KLM finally own up to a ‘misunderstanding’

KLM finally own up to a ‘misunderstanding’


norman lebrecht

July 20, 2017

The uptight Dutch airline has acknowledged a ‘misunderstanding’ at Heathrow Airport which led to them refusing to recognise Steven Isserlis’s purchase of a seat for his cello.

The ‘misunderstanding’ sent Steven rushing round the airport for another flight, putting him to great expense. Over 30,000 people, many of them frequent fliers, have read his story on Slipped Disc.

KLM have now refunded his out-of-pocket expenses, plus a small (really small) goodwill amount on top.

They apologised to his travel agent in an email, but refused to apologise to Steven in person.



  • Jakes McCarthy says:

    A Solicitor’s letter would certainly extract an apology from KLM, say from the well know firm Sue, Grabbitt & Runne, he could have it published in the Lunchtime O’Boulez column.

  • Bruce says:

    “Being KLM means never having to say you’re sorry directly to the person you rogered.”

    • Max Grimm says:

      Being most airlines means never wanting to say you’re sorry, let alone assuming responsibility for having bungled, but begrudgingly muttering an apology with glaring insincerity in the hope of not being brought into further disrepute or being at the epicenter of larger shitstorms.

      • Nik says:

        I suspect they have very little reason to care about this. How many people could realistically decide to boycott KLM over this, and more importantly, where would they go? Look at any of the major European airlines – BA, Lufthansa etc., all of their service has gone down the pan over the last 25 years and if you decide never to use KLM again you’re just as likely to run into similar trouble at the next airline. This is why they all get away with taking such a cavalier attitude to customer complaints. The competition in this market is now 100% about price.

  • Marg says:

    How to win friends (aka customers) and influence people … Sheesh!

  • Alvaro says:

    Friendly reminder that if suddenly all the orchestras, classical musicians, and concert venues dissapeared TOMORROW, it wouldnt make the cover of a regional journal. Maybe the column of some second rated cheap blogs….

    • Craig says:

      Nice try airline shill, you aren’t fooling anyone. Now explain to everyone why you’re such an asset to the world, why don’t you?

  • Kalpana Tripathi says:

    We as a family have boycotted KLM . May this small difference grow bigger.They keep getting away without apologies always.

  • Grabbit & Runne says:

    Jakes is correct, a letter from a brief extracts an apology and also a free air ticket too.

  • Theo says:

    KLM has some of the best PR around, nice neat and clean blue and white looks, etc. but it is one of the crappiest airlines around, and one of the most expensive. Here in the EU they always run late….And then they bus you to the terminal after landing, so you even miss KLM’s own connecting flights! Not to mention they have lost my luggage twice already this year. They love rules – but don’t even know their own rules to begin with.

    Their seats have shrunk to the point that you always have someone’s elbows in your ribs, the legroom idem. But many are stuck with them because of their connecting flight schedules.

    Avoid them if you can.