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Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

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South Florida
posts: 1
reviews: 4
Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

If I have a negative travel experience I simply do not review that hotel, restaurant etc. But my experience with Great Lakes Air at the Cortez Airport was so terrible I feel compelled to write this. I consider myself a fair traveler/person, therefore I understand that mistakes happen, issues arise, human and computer error sometimes occur (which is more then most travelers) What I have no tol;erance for is rudeness and an utter lack of customer service.

I have waited an entire year to hear a response from the airline, I like to give a chance to correct mistakes. I was traveling with my 10 year son, and I am hearing impaired. We had 2 tickets from Cortez to Denver, then had two more flights to make once arriving in Denver. We arrived for our flight at the tiny, one desk Cortez airport less then one hour before our flight. The Great Lakes employee told me that we would not be able to get on our flight due to the plane had exceeded its' weight restrictions. I most look stupid, or perhaps because I am hearing impaired they figured I could be taken advantage of.(most airlines try to be more accommodating to those with special needs). I asked for further clarification from a manager because I had never heard of such a situation. Barbara, another employee then approached the counter. She proceeded to tell me that another flight of Great Lakes from close airport was cancelled and that some of those passengers had to be put on MY flight and because I arrived late, they gave my seats away. She then told me the next flight was booked and that I would not be able to leave until the early evening. She did not even apologize. I politely told her that would not be acceptable. She replied that it would have to be because the airline REQUIRES I arrive an hour prior to take off. I showed her on the Great Lakes website that for smaller airports, Cortez included, it does not make that requirement. It actually uses the word "RECOMMENDS" not "requires" as it does for other airports. She had no response, turned around, went to back office where I heard her tell the first employee, who lied to me about weight restictions, "there is no way in h*ll I am letting her on that flight".

She then returned, and proceeded to help another passenger, completely ignoring me and the obvious error that they had made. She was clearly angry by me pointing out the notes on the website. I tried to explain to her that if we did not get on this flight, I would miss 2 connecting flights and reminded her I am disabled and traveling with a child. She refused to do anything. Since the flight they would be putting me on was about 7 hours later, I asked her if the airline would give me a voucher for the closest hotel/motel for the day or at least to eat, she simply said "no".

The results of her mistake had terrible repercussions for myself and my son. Missed my flight in Denver, had to pay for another airline to get me to Atlanta, had to overnight on the floor of the Atlanta Airport main lobby, and finally home the following morning. I was ill for a week afterwards (airports are terrible places for the hearing impaired), out of pocket approximately $900 in additional flight expenses so I could just get home, and most importantly, my poor son.

Charleston, South...
Destination Expert
for Charleston, South Carolina, Telluride
posts: 8,000
reviews: 28
1. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

I don't mean to sound rude, but I have a question.... since you are hearing impaired, how was it that after the agent went into another room you were able to hear her tell someone else that there was "no way in hell" that you could get on the flight? Again, I am not trying to be rude... I am just confused.

Destination Expert
for Colorado
posts: 8,211
reviews: 112
2. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

I'm sorry to hear you had a bad experience. I was "bumped" once and it is frustrating. But since you did arrive late, I think the airline is probably within its rights to give your seats away, since they are allowed to oversell flights and bump even those passengers who arrive on time. Look up "Involuntary Denied Boarding."

I don't understand, however, why your tickets for your connecting flights couldn't be honored for later flights, or why you would be out $900.

From the Great Lakes website:

"It is recommended you arrive at the airport at least 90 minutes prior to departure

if originating at one of our hub locations (Denver, St. Louis, Kansas City, Billings,

Milwaukee, Albuquerque, Ontario, or Phoenix). Arriving at least 1 hour prior is

sufficient in our smaller airports."


"Boarding Priorities

If a Great Lakes Airlines flight is oversold and/or weight restricted and not

enough passengers agree to voluntarily relinquish their seats, Great Lakes

Airlines reserves the right to deny boarding to passengers in accordance

with the following:

a. Priority for boarding passengers on the flight will be according to

time of check-in."...

"No denied boarding compensation payment will be made if:

...d. The passenger has not checked in within the posted requirements."

And yes, there are strict weight and balance restrictions to make sure the aircraft can take off and land safely, and the airline does have the right to deny boarding to passengers or to reroute their luggage or whatever they need to do to meet those weight and balance requirements.

You might look at airconsumer.gov to see what regulations apply in your case. http://airconsumer.dot.gov/index.htm

Trip Advisor also has an air travel forum:


Reno, Nevada
posts: 834
reviews: 170
3. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

CAUTION: Prescott, AZ flying on Great Lakes Air to Cortez after 9/29. Website lets you book, takes your money & then will not fly you to Cortez. You Get Voucher ONLY! They let you book a date that they know they are not flying, take your money and then will only give you back a voucher...."You book a non-refundable." So Tough.....LUCK!

posts: 1
reviews: 2
4. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport


I have the similar problem with this company.

They are the most unprofessional people I have ever contact in my life.



Good luck if you want to flight with them. they are bad very bad.

I have been travel around for many years having problems but never ever with people soooooo unprofessional

Durango, Colorado
posts: 1
5. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

These folks are horrible. Avoid them like the plague. Their customer service is nonexistent. They don't communicate cancellations to the customer. They cancelled our flight for the following day with no notice. When we found a flight with a number of available seats on Great Lakes at an airport less then 70 miles away that would get us to our meeting on time, they told us that we would have to pay their change fee and we would have to pay their difference in air fare. The change fee and the airfare difference was 3 times the original cost of the tickets. Wow! What a deal. They cancel the flight and it comes out of my pocket. Way to accommodate the customer great lakes....

Louisiana USA
posts: 36
reviews: 2
6. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

If you book with Great Lakes expecting poor service and maximal rudeness, you won't be disappointed.

Tortona, Italy
posts: 6
reviews: 103
7. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

First of all I apologize for my English, certainly imperfect, but i would like to tell my bad experience with the great Lakes.

September 17, 2013 arrival in Farmington with ZK flight 7232 from Denver and baggage claim I find my suitcase severely damaged. The damage, also recognized by the employee E.J. the Great Lakes, it was not repairable. I make the complaint immediately to request a refund or a new suitcase.

The employee of Great Lakes I release the completed form but asked to leave my suitcase at the airport with them because it is examined by their expert.

Unfortunately, my vacation would begin from Farmington towards Kingman covering 1000 miles in the car, without having a permanent place of residence for more than two days.

It was therefore impossible to establish a place where to return me the suitcase.

And so I could not even leave an address where eventually return the suitcase after visual examination of the expert.

The employee of the Great Lakes had in fact asked for an address where to send the suitcase. In the meantime I would have to buy a new suitcase at my expense, Otherwise it where I put my clothes? Therefore impossible to fulfill my request, the employee of the Great Lakes also tells me not to know what to do because it was the first time that such an incident occurred. He tells me to come back the following morning.

On September 18, I go back to the airport but a new employee only gave me a phone number to call, number of supervisor mr. Rick Kranse. Nothing else. I complain that it is not a correct behavior and the employee tells me to go Cortez airport and talk with Ms. Jackie. On the same day arriving at the airport of Cortez where I find Ms. Jackie tells me the same thing: I have a suitcase for examination by the expert.

Even Mrs. Jackie asked us almost as angry as we come into possession of the application form for damaged baggage damage.

Jackie also talking on the phone perhaps with Mr. Kranse says he does not understand what we say and we do not know to speak English ... which is partly true, but we knew we laughed and shame that all other employees we have understood. A behavior really rude and disinterested. We then asked our email address so that Mr. Kranse can write to the method of delivery of the suitcase once back in Italy. Of course, after ten days of waiting there is still no email arrived.

On 24 September, at the airport in Kingman and still wonder about my suitcase. Here, too, no news in addition. They send a fax at the airport in Los Angeles (where I was going) to inform them of my arrival and my problem. But say that I have little hope, have never had such a case and do not know how to behave.

On September 24, arriving at Los Angeles airport. Seeking the baggage office of the Great Lakes, but I find that only opens two hours before the flight departure. It was 12:30 and the next flight of the Greate Lakes was at 17:30. It was impossible to wait 5 hours and I'm gone.

It's been two weeks since my complaint and no response, and on my return to Italy I sent two e-mails asking for clarification.

I have little faith in an answer, but I wait before sending the third email to customer service.

Certainly a professional behavior on their part. Without a doubt!

Tortona, Italy
posts: 6
reviews: 103
8. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

After over a month of waiting I was finally contacted the airline.

I have to send proof of purchase of the suitcase. Unfortunately I have not kept the receipt (which dates back to August 2012 ... who keeps receipts that long?) And I then asked for clarification about any other options for repayment.

Are not yet fully satisfied, but I want to have confidence in a resolution of the problem.

9. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

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Tortona, Italy
posts: 6
reviews: 103
10. Re: Great Lakes Aviation at Cortez Airport

I'll be back to write on GreatLakes Airlines. After several months and several emails I finally managed to get a refund of the damaged suitcase. I remember discussions with airport staff, even the airports, and now I have to slightly Correct my opinion. In fact, after meeting Mr. Krause, Manager - Customer Relations & Baggage Services, kind and professional, I think the biggest mistake committed by the airline has been entrusted to the wrong people managing relationships with passengers. And I mean a few episodes that occurred during my tour of airports in an attempt to get a response on the damage done to the suitcase. Or Mr. Krause has surrendered to my insistence? We'll never know, but I got a refund, I am satisfied and therefore I have to revise my opinion on the airline.

Now my opinion becomes more positive. Even if it cost me effort to get what was my right.

The damage to the suitcase can happen, everyone knows it. We should not get angry, but only gain respect and ask (insistently) the fair. I have had several suitcases routes over the years, but this was the first time that I had to insist so much to be repaid. However I have traveled well with the GLA (with the exception of a sensational late) I can not advise against, is no different from many others.