Above And Beyond: Southwest Melts Customer's Heart After Deicing Snafu

Dan’s family changed planes in snowy Chicago while on their way to sunny Orlando. Before taking off, their Southwest flight spent three hours awaiting deicing on the tarmac. Dan’s family took the delay in stride.

The pilot kept us informed (he even said at time he would pull back into the gate if we were there much longer) and the flight crew were very helpful and understanding. No one got upset, we all just tried to make the best of it.

After returning from Orlando, Dan did not complain about the delay to Southwest. That did not stop Southwest from apologizing…

(Photo: isotopp)

Dan’s email:

My family flew to Orlando on Wednesday, April 11 on Southwest Airlines. We had to switch planes at Chicago Midway. Well we got stuck on the taxiway for three hours waiting to get de-iced. Actually it was not as unpleasant as it could have been. The pilot kept us informed (he even said at time he would pull back into the gate if we were there much longer) and the flight crew were very helpful and understanding. No one got upset, we all just tried to make the best of it.

Today I had a nice surprise when I brought in the mail. Every one of us, my wife, daughter, son, our niece and myself received a letter from Frederick T. Taylor, Senior Manager of Proactive Customer Service Communications (can you believe such a department exists!) apologizing for the delay, and telling us they will examine their planning and execution (or lack thereof) his own words) at Midway to avoid similar ordeals in the future. Also enclosed with the letter were roundtrip passes to anywhere Southwest flies, valid for one year.

We didn’t complain about the delay and I wonder if anyone else did. This was totally unexpected and has made me a loyal Southwest customer and I want to share it with everyone. There are companies out there who go above and beyond.

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Vouchers for everyone in the family? Not too shabby for an unsolicited apology. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER