The Tall Street Journal

Good Morning this is Delta Airlines Customer Service,


How about we start off your morning revoking your voucher that you paid for, then insinuating that you are trying to cheat the system and
calling you stupid
for thinking we would have a process that every other
Delta employee has told you about and appears on my computer screen.

Lets toss in some questioning about your feminine name and deep voice which shows me you are trying to lie again, this time about your gender
and who you are
. Ok now back to my coffee, job well done and $400
nicely stolen from a loyal customer.

Me: Huh?!! I can assure you that I am a male sir, I am not dumb, that I did pay for that voucher and despite your "years" of service that at
least has been the process.

What does shock and dismay me is that Delta's customer service has crumbled this far and that you have had
your job for "years" telling customers they are liars right down to
questioning their ethics and gender
. Forget the face I was trying to purchase a $1400 plane ticket and you probably just flushed the extra grand down the drain.

Thats ok, I will nicely hang up with you and take my case to Delta and social media. I love that we are no longer bound by 1-on-1
conversations with big faceless corporations.

If only I had musical talent I'd write a follow-up song called "United breaks guitars and
Delta questions the gender you are".

Its bad enough us tall people have to wince in the pain and discomfort of coach to get anywhere, but at least I've always been nice about understanding that it is a business and I do fall outside the norms of human size which isn't there fault, and it is my choice to fly or not. I however do not have to put up with that level of service.

Views: 275

Comment by Cheyenne Throckmorton on June 30, 2010 at 7:22pm
12 hours later I've gotten a few tweets from @DeltaAssist (who may or may not be a verified Delta account - i think they are) telling me they are working on a follow-up, but from their official customer support site, I have yet to even get a "tweep" from even an auto-reply suggesting they have received my message and are working on it.

I commend their social media team for getting back quickly, but it seems it must be in its infancy stages, completely disconnected from customer service.
Comment by Jheri Olsen on June 30, 2010 at 8:04pm
You can look at seatguru.com for a listing of seat sizes and pitches. Some of the commuter airlines in Europe are almost unusable. I fly a lot with some very long flights. My employer agreed to a clause in my contract that says they will try to get me on business class or pay for extended legroom if that option is available. It turns out having your legs locked for long periods of time is dangerous and I presented a note from my doctor stating that

Customer service is such a joke for many of these guys. It is really sad.
Comment by TallerThanTheAverageMom on July 1, 2010 at 8:50pm
Hmmm...I think you might be able to invoke the Americans With Disabilities Act here. "Disability" here should be understood in the broadest sense of an individual difference that interferes with normal activities--like sitting in coach class seats. You should NOT have to pay extra to sit in an exit row or bulkhead seat to accommodate your height: the ADA forbids "places of public accommodation" from charging you extra for and steps that need to be taken to accommodate you; this includes privately owned businesses offering services to the general public. If you want to go the advocacy route, I'd suggest partnering with the Tall Club and the National Marfan Foundation, the very capable support organization for individuals with Marfan Syndrome (which involves height plus heart, spine, and eye problems, among others).
Comment by Jeff -Vertical Workshop on July 2, 2010 at 2:37pm
Great suggestion to check out seatguru.com. I use it religiously when I travel. Thankfully my new job doesn't require as much travel as my last job.

As far as horror stories go... A few years ago I flew from NYC to Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific. Cathay is well known for being one of the best airlines in the world. Great service with great amenities. On my trip I had two choices of flights... one that went direct, and one that had a short stopover in Vancouver. Because of the flight times and my schedule, I ended up on the stopover flight TO Hong Kong and the direct flight back. I had hoped for the direct flight both ways, but I couldn't make it work. And I'm REALLY glad it didn't.

On the stopover flight to Hong Kong the coach room was reasonable. It was a 20 hour flight and had a stopover, so all things considered it was about what I expected. I'm 6'5", so although it wasn't a fun flight it wasn't too bad.

The way back as an absolute embarassment for Cathay Pacific. I have NEVER been on a plane with so little legroom in coach. I've flown JetBlue, Southwest, and all the other mediocre domestic airlines on short hauls and long flights, and none were as bad as this plane. My knees were at my chest for 20 STRAIGHT HOURS. I emailed everyone I could at Cathay when I got home. I was upset. I never heard back from them. I did, however, do a little more research on that exact flight and found many posts online from tall guys like me that had the same compliant. If I'd only done a little more research before I left. Sigh...

Seriously though, I'd strongly suggest checking out seatguru.com before ANY flight you take. And for those over a few hours in length, do a Google search as well to see if you can find any other info from upset customers. I wish I had!

Final off-topic note - for all the guys on here, check out the Vertical Workshop group here on TTSJ. You'll find links to our store and blog to find out more about our new line of Premium T-shirts for tall guys. Thanks!
Comment by Josephine Anderson on July 4, 2010 at 5:44am
I only have experiences of Europe and here I call tell that KLM use to be ok. even with the usual seats (if you're not taller than 6'5-6'6) , SAS a bit worse, Lufthansa again ok. All of them it is possible to ask for the emergency seat when you check in (so you need to check in early) or ask the stewardess during the boarding to get the help of changing to a seat so some shortie will move. No extra cost. (at least I have never had to pay when asking at the check in!)

I am also flying a lot with Ryan Air (low cost budget) - the best choice there is to pay the 5 euro extra for the priority boarding when booking the ticket. Then you are with the extremely few to board the plane first and you go directly for the emergency-seats. Never had a problem with it and sofar they are not charging extra for it though Ryan Air oterhwise are infamous for "pay what you want to have" - including 30 euro for your suitcase (they want people to travel only with a handluggage bag). I have flown more than 20 times with Ryan Air and the only time I got stranded was when there was a snowstorm in Belgium and they couldn't land - nothing the aircompany can be blamed for.

I have once travelled with British Airlines to Miami. On the way back all emergency seats were taken and this was a night-flight. The woman at the check in arranged a sort of club-class place for me - not business class but oh so much better than economyclass - and I didn't have to pay one cent extra! Thumbs up to BA for that flight! (although I'm a fan of Virgin and Richard Branson - unfortunately the time-schedule of Virgins transatlantic flights didn't match with me going from Brussels at the time).

I'll repost about Delta on twitter and Facebook for you.

I sit in a callcenter giving IT-service and of course it makes you puzzled when you read a female name and hear a male voice but it would never ever occur to me to behave like that - UnBelievable! If that call was recorded she would have been fired. Always ask for name of person you speak to - record time and day - send in a complaint. They might have a bad day - they must still do their job in a decent way!!
Comment by Megan Hewitt Lukens on July 11, 2010 at 6:13pm
David (my hubby) and I had surprisingly good luck with Delta on our way to and from the Tall Clubs International convention last month. We had printed our boarding passes out ahead of time, but checked on seating options at the desk as soon as we arrived at our departure gates for each leg of our round-trip journey from Portland, OR to New Orleans. We actually landed exit row seats for all but the one-hour flight from New Orleans to Atlanta. What really blows me away is Cheyenne's gender argument. We very tall females have to go through life hoping to not be mistaken for cross-dressers, but who would ever expect "Boy named Sue" treatment for such a tall guy? Ridiculous! Now, how's this for an idea that will never fly....put all the seats in planes on tracks, sell them all for the same price, then push a button to automatically readjust spacing to equalize leg (and butt) space after all customers are seated? A flight that didn't sell out would end up with extra leg room for everyone. :-)
Comment by Cheyenne Throckmorton on July 11, 2010 at 6:46pm
Wow! Seats on tracks is a great idea Megan.

As an update, I've gone ahead and purchased the ticket through Delta, since for this trip its really the best flight and the friend I'm traveling with is also on that flight. Maybe I'll have more luck in person as a paying customer, since it looks like their social media team is just in its infancy. Great that they do have one though, so I commend Delta on that.

I think in the long run, its a computer glitch or they changed some policy that caused the computer to make my voucher only good for one day. It'd be one thing if it was some freebie thing, but my voucher is from money that I actually paid to Delta in 2007, so its like they just took my money.

I think the guy on the phone was just a jerk and trying to accuse me of trying usurp the system or something. Since Cheyenne is mostly a feminine name I think he was questioning that I was even Cheyenne since I don't have a feminine voice at all.

I did get a hold of a nice rep that at least found out that my voucher was only good for one day. I was just on July 4 weekend and exhausted of fighting with Delta on the phone and this and that and ruining my time off so I took a back seat to see what will happen. I'll keep everyone updated, but I've learned lots of good tips on here already, so that part has been very enlightening.
Comment by Big Dave Bryan on February 5, 2012 at 5:37am

OK guys, I'm 7' and I work in the airline industry. Here is the skinny: The exit row seats are the last to be given out. They book all aircraft to 98 or so percent and usually hold a couple open in case you have a couple of seats INOP and have to be put on mco (maintenance corrective order). Almost every aircraft has at least a couple of seats that cannot be occupied because they are broken by the end of the day. Overnight they are fixed and on long tour arounds they might be. Due to that, If when you show up at the gate, you ask if the OVERWING exit seats are available, they mostly always are. If the aircraft has one exit hatch, the row of seats in front of the hatch  WILL NOT RECLINE. This gives some more room because the people in front of you wont be flopping into your lap. If the aircraft that you are on has two hatches, then there is a set of seats between them...You don"t want these, they don't recline either. You want the seats behind the aft hatch, preferably the one close to the hatch, Sometimes they remove the outboard seat in front of you and you may have up to 6 foot of legroom. Of course the best seat is the one in first class right at the door, you could camp out and make a porno movie with all that room.

Comment by Big Dave Bryan on February 5, 2012 at 5:41am

Oh, and David Taylor, when you are flying Airtran and enjoying using WIFI, you can thank me for putting it in. Or the Flight entertainment movies in the seat back in front of you on most Delta airplanes.

Comment by Cheyenne Throckmorton on February 6, 2012 at 2:06am

Awesome, thanks for all the good tips Dave.  That's good to know how the exit row seats are given out last.  I always wonder how I see tiny little people in the exits or the bulkheads.  That seat with the seat in front taken out is the greatest seat in coach.  I've had it a few times and it makes flying actually tolerable.

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