Customer Service—It Isn't What It Used to Be

While I don't consider myself to be an especially demanding customer, I do expect to be acknowledged and treated with respect. Unfortunately, it seems that many businesses I rely on have forgotten the fundamentals of good customer service. I spent this past summer writing complaints to Hampton Jitney, a bus service that transports travelers from New York City to the Hamptons and the North Fork of Long Island. I began complaining after being stuck on three broken down buses. The last straw for me was a fourth bus traveling on the hottest day of the year with no air conditioning. Despite repeated attempts to contact the company, all of my correspondence went unanswered. As much as I'd love to simply take my business elsewhere, it's one of the few affordable options available to get to the North Fork. More recently, I experienced a problem with my cable provider. After listening for approximately 20 minutes to static-filled on-hold music, I was finally able to reach Jason in tech support. Unable to resolve the issue, he told me I'd have to wait more than a week for an on-site technician. In the meantime, I guess I'll be reading more. As an existing customer who forks over a rather hefty sum to my cable company each month, that seems more than a bit unreasonable to me. Needless to say, both companies could do far better when it comes to dealing with their customers. Chances are, there is room for improvement in your spa, as well. Not long ago, I visited a spa in which I was left waiting for more than five minutes before anyone even acknowledged my existence. Something tells me, that's not the lasting impression they wanted to leave. What customer service blunders rile you up? And how do you prevent them from happening in your spa?

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