Qantas Call Centre Long Wait Times

My understanding (from unofficial sources) is that there is a pool of priority phone numbers that airport staff give to passengers which rotates every few weeks.

I will attempt to publish the currently active number(s) in this post:

1300 025 396
1300 659 116

1300 025 390
1300 024 715
1300 659 115
1300 659 134
1300 659 502
1300 304 318
 
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I have 3 active Customer Care complaints with Qantas now more than one month old! None of these have been resolved and only two have received replies approximately 3 weeks after lodgement to say they have a backlog of complaints and they have not forgotten mine!
REALLY!!
Even the phone calls about these and other issues to follow up refund of points used after a flight cancellation have now taken longer for the unresolved calls than the flights to Tasmania from Perth and back again.
Customer Care……REALLY!!!
Clearly the strategy is to leave complaints unanswered long enough for them to go away with the exhaustion of the loyal customer.
Qantas would be losing clients in droves if there were reasonable choice but Australians are chained to a dysfunctional semi monopoly.
Lift your game Qantas, I suspect more than half the complaints could be immediately resolved if coal face call takers were given authority to say yes more often. Even if the request from the client is perhaps not entirely reasonable the cost of a “yes” to solve would be significantly less than the ongoing cost of call centre time to solve issues.
Give yourself a productivity boost by giving more authority to coal face staff.
Kevin Maitland
 

SOPOOR

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QF probably have the same account of call centre staff now as they did when you were that child.

Domestic travel VA as premium as QF if not better, especially without any status.

Better value Y & J, economy X option & last but not least, call centre answer in matter of minutes.

It's just not solely the wait times with QF, it's at times the lack off solving the issue.
It's also the staff attitude, staff competence, dispute resolution
It gives me zero joy and gets me angry when I call any business and the staff have no idea what's going on or they can't even do the basics or put you on hold for 5 mins to find out how to change your name on the account etc
 

SOPOOR

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Qantas lost my business years ago over their terrible service. I happily put my money to Virgin and Emirates who are significantly better in this area. What surprised me is many complain at the service (or lack thereof) and yet still throw money at Qantas. Why? This is why they have such poor service because they know people just accept it. If enough people do the talking with their money and put it elsewhere, they will step up their game.
I believe it's a combination of brand reputation, loyal followers , lack of punishment for bad behaviour, lack of alternatives
 

PlaneCrazy

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Like most people here I’ve had a lot of flight disruptions during Covid requiring me to contact the airline I’ve booked with. In summary, via online chat I've resolved problems within 5 minutes with Alaska Airlines (no FF status, booking related to Qantas operated flights), regularly get straight through to Virgin call centre who have routinely offered solutions in my favour not strictly by the book (I am platinum) while with Qantas it's usually a half hour plus wait/call back and an uphill battle (lifetime gold). This is assuming the phone call doesn't drop out with no call back leaving me to start the process again. Due to the increased likelihood of having to make changes I now factor this in when choosing which airline to book with.
 

AVV

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No.Ever since A Joyce took over its got worse. Agree with those cut off. Me once after 4 hours. Then found out use messenger and get a reply. Not any more. He just accepts the loyalty of pax. Jetstar are brilliant as many international and domestic routes were taken over by JQ. WHY DO WE PUT UP WITH THEIR LOUSY CUSTOMER SERVICE. None at airports any more. Why not start a petition to Joyce?
 

Stevo.1702

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I have 3 active Customer Care complaints with Qantas now more than one month old! None of these have been resolved and only two have received replies approximately 3 weeks after lodgement to say they have a backlog of complaints and they have not forgotten mine!
REALLY!!
...
Same boat here.

My mother flew in early July on a business class fare CBR - MCY but it was swapped out to a single class 717 on the morning of the flight. CBR staff, cabin crew, and MCY staff all told her that a refund would be automatic and that she had no need to contact Qantas directly.

Early Aug I submit a complaint on her behalf. I articulate the complaint is in relation to the refund process, not the downgrade. I work in the aviation sector and understand these things happen.

Automated response in Oct saying we haven't forgotten about you.

This week I email their ff requesting an update on the complaint case number. The same afternoon I get a response asking for more information so they can look into it. Will be interesting to see what follows
 

SOPOOR

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Same boat here.

My mother flew in early July on a business class fare CBR - MCY but it was swapped out to a single class 717 on the morning of the flight. CBR staff, cabin crew, and MCY staff all told her that a refund would be automatic and that she had no need to contact Qantas directly.

Early Aug I submit a complaint on her behalf. I articulate the complaint is in relation to the refund process, not the downgrade. I work in the aviation sector and understand these things happen.

Automated response in Oct saying we haven't forgotten about you.

This week I email their ff requesting an update on the complaint case number. The same afternoon I get a response asking for more information so they can look into it. Will be interesting to see what follows
I've always wondered if you are Able to do a chargeback in these situations.

If possible I would do one , and then negotiate with them how much I think the downgraded flight is worth

im sure they will follow it up a lot quicker than the 12 weeks they take to refund anything
 
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Stevo.1702

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As an odd side note, I wonder if the frequent_flyer email address has a prioritisation system inside of it.

I signed off my email with simply my first name and phone number. The response I received a few hours later was addressed to Mr. [Surname] and referred to me as Mr. [Surname] throughout. I did not provide my surname in my original email.

I am WP and sent the email from my account linked to my ff number. Seems there may have been some connections and perhaps prioritisation occurring in the background?
 

Stevo.1702

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I've always wondered if you are Able to do a chargeback in these situations.

If possible I would do one , and then negotiate with them how much I think the downgraded flight is worth
The complicating issue (which may be the reason no action has occurred) is that my mum used pts plus pay to book the ticket. :eek:

I know, I know, a cardinal sin.

If I had known I would have stopped it. I am normally the family travel agent but in this case, they went it alone.
 

SOPOOR

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The complicating issue (which may be the reason no action has occurred) is that my mum used pts plus pay to book the ticket. :eek:

I know, I know, a cardinal sin.

If I had known I would have stopped it. I am normally the family travel agent but in this case, they went it alone.
i mean if you're using points to redeem your flight at a great value, why not:)
thats the whole point of the points accumulation game!
 

Stevo.1702

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i mean if you're using points to redeem your flight at a great value, why not:)
thats the whole point of the points accumulation game!
This wasn't a classic flight reward unfortunately. They used 100k+ pts for a CBR to MCY flight.

They don't travel a lot but have a lot of points so to them it was good value. I may have tried to guide them to a better use perhaps.

The 'fare difference' refund that I'm seeking is at least the number of points to upgrade from the cheapest economy seat to a business class seat for the same route. Still, a loss but a little bit back is better than giving up
 

SOPOOR

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This wasn't a classic flight reward unfortunately. They used 100k+ pts for a CBR to MCY flight.

They don't travel a lot but have a lot of points so to them it was good value. I may have tried to guide them to a better use perhaps.

The 'fare difference' refund that I'm seeking is at least the number of points to upgrade from the cheapest economy seat to a business class seat for the same route. Still, a loss but a little bit back is better than giving up
How about this for a doozie.
My first ever rewards point redemption was a return flight to Bali, 72k Qantas points on economy jetstar. Thought I got a pretty good deal.
Then got charged $210 tax

A friend booked the same flight and paid $250 cash for it!

It was a learning experience
 

gilldo

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Never have I read an article that is so accurate and reflective of my own experience.

My primary reason for ever calling the QF Service Centre is usually adding legs to my Oneworld Business Classic Reward (while you can create a new booking online, you can't add to it unless you give these guys a call). Despite call centres being located in Auckland, Manila, Cape Town and at least one Australian location, my many calls (probably around 25 over the last 6-7 weeks, including redials) have all ended up in Cape Town. For reference, I'm a QFF Gold Lifetime Member.

My average call wait time has been ~90 mins. This would be bearable if the calls didn't have the propensity to dropout. It might also help if the callback feature still existed, but this seems to have disappeared under COVID to reduce system strain.

Almost all calls have dropped out at some point, mostly after the agent has answered the call. It appears that calls often dropout while you're on hold, or being transferred to someone else. This says one of a number of things to me:
  • there are inherent problems in the ability of the system to cope with either the volume of calls, or the process of transferring a call is complex (or both)
  • staff haven't been properly trained in how to use the system
  • staff find some of the queries simply too hard to deal with, and deliberately leave people on hold for an eternity or simply drop the call (I find this a little hard to swallow, but who knows?)
When these call dropouts occur, staff never call you back of their own volition - you simply have to start again. Everytime I get through to an agent now, the first thing I ask of them if that the call disconnects, that they promise to call me back on my listed number. Two or three have actually done this, so this is a credit to them.

Staff knowledge would appear to be a massive concern. When you describe your problem they all take a long while to grasp it, and in some cases I'm convinced that they actually don't fully do so. Most understand what a Oneworld BCR is, but few understand the rules that govern it - so much so that I have to tell them. And when it comes to network knowledge, many sadly are geographically challenged.

On my first successful call (one that actually held up long enough to make a booking), I'd been trying to book 5 different trans-Pacific QF services, none of which I could make work. After connecting, the agent informed me that they couldn't see any of them as having available QFF Business availability - despite the fact that I could see them all (and still can today). I ended up booking a JL flight via NRT to SEA instead. And to rub salt into the wound, they hit me with a 2 x International Assistance Fee (which was refunded as part of a later call). So there's either lots of phantom availability out there, or some of the CPT crew don't have the access that others do.

Even if you secure a booking, the process of paying the taxes/charges never seems to occur at the same time. And until the taxes are paid, the fare isn't ticketed and you run the risk of losing flights as there is no way in hell that the QF Service Centre are going to be able to call you back to collect. Todays agent couldn't even get a full understanding of what I was trying to pay for today. I ended up paying taxes today on new legs booked for QF across the Pacific (which I finally secured), but was told that the refund of the taxes for the JL flights would have to be refunded later - I couldn't do a net payment taking the refund into account (which I have done in previous years).

Overall, this process is the most stressful I've had in dealing with any service provider - ever, and while COVID has taken a massive toll on the industry, QF need their QFF members to come back, and not walk to Virgin or elsewhere. We all want QF to succeed and have a long, successful life. This service is no way to retain them.

If Qantas ever want to talk to me about this complaint, PM me - I'll be happy to provide my details for a phone call.
 
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RedSMS

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This is a re-post from from Tuesday November 30th 2021 in another thread.

I received and read the email from AFF on Thursday almost in shock and thought to myself. "wow, the exact same thing happened to me", so I thought I would tell my story.


The Qantas call centre is absolutely shocking beyond description. They do not know the booking systems well and often hang up when your request is too difficult for them. This is pathetic for a supposedly "world-class" airline.


Perfect example:


Many of us had flights cancelled due to Covid.
I was taking my mother to the USA in June/July 2020, which was (at my request), refunded in the form of a flight credit, then issued as a Qantas Pass on 17/11/2021. She had a separate booking reference.


I also booked a flight in late July so that I could head up to CNS from down here in MEL for mid-November this year. Obviously, this flight kept getting cancelled and pushed forward due to QLD border restrictions.


I have spent so many hours on the phone with the most useless people I feel as if I want to cry. I have literally wasted that much time.


The first issue arose on 21/11/2021 when I attempted to cancel my CNS booking. I rang in the early evening. There was no wait time. The agent who took my call had the most indecipherable South African accent I've ever heard. . I wanted to cancel the booking and have the ticket re-issued as a flight credit so that I could rebook when the QLD Government decides that it's safe enough for vaccinated southerners to enter. As it happens, my mother (who had her own booking to Brissie), rang Qantas 20 minutes earlier to cancel and request a credit (also due to QLD border restrictions). She kindly sent me a text telling me that she didn't have to wait to get through, so I took my opportunity.


As the days went by, I noticed that my booking had not been cancelled.


I did have the opportunity to try again the other night when I was over at my mother's place. She could not see any flight credits on the screen (other than the Qantas Pass issued for June 2020 USA booking) and wanted to know where to look on the Qantas website so that she could use her flight credits from the cancelled Brissie flight.


That night, I witnessed a competent agent (rare) walk her through the process of using her Qantas Pass to rebook a flight to QLD. I witnessed it as I could hear the agents voice and I could see mum logging into the Qantas Pass on her laptop.


I made it my business today to have my CNS trip converted into a Qantas Pass because it had been evident to me that the woman I spoke to on the 21st November was completely incompetent, and did not cancel my flight as I had asked.


My first call today was at 16:43. The agent told me that I had already flown my mid-November MEL-CNS sector! I had to explain basic requests to him repeatedly. He told me that Qantas no longer issues Qantas Passes as of 30th September! He could only issue me with a flight credit.


What's the difference you say?


Well, according to this inept agent, in order to use a flight credit to make a booking, you must ring the Qantas customer contact centre. Ugh.


I explained the situation that occurred with my mother just days before. I wanted to be able to book online. After 35 mins, he terminated the call whilst I was on hold. This is shocking because you have no recourse except to ring them back and explain the same story to a different agent.
At 17:18, I immediately called back to attempt to resolve my query. I explained the situation to a different agent. He too told me that I had already flown one of my sectors (impossible because my flight had been changed from Nov 17 to Dec 15), so I asked if I could speak to his manager. He told me that his manager would call me back within half an hour. Obviously, that hasn't happened yet, nor will it.


Then I saw the flight credit appear, and at 18:04 rang up to make the booking. In the meantime, whilst sitting at the computer, I tried to see if I could log in to my existing Qantas Pass from last years USA booking using the card number, expiry date and password, however, the UATP login did not work! I wanted to raise this issue with the agent that was now booking my flight up to CNS in February. He put me in row 10, which I found weird because I am usually able to sit as close to the front of the economy cabin as I can (I usually try and pick row 4 on the 737's if possible). He said that rows 4-9 were blocked, but I could pay to sit in row 9. I don't know why, but I asked him how much it would cost to sit one row further forward (not that I would have paid extra). He put me on hold and literally 3 minutes later the call ended and went to the exit survey.


I made the booking with no seats selected and had not had my Qantas Pass login issue resolved.
Do these agents just not care, or are they under absurd time constraints? Do they actually know the QF systems? It is seriously maddening and it never used to be like this!


Aaaannnnnndddd POST! -----------------------------------------------------------------------------


Well, perhaps it was a good thing because just as I was proofreading my post I received a call from (02) 90671509. It was one of the 3 people that I spoke to today. He was quite a decent bloke I have to admit. He gave me some interesting information too. He told me that calls automatically time out after a certain period of time if they are on hold. I think he said an hour, but due to his thick South African accent, it could have been half an hour. It still doesn't explain why calls are terminated because my first call lasted 35mins 18secs and the other two were just under half an hour.


Anyway, I received the following outcome-


He was initially unaware that I had done this. Despite this new information, he really wanted to issue me a refund and cancel the booking. As I had already spent 25 minutes on the phone using my newly minted flight credit to book my flight up to CNS in February, I wasn't going to do that!
The gutsiest thing he said to me was "I'd like to be frank with you. We are trained and able to do simple things like make bookings and issue tickets, cancel or alter bookings but whenever a customer calls in with anything slightly more complicated than that I always transfer them to the frequent flyer team."


I respect honesty, so he put me in row 9 for no extra fee. Looking at the 738 seat maps I have no idea why Qantas would charge a Gold QFF to sit in row 9 when I could always pick row 4?

What's changed?


Regarding my Qantas Pass, he said he would issue me with a new login so I can get into the UATP portal to view my balance as per email.


It's funny how you measure the quality of customer service agents because here I am ranting about how terrible they were and suddenly I found myself calling this man sir and being extra patient, although he was really just doing what should have been done weeks ago.
Terrible.

UPDATE:

Because of some unknown fault with QF's IT systems and the way this flight had to be booked via the contact centre, I am unable to look at the seating arrangements, request an upgrade or manage the flight through the app or website. I literally have to call them if I want to do any of this! I have NEVER experienced this lack of functionality before!
 
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Mqrko

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Jan 9, 2016
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They made it so hard to get refund it feels like it's not worth it to do it so they can keep the cash...
 
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Same boat here.

My mother flew in early July on a business class fare CBR - MCY but it was swapped out to a single class 717 on the morning of the flight. CBR staff, cabin crew, and MCY staff all told her that a refund would be automatic and that she had no need to contact Qantas directly.

Early Aug I submit a complaint on her behalf. I articulate the complaint is in relation to the refund process, not the downgrade. I work in the aviation sector and understand these things happen.

Automated response in Oct saying we haven't forgotten about you.

This week I email their ff requesting an update on the complaint case number. The same afternoon I get a response asking for more information so they can look into it. Will be interesting to see what follows
I had a similar problem seeking a refund from the agent I booked a Silversea cruise with. After several calls to the agent and them changing promised dates for the refund, I called Silversea. Got the same answer the first three times I called over a month or so. Then on the fourth call, the Silversea support person, took personal interest in getting to the bottom of the problem, after all the activity in my customer log. She called me back 30 mins later and said that the requests from the travel agent had gone into a no_reply email URL and would never be processed. She contacted the travel agent who then emailed the correct inbox and lo and behold within 4 weeks full refund processed.
 

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