask if there is a direct number. Nope, she said. Must call that same number again, no direct line. Then, the phone got cut-off.
Tried again with Refund Application in their English page. Seems to go through OK. Now, it did seem go through. The problem is that the reservation inquiry still reveals double booking.
I called their number again. For three times, got hangup right after being told that all lines are busy. Are they trying to save me from waiting another 20 minutes? But, why not the first time? Anyway, on the fourth attempt, they were courteous enough to give me the privilege to wait only five minutes before the same lady picked up the phone. She as still nice and smooth to the fuming nut at the other end of the line. But, basically, I will have to check periodically on-line for the status of the Refund Application. They WILL NOT inform me through email, or anything otherwise. Basically, it is tough luck that I got into this mess. I will be charged for the double booking. They will refund me as they process it on their own pace. I thanked her. After all, she is just an employee following company policy.
As a technical support staff under customer service department of a medium size computer company, this whole event just seemed too ridiculous.
The behavior of the phone system did not follow a logical pattern. Did they intentionally cut-off all incoming calls to ticketing, for those three calls I made?
EVA is supposedly a global company, as should all international airlines. Why can't ticketing staff handle reservation made on their Chinese web page. Why does origin of departure matter?
How can their computer system accept double booking, by the same name with the same membership number. That can be valid only for someone with supernatural ability to split their presence. In that case, shouldn't they give this unusual being a free flight in first class?
Are they purposely making online reservation so unpalatable, in order to protect those travel agents that might be bring in more revenue than those pithy individuals?
It is over 4AM now. My double reservation is still there. I do believe that they will refund what shouldn't have charged on my credit card in the first place. But, before everything is settled, it is frustrating and excruciating. Perhaps, I should just move on, like my brother.