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Ski Beat - the worst ski trip experience ever?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Frosty the Snowman, evidence? Of anything posted on here? You gotta be kidding. Laughing
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Frosty the Snowman, people sitting in the back of a bus on their sole annual coach journey are world authorities on alpine road conditions, route finding, auto mechanics and the law relating to driving said vehicles. This is one of the first rules of tour operations. Laughing
ski holidays
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Lizzard, Any more rules?
ski holidays
 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
Well you don't need to be a qualified coach driver to notice if some one is driving while on their mobile phone or not. If the driver indicates that he is struggling to keep awake it is a sign he has probably been driving for too long. If Pandora's account of the coach journey isn't accurate Ski Beat could say so on this thread. At least the coach stopped for a new driver in the end.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
rayscoops wrote:
SB organised a hotel when they knew the flight was cancelled, organised a flight to an airport where planes were landing (no reps possible to meet the group because SB do not operate there) and told you that you would be transfered by coach to the resort, put two reps on a bus (assumingly from France) to Milan for a round trip that must have been 15 hours and got you to your chalet as soon as they could, yes their commiunication was bad and two stressed empoyees were a bit shirty with you, but are those actions of a company that does not care Puzzled


Not strictly true - the airline organised the hotel; Ski beat were uncontactable and nowhere to be seen. The airline also organised a flight to a different airport and the airline told us that we would be collected at Milan by the TO, NOT Ski Beat.

I was in frequent contact with the airline & learnt that at midday CET (an hour before we took off) we would be flying to Milan - that's 9 hours before the coaches arrived to pick us up.....can anyone explain the 3 hour delay???

Once we got to Milan there were conflicting messages - some bloke on a phone to someone in resort said the coaches were on the way, Milan airport staff said they were not and that if we didn't get on the last coach to Chambery we would be stranded at the airport overnight.

So yes - those are actions do seem to be of a company that doesn't care.
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You'll need to Register first of course.
Anyone want to take a bet that Ski Beat have slapped a Confidentiality / Non-Disclosure Agreement order on Pandora Puzzled
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Snow Joke, again then: if they generally don't care, how is it they are still in business? It strikes me that you want revenge over SB rather than justice for what happened.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Boredsurfing, Doubt it, what would be the point with the thread here?

Snow Joke, You guys seem to think you were the only ones to travel that weekend who had a sh*t time and some tired reps who maybe didn't preform to 100%. I know others who travelled home that weekend they had a sh*t time, they had some reps do some stupid things, they suffered huge amounts of mis-information. However they are quite philosophical about it and haven't felt the need to get personal in attacking individuals on the internet and try a destroy one TO. Their main conclusion out of all the fork ups, avoid Chambery not the TO.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
a veteran snowHead wrote:
Ski Beat - the worst thread experience ever?


Certainly not. There have been far worse threads than this one.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
thefatcontroller, 'tis the way of some Companies in Ski Beats position, an action that pre-dates the internet perhaps but once ingrained as a way of dealing with stroppy customers is still used.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Boredsurfing wrote:
Anyone want to take a bet that Ski Beat have slapped a Confidentiality / Non-Disclosure Agreement order on Pandora Puzzled


How does one 'slap' an 'Agreement' on someone? And can a 'Confidentiality / Non-Disclosure Agreement' be an 'order'?


Last edited by snowHeads are a friendly bunch. on Mon 25-01-10 9:39; edited 1 time in total
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Boredsurfing, PJSki, I find it hard to believe anything could shut her up Toofy Grin
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
PJSki, We'll leave those questions to be answered by the Wikilawyers on here wink Maybe even Ski Beat will come and explain.....
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
PJSki wrote:
How does one 'slap' an 'Agreement' on someone?


The mafia would have an instant answer to that question, articulated by Marlon Brando in this scene:


http://youtube.com/v/PiJ5rxG-DNk
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Boredsurfing wrote:
PJSki, We'll leave those questions to be answered by the Wikilawyers on here wink Maybe even Ski Beat will come and explain.....


We can do better than that. I bet we have people who have been on seminars about vaguely similar things, or, at the very least, people who have failed exams on this very subject. Laughing
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
thefatcontroller wrote:
Boredsurfing, PJSki, I find it hard to believe anything could shut her up Toofy Grin


Well, she's certainly toppled her gyros over this. wink
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Snow Joke wrote:
Not strictly true - the airline organised the hotel; Ski beat were uncontactable and nowhere to be seen. The airline also organised a flight to a different airport and the airline told us that we would be collected at Milan by the TO, NOT Ski Beat.

I was in frequent contact with the airline & learnt that at midday CET (an hour before we took off) we would be flying to Milan - that's 9 hours before the coaches arrived to pick us up.....can anyone explain the 3 hour delay???

Once we got to Milan there were conflicting messages - some bloke on a phone to someone in resort said the coaches were on the way, Milan airport staff said they were not and that if we didn't get on the last coach to Chambery we would be stranded at the airport overnight.

So yes - those are actions do seem to be of a company that doesn't care.


Hang on a minute, who are you blaming, the airline or SB?. The airline is an agent of SB of course and it sounds like you were in constant contact with them; SB probably had stranded passengers all over the place and obviously did not have enough to staff at the time to front this up but their agent, the airline with its representatives, were there to deal with you. You were told a coach was going to be dispatched and you were also told that it was on its way (some bloke ? who was that? a stranger selling coffee or something wink ). There are plenty of reasons for you to feel annoyed but bit by bit more information slips out that expands upon the situation which, at the moment, seems to be not much more than a one sided moan.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
rayscoops wrote:
Snow Joke wrote:
Not strictly true - the airline organised the hotel; Ski beat were uncontactable and nowhere to be seen. The airline also organised a flight to a different airport and the airline told us that we would be collected at Milan by the TO, NOT Ski Beat.

I was in frequent contact with the airline & learnt that at midday CET (an hour before we took off) we would be flying to Milan - that's 9 hours before the coaches arrived to pick us up.....can anyone explain the 3 hour delay???

Once we got to Milan there were conflicting messages - some bloke on a phone to someone in resort said the coaches were on the way, Milan airport staff said they were not and that if we didn't get on the last coach to Chambery we would be stranded at the airport overnight.

So yes - those are actions do seem to be of a company that doesn't care.


Hang on a minute, who are you blaming, the airline or SB?. The airline is an agent of SB of course and it sounds like you were in constant contact with them; SB probably had stranded passengers all over the place and obviously did not have enough to staff at the time to front this up but their agent, the airline with its representatives, were there to deal with you. You were told a coach was going to be dispatched and you were also told that it was on its way (some bloke ? who was that? a stranger selling coffee or something wink ). There are plenty of reasons for you to feel annoyed but bit by bit more information slips out that expands upon the situation which, at the moment, seems to be not much more than a one sided moan.


Indeed. I was under the impression that they were receiving no information at all. Now it comes out that there was 'frequent contact'. Puzzled
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PJSki,
Quote:

in frequent contact with the airline

But with no contact to/from Ski Beat?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Boredsurfing wrote:
PJSki,
Quote:

in frequent contact with the airline

But with no contact to/from Ski Beat?


The airline are in charge of that phase of the trip. No point in information going from the airline to SB and then from SB to the holidaymakers.
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You'll need to Register first of course.
But the airline didn't tell them which coach to get on in Milan did it? So it must have been a bit worrying to be told "last coach to chambery" and not know whether to get on it or hope another coach would come.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
snowymum wrote:
But the airline didn't tell them which coach to get on in Milan did it? So it must have been a bit worrying to be told "last coach to chambery" and not know whether to get on it or hope another coach would come.


The transfer is down to the TO, of course.

Quote:
some bloke on a phone to someone in resort said the coaches were on the way...


We await conformation as to who these blokes were. But it sounds like information was flowing, albeit not optimally.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Funny how we all moan when there's no snow in the resort but when there's snow everywhere and it disrupts our travel arrangments to get to a resort with loads of snow it's just not good enough.... these weather gods really do need to get there act together.... SNOW ON THE MOUNTAINS ONLY PLEASE GUYS.... IF YOU'RE LISTENING!

I'm sure we all sympathise with anyone who's been in this situation, apart from one or two rather ignorant posters who seem be almost implying it was the customers fault!!! Interesting concept.... book a holiday with a TO only too happy to take your money and promise the earth... get treated like poo-poo.... then its your fault!

Sounds to me like this thread is based on a valid moan..... ok so the weather undoubtedly played it's part in the disruption but a lack of communication by the TO was IMHO a failure in customer service.... as was their attitude... and their contingency plans for such an eventuality....

A well structured formal complaint accepting weather issues but being firm about a request for compensation for treatment afforded by the TO seems the order of the day. Also I'd advise your insurance company and copy them in cos u will probably need need to make any claim within a certain timescale....

Personally I don't use TO's for 90% of my ski trips and on the rare occaision that I do it tends to be a late deal with the main stream TO's as they have the staff and traning to better deal with problems.... certainly won't be using this one.... ever..... Good luck with your comlpaint....
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
SnowGod
Quote:
Personally I don't use TO's for 90% of my ski trips and on the rare occaision that I do it tends to be a late deal with the main stream TO's as they have the staff and traning to better deal with problems.... certainly won't be using this one.... ever..... Good luck with your comlpaint....


Not really a great loss to SB then? wink
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
snowymum wrote:
Well you don't need to be a qualified coach driver to notice if some one is driving while on their mobile phone or not. If the driver indicates that he is struggling to keep awake it is a sign he has probably been driving for too long. If Pandora's account of the coach journey isn't accurate Ski Beat could say so on this thread. At least the coach stopped for a new driver in the end.


In such times of large scale disruption many people do many thing outside of the norm to assist those that have been affected. I am sure that the driver didn't want to be tired or his company want him to drive a very expensive coach full of people while tired. The whole episode makes it likely that various people would want to contact the driver; yes talking on the phone is bad but the alternative of stopping the coach each time would also have not gone down well.

Ski Beat are based in The Tarentaise and 2 Valleys and have no reps outside of this region, never mind in a different country. It sounds like some folks have a tough time and that big companies with staff in more locations have handled it better. On the upside I suspect that the OP had a better standard of service for the remainder of the holiday than they would have with a big multi-centre operator.

Finally, everybody should be made to spend a a few weeks working at the sharp end of a job in retail, dealing with Joe Public.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
I have frosty..worked in macdonalds for a few weeks of my life and it was grim! At least every job has been better after that!
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Frosty the Snowman,
Quote:

Finally, everybody should be made to spend a a few weeks working at the sharp end of a job in retail, dealing with Joe Public.

Ironically the worst part of this complaint against Ski Beat appears to be the attitude of the resort reps who we are told are people who have retired from jobs, specifically dealing with Joe Public, <snipped>. One can always question why they retired from a job dealing with the public only to go into another........
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
snowymum, snowHead

The advantage of being ones own boss is that when one feel Joe has gone too far one can tell them to eff off Toofy Grin

Only done it once in 30 years but boy did it feel good Very Happy
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Frosty the Snowman, I've barred a few over the years but never felt the need to tell them to 'eff off'. Very Happy
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Boredsurfing, yeh but I am just a rough Northerner wink
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Frosty the Snowman wrote:
Boredsurfing, yeh but I am just a rough Northerner wink


Who was the guy I met at Hemel that said he was Frosty The Snowman Puzzled
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
My take:

No one would put in the effort to complain in this way unless they were justifiably aggrieved. People have better things to do.

Forget the weather. Apparently unforgiveably poor customer service. Substandard contingency organisation (leading to lack of information, misinformation and probably delay, inconvenience, discomfort and distress), appalling abuse of customers (imho sackable), failure to accept reasonable responsibility or apologise adequately, no contrition, no attempt at conciliation or goodwill compensation - all come across in the OP's account. Now SB have been around for a while so this cannot possibly be typical of their service, but of course they should wish to make reasonable amends and look at how improvements can be made to prevent such events becoming typical of their service.

Robust responses to poor customer service must be made. It's a public duty and civic minded. It's what keeps up levels of service, which are too low in this country. Some of the posters on this thread are true to form - lost the plot and proud of it. The OP has made a robust case but that's all. Form dictates these most vindictive posters would themselves have gone beyond robust if in her shoes.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
slikedges,
Quote:

No one would put in the effort to complain in this way unless they were justifiably aggrieved. People have better things to do.

10 minutes on a keyboard, cut and paste to 3 or 4 sites on the internet, all done in less time than it takes to fill in a formal customer complaint form sent out by head office following an irate phone call by the customer.

Quote:

SB have been around for a while

'Disaster recovery' tends to seperate the wheat from the chaff. Other operators appear from comments on snowHeads to have coped very differently over that same weekend.
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Boredsurfing, yes, but maybe these are new problems or maybe they did better for some of their other clients?

PS some of us can't post so quickly hence haven't amassed 32914 posts wink
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
slikedges, Laughing Laughing
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You'll need to Register first of course.
slikedges wrote:
#

Quote:
Robust responses to poor customer service must be made.
It's a public duty and civic minded. It's what keeps up levels of service, which are too low in this country. Some of the posters on this thread are true to form - lost the plot and proud of it. The OP has made a robust case but that's all. Form dictates these most vindictive posters would themselves have gone beyond robust if in her shoes.


Well, yes, eventually. But much better to try to get them on your side first through diplomacy, even in the face of arrogance, rather than going immediately for the jugular.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
thefatcontroller wrote:
Boredsurfing, PJSki, I find it hard to believe anything could shut her up Toofy Grin


I believe she has made two posts on this whole subject. She obviously has better things to do than us guys.

Two posts and she's described as trying to "bring the whole company down"

I really am struggling to see how you guys can excuse SB and its staff and the coach driver. I'd love to see your faces if I asked you to put your kids on a bus with a sleep deprived driver who was talking on his mobile all the time.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Quote:

Hang on a minute, who are you blaming, the airline or SB?. The airline is an agent of SB of course and it sounds like you were in constant contact with them; SB probably had stranded passengers all over the place and obviously did not have enough to staff at the time to front this up but their agent, the airline with its representatives, were there to deal with you. You were told a coach was going to be dispatched and you were also told that it was on its way (some bloke ? who was that? a stranger selling coffee or something wink ). There are plenty of reasons for you to feel annoyed but bit by bit more information slips out that expands upon the situation which, at the moment, seems to be not much more than a one sided moan.


Absolutely right. There's a post on a previous page giving the story from within the resort. It sounds as if SB reps were being sent from pillar to post in an attempt to play catch-up with the planes. In other words, doing all they possibly could to get to wherever the plane was going to land - and as Pandora herself will know only to well, occasionally planes have to divert to another airport because of localised poor conditions. This was an exceptional weekend from the weather point of view, requiring exceptional measures. I've read somewhere that two coaches "crossed" on the motorway (sorry for my poor choice of word) as SB were trying to get somebody down to the airport to help ASAP. In a mountain environment it takes time to get hold of a coach, get it up the mountain to collect a rep, get it down the mountain again, and get to the airport. So if the rep/RM was late in getting to you, then annoying and frustrating as this inevitably was after all of the previous delays, I'm afraid this is something the OP will just have to accept. It's the communication that I think went astray, not what SB actually did - or tried to do.

Moving on to the coach journey. Surely EVERYBODY on the coach had a vested interest in getting to resort as quickly and as safely as possible - the passengers, the RM, AND the driver? In other words, if the RM had felt that the coach was being driven badly/dangerously he would have asked the driver to stop. Of course, that would have made him even more popular with guests who were already a day and a half late in getting to resort! But as Lizzard quite rightly says IMO:

Quote:

people sitting in the back of a bus on their sole annual coach journey are world authorities on alpine road conditions, route finding, auto mechanics and the law relating to driving said vehicles. This is one of the first rules of tour operations.


Now, as for compensation for any delay, that is why you have travel insurance. The OP should be claiming on their travel insurance for this, and not dragging SB's name through the mud. Obviously the OP did have travel insurance didn't they? I'm sure the policy they chose was carefully selected to provide sufficient compensation in the event of a delay - if not, then they should have brought a more comprehensive policy.

Finally, as for why SB haven't been on here defending themselves, then I imagine that is because their own insurance will have instructed them not to respond until they receive a formal complain in writing. If I understand correctly, the OP has not yet done this and so from a procedural point of view, there is no complaint at the minute - just a series of telephone calls warning them that a complaint is likely to be issued.

Oh, and just a quick question - has the OP or any members of her party made complaints of this nature before? I'm making no allegations whatsoever in raising this question, it's solely to eliminate the unpleasant possibility that they are not serial complainers. Which I'm sure they are not.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Shimmy Alcott, Two posts here (Until I suspect Ski Beat have taken action to stop her) plus posts / comments on 3 other websites that I'm aware of, and I haven't been looking!

Quote:
I'd love to see your faces if I asked you to put your kids on a bus with a sleep deprived driver who was talking on his mobile all the time.

Thats why I drive Very Happy wink
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
Shimmy Alcott wrote:
thefatcontroller wrote:
Boredsurfing, PJSki, I find it hard to believe anything could shut her up Toofy Grin


I believe she has made two posts on this whole subject. She obviously has better things to do than us guys.

Two posts and she's described as trying to "bring the whole company down"

I really am struggling to see how you guys can excuse SB and its staff and the coach driver. I'd love to see your faces if I asked you to put your kids on a bus with a sleep deprived driver who was talking on his mobile all the time.


I'm just trying to see this from both sides, where as you seem to have been swayed by the fact the OP is A. a girl and B. a pilot. Neither of those two attributes actually make any difference to my opinion on this subject, which is what you have been inferring.


Last edited by Ski the Net with snowHeads on Mon 25-01-10 11:51; edited 1 time in total
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