Snigdha Jain, a marketing professional at an Indian bank and also a top travel blogger in the country, has caused quite a stir with British Airways.
Whilst many passengers turn to social media to vent their frustrations over apparent poor service, Jain's blog post following her own experiences has spiralled into genuine viral land.
Last month, Jain travelled from New York to Mumbai on a British Airways flight. She had a connecting flight at London with about an hour difference (both are BA flights).
Jain had checked with her travel agent and confirmed a "registered connection" so that "there was no chance of missing the connecting flight".
The flight, BA 114, from New York to London, reached its destination with just a ten minute delay, but for about an hour the plane couldn't get a parking slot due to an another plane in the way.
The reason? Jain says: "One of the ground employees had forgotten to detach the cargo trolley from the aircraft".
Jain claims that the cabin crew made announcement for all the connections, except her London-Mumbai flight. By the time she and five other passengers reached the gate to board the connecting flight BA 139, it had departed.
It got worse for Jain.
She claims the BA staff at ticket issuing counter was "extremely rude" and even "shouting" at Indian passengers who missed their connecting flights, but were "extremely polite and courteous" towards other travellers.
While she was rebooked for a flight after 12 hours, she wasn't given lounge access, even after she expressed interest to pay for it.
Perhaps the most damning elements in the post is when a fellow passenger asked the BA official if "our comfort and wastage of time mattered to BA at all?", with the official allegedly responding: "No sir, your wastage of time and comfort has no value for us."
No compensation was provided except for a £10 voucher. Also, no wheelchair assistance was provided to an elderly person, Jain claims.
She closes the post, which is an open letter to BA CEO Keith Williams, by saying,
"So let me safely conclude this letter and say that the next time I see a BA India ad of a husband gifting a romantic holiday to his wife and how BA makes it all happen, I will only recall the words that my loss of time and comfort is of no value to BA."
The post has since been shared by over 10,000 Facebook users, attracted about a dizzying 900 comments, over 1,000 retweets, and 350 LinkedIn posts.
A representative of British Airways, known only as "Rick", apparently reached out to Jain after the post's publication and acknowledged receipt of the letter to the CEO. Rick also told Jain that she is eligible for duty of care and compensation for missing a registered connecting flight.
"He accepted that the behavior meted out to us was unacceptable and also explained our rights in case we miss such connections (for future reference). They shall also work on improving their customer care to avoid such future incidents."
Tnooz asked British Airways about this incident:
"We have apologised sincerely to the customer for the inconvenience caused as a result of the delay to her flight.
"British Airways takes customer service and customer feedback very seriously. We always do our best to offer seamless service to our customers at all times. On occasions when we don't meet their expectations, we take immediate steps to address their concerns and take the appropriate action."
British Airways has made a lot of effort in recent years to promote its flights among Indians. Its two recent marketing effort include emotional videos that explain how an Indian couple took a much needed vacation, and how an Indian mom was surprised to see his son arriving from US.
Recently, a similar incident was reported by a traveller named Jay Shah who flew from New York to Mumbai on an Air France flight.