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Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

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Very Unhappy Emirates Customer


I received some horrible news the night before Christmas Eve that my grandfather had passed away at home in Ireland. Living in Perth I, obviously, wanted to get home ASAP. I went on line and booked my flight Perth to Dubai, Dubai to Dublin (EK425 + EK161).

My stopover in Dubai was 18 hours so when I checked in to Perth airport I was told (by Emirate staff) that as I didn't have the 24 hour notice to book online, I would be able to book my hotel (for free) from the desk in Dubai.

I boarded the plane at 6am and everything was great although all I wanted though was to get to a bed after being up all night.

I arrived in Dubai, went to the desk as instructed and was told because I don't book 24 hours in advance there was nothing they could do to help. This is absolutely ridiculous! Unfortunately, death doesn't seem to give 24 hour notice!!

I met the most rude staff I have ever met! Staff in Perth should have given me the correct information and Dubai staff could have had a bit more compassion for a girl standing on her own, tears rolling down my face! Last thing I wanted to do was grieve in an airport for 18 hours. And then the staff called 'NEXT', basically telling me to step aside.

I was then told by a staff member there was an earlier flight to London and could just get a connecting flight to Dublin but I had to go to the next desk to get more information. At this desk I was told NO. This cannot be done because I have a direct flight and it cannot be changed. Again ridiculous..

As it is Christmas time, the flights are a lot more expensive so I put all my savings in to the flights home. Not to pay for hotels in Dubai..

I am now sat on my own in an airport until 7am.

My reason for this email is your rude staff in Dubai, misinformed staff in Perth and ridiculous policy of requiring 24 hour notice to book the hotel for long connections. There should be some other policy that understands needing last minute bookings.

I wrote to Emirates Customer Care with my complaint and not even as much as a reply.

Very Unhappy customer

Nuremberg, Germany
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1. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Same old story. They are not bad in the air but terrible on the ground. In particular in Dubai.

That's exactly why they are on my personal blacklist and reading that they haven't changed they will remain on my list.

Nowy Sacz, Poland
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2. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Agreed - good in flight, awful on the ground

Destination Expert
for Staffordshire
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3. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Have never had a problem with them at all and would not hesitate to use them again.

As I see it, it is up to the flyer to find out the facts.

Edited: 7:43 am, January 28, 2014
Fredericia, Denmark
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4. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Rude? They likely did not give you the answers you wanted to hear.

Destination Expert
for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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5. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer


I'm not intimately familiar with EKs layover hotel policy; but.... Like many airline policies, this one has an objective definition as to who is, and is not, eligible, and under what conditions, etc.

Yes, it can be somewhat like lounge access -- that there might be multiple scenarios under which a passenger IS eligible, and perhaps an equal number whereby they are NOT eligible..

However, that's EKs issue to manage internally... And as the passenger you do have the reasonable expectation that a question such as this -- one that's objectively defined and answerable as such - be answerd correctly by staff..

So, given that it sounds like one of the two were objectively wrong (and again, I'm not an expert on EKs policy in this regards, but an reading about it at arms-length) I would expect EK to address this issue and, to the extent possible, make you whole for any failures on their part.

The other issue -- the changing of your ticket.. This one to me is somewhat like the hotel issue.. It to has an objective answer.. So, assuming the staff in DXB corectly interpreted and enforced the policy that would govern your case- then I can't fault them.

I get it, you had a somewhat unique and immediate travel scenario, but that alone to me isn't automatic grounds for a ticket change that's not supported by the tickets fare conditions... And again, this does assume the ticket the OP held did in fact not allow for such changes...

Perhaps the OPs travel scenario might have meet EKs or EK staffs threshold for discretion - but that is a wholly different matter and one that would be entirely EKs call.

I would press EK for resolution of the hotel matter as that sounds to me, only from what's presented here, to be the most valid and factually actionable issue here.

Travel Safe,

London, United...
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6. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

I'm really sorry to hear about your grandfather.

In relation to your situation, emirates do clearly state they will not make free hotel bookings if less than 24 hours in advance. This is also what you were aware of from the website and the staff in Perth were also aware of or they would have done it for you and you would not have asked, you could have done it at the time of booking.

The Dubai staff acted according to policy, both with your ticket and free hotel. Whether you, me or anyone else feels that the policy should be flexible is a different story, it's clearly not or was not. You were not eligible irrelevant of circumstance, for either a ticket change or free hotel due to a death in the family.

The only discrepancy is why the emirates staff In Perth told you that the Dubai staff would be able to book you free hotel stay, against policy, basically just by turning up and asking. This seems an unusual thing for them to state, because if that was the case, everyone who made a short booking would try it. Are you sure they did not say to just "ask" at Dubai, or that they actually said " free hotel" and not just it could be booked there?

I also wonder about what you were told about your ticket change, it does not look like the member of staff looked at your ticket and promised you a change, maybe again, just to go and ask at the next desk for more info? The words you use here are what makes me think the same thing happened with your hotel. The instruction to ask or get more information appears interpreted to mean they will absolutely provide it for you, and that's not what it means. Offer to book a hotel, does not mean it will be free. Sadly enough.

The emotion is very clear in your post, and sometimes when we are tired and emotional ( eg another example, you state you were crying, and refer to yourself as a girl, when I suspect maybe you are a grown woman) we don't always hear what is being said, but rather hear what we want to.

Again, I'm sorry about your grandfather, it's a horrible thing at a horrible time of year and an awful journey to have to take, but sadly that does not change the policy of airlines in many instances. So I would be very clear on what was actually said to you in Perth, not what you maybe thought they meant or wanted them to mean, because you were not eligible and you were very clearly aware of that fact but wished to have the circumstances of your travel taken into account and an exception to the policy granted.

New York City, New...
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for Air Travel
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7. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Rude? They likely did not give you the answers you wanted to hear.


Indeed, as seems to be the case with the one post ranters.

If getting a hotel was so important then "grieving in the airport for 18hrs" wasn't necessary. Dubai hotels are plentiful, cheap and convenient to the airport. Most airlines don't offer free hotels in this situation and it wasn't as if you booked EK for the hotel, you found out at PER that the hotel was an option.

Nuremberg, Germany
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8. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

I wouldn't jump so fast to the conclusion that the ticket was not changeable. Because a ticket bought less than 24 hours in advance is pretty likely not a fully restricted lowest fare one. It's much more likely that changes would have been possible, but perhaps for a fee.

E.g. I remember when an EK staff in Dubai informed me that I could not take another flight with my fully flexible C-Class ticket. I went to the DNATA counter right next to it and had myself booked on my selected flight within minutes and without payment. So much for competency of EK staff.

Melbourne, Australia
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9. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

When I was flying home to Melbourne from Singapore when my dad was dying emirates were great. They recognizes me due to all my travel back and forwards and nearly always gave me an upgrade.

For the flight I booked when I got the dreadful call that he only had days left and to come home they were fantastic. Business and first were full so they gave me 3 seats to myself. When I got on the plane the three seats were bulkhead so arms wouldn't lift up. As I was gold the flight attendant welcomed me and asked if he could do anything. When I asked if there were three seats free with adjustable armrests he did even better and moved me to the four(might have been 5) seat config so that I could lie down

Fantastic from them. Unfortunately now I live in Hong Kong I can't use them when I go home for visits

Kerikeri, New...
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10. Re: Very Unhappy Emirates Customer

Funny how on the Dubai Airport series, they always seem to go out of their way for almost any situation....for the cameras no doubt:)