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27 September, 2011

Stansted Airport - Its all about money!

Remember the time when a holiday abroad started as soon as you got to the airport, the moment there with bags packed and you thought, yes I'm going on holiday, fab!

Then it changed, Airports became a place of hell and torture with sole purpose to make us realise we have no control over anything we do until we eventually get off the plane at our destination.

We are told that all the stupidity if for our own security, when actually it is all for profit. My last trip through Stansted was a perfect example of this.

We arrived at the checking at 05.45am, they love to have you sitting around for hours, and as we checked in the woman on the desk said "you don't have any hold luggage booked" . "We do", "no the computer says no, cough". "That will be £20 per person per 20kg each way" , "No it wont we have already booked it" . After several minutes I found another piece of paper I happened to have taken with me that listed the luggage allowance, why would they tell me an allowance if I hadn't booked it, Miss Jobsworth stopped trying to bump up here wages and scam me out of £80 and check us in.

I went to the Thomson desk to check we had luggage for the return flight, but the woman was doing a crossword and would only say "computer says no, cough" and would do nothing to rectify the problem. Well done Thomson-fly!

I had the executive lounge booked which includes the "fast track" security, off we wander, I show the lounge pass and get told "£5 per person please" , "No, we are going to the lounge", "but you booked it through the wrong website so thats £5 per person". " another long discussion followed, Miss Jobsworth eventually had to relent when I showed her the email from the lounge company explaining we had fast track.

Within 15mins the airport has tried to scam me out of £100 and I hadn't even got near a plane.

Onward to be sexually assaulted "for my own security" as Mr Jobsworth gropes me up on the pretense of checking me for who knows what, because for some reason they are allowed to assume we are all terrorists. After the groping I get called to one side " this plastic bag is too big" Oh please you stupid Jobsworth its the same size sandwich bag I have used everytime I have come through security. Oh look they are selling plastic bags and want me to use them at £1 for something I can get for 2pence everywhere else.

How did travel get so bad.

On the flight if you were cold you could BUY a blanket, and "we recommend you drink plenty of water to stop you getting dehydrated in flight" but they will only sell you it.

The Holiday was brilliant, thank you, but we had to do it all again on the way home.

Next time I'm strapping a AK47 to my chest and 4kg of C4, bet all they will do is charge me 50quid for excess baggage.

05 September, 2011

BT You are taking the piss!

Imagine if you could be billed for something you didn't ask for, need or recieve, then if you didn't pay this bill imagine that you were threatened with an "independent debt recovery agency" and an "adverse effect on your credit rating". That could never happen. Oh hold on it just did, and it seems it is happening to hundreds of people every year.

Its BT again. We left them a couple of months back and joined Talk Talk.
When we swapped I was careful to check that we were not going to break any contract and incur a charge. Once all was complete we stopped the BT direct debit, happy in the knowledge that we didn't owe them anything.

Silly me there is the matter of the Broadband Cessation fee of £30. Whats that? Bloody good question. I phoned BT. The lovely man that spoke perfect something but not English explained that the cessation fee was because I had not requested a MAC. Um, what. So why would I have requested this and why are you charging me for not doing so. The answer "Talk Talk should have asked you too get one, you will have to phone them and tell them this and they will raise a query with BT". Hold on BT charged me £30 for not asking for something, they charged me to do exactly what? "Because you didn't ask for a MAC....... " he lost me with jargon of Ofcon and broadband lines and goodness knows what.

I phoned Talk Talk and got the BT guys brother, who not unexpectedly told me there was little he could do about a BT bill, and that they would not have needed a MAC because they have "LLU "so would not have told me to get one, so why would they now want to talk to BT about it.

Sorry if your bored ill try to move this along.
I phoned BT back. Listen here, you have charged me £30 threated me with a debt agency and baffled me with technical gobledegook for not asking for something I didn't need want or have any use for. This is not on! The woman went into the long explanation again and I was still none the wiser, so just kept asking what I was paying £30 for.

Eventually after the umpteenth time of "so what is the £30 for" she agreed that she would remove the fee and send out a new bill.

So to all those hundreds of other people paying the BT broadband cessation fee I suggest you phone and ask why.

Good Luck