difrano789 From United States of America, joined Mar 2014, 19 posts, RR: 0 Posted (8 months 3 days ago) and read 2161 times:
Hi this is my first topic post after several years following the forum.
I believe United is going to fail as airline, and this is my point of view:
I started flying Continental about 10 years ago and I have been keeping my gold status from 6 years now, first Skyteam then Star Alliance, it was the best US Airline experience i ever had, i have flown AA, Delta and pmUnited. I cant tell that 100% of the time was good but close to 90%. But since the merger everything is falling apart, i can say that service is getting worse but is something not objetive, so i will tell you my horror stories of the last few weeks.
Since March i have been communting between MCO and PVD every other week, Since I'm a gold member try to use United everytime I can, and every month the experience have been worse worse:
1. The food and service in business is real bad.
2. Some of the new 739 with sky interior doesnt have Direct Tv or any other entertainment.
3. On June 18th i was flying MCO-EWR-PVD, and the flight from EWR to PVD was overbooked and i was one of the lucky winner of: sir you dont have a seat in this plane... so they sent me to 9:45 PM flight with only 7$ of vouchers for food... Really? this is EWR.. 7$ is a cup of water.... i fougth to almost be arrested but didnt get my travel vouchers.... for much less a couple of times with pmCO i got 200$ vouchers...
4. Yesterday 06/30 i decided to bring my wife and 7 and 3 yo kids to spend some time with me in Rhode Island and booked again MCO-EWR-PVD, when i arrived at MCO to check the bags the agent told me that we can't fly because our tickets are invalid... I have done check in for the 4 of us on the app and able to select seats, they told me that the ticket was never paid, and now due to fare change if I want to travel i have to pay $ 1700 for 4 one way tickets to PVD, I tried to keep calm and printed all the email confirmations tickets and notifications i got from United for this trip and after long fight I had to pay with my credit card the initial fare. After this lost my seats and almost lost the flight. When we arrived at EWR at 1:00 PM and the flight to PVD was cancelled!!! Went to service desk and had 30 pax in front of me, no more premium access for service at EWR. They just told me your flight flight was cancelled due to weather and you are booked for tomorrow at 9:45 PM flight and no vouchers and no hotel, there was no other cancellation and wheater was just fine light wind no cluods, at this time i went ballistic, you know what helped me say this words "CONTINENTAL WAS THE BEST US AIRLINE, UNITED MERGED WITH IT JUST TO DESTROY IT" as loud as i can in the terminal, the agent changed attitude and i showed her that i still have my Continental gold tag on my backpack! She changed and even called someone at the phone, she told that she didnt know why they cancelled the flight, and she put us on standby for same day 9:45 PM flight. When was time to board the flight it was overbooked and I explained oour case to the gate agent, same strategy love continental hate united, and she asked for volunteers to help us get in the flight.
Why I say is going to fail?
Employee unrest! I have a frind that work on MCO maintenance and he said that everybody there hates the merger that things are going down fast. every employee I mention that i hate the merger they just get empaty and start talking about the bad United is doing etc etc etc. A sample is my story.
In the same MCO-PVD i have also used Jetblue and the experience is totally differend, free direct tv, free wifi, free drinks and snaks, and if you pai for even more space is almost a businnes seat. If Jetblue start doing better in the business world and join some alliance I'm almost sure I change my prefered airline.
Sorry for my spelling English is not my mother language.
tlhgator From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 79 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (8 months 3 days ago) and read 1944 times:
Let me preface my response by saying I am not a UA fanboy. Saying an airline is going to fail based off a few service failures is almost like claiming McDonalds is going to fail because they ran out of cheeseburgers. UA is going through the "teething" issues that Wn/FL are going through, that DL/NW went through and that AA/US are going to go through. every merger had bumps in the road and issues that came about. You claim employee unrest, sure if you worked at airline ABC that just "merged" with airline XYZ, employees at ABC are going to say that things were better before XYZ and vice versa. It happened at DL, it's happening at WN ( I have friends that worked for FL and work at WN) and it will happen in any merger in any industry, until the dust settles and employees start making more money in terms of profit sharing etc. you mentioned the flight cancellation due to weather, what was the weather like in PVD? When I was a gate agent, I heard time and time again well so and so lives in Buckhead there's no weather there, but at the Atlanta airport it was lightning central high winds etc. so just because EWR is ok what about the destination? Add in FAR 117 and it's going to be a recipe for disaster. If the service is better on JetBlue then shy aren't you flying them? Alliances? That's not a good excuse.
UALFAson From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 758 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (8 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 1792 times:
I'm sorry to hear of your recent frustrations with UA. Despite my user name, I too am becoming less enamored of UA despite being a Premier Silver for many years.
That said, I have to second tlhgator's comments. And I would also add that such operational issues aren't unique to UA. I stopped flying AA years ago after multiple outrageously unacceptable customer service failures. I have friends who have sworn off DL--the supposed industry darling--due to lost bags, ticketing issues, constant delays, etc.
As others have pointed out in other threads, airline companies are very cyclical in terms of leading and trailing their peers. Right now, UA is at a low(er) point, but I think in the next couple of years once we see the in-flight product standardized and hopefully some joint contracts hammered out, they will start to see their star rise again. Conversely, AA and US are getting ready to undergo the merger pains, so I wouldn't anticipate a lot of smooth sailing there for the forseeable future.
Unfortunately, I think this is just the sad state of the U.S. airline industry. With fuel prices remaining fairly high and consumers being as price-conscious and fickle as they are, the airline industry is doing what it has to to stay afloat. Throw in an antiquated air traffic control system, new pilot rest rules, more extreme weather, and I think it's going to get worse before it gets better.
"We hope you've enjoyed flying with us as much as we've enjoyed taking you for a ride."
TWA772LR From United States of America, joined Nov 2011, 2731 posts, RR: 3
Reply 3, posted (8 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 1721 times:
I don't like UA the way it is as much as the next guy, and I'm a pretty big UA fanboy. But dude, UA isn't going anywhere wether we like it or not. Yes they have problems, but yes they will be fixed. Yes service has gone down, but the only way it can go is up.
On top of all of that, UA is NOWHERE near bankruptcy. They are making money and have tons of reserves. And even if they were to go through BK, it would be a good thing because it would go through a renaissance like AA.
A landing EVERYONE can walk away from, is a good landing.
tylersmithSJC From United States of America, joined Oct 2013, 81 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (8 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 1603 times:
Quoting tlhgator (Reply 1): Saying an airline is going to fail based off a few service failures is almost like claiming McDonalds is going to fail because they ran out of cheeseburgers
Just because you had a few bad experiences doesn't mean that they are going bankrupt. Some airlines have service that makes UA look like SQ and make great profits (Ex: Allegiant) while others have service that make United look like a third world country and struggle to turn a profit (Ex: Virgin America).
penguins From United States of America, joined exactly 5 years ago today! , 357 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (8 months 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 1378 times:
Quoting tylersmithSJC (Reply 4): Just because you had a few bad experiences doesn't mean that they are going bankrupt. Some airlines have service that makes UA look like SQ and make great profits (Ex: Allegiant) while others have service that make United look like a third world country and struggle to turn a profit (Ex: Virgin America).
Just to strengthen your argument by attacking it a little bit, I have had horrible experiences on "great" airlines, specifically VA. I was booked in E+ on a cross-country flight with them. Five days in advance I get a notification that my flight has been canceled. No explanation, no nothing. I got peeved because they rebooked me at an unfavorable time on AA and I lost my E+ seat. Guess what big guy, it happens to all airlines. Perhaps your friend doesn't like the merger and you have overgeneralized to the whole company. It looks like you can't deal with the inevitable in the airline industry and are trying to go back to a "better" time. Just ask the people with bad experiences on CO.
AMALH747430 From United States of America, joined Mar 2014, 24 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (8 months 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 1308 times:
I was just about to start a similar topic on this. Firts off, I do not think UA is in immediate danger of failing but they do have quite a few issues that they need to work through. I too have noticed the degredation of service at UA.
I started flying CO regularly in 2009 after getting fed up with AA. I had been a loyal AA customer up to that point. However, I had enough with unkept cabins, delays and generally substandard service. It started with a flight on a 763 (AA 79 LGW-DFW) in 2006. Dated, worn out cabin with few amenities. The straw that broke the camel's back was the ATRs they were sening to AMA at the time. I don't mind the ATR but OW's were in horrible shape and prone to delays/cancellations.
At the time I switched, CO was a breath of fresh air. New, well kept planes. Flights were punctual. Crews, airport and phone personnel were outstanding! Complementary meals and even muffins on Contintental Express flights in the mornings. I did a couple of trips to LHR through IAH in 2009 and 2011. Both were on immaculate 777s with great service and IFE. Right after the merger was announced, United Express came in with flights to Denver. I had some excellent experiences with PMUA crews and metal at that time. I had great service on a PMUA 757 DEN-SEA.
However, as time has gone on there has been a slide toward mediocrity. I am not saying PMCO or PMUA is/was better. The whole operation has gone downhill. My mother just had an abysmal experience yesterday on UA 201 IAH-HNL. Unkept, worn cabin with filthy lavs. Very little in the way of service. FAs hid in the galley the entire flight. All IFE out of service. My experiences have been hit or miss. IAD-MUC last June was great. Immaculate 764, great service from the FAs, all around good experience. I would like to say it is just "teething" issues from the merger but we are way too far out to still blame it on that.
In the end all airlines go through ups and downs. DL is up right now, AA is on the way up but we'll need to wait until the merger is complete to see if they remain that way. I stick with UA because I have status and the network works for me. Eventually UA will come back around.
Roseflyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 10054 posts, RR: 52
Reply 7, posted (8 months 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 1290 times:
If I were you, my business would be with Southwest or Jetblue who fly that route nonstop. EWR is known for delays and cancellations and the worst routes for these are the short hops like EWR-PVD. Short routes get sacrificed to keep the international operation moving with minimal delays. United can swap around flights when flow control is limiting arrivals and departures out of EWR. UA historically in Chicago would do what was necessary to keep mainline and international flights moving and sacrifice the regional flights. Also with the smaller planes, the specific plane might have 5 scheduled landings in EWR in a given day. That means that 1 - 2 hours of flow control will stack up. Flights end up canceled all the time. Personally I would avoid regional flights out of EWR and ORD. If you want more reliable flights, you should use IAD or go nonstop. None of the airports in the Northeast are particularly good, but EWR is almost always in the list of 5 most delayed airports in the country.
How long were you delayed when you were denied boarding on June 18? If it was more than 1 hours, you should be compensated in direct cash (not voucher) between 200% and 400% of your fare. This is not a $200 voucher or a $7 voucher. A food voucher is a separate requirement on top of payment. The law requires you to be paid, not given a voucher. I am shocked to see a Gold member denied boarding with only a $7 voucher. You should file a complaint and demand proper compensation as long as you didn't agree to voluntarily forfeit your seat. Occasionally agents may not clearly explain voluntary vs involuntary denied boarding compensation.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
difrano789 From United States of America, joined Mar 2014, 19 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1240 times:
Maybe when i choose the word fail is a bit dramatic, and i know still UA has lots of cash in their pockets, but service is going down and their are loosing lot of loyalty, I am a big fan of UA and even if I had to pay a bit more for the same flight or go 1 stop instead of nonstop i'll choose them. But things are going bad and if they keep loosing thir loyal customers they will be in trouble, not tomorrow not in 6 months but they will be in trouble.
Is not a single or couple experiences, delays and bad service have been constant in the last year, this is just the end of the line.
Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 7): How long were you delayed when you were denied boarding on June 18? If it was more than 1 hours, you should be compensated in direct cash (not voucher) between 200% and 400% of your fare. This is not a $200 voucher or a $7 voucher. A food voucher is a separate requirement on top of payment. The law requires you to be paid, not given a voucher. I am shocked to see a Gold member denied boarding with only a $7 voucher. You should file a complaint and demand proper compensation as long as you didn't agree to voluntarily forfeit your seat. Occasionally agents may not clearly explain voluntary vs involuntary denied boarding compensation.
Yes my delay was like 7 hours and they just offered me that "free" food voucher.
727LOVER From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 6747 posts, RR: 20
Reply 9, posted (8 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1226 times:
Quoting difrano789 (Thread starter): 2. Some of the new 739 with sky interior doesnt have Direct Tv or any other entertainment.
God forbid, read a book. That's what we did back in my day!
Quoting difrano789 (Thread starter): They just told me your flight flight was cancelled due to weather and you are booked for tomorrow at 9:45 PM flight and no vouchers and no hotel, there was no other cancellation and wheater was just fine light wind no cluods
Weather in PVD?.....and if it is weather, don't all airlines do this?
I seem to have no problems. Excellent F/As, food was good, more meals than on DL, United Clubs were great, and turboprop equipment. And on one flight I was sat next to an ex-CO captain who flew everything from 752s to DC-10-30s. That my friend, was the best IFE there is. After that, there is channel 9. DirecTV is so boring I didn't even watch it on IAH-FLL.
I flew Delta First Class and BusinessElite too many times to count from late 2006 until about March 2014. To me, the service is so consistent that it got mighty boring. Now I've tried UA, NK, AA, US, UP, B6, FL, and 3M and saw what I was missing just by flying DL.
-LPDAL, A proud UA flier.
Rode on: GlobalFirst,BusinessFirst,Flagship Suites,Envoy Suites,BusinessElite, Domestic First Class:DL/US/UA/AA/FL/CO/NK
Cubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 23523 posts, RR: 21
Reply 13, posted (8 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1090 times:
Quoting tlhgator (Reply 1): A is going through the "teething" issues that Wn/FL are going through, that DL/NW went through and that AA/US are going to go through.
If we are talking about customer-facing unrest, UA/CO is quite a lot different from WN/FL or DL/NW. Sure, I see NW tags on employee bags in DTW and MSP, but there's no open disdain for either carrier. WN is similar; we seem to get a lot of ex-FL nonrevs going to BNA (I assume because BNA is a new destination for them), and I've never seen anything less than a welcome with open arms from the WN crews and reciprocal pleasantries from the FL folks.
The stories about the public animosity between UA and CO folks are quite a lot different from my experiences with either WN or DL.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
PGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2862 posts, RR: 49
Reply 16, posted (8 months 13 hours ago) and read 945 times:
Along with other posters I too am sorry you aren't happy with UA; mergers are difficult for everyone (I have been through two) and problems occur.
Having said that, if you are dissatisfied fly another airline. You have complete control of this variable, and there are better options available. You say you like JBLU, so fly on them.
The last place on earth I would routinely want to connect is EWR; it is entirely predictable that you will have frequent travel headaches if you insist on connecting there (or anywhere in NYC, but especially EWR) simply to further your status.
Yelling at an agent is not justified, regardless of circumstance. If you are truly so dependent on IFE that you must have it to be entertained for a couple of hours then book accordingly. Or try reading a book.