People are hating Air Canada's new reservation system
As the peak time for holiday travel approaches, many Canadians are beyond infuriated with Air Canada, which recently moved to a new reservation system that is causing more than its fair share of issues.
Horrible. Horrible. Horrible.— KommonSense (@Kernel1000) December 10, 2019
Hours on hold or not being able to hold. Cost me $1000 since I could not change flights online & could not connect.
Loyal for 30 yrs - now need to try other carriers
Air Canada's new booking system frustrating travellers https://t.co/NpdAjMUE3v
The Amadeus Altea Suite Passenger Service System, which has replaced the airline's decades-old interface, has apparently been crashing, not permitting any modifications it is supposed to, switching reservation codes and prices on travelers and at times not letting them book anything at all.
The new booking system changed the existing booking reference codes. They were not sent to clients. You can not use the app to change seats, etc. because app is not recognizing the old or new booking codes. Says you have no flights on file. Panic! @AirCanada @AirPassRightsCA https://t.co/Vd1JT2KjPW— Anna Anthro (@AnnaAnthro) December 10, 2019
Customers are citing hundreds of unanswered calls to the airline, which as of yesterday had issued a recorded message warning that "call volumes are significantly higher than normal" due to the new reservation system — so high that there is no option to speak to an agent and callers cannot even be placed on hold.
@AirCanada been on hold over an hour with your 800 number. Your new system changed seat assignment for only 1 person in my party of 2. Tried emailing you over a week ago but no response. Help! Let me cancel my reservations and go with an airline that responds to customers!— karen dobos (@karend00) December 10, 2019
Many are taking to social media to complain of hours waiting on hold, dropped calls, unanswered emails and general lack of communication from the airline amid a chaotic booking and check-in process.
I can't even log in to check the status of my reservation...— Natalie Prowse (@HFandHomework) December 10, 2019
I get the perpetual spinning plane, which aptly describes AC right now... pic.twitter.com/iiat0OvAyR
Some are saying that the introduction of the new reservation system, which the airline switch over to on November 19 after an alleged 700,000 hours of labour and development, is very poorly timed given that the Christmas holidays are often the busiest time of year for travel.
Literally the only industry where this type of business decision is acceptable. Can you image a retail store putting in a new POS system during the busiest 3 weeks of the year? Insane. 700,000 hrs to do this & no one questioned the timing? Any other business would have to close!— HHS Contracting Inc. (@hhscontracting) December 10, 2019
Others are saying that the company committed a massive oversight when it didn't think to hire additional reservation staff to deal with the transition to the new system, especially given the timing.
@AirCanada it seems unbelievable that you worked on this reservation system upgrade for 2 years, and nobody anticipated that maybe it would increase calls and perhaps you should hire more reservation agents.— Kevin Peuhkurinen (@k_peuhkurinen) December 10, 2019
Air Canada's failure to acknowledge the issue publicly or provide adequate apology and what some see as warranted compensation is causing further upset.
Exactly! Can’t even believe they haven’t issued a statement and / or apologized and shared with passengers plan of action (including how passengers will be compensated for this mess). #aircanada @AirCanada— Carrie Alane (@Carriefilm) December 10, 2019
But, some are quick to remind those with complaints that despite their frustrations with the company, they should try to be kind to the customer service representative they do end up speaking to in the end, as it is not their fault.
.#AirCanada is trending lolz. Still not sure why they thought launching a new reservation system right before one of the busiest travel times of the year was a good idea. And that new app is a disaster, too. Be nice to agents though, it’s really not their fault.— Hani (@hani87) December 10, 2019
Overall, it seems like an absolute mess for would-be flyers and Air Canada staff alike, and perhaps it's no wonder the airline has been getting some other bad press lately. If you're looking to travel in the next little while, booking with another provider, if possible, is highly recommended.
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