Customer Experience: Missed Train


A young businesswoman ran into a major train station to travel from Washington D.C. to New York City. She was on the verge of tears – she had left her apartment with ample time to catch her train, but unexpected delays on public transportation had delayed her arrival to the train station. She had a business meeting in New York just hours later, and she was very worried she would miss her meeting.

Seeing that the train had already left the station, she went to the ticket counter, where she nervously waited in a long line. By the time she made it to the ticket agent, she was very distraught. She blurted out to the agent that she had missed her train, and that she did not know what to do.

The agent warmly smiled at the young businesswoman and told her that she was going to try her hardest to turn her day around. The agent said that she could rebook her on a train leaving in just a half hour, and that there would be no additional charge. The agent also said the best part was that the young woman could now enjoy some breakfast and coffee at the station.

The young woman was overwhelmed with gratitude for both the cost-free train rebooking and agent’s kindness. Her mood instantly improved, and she enjoyed a nice breakfast. She caught her train and made it to New York City in time for her meeting.

Customer Service Takeaways

  • Being empathetic to a customer who is having a bad day can touch them emotionally and create brand loyalty.
  • Some concessions, such as filling a seat on a train that has room, cost your organization nothing. And generously offering such a concession to a flustered customer will improve their day and make them a brand advocate.