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AA Inflight Service Latin America  
User currently offlineUalcsr From United States of America, joined May 2006, 485 posts, RR: 1
Posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 3243 times:

I just flew MIA-MEX-MIA on AA. On the outbound, which departed at about 2 pm., we were given drinks and offered the lunch boxes; no pretzels or other snacks. The flight attendants made no effort at all to sell the boxes and instead handed them out freely to the last 2 or 3 rows. On the return, we left at 5:15 pm., a dinner flight, and again were offered only drinks. Flight attendants made an announcement as to the boxes but made no effort to sell them. The headsets were $2 and there were no pillows and blankets.

Last month, I flew MIA-CCS-MIA on AA. We were offered hot breakfast on both segments. Flight attendants were proactive through the cabin even after the service offering water, juice, etc. The headsets were free and there were pillows and blankets in each seat.

Why the inconsistency in the service? Both flights are approximately 3 hours, give or take. Is Mexico considered "North America" and not international? Thanks in advance!

4 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 33054 posts, RR: 71
Reply 1, posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 3220 times:

Mexico City is considered North America and Caracas is South America. All flights to South America have hot meal service regardless of length. International flights within North America have to be, IIRC, 3.5 hours or longer, for meal service.

On a side note, Bridgetown, Port of Spain, and, as of a few weeks ago, St. Lucia are considered "South America" and have meal service.



a.
User currently offlineUalcsr From United States of America, joined May 2006, 485 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 3206 times:

I thought that would be the reason, but I don't understand that "boxed in" mentality, that simply because it's geographically in what Americans call "North America", that North American service should be offered. Shouldn't airlines take the market into consideration? I'm no marketing expert, but AA has almost a captive audience on MIA-CCS given that some people I know will not fly Aeropostal and much less Santa Barbara. On the other hand, I think people feel safe about MX and AM and would fly them with no hesitation. I would think AA would offer a better product on a more competitive route.

User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2574 posts, RR: 31
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 3156 times:

Quoting Ualcsr (Reply 2):
I thought that would be the reason, but I don't understand that "boxed in" mentality, that simply because it's geographically in what Americans call "North America", that North American service should be offered. Shouldn't airlines take the market into consideration? I'm no marketing expert, but AA has almost a captive audience on MIA-CCS given that some people I know will not fly Aeropostal and much less Santa Barbara. On the other hand, I think people feel safe about MX and AM and would fly them with no hesitation. I would think AA would offer a better product on a more competitive route.

Between 80 and 90% of the travellers between the US and Venezuela are Venezuelans. They will usually fly in the cheapest airline (usually not AA) that their travel agent can find. Of course, we have people with bad experiences with Aeropostal and Santa Barbara which will pay the premium to avoid AA.

Venezuelans like every other Latin American expect to receive food on board because most of them see flying as a "luxury". Giving out pretzels and charging for a "lunch box" will definetely hurt AA as many pax will prefer to "take the risk" and choose S3 and VH next time they fly, just to get the free meal.

AA's has the upperhand in the market simply because of Aeropostal's poor punctuality record and because Santa Barbara's name isn't too famous around here. Another good reason to avoid VH is lost luggage. AA crews aren't too friendly compared to what you get on VH and Santa Barbara. In my personal experience, Santa Barbara's offers excellent service starting when you queue at front of the checkin desk and throughout your travel experience.

The day Aeropostal improves its punctuality record, reduces lost/stolen luggage to a minimun,
and Santa Barbara becomes a known airline, AA will have to find a good way to keep its loyal pax... Remember that before the downgrade of Venezuela in 1996 to CAT II, Venezuelan airlines flew 51% of all USA-Venezuela pax and US airlines 49%. Nowdays its 85% USA, 15% Venezuela.


Saludos desde Caracas,
Luis


User currently offlineUalcsr From United States of America, joined May 2006, 485 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (8 years 4 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 3128 times:

Hola Luis!

I agree with your assessment of what Venezuelans, and Latin Americans in general, expect in a flight which is all the more reason why AA's service to MEX just seems so completely inferior than what if offers to CCS. I'm not saying that AA's service to CCS is anything special; I only fly them because I live in Miami, have tons of miles on them and quite frankly, because I have too many Venezuelan friends who have scared me with horror stories about "AeroMortal" and even worse about Santa Barbara. In the end, they both might offer better service than AA. I have flown CM and AA to PTY, AV and AA to BOG and CLO, and MX, AM and AA to MEX; in all instances, the local airline is far superior than AA.

BTW, a little off topic here----when the La Guaira-Caracas autopista was closed in December (?), did the airport or specific airlines make any arrangements for employees who live in Caracas but had to commute to Maiquetia? A few taxi drivers told me it would take up to 3 or 4 hours one-way for the commute, depending on the time of day. I can imagine how difficult it would be to have to commute 6, 7, 8 hours on a daily basis. Just curious.

Saludos!


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