Deep breaths.

I take public transit to get around (unless my Fiance drives me somewhere) and the problems with the Mississauga Transit are nothing new to me. I try to defend it and I try to be understanding. But on this day, I’ve just about had it. On many occasions, I wanted to complain about the service (case in point this blog post – but clearly, that one did not go well) and after over a decade of terrible service, I finally decided to send in an email (not a tweet, because I know how that one ended).

Anyway, here was the email I sent in immediately after the issue arose. I was livid when I sent this e-mail in and reading it back to myself right now, I am surprised it still came across as professional (at least I think so). [On a personal note, this was during my February challenge and yes, it did cause me to be very late! It was my first “late”, actually. Boooo-urns!]


A little over an hour later, I received an email from Miway Customer Service. Although I was impressed they responded quite quickly, the email did very little.

feb6miway-2a So… they apologized for the inconvenience and that was it. They did not acknowledge that I mentioned that the service with this route has been sub-par for the last few weeks. Perhaps just a line that read, “I’m sorry you’ve been experiencing inconsistencies with our service during the last few weeks. We will have a look and inspect the situation further”. The explanation given, for this particular issue, was that the operator was confused with their assigned work. Personally, I don’t think this was the best way to approach this. Instead, I (as a MiWay Customer Service Assistant) would have taken accountability on behalf of Miway instead of throwing the Operator under the bus (pun not intended). And maybe I would have added a closing line that said to provide me with feedback the next time something like this happens, so I can look into it.

I think what really bothers me is that this response was very basic, robotic and did not give me the feeling that my feedback was appreciated. After all, people complain because they want to be heard. Is that not Customer Service 101? I was not expecting compensation of any kind, just that my feedback was appreciated. Instead, this email did the opposite – it made me feel like the person that read it, Dana, likely rolled her eyes as she read my email and responded just to get it out of her inbox. Am I expecting too much here? Do you think this was a satisfactory response and I’m just really hard to please? (I know I tend to be super picky when it comes to service and I think it comes from working in the customer service sector for years.) Or are you in agreement with me? Feedback welcome! Please and thanks for reading!

EDIT: March 11, 2012 8:19 P.M.
Seems that someone else recently complained in to the Mississauga Transit. (She OK’d me sharing this with the blog!)


Glad to see that not everyone gets the robotic reply that I received. Granted, her complaint directly involved one of the drivers so that might be why they took different action. What do you think?

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  • This is appalling!

    It definitely sounds like a generic bot-like response, and that is very unfortunate. While I mildly understand MiWay must get thousands of these e-mails and can’t personally answer each one, getting a response like that does NOT make the situation better.

    There are so many ways they can go about improving this retarded system. And if they really can’t come up with any, they can simply offer you discount or pay for your fare.

  • Jimmy

    Mississauga Transit takes customer complaints very seriously. I understand your concern and disappointment, but your complaint was dealt with properly. Every time a complaint is received, customer service must locate time, location, & operator on duty. If that information is not available, there’s nothing much they can do. If a driver passes you at a stop, you’d need to complain and provide, date, time & location. Remember, if you are in the bus shelter and not at the bus stop, driver doesn’t stop. If people try to take the bus without proper ID, driver can either refuse service or explain the requirement for next time; and that explanation will definitely delay service. People asking directions, not having enough change, traffic, weather, traffic lights, detours and many other factors are reasons why your bus can be late. Drivers hate to be late. But it’s beyond their control. If a driver is a minute early, he/she will get suspended. If they’re late, no problem. Early means service was not provided; late means service was provided.

    • I have to disagree with you. The whole point of this post is what I do not believe that the take every complaint very seriously. You would really be okay if you received the same basic email that I did on my complaint?

      If you read my original email to them carefully, I do actually outline the time, date, and location of the bus stop. And of course I know that if I’m in a bus shelter, the bus driver wouldn’t stop. (My particular stop doesn’t have a shelter, btw.)

      Also, I think you’re confused about the ‘proper ID’ comment – the screenshot I added about Veronica’s experience was actually to show that not everyone gets sub-par responses like I did.

      And on your comment about early meaning there was no service provided and late means it was provided… when they don’t show up at all I’m pretty sure that means the service wasn’t provided and that was my complaint. Not that it was late – but that the original bus never arrived.

    • vvsp

      your explanation seems a bushit! I just had experienced a terrible half hour delay under -20c ultra cold weather without a shelter and bus driver refused to explain why except a word of TRAFFIC. Such terrible delay was not once and I had received the same nonsense reply from Miway customer service as well. The situation had not been improved at all but got worse. I think the only way to educate them is to let news media be involved.

  • Henriette Gonia

    Thank you for your post. I feel less alone. I have just sent them a complaint via their website. I hope they will fix the problem. It would be respectful if they give us financial compensations for services that do not meet standard expectations.