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Unless you’re a glutton for punishment, calling customer service is usually like visiting the dentist. You’re hoping for the best, but you’re probably go to walk away feeling like you got punched in the mouth. I know this feeling all to well – I’m on the phone with reps a lot with my Award Booking Service. And if things couldn’t be worse…you have to listen to the dull elevator music while you’re waiting to get flogged. We all know about pressing 0 a million times, or garbling your words so the robot can’t understand you, but I thought I’d put together a quick list of 3 tips that I’ve used to cut my wait time down.
Tip 1 – Always indicate you’ll give feedback
Time and time again when I press the option that I will complete a short customer service survey after my experience, I’m fastracked to a rep. Makes sense, right? If someone has already said they aren’t going to take the time to rate your performance, you can make them wait longer than those who are going to rate your performance. Hint: there’s no penalty if you don’t give feedback and hang up.
Tip 2: Choose a language option that is different than your home country.
This is a common tip, but one that continues to work. For instance, in the US, Spanish is often given as a language option. Choose it. The Spanish speaking reps speak English as well, and since there are fewer people choosing Spanish…you’ll get to a rep faster.
Tip 3: Utilize foreign call centers.
American Airlines is based in…America. So it makes sense that callers utilizing their US 1-800 are going to face longer wait lines than say, those who use the number for Hong Kong. You can access the list of worldwide number here for American. Angelina Travels pointed out that a Mexican number got her through to BA ( notorious for insane hold times ) in 12 mins. WOW.
PS…use skype or the like – don’t get hit with insane phone charges dialing straight from your carrier.