Friday, 1 May 2009

How To Write a Letter of Complaint

To Whom it may concern, (This makes them feel nameless and soulless - which they are)

I am writing to complain about the bus trip I just took from Cambridge City to Cherryhinton on 30/4/09 at 22:17. (State in a sentence why you are wasting their time with your letter)

I am a member of staff at Addenbrookes Hospital and purchased a "megarider" weekly ticket from the access office at work. I have been using this ticket the last few days with no problems whatsoever until this evening. (Start off all innocent then chuck in an "until". Thus the plot starts to thicken)
On this particular occasion after I had shown my ticket, the driver abruptly asked to see my work card. I explained to him that I had not brought it with me as I was out for the evening and my card was with my work things back home. I also explained to him that I had never been asked for my card before. He did not show any sympathy at all towards me and made me purchase yet another costly ticket. (Make yourself seem reasonable and sincere. Make the other person sound unreasonable and heartless.)

I do not understand why I had to show him my work card. There are several reasons why I did not bring it with me:
Firstly, carrying my hospital work card around with me unnecessarily poses a security risk should it be misplaced. My card allows access to such areas as the pharmacy and controlled drugs rooms. We have been warned never to carry it around with us indiscriminately. (Make yourself sound like you care about the wellbeing of the public, not yourself.)
Secondly, my card is attached to a lanyard which I wear around my neck at work. This is cumbersome to carry with me when I am out for the evening and hence is not brought out with me. I explained this to the driver but he told me to carry it in my wallet. Which makes no sense since it is attached to a lanyard. (Make the other person sound stupid)
Again I must reiterate that I had never been asked for my card before. I do not understand why this one driver had to make such a scene of it. I was clearly a member of staff with a valid bus ticket but this apparently was not enough for him. Whether the driver was being deliberately inflexible and wishing to waste the time of his passengers for the hell of it or possibly for some other sinister reason related to my race or age, I cannot be entirely sure. (Ahh...the old "prejudice/discrimination" card. Play it subtle though, especially if the other person's intentions were not actually motivated by this.)

Nevertheless, please make up your mind. If you wish for all drivers to ask for photo identification from holders of the megarider ticket (a lengthy, troublesome and unneccesary process) then please educate them all to do so and let the public know clearly too. There should be some set system in place - not some "pick and choose" discriminatory process you seem to have at the moment. (Conclude with some helpful suggestions which aim to rectify the underlying problem, thus making you seem reasonable. Also the word "discriminatory" works wonders.)

Here are the details of my trip:
Tkt 65468
Bus 22460
Equ 08320674
Trip 159
Route 3
Duty 315
(Always include all details of the situation - but leave out those which may work against you eg. your blood alcohol reading)
I know you probably won't give me a refund for the ticket (or you'll make it some long and convoluted process for me to obtain one) so I won't bother asking. (Finally conclude with a sarcastic statement which makes it seem like you don't actually care about what's happened and that you really just wanted to waste the reader's time. And sure it seems like a cheap and dirty shot, but it feels good writing it.)

From your disappointed customer, (Final kick in the shins)
Edwin Tan (Full name so they know you're not afraid of them sending a hitman after you)

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