Jet star should be taken to the Humanitarian Tribunal Court for crimes against humanity. The sheer scale of their stupidity and ignorance is staggering. Lack of customer service skills, lack of intelligence and lack of human decency are the many treacherous pitfalls lying in wait to fuck you over at every turn when you fly this pathetic joke of an airline.
Wow. Those are some pretty heavy allegations on my part, aren’t they. But rest assured I can back it all up. Just as sure as the bile is rising in my throat as I recall my horrors with jet star, I implore everyone to avoid this airline like the plague.
I had heard many horror stories about jester and was prepared to encounter the worst standard of air travel known to man during my flight to Osaka a few weeks ago. They certainly lived up to their reputation; it was worse than anything I expected.
First, I received a phone call at 11:30pm the night before the scheduled 6:15am flight from a man who could barely string a few words together to form a coherent English sentence. The gist of what he said, after many many requests to repeat his line, was that the flight had been delayed until 8:15am. No big deal, the only way it affected me was that I could now wake up 2 hours later than I had planned. I thanked him and hung up the phone.
The next day I arrived at the Sydney international terminal 2 hours before the flight as recommended. As I approached the check-in counter I noticed the flight QF40 to Kansai, Osaka was listed as departing at 6:45am THE NEXT DAY! Impossible, I thought.
The staff member on the desk motioned for me to come over. I told her about my phone call the night before and of the delay and she replied saying that she knew of the delay, but the flight had already left at 7:15. My stomach sank.
“Well why did I get a phone call last night saying it was due to leave at 8:15!?” I asked.
“Yes that was fact as of last night. But the plane was ready early, and we couldn’t wait. I’m sorry for the misunderstanding, but I can book you on the 6:45am flight tomorrow. If you like…” She told me.
Well, I had no choice did I? I told her to go ahead and book me on that flight. She tapped at her console then told me cheerily, “so with the flight change fee of 75 dollars and the difference in ticket prices, that comes to…”
“What!? You’re charging me?!” I cut her off.
“Sir, you were informed of the flight change time beforehand. Jet star is not responsible for you missing your flight. It says that under the customer policy on the ticket?”
“But I was here at the time you specified last night!”
“Yes, I understand that sir. But your plane has already departed due to circumstances beyond our control.”
Then came the most unbelievable question of all:
She asked me, “Are you sure it was jet star that rang you last night?”
To this I had no reply. Just a stare.
“Did you get the mans name?” She asked.
Again, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.
“His name? I couldn’t even understand what he was saying!” My voice getting louder now.
“What do you mean you couldn’t understand?” came her condescending rebuttal.
“Well, his English was very poor.”
“I’m sorry sir, all of our staff are native English speakers.” She tapped at her keyboard again and asked, “are you positive it was a jet star team member..?”
At this point I was about to put her big head through the granite countertop.
So not only did they fuck me around by not telling me the flight times now they were telling me it was I who was crazy and that it was entirely my fault that I missed the flight; the flight I paid for!
Did she want me to admit that I made the mistake? Un-fucking-believable…
She told me I could check my bags in now to “save me the trouble of doing it tomorrow”. I didn’t answer, I just went to the train station and tried not to break the face of anyone who looked at me funny.
The next morning I returned and went the through the motions again, got on the plane and arrived on time at Brisbane to make the transfer to Kansai.
Every 15 or so minutes they would announce to all the waiting customers that the plane would be ready to board in a few minutes so we all went to the boarding gate and waited. And waited. And waited some more. This continued for over 4 hours and never once did they update us. At some requests they even viciously refused to give out any information at all. Just replied with a cold:
“This is a problem that doesn’t concern you, please wait in line.”
Then, at 9pm we heard the announcement.
“Would all jet star passengers travelling on the flight, JQF20 please forward to the main reception counter. Your plane has been cancelled and you will now have to organize emergency accommodation. Jet star thanks you for your patience.”
Well, that was the rotten icing on the filthy-fucked up cake they had stuffed down our throats and forced us to swallow. Over 4 hours of waiting in ignorance of the situation they tell us to go and wait in ANOTHER line to arrange a night in a flea-ridden BnB on the outskirts of Brisbane.
Had they told us this 3, even 2, hours before some passengers may have been able to arrange alternative flights. But no, that would have been too helpful, too logical – which are words that aren’t synonomys with jet star at all. Some of the passengers catching the flight from Brisbane to Osaka had been in the terminal since7am that morning.
At this time I was numb to the whole situation and just shuffled out into the main desk with the rest of the doomed and very pissed off customers. Some yelled abuse at the jet star ground staff as they herded us like Nazis through the various corridors that lead to the check in desk.
They took the abuse with a smirk, perhaps because they knew whatever damage inflicted on them from the verbal abuse couldn’t possibly match the horror and trauma of the last hellish 6 hours. So a self satisfied smirk and a wave of their glow stick was all they needed to do.
There were 3 jet star staff working on the counters at that time; 2 of the 3 were still wearing trainee badges. One of the computers was down, too. So some of the arrangements were made by hand.
After another 2 hours of standing in line waiting to be shipped off to fuck knows where, it was my turn to be served. She took my details and told me the only accommodation she had available for me was a room at a 5-star casino n the gold coast, Conrad Jupiter‘s.
“I’m not expected to pay, am i?” I asked upon realising she had fixed me up with the most expensive hotel on the Gold Coast.
“Well, sorry but we cant actually pay for your accommodation but if you send the jet star head-office a receipt we will pay you back as soon as possible.”
“Sure you will,” I told her.
“Sir,” (there’s that fucking “sir” again), “im really sorry for your troubles today, but we need to get through this as fast as possible. I can give you a few food vouchers to use.”
I looked a the vouchers she slid across the counter to me. Lo and behold they were only valid for stores within the airport – all of them were shut at this hour.
Next came the flight arrangements.
There was no choice in this. We had to leave at 6:30am the following morning, or pay even more fees to have it changed to another time.
“Would you like a wake-up call in the morning. It will be for around 4:45am.”
I took the shuttle bus to the hotel. It was a very nice hotel, but under the circumstances there was no way I could enjoy it.
The wake up call never came, but then, what did I expect. Luckily I had been drifting in and out of exhausted sleep since I collapsed on the bed earlier that night and every time I woke up a glanced over at the clock.
By 5am I knew the call would not come and got up to get myself ready. No time for a shower.
Those fucking idiots…jet star…
I exited the hotel to find the other passengers I had shared this experience with last night milling around the bus terminal. All looking thoroughly exhausted and still with that pissed off scowl twisting their faces. I asked around to some familiar faces I saw and not one of them had received the wakeup call from jet star.
We all boarded the plane on time with no hassle, except the feeling of nearly 2 days with very little sleep or nourishment. I took my seat. I looked at my watch sometime later and realized the plane should be in the sky by now.
The captain came over the PA system and announced that they were still waiting on a few more passengers. I overheard a few staff saying
“Well, there’s always one hey…”
“Yeah, and always on flights to Japan…”
Some of the passengers sitting near me were talking on mobile phones, seemingly to those who had yet to board the plane. It turned out they needed to take a taxi to the airport since they too never received their wakeup call. And I bet you a steak dinner that jet star would never pay their taxi fare.
Some random moments during the flight which serve as perfect examples of jet star’s incredibly dumb and ignorant and racist staff:
A rotten stewardess asked a Japanese passenger what drink she wanted and very condescendingly replied: “well you didn’t say that. Now, what do you actually want?”
- One stewardess made a joke under her filthy breath about how whale was not on the lunch menu, luckily the old Japanese woman couldn’t understand.
- I asked for water, and she told me to go into the toilets if I wanted to drink water.
- “GO BACK TO YOUR SEAT, NOW!” Was yelled into the face of a small Japanese child.
After a 30min delay the plane took off and we landed 10 hours later at Kansai Airport – one and a half days after the scheduled time.
Rest assured I kept every single one of the receipts, however irrelevant some might seem, and upon my return to Sydney I made copies of all of them as - documenting the horrific fuck-ups: hotel reservation forms, check out receipts, receipts from restaurants in the hotel, even bus tickets. All perfectly labelled so even any idiot at jet star could understand.
In addition I immediately followed up the letter with a phone call but got the run-around that has been mentioned so many times on this site and was told to await a reply to my letters.
Well, its been 2 weeks now. No reply, no confirmation of even receiving my letter and just the same response every time I ring. I will make an update to this post when I receive ANY word at all from these fist-fucking swine.