AA Australian office closed!

Discussion in 'American Airlines AAdvantage' started by icarus, Jul 29, 2006.

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  1. icarus

    icarus Member

    Feb 15, 2005
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    I've been dealing with the Sydney AA reservations office over the last couple of weeks and finding them pretty unhelpful. After almost daily email exchanges they finally sent me (on Tuesday) written confirmation of some flights I had booked which they had changed. Tuesday night I sent a "thanks" and a question about the tickets. And Wednesday I got a return email saying that the Sydney office was closed and all Australian inquiries should now be directed to their office in "Deli" (sic), with a freecall number.

    Is this weird or what? There was no mention in our discussions of the office being about to close, though it does sort of explain why the service was so indifferent, if the staff knew they were losing their jobs (I've always had really good service from that office in the past). When I directed a query to the US, a note came back on the Thursday (after the automated response from Sydney), but also with no mention of the Sydney office closing.

    And who closes an office mid-week? Anyone know anything about this?
     

  2. Mal

    Mal Enthusiast

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    #2 Mal, Jul 29, 2006
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2006
    I heard a cpl of months ago that the SYD office was soon closing and that Australians were to be pushed towards an Indian centre when it closed.

    Don't know the reasons as to why (but assume cost cutting from AA).
     
  3. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    I thought that the office is closing on monday. It was definately open on friday since I was in there getting an ATW ticket issued to get it done before they shut up shop

    They have had a number of Temps working there with a few experiences staff. I know that some of the staff are off to pastures new with AA. The agent I was dealing with was off to work at LHR

    Not too surprising it is closing really; they haven't had a flight to Oz in the last 10 years. I believe that they are planning to have a GSA ( possibly at QF ) to do ticket issuing for them

    Dave
     
  4. NM

    NM
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    Aug 27, 2004
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    Though perhaps with the fresh influx of people buying tickets through AA rather than QF, their decision may have been a little premature. With enough people "migrating" to AA from QF, they may have had justification to keep the office open :confused:. I guess its all too little too late.
     
  5. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    But people wouldn't be buying their QF domestics from AA Sydney would they? .... no GST benefit that way :)

    At least with VOIP et al, phoning the USA isn't an expensive activity and the US staff have generally , imo, been much more knowledgable than those in Sydney ( though there were a few notable exceptions , such as the chap on the front desk at AA N Syd)

    Dave
     
  6. NM

    NM
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    No, but think of all the award flight taxes they will need to process locally :D. And then all the ATW fares to be purchased through AA. And all the IATA fares with exotic routings to be hand written :rolleyes:.
    The only problem is the very helpful and knowledgeable AA USA staff can't process an Aussie credit card payment. So I suppose part will need to be via India.
     
  7. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    Exotic IATA routings? I don't know *what* you mean :) . Hopefully they will have got a GSA set by now in order to handle local ticket issuing

    Ahhh. Hopefully the India ppl can handle something as straightforward as an award payment; perhaps they won't even need CC authorisation forms ... if not, the UK office can handle Ozzie cards with no hassles

    Dave
     
  8. drron

    drron Enthusiast

    Jul 4, 2002
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    So if you book on aa.com you can ring the AA office in the UK to process your credit card payment?I do have a few misgivings about sending my credit card details to India.
    Maybe just have to plan even better and get my tickets whilst in the US.
     
  9. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    If it is for an AA flight, then no problem. If it is for something else then you cannot hold the booking online only purchase

    If you have AA Gold or higher status , then the US office can take non US credit cards

    Dave
     
  10. NM

    NM
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    I was AA P;at when making my award booking and the US office could not take my Aussie (i.e. non-US) credit card for payment of the taxes.
     
  11. icarus

    icarus Member

    Feb 15, 2005
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    It always struck me as odd that AA in the US can't process my credit card over the phone if I call from Australia, but they can if I call them from within the US. I mean, what's the difference?

    And I wish Expedia would take international credit cards for flights. That would make life much easier.

    Come to think of it, why are international credit cards a problem, anyway? I can use my card at Nordstrom when I'm in the US, but if I try to use the same card on-line to order a gift for my sister: no dice. Whereas Barnes & Noble will accept my card whether I'm in the store there or on-line here. And Pottery Barn will accept my card in the store, won't accept it on-line, BUT if I ring them from Australia they *can* accept it. It's v peculiar.
     
  12. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    I was fairly sure that AA had changed their procedures that the US office was supposed to now accept foreign credit cards from "elite" members

    Dave
     
  13. NM

    NM
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    The place you call from makes no difference. When I call AA in the USA I use an IP phone that originates its call from the same local call area as AA and in fact I used their local phone number (817 area code in Fort Worth) and not their 1800 free call number. So as far as their system was concerned, I was calling from somewhere in Ft Worth, Texas. And they could not process my Aussie credit card.

    However, my postal address registered with AAdvantage is in Australia, and my award flights were with Qantas. So I first thought that these facts would make the taxes calculate in A$ and that may be why they could not process it in the USA. But I was quoted the tax amount in US$ by the US AAgent, and she did try to process it but their system would not permit it. She then asked a supervisor to help and they came back an apologised for not being able to do it.
    Its all about credit card fraud and the regular use of foreign credit cards to rip-off people.

    But, if AA in the USA had charged my Amex card for the taxes on my award flights, Amex would have added their foreign exchange commission and it would have cost me more. So having the card charge processed in your home country will save you money.
     
  14. Slightly OT, but I had a problem using citibank card in Honolulu. Couldn't check into room because of ridiculous 3pm check in and needed to make urgent phone call and no LOTFAP coins. Tried operator assisted CC call and she couldn't do it because the card was not issued in the US. I pointed out to her that CB was a US multinational and that Visa was a world wide accepted credit provider, but no go. IMO this sucks from the people who invented the telephone, light bulb and who put man on the moon.:evil:
     
  15. NM

    NM
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    Oh yes, and don't forget that you Citibank Visa card is not accepted on the moon for purchases of light bulbs or making operator assisted telephone calls back to Earth :evil:.

    And don't try to use a non-US issued American Express card on the Internatinoal Space Station - they will just laugh at you :rolleyes:.
     
  16. Is that what it meant when that Armstrong bloke put a LOTFAP flag there in '69? It must therefore be US territory. The way our foreign policy works we might as well be too:evil:
     
  17. drron

    drron Enthusiast

    Jul 4, 2002
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    In April this year in New york I booked on line with aa.com for domestic AA tickets.When I rang to pay they could not accept an aussie credit card.I then walked about 600 metres to their Manhattan ticket office and the card was accepted.I have paid for several tickets now using that card but still have to be in their physical presence to use it.
    It is one of the major wonders of the world that the so called leader of the world is so backwards when it comes to some of their financial practices.
     
  18. Tiki

    Tiki Member

    Jul 21, 2004
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    OMG, well that explains it. We had a few people off sick today so I was able to sneak a call and got the Indian call centre. They didn't know anything about the Global Explorer. The lady gave me a number in Sydney 02 9923 3609 and said speak to someone named Hector. I tried the number several times and no one ever answered. So if I call the US, can I speak to an American or will it go to India too? So does that mean I can't get my Global Explorer plated on AA to save on taxes? If this is the case, is LA at least better than QF for taxes?
     
  19. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    If you call the ATW desk in the USA on +1 800 247 3247 , it will go to the dedicated Around the World desk in the USA and not end up anywhere near India. I doubt that you will have any difficulties with them. Tell them that you want it issued in Australia and they will get the Australian price quoted. Then just wai a day whilst they send itinery to Dublin for tax pricing and phone back and you'll have the total price. When ready to ticket, then finally call the "Australian" Office

    Shame you couldnt get hold of Hector, he is pretty knowledgeable

    Dave
     
  20. Tiki

    Tiki Member

    Jul 21, 2004
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    I'll try Hector again today, I wonder if he lost his job? I hope not, but at least you confirmed he is a real person! I thought the Indian lady was BSing me.
     
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