Jetstar cancelling flights on the Singapore route

By Noel2000 | Mar 08, 2018, 01:00 AM
I love Jetstar (as my wife says, love is too strong a word). However, that is quickly flipping to a fear of booking with them because one can never be sure the flight is actually going to depart. Examples, and we have flown Jetstar dozens of times over the last 5 years since I retired. Booked 4 return tickets to Singapore (Melbourne return) May 2017. Come September received an email the outbound flight was cancelled. Travelling in the US at the time - managed to find a local US number and changed all my flights forward a day to avoid an overnight stop in Darwin or protracted flight back via Bali. Fix up our hotel bookings later - a whole other story. In October I rejigged the flights to the day earlier to better fit with the travel insurance for my wife's parents who were travelling with us.
So far so good although changing my hotel bookings was a laborious affair.
In Singapore last Monday, had a lovely breakfast at the Somerset Bencoolen - or was going to until I checked my email and saw an email from Jetstar from 5am that morning that our flight that evening had been cancelled. Signed off by Liz McCarthy, Head of Customer Care - that's an oxymoron if ever I've heard one. No alternatives provided in the email which is the usual Jetstar practice, and the link to my booking only indicated that the flight had been cancelled. The other suggestion was at the airport speak to Jetstar staff member (poor staff getting lumped with agitated and annoyed customers).
Ever tried finding a local contact number for Jetstar - good luck with that. Eventually called a Singapore number for Qantas and served by Nomasa or something like that. No attempt to help a stranded customer - if you don't have a Qantas booking code I can't help you. I asked to speak to her manager only to be put on hold and never going to be answered. That was my first 30 minutes of trying to solve MY problem. Rang the same Qantas local number and after waiting about 20 minutes on hold (is that a record???) I spoke with Samantha who understood my dilemma and provided a number for Jetstar in Singapore. Now, that wasn't so hard was it Nomasa!!!
I was on the home straight now. Rang the Jetstar number and after another 20 minute wait was connected and after much breath holding, was advised that we could get onto an Emirates flight which was leaving about 3 hours after our cancelled flight.
I have had poorer treatment at the hands of an airline, but Jetstar is trying to claim that title.
And do you think this is an isolated occurrence! If only that were the case.
In October I booked another Mel-Sin trip for July of this year. Another Jetstar great offer, and a surprise for my wife. Mid December Jetstar advises me that from March 2018 they'll be operating fewer services to Singapore and guess what - yep, my flights are impacted. At least on this occasion the alternative flights were offered and were not that different although the carrier is Qantas. Options 2 and 3 in the email were somewhat ludicrous. Change my booking to prior to the flight cessation in March 2018 (doesn't quite compute given my travel plans were for July); and seek a refund of the fares paid - and what about the hotel bookings.
If anybody from Jetstar reads this, recognise that as an airline you have quickly turned me from a very strong advocate into quite the opposite. Perhaps some recovery may have been possible if you had better processes in place to solve the problems which you create in travellers' plans rather than putting the onus on the traveller to come up with a solution.
And please, get Liz McCarthy (head of Customer Care!!!!) to include contact numbers in her emails - not too much to ask is it.
The sign of a good company is how they respond to issues arising. Any company can cope when everything is running smoothly - the test is when things fall over. Unfortunately, I rarely see a company in pretty much any industry which has good plans in place to handle adverse situations.
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By mviy | Mar 08, 2018, 08:21 AM
With QF putting two A380s on this route (one already and another from late March) it’s not surprising that they’re cancelling Jetstar flights. With a LCC there’s a much greater risk of cancellations. It’s one of the risks you take when you choose to fly them.
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By GBRGB | Mar 08, 2018, 08:56 AM
It’s Jetstar, at some point in time the low cost element will manifest into a lack of customer service and leave customers disappointed, that’s how it saves money, by not offering good customer service which is very costly, I have avoided them since they started and will jump on a VA flight or any other rather than JQ if QF don’t offer a flight, this is the only way of avoiding a bad Jetstar experience.
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By Grannular | Mar 08, 2018, 09:03 AM
I don't think you will get much sympathy on here when complaining about Jetstar. You seemed to have a lot of problems, but still persist with using them. I understand that the fares are cheap but generally, you get what you pay for. In any case, it sounds like everything has worked out in the end and even being upgraded to a Qantas flight, which i would chalk up to a win.
If you don't want these sorts of problems, pay that bit extra. If you don't want to pay extra for a proper airline, deal with the consequences and move on.

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By dm12 | Mar 08, 2018, 09:06 AM
‘Rolls eyes whenever hears whinge about Jetstar’ They’re rubbish - we know!
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By hutch | Mar 08, 2018, 11:41 AM
They cancelled your flight and put you on Emirates 3hrs later. They then cancelled another flight and put you on Qantas.

I think you are doing quite well out of booking Jetstar and getting put on full-line carriers. Send them a thank you letter.


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By mannej | Mar 08, 2018, 11:59 AM

Isn't it funny that 99% of these long-winded rants always mention the fact they advocate for the company etc...

There is one place these rants end up and that is the company's wall of shame

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By Dredgy | Mar 10, 2018, 04:27 PM
Contrary to what people are suggesting, this isn't really a problem with Jetstar or low cost carriers in general - the cancellation rate of flights are actually roughly the same between Qantas and Jetstar (1.7% vs 1.9% respectively).


The "problem" is that you are booking flights 8 months in advance which increases the risk of a schedule change - simple as that. I booked ~30 flights last year 11 months in advance and I think the schedule changed on all but 5 of them with 9 being cancelled/moved to different days. Airlines change their schedule with the season and routes are constantly reevaluated - it's not like they're having mechanical problems or cancelling last minute - in both your examples you were given MONTHS of notice. The customer service of Jetstar seemed fine - put you on another flight or refund the money.


You're also prepaying for hotels which shouldn't be necessary - usually prepaid hotel rooms are discount non-refundable and you take that risk. Just put the money aside, book a flexible rate and pay at the hotel. Even with a non-refundable hotel booking, your travel insurance will cover the cost if the flight is moved to a different day.


Also, you think 20 minutes on hold at Qantas is a record? Hahahahahahha.

For future reference, Jetstar's contact numbers including all local numbers are available here: https://www.jetstar.com/au/en/contact-us/contact-numbers

Last edited by Dredgy at Mar 10, 2018, 04.29 PM.
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By MikeZ | Mar 10, 2018, 05:23 PM
Thats a bad customer service. They had to provide you phone numbers and assurance that they will help you to resolve the ussue. Shame on a Jetstar.
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Doubleplatinum

By MikeZ | Mar 10, 2018, 05:25 PM

I don't think you will get much sympathy on here when complaining about Jetstar. You seemed to have a lot of problems, but still persist with using them. I understand that the fares are cheap but generally, you get what you pay for. In any case, it sounds like everything has worked out in the end and even being upgraded to a Qantas flight, which i would chalk up to a win.
If you don't want these sorts of problems, pay that bit extra. If you don't want to pay extra for a proper airline, deal with the consequences and move on.


Bad response
Last edited by MikeZ at Mar 10, 2018, 05.29 PM.
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By puppy79 | Mar 11, 2018, 09:47 AM
be thankful you are on an emirates flight.things you would have had to pay for on jetstar are now included.
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By Doubleplatinum | Mar 11, 2018, 02:38 PM
Pays for a fare on a budget airline and expects the service and punctuality of a full service carrier, the mind boggles!
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By Red Cee | Mar 12, 2018, 12:08 AM
Jetstar are notorious for cancelling flights. I am personally aware of many who have booked, and the flight cancelled.
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By Powerledger | Mar 12, 2018, 01:29 PM
Fly Singapore Airlines they are miles ahead of Jetstar and Qantas in all areas
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By MikeZ | Mar 12, 2018, 07:06 PM
Its always funny how some (doubleplatinu grannular ) defend airlines that provide bad service. As customers we naturally demand a better and cheaper service whether it is a budget airline or a premium carrier.
Last edited by MikeZ at Mar 12, 2018, 07.09 PM.
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By elchriss0 | Mar 13, 2018, 12:40 PM
Contrary to what people are suggesting, this isn't really a problem with Jetstar or low cost carriers in general - the cancellation rate of flights are actually roughly the same between Qantas and Jetstar (1.7% vs 1.9% respectively).


The "problem" is that you are booking flights 8 months in advance which increases the risk of a schedule change - simple as that. I booked ~30 flights last year 11 months in advance and I think the schedule changed on all but 5 of them with 9 being cancelled/moved to different days. Airlines change their schedule with the season and routes are constantly reevaluated - it's not like they're having mechanical problems or cancelling last minute - in both your examples you were given MONTHS of notice. The customer service of Jetstar seemed fine - put you on another flight or refund the money.


You're also prepaying for hotels which shouldn't be necessary - usually prepaid hotel rooms are discount non-refundable and you take that risk. Just put the money aside, book a flexible rate and pay at the hotel. Even with a non-refundable hotel booking, your travel insurance will cover the cost if the flight is moved to a different day.


Also, you think 20 minutes on hold at Qantas is a record? Hahahahahahha.

For future reference, Jetstar's contact numbers including all local numbers are available here: https://www.jetstar.com/au/en/contact-us/contact-numbers

Last edited by Dredgy at Mar 10, 2018, 04.29 PM.

Whilst the cancellation rate might be similar, by flying with an airline like SQ who offer multiple daily flights (e.g. 4-5 to MEL) you have a much higher chance of being accomodated on another flight without any great impact to your trip.
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