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Hello and welcome to Seat 1A!

When you travel, do you ever wonder how you can be that person who is always ahead of the pack, even when things go awry? Hosts Vinod Viswalingam (@VViswalingam) and Geoff Dahl (@geoffdahl) are proud to present The Seat 1A Podcast.

Seat 1A aims to provide savvy travellers with advanced industry based knowledge to enhance the air travel experience and take off from the crowd. By arming you with an understanding of the systems, processes, rules and structures that define modern air travel, Seat 1A strives to give you the upper hand by examining real experiences from abroad.

Whether traveling in ultra-economy or first-class, with or without frequent flyer status, knowing how the operation works will keep you moving in front of the masses, especially when things don’t go as planned. Seat 1A provides tips and tricks on how to make your travel experience as smooth and efficient as possible. Our goal is that you'll be in Seat 1A all the time!

We have over 5 million miles of flying and over 10 years working for numerous airlines, enjoying all classes and cabins, and exploring airports on every continent. We're enthusiastic #avgeeks, with a keen interest in modern aviation trends and aim to share our knowledge in The Seat 1A Podcast. To learn more about who we are, check out Experience 010!

The Seat 1A Podcast also relies on feedback from listeners, offering the chance to take real experiences and analyze them, breaking them down to understand what happened, where things went well or wrong and what can be learned from it. If you have a story, question or experience that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at)seat1a.org or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

In the meantime please find us wherever you download your podcasts, and tell all your friends!

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Jun 19, 2022

As the Northern Hemisphere arrives at summer 2022, many travellers are getting things figured out. Travel is back – but it’s a madhouse. People have had long delays and wait times to rebook their plans. From 2020 to 2022 it has been a toss up of who or what is providing support to customers.

Take all of these issues and multiply them "world-fold". There are many customer service issues that will arise.

We ask, "What do you do to plan for customer care"? Why is there a long hold? In many cases the support can only come from the provider - which isn't always the easiest to determine. Is there enough staff to hire, have experienced staff left the industry? The situation of experienced staff leaving an industry goes far beyond just the travel industry. When you call, have the knowledge and the request with you.

Vinod shares a story of getting caught up in a loop with a point upgrade credit. Aeroplan...if you're listening...

Geoff shares an experience of getting stuck in a "shadow ticket" loop and it eventually getting fixed.

Vinod shares a frustrating experience with a gift card and trying to utilize it for control of family seating.

Geoff shares props with Lufthansa for a quick response to a call he had with them.

In most cases, airline call centres are regional. Due to this regionality, there can be a disconnect between global staff and local realities. Vinod shares a story of how he used local knowledge to his advantage and building a personal connection.

These days, patience is virtue. Be adult and cordial – you will likely get further.

We also look at the current situations with massive queueing and lineups in person – in various cities worldwide. Since many people haven’t flown recently their attitudes are amped up.

Take the time to analyze the peak periods of the airports that you are visiting.

If you're liking this episode experience, you may also enjoy Experience 011. Flight delays, cancellations, diversions, and the airline's obligations. It's available wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Vinod and Geoff share their travel plans for the summer of 2022. Geoff with Canadian, European and Southern African journeys, while Vinod has a first trip to the UK with a baby toddler.

We’re packing patience - and are making sure to have the paper copies as backup!

News Items:

 

If you have a story about travel customer service stories, upcoming trips, or other experiences that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at)seat1a.org or find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. If you wish to support the show financially, we are on Patreon. Show notes are available online at http://podcast.seat1a.org/