Two tales of Customer Care

Tale One.

When we retrieved our bags at Heathrow, we were dismayed to discover one of them had been ripped open. On closer inspection it seems that the damage had been caused by the baggage handling machinery at the very end of our journey so none of the contents had escaped. Lucky! Nevertheless, the case was beyond repair. It was about 6.30 in the morning and we’d just got off the overnight flight from New York, so we weren’t in the mood to find someone at the airport to complain to. Once at home (and after a suitable period spent recovering from jet-lag) I investigated the claims procedure.

I discovered that responsibility for your baggage remains with the carrier up until the point that you lift your case off the baggage carrousel. So nothing to do with LHR. In other words the airport baggage handers are contractors of your airline.

So I filled out the claim form from my airline’s website and emailed it off with supporting documents and a photo. Yesterday I was very pleasantly surprised to receive a lovely email from Virgin Atlantic apologising for the damage and confirming that they had settled my claim in full. No arguments or attempts to negotiate the cost downwards.

Thank you so much, Virgin Atlantic.

This is how it is done.


Tale Two

My Mother is in hospital. A while back she ordered some goods from Damart. After she went into hospital Damart wrote notifying her that the items were out of stock and that they would deliver them at some future date once they were back in stock.

My mother asked me to cancel the order, so I rang Damart’s Customer Services. I knew this was doomed to failure and sure enough they trotted out the good old DPA spiel. Could they speak to my Mother? No, as I already explained to them, she was in hospital and in no fit state to speak to anyone. I pointed out that I was doing them a favour as, if they were to deliver the goods there would be nobody there to receive them. Even though I had the order numbers, account number,etc. this fell on stoney ground. Worse, the Customer Services person was unfriendly as well as being unhelpful.

Not one to give up, I penned a letter to Damart’s Managing Director, a Mr Andy Hill, explaining my dissatisfaction with my encounter with his company’s Customer Services staff. I even reminded him of the “Winner – UK Customer Satisfaction Awards 2014, Institute of Customer Service” award  posted prominently on their letterhead. I was expecting a letter in reply, hopefully a polite one.

What I got was a compliments slip with a handwritten message scrawled across it, presumably from their Customer Services team although I can’t be sure as it wasn’t signed. Pretty sure it wasn’t from Mr Hill.

I venture to suggest that this is not how it is done.




iPhone 6

I’m pleased with my iPhone 6.

I haven’t managed to bend it.

I’m not going to wax lyrical about it because I’m not interested in stirring up the trolls or haters.  See paragraph one for my iPhone 6 review.

I’m not sure about the changes Apple have made to Photos with iOS 8, although I think I can see why they have done what they’ve done. It will be interesting to see how it all works once Yosemite drops. The only issue I’ve found is with the Instagram App which displays every photo on the device in duplicate (FB and others seem to have got it right).

Being a clumsy sort of fellow I have ordered a case for it, hopefully that will arrive tomorrow.

Haters and stupid people

Plenty of words (and videos) have already been written about a certain new smartphone. It seems that some people have managed to bend theirs by sitting down for long periods with the smartphone in their trouser pockets. Others have found it necessary to forcibly bend the smartphone and video said activity.

Now, I am no expert on the human mind but it does appear that these people would have to be extremely stupid to do either of the above. After all, nobody has yet managed to manufacture anything from “Indestructium”.

Suppose I deliberately drove my brand new Bentley* off a cliff. Shocked and surprised at the resultant damage, I could hardy complain to the Bentley Motor Company that their product had a design flaw.

Oh well, that’s quite enough wasted on that topic. Just needed to say something, that’s all. :)

* For illustrative purposes only. I simply picked a prestigious vehicle at random, I don’t actually own a Bentley.

Recharging my batteries

Since we got home from New York, life in our household has been both hectic and draining, so I was getting desperate for some R&R.

Yesterday I finally managed to get out for a walk and grab some caches. I went up Chesham way to do some more Chiltern Hundreds. I found 8 of those, 4 of these finds were caches I’d DNFd on previous visits which I was very pleased about; I also DNFd a new one! Ah well can’t win them all. I also found a Church Micro and a random Captain Jack.

It made a nice change to be out in the English countryside, if only for a few hours.

And when I got home my iPhone 6 had arrived. :)



Another Postcard from New York

Happy days!

happy days


Making ladder climbing more difficult:

health and safety


Rock-climbing pipe cleaners:

rock climbing pipe cleaners


“I don’t give a shit”:

sign seller


Central Park Proposal:

the propsal


Dogs and Pretzels:

hot dog cart


An Englishman in New York:



Courtesy, Professionalism, Respect:

nypd vehicles


The subway cars are air-conditioned!:



Americans are very patriotic:

stars and stripes


911 Memorial. Respect and Remembrance:

911 Memorial


Postcard from New York

I took quite a few photographs as we wandered around Manhattan. Here are a few “postcards”. Hope you like them.


Not all Manhattan buildings are glass and stainless steel:

interesting stonework


Or shiny and new:

Office windows


Wholesale clothing, 2nd Floor:



Here’s a site for sore eyes:

site for sore eyes


High above the modern shop fronts, there are still signs of the old, um, signs:

Macys old signs


Urban Outfitters have gone for a minimal, loft style. I love this:

bare pipes


Subject to inspection:

bit of a dump


There’s still space available:

space available



iPhone 6 Pre-order day: 12 September.

If you know me, you know what I’ve done.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 240 other followers

%d bloggers like this: