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  1.    #1  
    I went to the Poconos over the Mem. Day wknd.
    Had a great time ("beautiful Mt. Airy Lodge" to quote the commercial).
    Except for Trailways and Greyhound (the former may be a subsidiary of the latter).

    When my lady & I got our tickets at the Port Auth. Bus Terminal at 42nd & 8th Ave. (I know - not *exactly* known as "The Happiest Place on Earth" the way Disneyland is):

    At Greyhound:
    1) Rude female clerk (I didn't get a photo, or make an audio recording, to my regret) keep clamoring "NEXT!" repeatedly to my lady & I, though there is obviously another party blocking our way to get to her;
    2) When she finds out where we're going (and that SHE needn't "worry about our biz.") she hostilely snaps: "Go next door" (to Trailways).

    At Trailways:
    1) a guy blatantly cuts the line, by stepping over the rope in front of my lady & myself (I don't want to cause a scene in front of my lady, of course - which I'm sure the ape was couting on);
    2) the female clerk on duty (I took a digipic of her [not w/my EM2, but a stand-alone], which I'll try to post in the next few -- but didn't make an audio recording, to my regret) lets this happen! (instead of refusing to serve him, and sending him to the back of the line; he turned out not to be a paying customer, anyway!)
    3) the ape and the female clerk actually LAUGH about this, looking over at my lady & myself a number of times like we're "chumps"! (this was "easy to see" as VIDEOTAPED SURVEILLANCE of this person "doing her job" would prove)
    5) female clerk laughs, calls to her co-workers and points at me when I whip out a highlighter to highlight important info on the tickets!


    I will NEVER do biz. w/them again, and hope everyone else won't, either.
    "Great Spirits Have Always Encountered Violent Opposition From Mediocre Minds." -- Albert Einstein
  2. #2  
    I'll support it.

    Although I'm not quite sure, usually something like this is what you'd file a complaint to with Greyhound / Trailways about their service. Usually, if they don't do anything about it and say "tough luck" or "we're proactivley engaging in a win-win solution to better fit our customers paradigm," I'd boycott. But if it's an isolated case with just these two jerkholes, I'd focus more on getting them fired than anything.

    Although, I really was not there, so I really can't say much. I'm waiting to see these pictures

    I've never known them to be all-too friendly though.
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  3. #3  
    I support you guys all the way!

    I Will Never Ride A Greyhound/Trailways Bus Ever!
    Matt Nichols
  4. #4  
    no offense, but why didn't you just drive? It would have been more relaxing, more private and you could go at your own pace.
  5. #5  
    when unhappy with customer service, take personal action on the scene -- it's hard to do it without getting angry, but it's worth the trouble

    example -- also Memorial Day weekend

    stopped at a diner before hitting the road; this particular diner automagically adds a 12% tip to all orders from 3 pm until closing (note: I've heard of automatic tip addition for big parties [6 or more people, 8 or more, whatever] or for late night service, but never as early as 3 pm)

    meal was fine, until we were done -- at least 20 minutes passed between the standard early meal check-in ("How is everything? Is there anything else I can get you?") and the time I found the waitress to ask for the check

    during that 20 minutes, she had been in the area (the guy two booths away from us ordered and received his food in that 20 minutes), but had not deemed us important enough to visit

    took bill (w/ 12% tip added) to cashier, said, "I'm not paying the tip. It took me 20 minutes to get it from the waitress and she doesn't deserve a tip." The cashier was a little flustered, but got the manager

    without ever making eye contact with me, he told her to go ahead and ring it up without the tip

    grabbed a customer comment form to fill out (which I did in the hotel room over the weekend) to complain about both the 20 minute wait for the bill and about the fact that the manager on duty didn't even make eye contact with me (let alone apologize, which is what he should have done)

    the funny thing is that if there hadn't been an automatic tip, I probably would have tipped the waitress a little bit -- I'm a good tipper because I realize what a sh#tty job they have

    I have no tolerance for poor customer service -- at the same time, I readily compliment good service and definitely re-visit those places which do provide it
  6. #6  
    You've got quite a bit of gall!

    If my service was 20 minutes long, I'd simply grumble about it, and fill out a comment card. McDonalds must really irk you!

    P.S. Do you like to tip people? If so, go to , and checkout "3tip 1" !!! It's my very first Palm App that I programmed all by myself. (By using another Tip Calculator as a guide!) It's pretty good! And I'll be releasing a more unique version soon that can calulate the tax!!!

    Maybe you'll get to see it if I'm still around!
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  7. #7  
    Originally posted by creole
    no offense, but why didn't you just drive? It would have been more relaxing, more private and you could go at your own pace.
    His part is saving the environment? Not needing to drive? There are plenty of reasons.

    "One word sums up probably the responsibility of any vice president, and that one word is 'to be prepared'.
    -Dan Quayle
  8. #8  
    Originally posted by bblue
    McDonalds must really irk you!
    Actually, McDonalds and my mother are to blame. When I was a kid, I didn't like onions (still don't like them much, but I can tolerate them now). We were at McDonalds once when I was about 5 -- she ordered a cheeseburger without onions for me.

    They failed in their mission -- my cheeseburger had onions on it. I'm sure my recollection is not completely accurate, but the only word that comes to mind to describe how I remember my mother's reaction is "ballistic."

    Add that to about a year of restaurant managing experience (in a former life) and you've got me: a person who does not tolerate bad service.

    What is even worse than bad service is when the managment does nothing about it.

    I have walked out of more than one fast food restaurant when I was unsatisfied with the service I was receiving.

    And any time I fail to tip, I make sure the waiter/waitress and the management know *exactly* why.

    Thanks for the software offer -- I'll look at it, but doubt that I'll use it. I have a B.S. in math and an M.S. in statistics, so it's pretty easy for me to calculate tips. If in doubt, I round up....
  9. #9  
    Oh man... I knew it had to be McDonalds....

    I love onions, but I sure as heck cannot STAND theirs! (Probably because their onions are not real...)

    Ballistic.... oh boy... I wish I was there!

    I remember times when I'd get in line at McDonalds with my Sister (who has the same tolerance as you do!), and they would stop serving breakfast in 30 minutes. (Where I lived, it was the only place that served breakfast by the time I got up!) There were about 6 people in front of me, and the cashier cared more about fungus on her toes than she did my order. By the time I got up there, they had stopped serving breakfast for 2 minutes. I asked for a breakfast sandwich, and I get "WE STOP SERVING BREAKFAST AT 10:30! IF YOU WANT IT, GET HERE EARLIER!" Once I re-gained my speech, I then asked for a Quarter pounder, but because they didn't have any sitting under the heatlamps, I got the "WE'RE ALL OUT OF THEM" response. Now honestly, how hard would it be for her to get up off of her 300 lb **** and actually MAKE food?

    Well, I decided to try once again. I ordered a strawberry shake (their shakes are terrible.... they're not real, either.) figuring it would cheer me up. However, the jerk-of-a-clerk replied: "Sorry, we're out of strawberry shake as well as chocolate shake. All we have is vanilla shake."

    First off, that sounds wrong. Second off, I know they had strawberry topping and chocolate syrup for their sundae's at hand.

    I felt angry, until my normally-polite sister promptly screamed: "I can't believe they actually pay someone like you!" (she's 9 at the time) and promptly swipes all of the comment cards, and on them wrote (with my help): "Your service stinks as much as your food does." as well as the clerk's name and the location / survey / etc.
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  10. #10  
    i have two customer service stories:

    i once rented a uhaul truck and the guy who rented it to us failed to do many things he should have (made sure there was coolant in it; tell us that 1/4 tank of diesel fuel is actually fumes and that you'll have to stop for gas; etc.). his neglect caused us to stall during rush hour on the 401 highway in oshawa heading for toronto (busy as hell). as a result, i had to wander around for two hours in an unfamiliar city trying to locate diesel gas, buy gas cans, make multiple trips across the highway to fill the tank, etc. etc.

    when i finally arrived back in toronto, i was furious. i could have been stranded overnight if i hadn't had a credit card, or, worse, killed crossing the highway multiple times. the attendent then gave me hell cause i was late in returning the truck. he said he missed on another rental as a result. when i told him what happened and how he'd forgotten things he told me that he had told me those things. (the uhaul in oshawa was appalled when they found out there was no coolant in it. they called the reservoir "bone dry" even though it's supposed to be filled after each rental.)

    he then proceeded to charge my visa (which he'd made an impression of as a deposit when i rented the truck) for the full fee plus a late fee. not one to settle for consumer injustice i literally leaped over the countertop and grabbed it out of his hands and tore it to shreds in front of him while screaming explatives.

    he called the cops, but refused to press charges when they arrived. i wrote a letter to uhaul's head office who were furious about the incident and refunded my money (all the money spent on cabs, gas, and jerry cans in oshawa) and gave me a free rental voucher (like i'd ever use their service again). that particular vendor was out of business 6 months later.

    story number two involved an incident at a local theatre (the paramount for those in toronto). i'd had a disagreement with one of the managers when the film i was watching broke (it had broken the previous time i'd try to see the film and prior to going again, i spoke with management to ensure that it had been fixed). i demanded my money back and the manager refused saying he would only give me a voucher to return to his theatre, which i didn't want.

    i left him with nasty words, bumping him slightly as i brushed past him on my way out. i went downstairs and informed all the people buying tickets for the broken movie that it was busted and that they should not buy tickets. the counterhelp radioed for the manager who came down and when he saw it was me got all mad. he called for backup--four managers surrounded me. then they called the police (all this while lying to the people in line saying that the film was not broken and that i was the one lying).

    so, anyway, i ask why they're calling the police. what are they going to charge me with? one of the managers pipes up and claims i assaulted an employee! it was totally ridiculous. the manager i apparently assualted (the one i had brushed past) was a monster whereas i'm only 5'8 and of medium build. the cops arrived and looked at him and then me and literally started to laugh. i was dismissed (without my $12!) but told never to return to the theatre or i'd be charged with trespassing (again, as if i would even consider giving them cash).

    however, i was pissed. that night i wrote letters to the three daily newspapers, the two weekly papers, the theatre head office, the canadian distributor, and the studio that made the film. the toronto star wrote an article two days later about the trouble at the theatre and quoted me in it. the studio wrote me an apology. cineplex odeon (owners of the paramount theatre) never even responded to my letters.

    the best thing about the incident is that when my name appeared in the paper, a manager from a new AMC theatre (a new chain in toronto, but old in the usa) called me and offered to let me and 6 friends come see the film at his theatre for free. i didn't take him up on it cause the theatre was a distance away. however, i do my best not to give cineplex odeon any more of my money, and when an AMC opens here, you can bet i'll be frequenting them. as someone who sees at least one movie every single day (on video/dvd or in the theatre), cineplex is out a nice chunk of cash. bastiches!

  11.    #11  
    bblue: You must love that great scene in the movie "Falling Down" w/Michael Douglas & Robert Duvall where he flips out in a burger joint ("Whammy Burger"?) that stops breakfast at 10:30am, and he's there at like 10:32.

    Thanks for the responses, everybody.

    For some reason, my brain froze along the lines of "going there by bus" (couldn't take a plane on such a short trip), and I never even considered renting a car until we were finally ON THE BUS, and I was mentally playing back the events. Probably would have been CHEAPER, too. Next time.

    It is hard to complain on-the-spot w/out losing your temper, though. Still, they seem to "use this as an excuse" to "ignore what you're saying" -- as if VOLUME and/or profanity (oh, sh*t; people don't REALLY speak these words, do they? My Virgin Ears!) completely NEGATE any points you're making, no matter how cogent or valid. But that's how they play it. And the NYPD Nazi Pigs will, too, if they're called. (Individuals = Always Wrong; Corporations = Always Right. Facts don't matter.)

    Sadly, you won't learn much from the photo -- just someone behind the counter (she averted her eyes when she saw the camera [which is why I used it instead of the EM2 -- I WANTED her to know this was being recorded]), not shouting or anything. That's why I wish it was video. Still, if it causes her heat in her daily life, I think that would be a good thing.

    I'll see if I can copy my post(s) and/or pix to a Trailways, Greyhound and/or related site, and hopefully it will have some of the positive impact some of you have had when you've been consumer-screwed and forced to rebut.
    Last edited by bkbk; 05/31/2001 at 07:35 PM.
    "Great Spirits Have Always Encountered Violent Opposition From Mediocre Minds." -- Albert Einstein
  12. #12  
    I do love that scene! It's so true!

    Mc, BOTH of your stories were awesome! It's like something I would see in "Cops!" This is a 1st-class thread!!!!

    Oh boy, this brings back so many memories!

    As for bkbk, I couldn't agree more. I'd still like to see the pic, but I know what you mean. Fortunately, I've never had the cops called on me because I keep cool. I think I've also built up experience from the days I had to argue with my blood-sucking teachers....... (you would think I'd have forgotten by now!) Your best bet is to be REEAAALLLY witty and REEEAAALLLY sardonic, but cool. Ticks the hell outta them.

    bkbk, you may wish to write a letter to Greyhound, or the manager, or the dog who does the commercials (just kidding! ), and give this some publicity. Big companies fear consumer opinion when it is voiced to the masses.
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  13. #13  
    Waitresses have real sh*tty jobs. When I go out with friends we leave an exorbitant tip, usually more than 50% for the waitress because.. well... we're all 16 and horny but anyways.. my point is... well I forgot that too...
    1 out of every 3 baby ducklings are born without the protective membrane on the bottom of their webbed feet that enables them to survive in the water because of acid rain.
    1 out of 5 are born without heads.
    You can't make this stuff up... or can you?
  14. #14  
    Originally posted by gorrak
    Waitresses have real sh*tty jobs. When I go out with friends we leave an exorbitant tip, usually more than 50% for the waitress because.. well... we're all 16 and horny but anyways.. my point is... well I forgot that too...
    Yeah this is the same sort of thing that my friends and I do when we go out to eat.

  15. #15  
    This has turned into an ideal post for telling you about my peice of software that I made: 3tip! A tip calculator for your Palm Pilot! Even if you already have a tip calculator on your Visor/Palm, you may actually like it! Give it a try:

    Ok... sorry about that. But please tell me what you think!

    Allright, about tips.

    Whenever I go out to eat, I tip a 15% minimum, then I add on if they were friendly / or / they did a really good job. I know once I went to a place called Graeters (an very good ice-cream parlor. world's best chocolate.) , and the nice person who made my soda did such a good job I ended up paying nearly double! They deserved it! Only if their attitude is REALLY bad do I subtract... but it's been so long since I remember doing that.

    I always thought being a waiter was a so/so job. I think it's tech-support people and customer service people (especially at "Dillards" ) who put up with the most garbage. Of course... usually that's what they treat you like, too. Probably because they do not get tips.
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  16. #16  
    15% is usually my starting point too

    once when we went out to eat w/ my in-laws I actually found an excuse to return to the table after we had all walked towards the door because... father-in-law is a straight 15% tipper (I don't even think he'd decrease the tip if he was unhappy w/ the service) and I wanted to add enough to hit at least 20% at this pretty nice restaurant (of course, the fact that the in-laws always pay when we go out meant that my entire bill for the evening was only 5% of cost of dinner)

    and, just so you all know I'm not *that* much of a grouch, here's a story about outstanding customer service:

    new Mexican (but not New Mexican ) place opened in town, and their shtick is that everything is fresh -- no canned veggies, salsa made on premises, etc. -- and part of that shtick is that they're not really fast food (i.e. they don't make promises like "we'll have your taco in your mouth in 20 seconds or it's free!") but they're still quick...

    first time we went there, we ordered, were given a number, and went to our table

    I was not alarmed when a couple of numbers which were higher than us were called; after all, some orders take longer to prepare than others

    after about 10 minutes passed (and a few more numbers higher than us were called), I went to the counter and inquired about our order

    oops, somehow things got mixed up in the ~3 feet between the cash register and the food prep area; our order never made it across that immense chasm

    manager apologized and said he'd bring our food out to us ASAP; he was apologetic without reciting the "I'm sorry your food isn't ready" speech like a robot (you've all gotten that at least once in your lives, right?)

    about two minutes later, he came to our table with our food -- and a 100% refund of our bill -- apologized again and said he hoped we would come back again and give them another chance at serving us

    I filled out a comment card (I'm a big believer in positive customer feedback as well as negative) and you can bet we've been back

    point: I expected an apology (although the fact that this was a new place made me a little unsure about exactly how long our food should have taken); I expected him to bring the food to our table -- he fulfilled those expectations

    I was hopeful that (1) the apology would seem sincere (it did) and (2) maybe we'd get a coupon for our next visit or maybe some free tortilla chips or something -- if he had done that, I would have been very pleased because I would have considered it above the minimum

    I didn't expect a 100% refund, and I was amazed that he gave us that -- he went way above and beyond the minimum
  17.    #17  
    Originally posted by David Harville
    <snip>(I'm a big believer in positive customer feedback as well as negative)<snip>
    I am, too -- I've even left positive feedback for some U.S. Postal employees! But, sadly, I've had to leave more negative ones.
    I try to be realistic in my expectations. (I've done cust. svc. work in the past, too. Preposterously, I liked & was good at it -- getting a lot of positive feedback -- but it just didn't pay the bills the way other work could.) And in NYC, we're notoriously "over-tippers" -- when I travel, people ask me WHAT THE HELL I'M DOING tipping so much!

    Still, you can't reward incompetence or hostility.
    I can't imagine where some people were raised / educated nowadays, where they seem to come to work w/out their "work personality (the "cust. is always right," courtesy, good data, etc.) and instead think it's "funny" to "create problems for the next ***** who comes to my window."

    I'm sure, ultimately, our failing educ. system (that teaches ONLY rote facts, and little about the "living" parts of life -- a home budget, how to find & stay in a good relationship, office politics, etc.) has a lot to do w/it....
    "Great Spirits Have Always Encountered Violent Opposition From Mediocre Minds." -- Albert Einstein
  18. #18  
    Was that place you ate at called La Salsa? They're good! I like em alot! (They're better than Chipotle!)

    Anyway, Bkbk, I guess you can blame the overall rudeness of certain employees on the idiots they have had to deal with. (That, or they're angry because it's 15 minutes till their next smoking break... ) Sometimes I don't blame them. They come there with a positive attitude (if it's their own will.... ) , expecting to make a few bucks while at it. Then they get the idiots who come in there "I didn't know that a cheeseburger had CHEESE on it! ; Wait... you mean tickets cost MONEY!??" and the rest of us normal people have to suffer. They're jobs become so lousy they take it out on us. Usually the worst people ARE tech support. (I've gotten hollered at by people who thought I didn't know what I was doing.... even though I did... and I was right!)

    The problem, is that I've also noticed an increasing trend OF rudeness. I still want to see your picture , but I also know that some of these people are simply too self centered to give a rat's bottom.

    That's why I am always so quick to compliment those who still give "service with a smile!"
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  19. #19  
    big k,
    Did you ever get that customer issue resolved with Greyhound/Trailways ???
    <b><font size=1 color=teal>"Sorry about the whole thing about losing your life savings, but that Palmpilot is property of Enron, so please give it back"
  20.    #20  
    Originally posted by bblue
    <snip> Anyway, Bkbk, I guess you can blame the overall rudeness of certain employees on the idiots they have had to deal with. (That, or <snip> Usually the worst people ARE tech support. <snip> I still want to see your picture <snip>
    I know sometimes people can be unreasonable, but I try to make sure I'm never one of those; I try *never* to argue unless I'm pretty sure I have a valid, important point. It's tempting to say people come in & ruin an employee's day, and that's why they take it out on the next person, but they prob. shouldn't be there.
    This is why I think we could rely on video much more:
    1) You see the actual truth; 2) You see if maybe *you* caused the employee to "lose it"; 3) You see the daily / weekly / monthly reality of that job, and that employee doing that job; 4) This would allow you, perhaps, to "cut the person some slack," or "see it's biz. as usual"; 5) + or -, it could be shown to their Mgr. for a promotion or demotion; 6) Prob. stuff I'm not even considering here.

    I've actually done tech support, too -- and, again (w/out tooting my own horn; I almost feel like this is a job interview!) w/in a week of my 1st time EVER doing the job, a DB of our calls proved I zoomed up to #2 out of 12 tech support people. I just try to put myself in their shoes, find out the prob. (w/out 1/2 hr. of "schmoozing": "You're in Idaho? What's the weather like over there today?"), fix it for them as quickly as I can, and get off the phone (always being "courteous, but brief," as they trained us). And every day I would try to learn EVERY DETAIL that ANYONE might ask me on ANY call -- because I knew how I'd feel if someone called and I said: "I dunno, I dunno, I dunno..." I don't know why it's hard to find good tech support. Even when people complained -- I just did what they wanted! "I want to speak to your Mgr." "Okay, Sir, please hold" -- and patch them through. I already knew I prob. already tried my best, gave the standard solutions in the standard sequence (& any quick, relevant "tips & traps" I could), so I prob. wouldn't be fired.
    The Customer Is Always Right, Period. That's how I looked at it. "I want a refund!" "Okay, Sir, please hold while I connect you to Refunds." I never kidded myself I got my paycheck from anyone else but our customers.

    I'll still try to upload the pic -- I just have the kind of life where a billion things happen at once, and it happens all the time. Also, I have tons of Web access at work, but am often beat when I get home, and that's where I do my psnl. stuff, obviously. (Another virtue of video: you can capture all data, media, etc. EFFORTLESSLY -- and even if you don't get back to it for 6mo., you KNOW it's THERE. And you didn't have to lift a finger or take even a SECOND to document it. It's my favorite technology. Surprise, eh?)
    "Great Spirits Have Always Encountered Violent Opposition From Mediocre Minds." -- Albert Einstein
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