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What the flying fuck do I do now?- flying problem

(21 Posts)
Piratepete1 Thu 12-Nov-15 00:19:28

I am flying soon with a 4 year old with autism and a 1 year old. We have to fly to visit a sick relative. Only Virgin do a direct flight from our local airport. We used to have excellent service from Virgin but they have been going downhill for years now. We always encounter problems now when we fly with them.

We have saved and paid to go Premium Economy as my 4 year old finds it easier to be in a smaller quieter area. Last month when we went they provided a safety seat for my 1 year old (who had his own seat). He was strapped in, safe so I was able to deal with my 4 year old.

I checked my booking today and have been told that they are no longer providing safety seats. Fine I said, I'll get a flight approved child seat. These cannot be used in premium economy. So then I'll have to move to economy - no can do without incurring huge cancellation fees.

What the hell do I do? I will have a 4 year old with special needs and a 1 year old effectively running loose ( no way will the lap belt contain him). I will have to have him on my lap for take off and landing so if my older one melts down I'm stuffed.

I am so pissed off with virgin as everyone tells me different things when I phone. I want to cry.

vvviola Thu 12-Nov-15 00:21:29

There is a special sort of harness that is approved for flying. Can't remember the name of it. could you buy/borrow one of those. I looked into it before with DD1 when we were flying a lot.

I'm sure someone with a quicker brain that I have will remember and post the name.

Piratepete1 Thu 12-Nov-15 00:22:27

I am half hoping they do what they did last time and assign me a seat completely apart from my 2 children. Someone else can deal with the fallout angry (although they did seat us together in the end after hours of faffing)

vvviola Thu 12-Nov-15 00:22:23

I remembered. It's called CARES.

AndNowItsSeven Thu 12-Nov-15 00:24:22

What a horrible situation, Virgin are acting very badly. Could you maybe use something like this?
kidsflysafe.com

Piratepete1 Thu 12-Nov-15 00:24:22

Is it the Cares harness? It says on their website only 2+ can use it confused

Epilepsyhelp Thu 12-Nov-15 00:24:38

kidsflysafe.com This one?

Epilepsyhelp Thu 12-Nov-15 00:24:47

Oops X post

Piratepete1 Thu 12-Nov-15 00:25:16

Well Virgin say only 2+, the manufacturer says younger

Tartyflette Thu 12-Nov-15 00:27:57

Meanwhile you could tweet them/post on their twitter feed and on their facebook page too. Make it a PR issue for them.
Someone ought to be addressing this issue at Virgin Atlantic HQ, it can't be the first time they have had issues like this.

AndNowItsSeven Thu 12-Nov-15 00:28:46

www.tinytottravellers.co.uk
Uk stockists

Piratepete1 Thu 12-Nov-15 00:29:37

I tweeted them and asked them what I should do. They said 'yes we are withdrawing the seats, sorry you are not happy with this decision' - so very useful response these

ihatevirginmobile Thu 12-Nov-15 01:26:51

Well....I think my user name gives it away - and I checked - they are still part of the same company - been with them for years, no problems, good service.
Until this year when they have been absolutely shocking ....one thing after another - different departments and they don't effectively share information eg the phone I bought off them was faulty - took 9 months for them finally to fix it but that changed the IMEI so I now have to wait for 2 weeks to get that sorted out so I can get an unlock code for it ..same 2 weeks for DD1s phone bought from them except that one is 'no record of the IMEI'.... but 2 months ago I had the same problem - I had to get it registered to get a quote for a repair confused. Even though we have lots of allowance left the phones keep getting barred - you only find out when you try to make a call - because I no longer trust them with a direct debit and I can't pay them off because an IT problem means that they can't change my card details from the one that expired a year ago confused Stopping myself there because the list is endless...and I have cried over it...and wasted hours of my time..it really is a brick wall. I really hate them...
Sorry - a bit of a derail -only reason I was posted because I absolutely relate to the 'don't care' attitude to complaints ...over the repair I have sent letters recorded delivery (template from CAB) and got an autogenerate letter telling me to do what I had already done and had said so in the letter (and I have tried facebook, twitter, etc etc)
Just don't read their terms and conditions on their web site - all the rubbish about their customers being important if they are anything like the ones on their mobile site.... it will really make your blood boil...(the line 'we'll do all the leg work for you' as I traipsed to the post office for the second time was what nearly tipped me over the edge ....)
Good luck with your flight ...I would look at buying a harness and just resolve to never ever deal with them again ...(don't get caught up complaining ime you will just waste your time and get angrier) and bad mouth them at every available opportunity wink

Senpai Thu 12-Nov-15 03:14:00

Here in the US they make children under 2 sit on our laps. Can your child do that for the flight while 4 year old sprawls happily on 2 seats?

tanukiton Thu 12-Nov-15 03:55:34

I would take the harness and stay with the Premium Economy. Usually it is a height weight thing for seats/harnesses and not just age so I would argue that if push comes to shove.

Good luck and remember you don't have to see any of the passengers ever again!

MiamiBound Mon 16-Nov-15 16:45:21

I work for Virgin (but not here in an official capacity in any way)

"The customer can buy a seat for their infant to use in flight, and if it doesnt have an airbag, they can provide their own car seat to fit it. But as the A330 Premium Economy class have airbags, this is likely where the problem lies. "

So its more of an actual problem than just a 'we are being arsey'

specialsubject Mon 16-Nov-15 17:00:33

yet again airbags make more trouble than they save.

if that's the issue, then try going back to Virgin, explaining that you didn't realise that your circumstances mean PE is not appropriate, and asking them to allow you to downgrade for goodwill reasons.

MiamiBound Tue 17-Nov-15 21:23:26

Sending you a PM with some contact details on Pirate

RealityCheque Tue 17-Nov-15 21:53:19

Why the fuck would you want airbags on a plane? Its not like they are going to help if it crashes!

Genuinely confused confused

MiamiBound Tue 17-Nov-15 22:10:55

Well if you have an emergency landing (not necessarily a crash) they could help

SandunesAndRainclouds Tue 17-Nov-15 22:22:25

Could you use something like a crelling harness for your 4 year old? Might work if he's ok with pressure and finds it reassuring?

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