Over the past two months, I've flown BOG-ATL-BOG on DL 4 different times. Each time, I seem to get totally different services. I wonder if this can be taken as a good sign of "empowerment" for the crew on board, or a bad sign of "lack of commonality" in procedures and methods?
In all but one occasion, the flight has been completely full. You can imagine how it is in coach when a good majority of passengers try to cram in 2, 3, 4 hand luggage pieces...
In two occasions, I've been upgraded to J just by showing my Platinum Medallion card, right after the last pax boarded and the door was about to close - In one occasion, the on-board team leader approached me (I was in 20C) and calling me by my name, she asked if I would like to move up front to 3A.
Needless to say, DL made me a very happy customer those days.
But the other five, I tried to request an upgrade, and have been denied by both the crew (using the method described above) and by the traffic people dispatching the flights. Even when there were empty seats in J and not a single empty seat in Y. By moving me up front, they could have helped some overbooked pax to get into the flight.
Also, in some occasions the meal goes first and the movie later, whereas in other occasions it is the other way around. In with most occasions, pax in emergency exits are questioned if they speak English and are able to understand directions in such language. Most of them just nodded "yes", with further ado. What's more, in a couple of flights no questioning was made at all. In another one, the most charming lady with beautiful eyes made every pax on the two window emergency exit rows (it's always been a B752) make a full statement in English, about their ability to understand and readiness to help if the case so required.
Usually, the beverage service is done out of carts; but in my last flight, the f/a's were walking down the aisle with already-served drinks and offering them out of trays. Albeit they do walk a lot more, the aisle remains unblocked, and the service feels swift and more personal.
One of my flights was delayed for 45 minutes. The other ones have left and arrived right on time. Regardless, all but one arrived to a normal gate, whereas one of them arrived to BOG in a remote position and we were ferried in buses to the terminal.
I must say that the only constant item in all flights is the dedicated, friendly service of DL f/a's. In most of the flights, several of the speak Spanish. There was one, however, in which none but one of the f/a's spoke Spanish. Regardless, they are friendly, helpful, and try to make the pax be as comfy as they can in every flight.
So, in sum: is this all a good sign of "empowerment" for the crew on board, or a bad sign of "lack of commonality" in procedures and methods?