Friday, 14 August 2015

Stupid things Travel Agents hear

I work in a travel agency and we handle a lot of rental car bookings. Note: if you book a car early, and want to change something about the booking, the rate for the car will change. This exchange takes place with a customer who has booked a car about three months prior:)
Customer: “I’d like to change my booking to pick the car up a day earlier.”
Me: “I’d be happy to take care of that.” *pulls up new booking info* “Your new rate is going to be  [several hundred dollars more].”
Customer: “For that much, I could just go buy a car. The new rate is supposed to only be $30 dollars more for an extra day.”
Me: “That’s not how it works. You booked this three months ago and that rate isn’t available anymore. That extra day rate is if you return it a day later, not if you pick it up a day earlier.”
Customer: “Can’t you just go back to then and re-book it for me?”
Me: “You want me to travel back to March and book this for you again?”
Me: “I can’t travel through time to re-book this for you. I’m sorry. If you want to change it—”
Customer: “—well never mind. I’ll just take care of it myself.” *storms out of the office*

I have a long-time repeat client, old but quite nice. As I am finishing up going through the paperwork and vouchers for his identical biannual holiday with his wife, I inform him I won’t be able to assist with his next trip as I’d be on maternity leave but I’ll pass his file over to my manager and she’ll be quite happy to assist.)
Client: *blank look* “But you’re not… married.”
Me: “Well… no…?”
Client: “How can you be going on maternity leave, then?”
Me: “Because I’m having a baby?”
Client: But you’re not MARRIED?!”
Me: “Uh, I know, but I appear to be pregnant and as I am having a child I need maternity leave…”
Client: “BUT. YOU’RE. NOT. MARRIED. How can you be PREGNANT?”
(Every week for the next seven months he came into my office, sat in front of me, and implored me to go and get married, to anyone – maybe that man over there? – because I needed to be married to have a child. Well, I have a child and I’m still not married. Occasionally he goes back into my old store and asks if I’m married yet.)

(It is the late 1990s. A couple walk in. She is obviously Jewish, he not-so-much. As it turns out, he is a Lebanese Druze.)
Female Customer: “We’d like airline tickets flying into Tel Aviv and back from Beirut.”
Me: “Okay, let’s see what we can find.” *types into the computer* “Meanwhile, how will you get from Tel Aviv to Beirut?”
Female Customer: “Oh, we plan to rent a car and drive.”
Me: “I don’t think we’ll be able to find a rental car for that.”
Male Customer: “Why not?”
Me: “Well, right now the Israeli-Lebanese border is a war zone.”

I always like to follow up after a trip I have booked for a customer. A couple had booked a plane flight to Florida, a small rental car, and a few nights hotel on the beach.)
Me: “Hi, Mrs. [Name]. This is [My Name] calling from [Travel Agency]. I just wanted to make sure you had a wonderful time on your trip.”
Wife: “You’ll have to speak with my husband. I’m too upset to speak with you.”
Husband: “I can’t believe you have the courage to call, after what you did. I’ve dealt with incompetence before, but you are the worst!”
Me: “I’m so sorry. What happened?”
Husband: “When I booked the flight, I told you that I wanted an aisle seat, and my wife preferred a window seat. You had us backwards on all four flights!”
Me: “I’m so sorry. Why didn’t you just swap seats? Or, say something to a flight attendant, who would have told you to just swap seats?”
Husband: “…” *click*

We have a screen with special offers on the wall. Customer #1 is reading the board as offers flash by.)
Customer #1: “Wait, Paris is in Europe?”
Customer #2: “Really? Where did you think it was? Asia?”
Customer #1: “I never really paid much attention in Geometry class.”
(Customer #2 starts laughing as Customer #1 realizes what she just said.)
Customer #1: “Yeah… didn’t pay much attention at all.”

Customer: “Hello, I’m calling to make sure that my flight back to Israel departs as scheduled, and that my request for a kosher meal has been approved.”
Me: “Sir, your ticket has already expired. Your flight was on May 15th.”
Customer: “What?!? That’s not possible! I am absolutely sure that my flight is on May 29th!”
Me: “Sir, have you perhaps changed your ticket’s return date?”
Customer: “No way! I would remember that! I’m not senile. My flight is on May 29th and I did not change my ticket!”
Me: “The computer says your flight was on May 15th. Could you look at the printout of your ticket and tell me what date appears there?”
Customer: “Oh, my God…”
Me: “Sir?”

Customer: “I forgot! I completely forgot! I am calling you from Netanya! I already amback in Israel!

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