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Guest Cristina

Car doors not closing

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Guest Cristina

Traveling in the train 94 from NY to Boston on 1/18/2019. For the whole duration of the ride the door at the ends of my car has been stuck open. Asked the conductors how i can close it; it is cold and very noisy in the car because of it being opened. They said not to touch it as they will take care of it. Reminded them 3 times in one hour and still nothing. Not sure if they just don’t care or they are on purpose being passive aggressive. Very upsetting. 

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Sorry, you talking about the doors for going between cars, or the doors you go through to get on and off the train? Because of it's the latter, we're talking about a really serious safety hazard. If it's the former, we're talking about a pretty minor inconvenience.

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10 minutes ago, Guest Cristina said:

the door at the ends of my car has been stuck open. Asked the conductors how i can close it; it is cold and very noisy in the car because of it being opened

 

5 minutes ago, cpotisch said:

Sorry, you talking about the doors for going between cars, or the doors you go through to get on and off the train? Because of it's the latter, we're talking about a really serious safety hazard. If it's the former, we're talking about a pretty minor inconvenience.

 

She is talking about the doors going between cars as she said the END doors, not the SIDE doors and if she's sitting near them, that is more than a minor inconvenience, particularly in this weather.

The train is out of PVD. As the crew walks through, ask them to close them again. I'd advise you to check the toggle but it is possible the door is stuck, which Amfleets are notorious for.  If you close it, it may not open without the aid of a crowbar.

Edited by Thirdrail7

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Cristina, please be aware that this is just an amateur train enthusiasts forum. I mention that in case you thought you were dealing with Amtrak directly.

It is horrible that your journey was so cold and noisy, and that the staff did not deal with your complaint.

If it happens again, I would  ask to move to another car.

You may also contact Amtrak and make a complaint, maybe you would receive a voucher or partial refund?

Folk ought to complain, bring things to their attention, after all, you paid for a decent trip...

Ed. 

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Cristina,

Your post is discouraging but I am glad you posted it.  You were not treated very well.  If there was a mechanical problem with the door, the crew should have explained this to you.  If they chose to keep the door open for some other reason, they should have explained it to you.  It sounds like they just did not care about your comfort or experience.  

If Amtrak was a class act, they would fully refund your fare.  

I do not know if this is correct or not, but my understanding is that the proper course of action would be to send a letter to the following address:

Amtrak, Attn: Director of Customer Experience, 60 Massachusetts Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20002-1285

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1 minute ago, Rasputin said:

If Amtrak was a class act, they would fully refund your fare.  

I recommend the OP call Customer Relations (different from customer service) and ask for compensation, since they've always treated us very well in the past. I'm not sure if a full refund would really make sense here, since they did get the OP to her destination, albeit in a pretty noisy and chilly manner, but they might give her 50% of the cost of the trip back as a voucher or something (speaking from past experience), which I think would be pretty fair.

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Cristina,
Your post is discouraging but I am glad you posted it.  You were not treated very well.  If there was a mechanical problem with the door, the crew should have explained this to you.  If they chose to keep the door open for some other reason, they should have explained it to you.  It sounds like they just did not care about your comfort or experience.  
If Amtrak was a class act, they would fully refund your fare.  
I do not know if this is correct or not, but my understanding is that the proper course of action would be to send a letter to the following address:
Amtrak, Attn: Director of Customer Experience, 60 Massachusetts Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20002-1285


If Amtrak started issuing refunds cause an end door wouldn’t close they wouldn’t make any revenue.

Of note Amtrak Headquarters is no longer at 60 Mass. and hasn’t been for about a year or two.

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15 hours ago, cpotisch said:

I recommend the OP call Customer Relations (different from customer service) 

 

What’s with the constant nit-picking of customer relations vs customer service?  They are the same thing.

 

If you go to their website and fill out a feedback form, the page says a “customer service representative” will respond. If you look up their phone number, their main number is for reservations & customer service.  Even if the department is called Customer Relations (and it doesn’t surprise me that Amtrak doesn’t have use consistent terminology across their website), I find it...misinformed (at best) to claim, as some have (not in this thread but certainly elsewhere) that if you call an agent and ask for customer service that the agent won’t know what the caller is really asking for.

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41 minutes ago, Trogdor said:

 

What’s with the constant nit-picking of customer relations vs customer service?  They are the same thing.

 

If you go to their website and fill out a feedback form, the page says a “customer service representative” will respond. If you look up their phone number, their main number is for reservations & customer service.  Even if the department is called Customer Relations (and it doesn’t surprise me that Amtrak doesn’t have use consistent terminology across their website), I find it...misinformed (at best) to claim, as some have (not in this thread but certainly elsewhere) that if you call an agent and ask for customer service that the agent won’t know what the caller is really asking for.

If you just call USA-RAIL, you get a standard customer service rep. Since Customer Relations is in charge of refunds and compensation, and is its own separate department with its own hours, the distinction between a standard USA-RAIL rep and a CR rep is important. If you don't specifically ask to talk to the latter, the former will often just give you a lecture on policy that won't get you anywhere. So it is worth pointing out that she needs to talk to someone from that one department, since she might just end up going around in circles otherwise.

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I appreciate the comments on this.  The address which I posted was given to me by someone who recently traveled on the Lake Shore and that person received it from an Amtrak employee who urged him to submit comments on the food service and who stressed that a letter was given more weight by Amtrak than an email.  I don't know if that is correct.  It might be just another Amtrak employee rumor but I understand that Amtrak does have a director of customer experience (Waves Mowatt-Kane, PMP.)  Perhaps she is the right person to receive these comments, perhaps not. 

In Cristina's experience I am not disturbed as much by the noise from the open door as by the temperature in the car.  If the car was cold, the crew should have suggested that passengers who were uncomfortable should move to another car if there was space available but her concerns should not have been ignored. 

I think that many businesses recognize that if a customer experience is well below the norm, the customer should be offered a significant and perhaps full refund as a way of demonstrating that the business recognizes the disappointing experience that the customer had and that the business wishes to have repeat business from the customer. 

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In all the years I've ridden Amtrak and been a member of this forum I've never once seen any actual evidence that Customer Relations is anything other than an interchangeable term for Customer Service.  So far as I can tell the claimed distinction is little more than a myth perpetuated by chain letter logic.

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Words of Wisdom from an ex- Amtrak agent!^_^

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6 hours ago, Devil's Advocate said:

In all the years I've ridden Amtrak and been a member of this forum I've never once seen any actual evidence that Customer Relations is anything other than an interchangeable term for Customer Service.  So far as I can tell the claimed distinction is little more than a myth perpetuated by chain letter logic.

This from the Amtrak Twitter feed:

 

Capture.JPG

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10 hours ago, Acela150 said:

Trust me.. At Amtrak Customer relations is NOT Customer Service. ;)

That...can be interpreted in a couple different ways.  :lol:

So what's the difference? 

Where does a request for customer service actually go? Is it just rerouted back to the same call bank?

4 hours ago, PRR 60 said:

This from the Amtrak Twitter feed:

Capture.JPG

Thank you.  I'm not on Twitter so I naturally never saw that. 

Calling, purchasing, riding, and browsing Amtrak's website an incalculable number of times has provided me with zero evidence of this oddly secretive department.

Although this thread has made it clear some sort of department does actually exist it's equally clear that most Amtrak customers are not supposed to know about it.

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9 hours ago, Devil's Advocate said:

Although this thread has made it clear some sort of department does actually exist it's equally clear that most Amtrak customers are not supposed to know about it.

I'm pretty sure if you call Amtrak and say "This, this, and this happened on my trip. I want a refund or voucher", they will know to transfer you to Customer Relations. It might take a bit more time than if you outright ask for CR, but I think the end result will be the same.

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1 hour ago, cpotisch said:

I'm pretty sure if you call Amtrak and say "This, this, and this happened on my trip. I want a refund or voucher", they will know to transfer you to Customer Relations. It might take a bit more time than if you outright ask for CR, but I think the end result will be the same.

Other than Amtrak's twitter account (referenced above) I've never seen or heard about Customer Relations from any official sources.  According to some Google digging "Customer Relations" is only mentioned in the job posting and travel agent areas of the Amtrak website.  It would appear that the primary purpose of the department is to handle unresolved disputes for serious claims that have reached some sort of impasse.  It does not appear to be part of the normal complaint resolution process.  Which is why I asked what happens to people who call to complain but do not ask for Customer Relations specifically.

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1 hour ago, Devil's Advocate said:

“Customer Relations" is only mentioned in the job posting

Why do you think they would post a job listing specifically for Customer Relations if it is the same as Customer Service?:huh:

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3 hours ago, the_traveler said:

Why do you think they would post a job listing specifically for Customer Relations if it is the same as Customer Service?:huh:

I hadn't seen the information about job postings when I made the statement about the department names being interchangeable.  Based on the posts by Acela150 and PRR60 it's clear that customer relations is distinct from customer service.  What remains unclear is how the rules/abilities of the CR department differ from the standard complaint resolution process or where a call goes when you ask for customer service.

Edited by Devil's Advocate

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15 hours ago, Devil's Advocate said:

That...can be interpreted in a couple different ways.  :lol:

So what's the difference? 

Where does a request for customer service actually go? Is it just rerouted back to the same call bank?

Thank you.  I'm not on Twitter so I naturally never saw that. 

Calling, purchasing, riding, and browsing Amtrak's website an incalculable number of times has provided me with zero evidence of this oddly secretive department.

Although this thread has made it clear some sort of department does actually exist it's equally clear that most Amtrak customers are not supposed to know about it.

"Customer Service" is the agent who answers the phone when you call the 800 number. If someone needs customer relations the call is transferred. 

4 hours ago, Devil's Advocate said:

Other than Amtrak's twitter account (referenced above) I've never seen or heard about Customer Relations from any official sources.  According to some Google digging "Customer Relations" is only mentioned in the job posting and travel agent areas of the Amtrak website.  It would appear that the primary purpose of the department is to handle unresolved disputes for serious claims that have reached some sort of impasse.  It does not appear to be part of the normal complaint resolution process.  Which is why I asked what happens to people who call to complain but do not ask for Customer Relations specifically.

Job postings for call center jobs do not include any information about working customer relations. The only way to work customer relations is to take a qualifying test for the position and even then you need to have worked at the call center for 1 year. 

When someone calls to complain and does not ask for customer relations, the agents will transfer them to customer relations for handling. 

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1 hour ago, Acela150 said:

"Customer Service" is the agent who answers the phone when you call the 800 number. If someone needs customer relations the call is transferred...When someone calls to complain and does not ask for customer relations, the agents will transfer them to customer relations for handling. 

If that's the case I wonder why it's considered so critical to specifically ask for "Customer Relations" here on the forum (and twitter apparently).  According to your post it does not seem to matter what a customer says or where they ask to be transferred.

 

1 hour ago, Acela150 said:

Job postings for call center jobs do not include any information about working customer relations. The only way to work customer relations is to take a qualifying test for the position and even then you need to have worked at the call center for 1 year.

Looks like they'll accept similar experience from other call centers as well.

------------------------

Customer Relations Specialist - 90229002 - Washington

Amtrak

Washington, DC

Your success is a train ride away.

Amtrak connects businesses and communities across the country and we move America's workforce toward the future. We employ more than 20,000 diverse, energetic professionals in a variety of career fields throughout the United States. The safety of our passengers, our employees, the public and our operating environment is our priority and the success of our railroad is the result of our employees.

Are you ready to join our team?

SUMMARY OF DUTIES:

The Customer Relations Specialist position will have the responsibility to perform the final adjudication of customer complaints escalated from the Customer Relations Desk (CRD) and to resolve customer complaints and comments submitted to the Office of the President in writing or by telephone and to provide monetary refunds outside of policy on a case-by-case basis. Also responsible for documenting customer comments for reference by other Amtrak departments and outside agencies, such as the Better Business Bureau and FRA, and for corporate reporting. Serves as corporate resource for complaint resolution, including ADA issues. Also provides final resolution for Baggage and Express Claims.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS:

* Responds mostly in writing, but some telephone work required to customer inquiries on behalf of the Corporation and corporate executives to perform the final adjudication of customer complaints, inquiries and Baggage and Express Claims. This will include accurate recording in a database and hard copy files. (90%)

* Participates in projects in support of departmental goals. (10%)

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:

* Bachelor's Degree in English, Communications or equivalent combination of education, work experience and training.

* Ability to type without error at a reasonable speed. Ability to work in a stressful, production-oriented environment.

* Ability to communicate successfully regarding customer complaints via telephone and especially in writing. Must have excellent writing skills.

* Must have Customer Relations complaint handling or other relevant experience

PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS:

* Proficiency with native Arrow or RailRes/STARS, RTDS and the use of Microsoft Word and other Microsoft Office software applications.

COMMUNICATION AND INTERPERSONAL SKILLS:

Must have excellent oral and written communication skills.

Requisition ID:39742

Posting Location(s):District of Columbia; Maryland; Virginia

Job Family/Function:Marketing

Relocation Offered:No

Travel Requirements:Up to 25%

Amtrak employees power our progress through their performance.

We want your work at Amtrak to be more than a job – we want it to be a fulfilling experience where you find challenging and rewarding opportunities, respect among colleagues, competitive pay, benefits that protect you and your family, and a high performance culture that recognizes and values your contributions and helps you reach your career goals.

We proudly support and encourage U.S. Veterans to apply for Amtrak job opportunities.

All positions require pre-employment background verification, medical review and pre-employment drug screen. Amtrak is committed to a safe and drug-free workplace and performs pre-employment substance abuse testing. All new hires are required to undergo a hair drug test which detects the presence of illegal drugs for months prior to testing. We appreciate your cooperation in keeping Amtrak safe and drug-free.

In accordance with DOT regulations (49 CFR section 40.25), Amtrak is required to obtain prior drug and alcohol testing records for applicants/employees intending to perform safety- sensitive duties for covered Department of Transportation positions. If an applicant/employee refuses to provide written consent for Amtrak to obtain these records, he/she will not permitted to perform safety-sensitive functions.

Note that any education requirement listed above may be deemed satisfied if you have an equivalent combination of education, training and experience.

Amtrak is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and we welcome all to apply. We consider candidates regardless of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability (including blindness), or veteran status.
------------------------
Edited by Devil's Advocate

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