So. Let me just tell you a little story about getting to LA. The flight was fine. The kids were a little whiney from being tired, and both refused to nap, but overall they were pretty good. Will was quite sad when he realized he didn’t get his own seat but he settled down once he realized he could look out the windows. No, our trouble didn’t start until we got to LAX.
We got off the plane and Will’s car seat wasn’t there. We had gate checked it SPECIFICALLY so we could avoid dealing with baggage claim. (You can check a car seat for free.) I asked an employee about it and she went and double checked and informed us that it must have been put with the checked baggage and we would have to go to baggage claim and there would be someone there to help me. Annoying. So we hauled our stuff and both kids down to baggage claim. There, we were informed that Allegiant’s baggage claim was actually one terminal over. So we walked some more, got to the Allegiant baggage area and checked the luggage that was circling. No car seats. Then I get to the far end and see the car seat. In a locked case.
I figured we were set. I mean, I could see the seat! It was Right! There! There was a lady standing near the case so I asked her to open it. She tells me I need an Allegiant employee and she’ll go check for one. She walks around the area, but no one from Allegiant is there. She tells me I can go up to the ticket counter and get someone to come down and open it. Alright, obnoxious, since the girl who checked for the car seat at the plane told me there would be someone AT baggage claim. But whatever. We are SO ready to leave. Up at ticketing there is no one at the Allegiant counter. Awesome. The guys at the counter next to it inform me (when I ask whether someone is in the back) that there are rarely employees at the Allegiant counter. Extra awesome.
I go back downstairs and do a lap hoping someone is there no. No luck. I ask the lounging security guard if he can open it. He directs me to an office. The employees there inform me that A) they work for another airline B) only an Allegiant agent can open the case C) there is no paging system in place at LAX D) they have no way to contact Allegiant employees and E) there are almost never Allegiant employees in the baggage area. SUPER DUPER. I’m pretty pissed at this point. They suggest the ticket counter may list a customer service number. I go back up. No employees (no surprise) and no number.
I’m wishing I had a hammer so I could just break into the damn case. No employees in the baggage area. No employees at the ticket counter. No listed numbers anywhere. And a car seat LOCKED IN A CASE. Also? We were at baggage claim within like 30 minutes of landing. How in the world did they get all the baggage down there, on the baggage carousel, picked up by other people on the flight, leftovers off the carousel, locked up, and all employees gone by the time we got down there?!
We’re considering leaving (since we apparently have no way to contact anyone) when I realized I had the reservation customer service number still in my phone from the other day. (I had to call to confirm we had a lap child.) I figure it’s worth a shot to call.
After 10 or so minutes on hold an agent asks how she can help. Our conversation goes like this:
Me: I need a phone number to get ahold of someone who works for Allegiant baggage claim at LAX
Her: Those numbers aren’t public
Me: Well, I gate checked a car seat which then ended up with the checked baggage and now it’s locked up. There are no agents in baggage or at the ticket counter and no other airline knows how to get ahold of Allegiant employees.
Her: Let me put you on hold.
Her: It looks like no one will be back in until Monday
Me in my head: Are you %&$*#&@ kidding me right now?
Me out loud: It’s a CAR SEAT. How am I supposed to get home?
Her: Let me put you on hold.
Her: We’re trying to get ahold of the person in charge there to see if they can reach someone at the airport.
Her: They’re sending someone down.
So finally. FINALLY. A girl comes in and opens the case. And you know what? It’s one of the girls who was STANDING RIGHT THERE when they told me there would be someone AT BAGGAGE to help me. The whole ordeal took an hour and a half. Including a half hour on the phone with the customer service girl.
Right now the only person at Allegiant I don’t hate is the girl on the phone who (eventually) got someone to help.