We recently related Matt H.’s tale of woe while flying the friendly skies via Raleigh Durham airport. Against all odds, his story has a happy ending:
Much to my surprise my complaint was actually addressed. A representative contacted me directly (a different one from the person originally claiming to be a manager) and took the details of my experience, telling me that the process I went through was not the correct procedure for RDU as it had been explained to her and that she would follow up with me. I received a second call the next day . . .
with the contact information for two on-site managers, one for the day and one for the evening shift, as well a confirmation that their procedure would be different for my next flight. The procedure they told me they’d be following going forward was to have someone from TSA come to the oversized baggage area for an inspection, at which time I could lock my case and be on my way.
Before my next trip, I called one of the managers in advance of arriving at the airport. They met me at the ticket counter and brought me over to the oversized baggage area where an individual was waiting to inspect my bag. A few minutes later and we were locked and done.
I received an apology for the previous treatment and confusion. They let me know that apparently an individual cut the first lock before realizing that the bag contained a firearm, but stopped as soon as they realized their mistake. They assured me that this should be the procedure I ask for at the ticket counter any time I fly through RDU in the future.
This was precisely the type of response I was expecting during my first incident…in fact I would have been happy had I simply gotten an apology over the phone on my first call and an investigation and confirmation of the proper procedure on my next flight.
I’m not sure if all of their staff have been updated on the proper procedure, but at least I now have an escalation point should it happen again. I don’t think it would be inappropriate for me to publish employee names and numbers through this medium. I would advise anyone traveling through RDU to call and see who the manager on duty is and get their contact number in advance of your arrival and clarify the process…just in case.