Monday, April 27, 2009

Not the Real Deal

Saved here for posterity: the Philippine Airlines notice of capitulation. Back story: last week, PAL advertised a promo for very cheap rates. Flights to the US were as low as $400, when the usual rates are $800 or more. The catch, of course, is that you have to book through their web site.

I tried to connect yesterday and early this morning but received long delays and persistent errors. Early this morning, too, I received a call from a friend of a friend, asking for help with some "Generic Error" the web site was throwing. Then on Facebook, another friend complained of wrestling with the web site for three hours, then having to wait for confirmation.

In other words: EPIC FAIL.

I would think that this is what they have web server stress testing tools for. Apparently, PAL's IT didn't make the most of this before they launched. Result: PR nightmare.

Somehow, I'm glad I didn't get a ticket. The first time I tried PAL's Internet booking service, I managed the reservations alright. Then they took my money. Then a couple of weeks before the flight, they told us that the flight was no longer available, and could we move to another flight. As we were hoping to connect to an outgoing international flight, we declined and asked for a refund. Which they gave to us six months later.

Winner, man.

Update: On Mother's insistence, I tried again. Surprisingly, I got through! And the response was much smoother. Except, I eventually hit another wall: the same error my friend had this morning.

Epic Fail.