Traveling with a child is stressful enough, but not when dealing with mixed messages from airline counter crew.
Content creator and mother-of-one Tina Amir posted a series of TikTok videos this week sharing her nasty experience trying to check in on their AirAsia flight.
In the first video, Tina said she booked her flight to Bali in August when her boy was still 23 months old, which meant he was allowed to sit on an accompanying adult’s lap.
She was supposed to take the 1:40 p.m. flight to Bali on Monday September 12 and return to Singapore on Thursday.
On Monday, she said AirAsia staff at the counter told her she did not need an extra seat even though her son was already 24 months old, having turned two on August 17.
According to AirAsia’s website, a child’s age on the departure date will determine whether the child is eligible for an infant fare – the airline considers any child under the age of two to be an infant.
Replying to @user4175102807882 Part 1 of my ordeal!
Everything was fine until Tina realized that her passport was less than six months old.
“AirAsia agents told me to go to ICA to try to get an extension slip for my passport, and that they might transfer me to a 5 p.m. flight instead,” said she told AsiaOne.
She quickly headed straight for the ICA and on her return to the airport with the extension slip, she said she was then told there had been a miscommunication – “there is [was] no flight at 5pm” and the next flight to Bali was at 10.50pm.
Exasperated, she agreed to be put on that flight and said she was told to pay an additional $169, which included baby fees and a processing fee.
Thinking everything was sorted, Tina returned to the airport at 7 p.m. later to check in, but ran into other problems.
Replying to @Tina A
This time, she said AirAsia staff told her they had “forgotten” about the fact that her son was no longer a baby and needed his own seat.
Moreover, in order for her to board her son on the same flight, she had to pay $778. Tina did not explain if it was an adult or child rate.
A check on the AirAsia website showed that a return flight to Bali from Singapore costs around $600 for an adult.
“I was literally in tears at the counter,” Tina recalled in her video.
After numerous back and forth with counter staff, Tina told AsiaOne that her son was able to secure a seat on the same flight – after paying an additional $311, on top of the $169 she had paid earlier.
She also showed AsiaOne a copy of her final travel itinerary, which showed her son had been booked as an infant.
Tina told AsiaOne that the airline sent her an email offering her a $50 credit for her next flight, a move she thought was “pretty ridiculous”.
A TikTok video posted yesterday showed her finally on vacation in Bali.
AirAsia has not yet responded to questions from AsiaOne.
Tina’s video received several comments from netizens who felt Tina shouldn’t have to pay for airline staff’s mistakes.
“How is their staff’s mistake yours? It drives me so crazy,” one netizen remarked.
In June this year, a family traveling to Malaysia and Indonesia with AirAsia said they had to pay more than 30.48 million Vietnamese dong (S$1,800) just to check four bags.
Rocio Ocampo took to a TikTok documenting his family’s experience with the low-cost airline, explaining that they racked up the exorbitant fees because they checked their bags at Hanoi airport, instead of prepaying for them on line.
“It’s like a little kid setting up a lemonade stand and charging us $100 per lemonade,” Ocampo’s son Knox commented.
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