Demoose From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 1952 posts, RR: 22 Posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5166 times:
I'm not one to moan alot but I flew with bmi between MAN and LHR this week and I just got the impression the airline is at rock bottom. Not only are they trying to market themselves as a full service airline but offering a very low standard of service (low cost without the low expectations???) morale amongst cabin crew just seemed so low. On my outbound flight most of the crew looked like they wished they were elsewhere looking like they'd just been slapped in the face.
On my return flight from LHR I was charged excess baggage for the sake of 4 kilos, they had a guy at the self check in counters with a calculator ready and waiting, many people were being charged extra, again this emphasises my frustration that they still think they are a full service airline yet they have a miniscule baggage allowance which is not inline with other partner and star alliance airlines (I was connecting off a Virgin Atlantic flight). And whats with the flimsy bits of paper they now call boarding passes, by the time i got on the flight mine had nearly ripped apart.
On the flight there were two men sat behind me and all they did for the whole flight was slag bmi off, saying to each other how poor the service is these days (though why they still chose bmi i don't know if they were so unhappy with them). When they were charged £1.75 for a cup of tea it was like a red rag to a bull and they were saying how it was ridiculous to the cabin crew, to which the crew replied, "well they don't listen to us anymore you're best of putting a complaint in yourself as they don't listen to the crew anymore."
Both flights were pretty empty also, though this could just be the time of day.
It left me with the impression that no one knows where the airline is going at the moment, they are trying to get money from every avenue, think it needs a radical overhaul and a bit of direction. The last time I flew bmi was in 2002 and the crew and service was far better than what it is today.
BMED From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2004, 863 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5146 times:
I've flown with the airline at least 10 times in the past 6 months and the crew have been very friendly although i always seem to find the ground staff not as friendly as the cabin and flight crew. While prices can be a bit high on board its nothing I wouldn't expect. Next time you fly with them try a bmi regional flight. The crew are always more cheerful and never had a bad experience with them yet.
ManchesterMAN From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2003, 1239 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5119 times:
The whole bmi modular thing has been one very big mistake and all the signs are that they have now realised that chasing the price concious leasure travellers isn't working. I have been a Diamond gold member for quite a few years and things got to the point a year or so ago when I was considering jumping ship. However a lot of what bmi have done recently has been very positive and suggests they are looking at reversing the damage done over the past few years. For example they are currently offering tripple miles for new DC members and were offering this for existing members before xmas. They are also about to have the world's very best premium economy long haul product as they will be putting the existing J class seats into this cabin and they will have one of the best J classes with the new seats. I wouldn;t at all be surprised if they re-introduce a complementary beverge service some time soon on short haul flights too. s/h aircraft and lounges are noticeably emptier these days and I thing they will do something.
UK_Dispatcher From United Arab Emirates, joined Dec 2001, 2598 posts, RR: 29
Reply 3, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 4929 times:
Quoting ManchesterMAN (Reply 2): They are also about to have the world's very best premium economy long haul product as they will be putting the existing J class seats into this cabin and they will have one of the best J classes with the new seats.
The bmi long-haul product is simply superb and has been since day one. I flew MAN-BGI-MAN a couple of weeks ago in The Business and the service was outstanding. After the refit of the C and U cabins it will most probably the best in the business across the pond.
I know for short-haul that bmi is now a far cry from the days of British Midland (the classy choice), but they had to change their business model to remain competitive. I just hope that what comes over the next few months will improve their short haul offering and stop more a.net bmi-bashers jumping on the bandwagon when most of them have not flown bmi before slagging them off.
Demoose - I do not include you in this as you had disappointing flights and have a right to complain. By the way, were you on conjunction tickets with BD/VS, or were they separate bookings? If they were conjunction tickets then your allowance would be the same as on the VS flights. As you were checking in your baggage at LHR with BD I am guessing you were not on conjunction tickets, in which case bmi's standard policy applies (which is in line with other carriers). How strictly each carrier enforces their policy, however, is another matter.
Demoose From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 1952 posts, RR: 22
Reply 4, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 4870 times:
I wouldn't say my flights were dissapointing, as most importantly they were on time, it was just really sad to see for real what the airline has become, desperately seeking every penny they can get and not seeming to care about customer service.
Yes my flights with VS and BD were booked separately, as to have them on one booking added an extra £200 to the ticket price! Even saying this, a woman who was on my Virgin flight had a connecting flight to Palma with Bmi and wasn't able to check her baggage through LHR from the United States, she was infront of me in the bmi check in queue and was also made to pay the excess. Seems Bmi have realised there's alot of money to be made in this area.
BrianDromey From Ireland, joined Dec 2006, 3992 posts, RR: 10
Reply 5, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 4845 times:
Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Reply 3): I know for short-haul that bmi is now a far cry from the days of British Midland (the classy choice), but they had to change their business model to remain competitive.
From the day modular was launched I thought it to be a bad idea. Its too confusing and too complicated. Keeping J on some routes and not on others was just insane. I've got no problem with BOB, and as these things go bmi's is pretty good. But a one class service on a predominantly LHR based route structure makes no sense. Even worse on bmi regional in Y there are still refreshments. Add this to crazy lounge rules and silly check-in rules and things are now more complicated than they were befroe the "simplification"
Quoting ManchesterMAN (Reply 2): I wouldn;t at all be surprised if they re-introduce a complementary beverge service some time soon on short haul flights too. s/h aircraft and lounges are noticeably emptier these days and I thing they will do something.
Hopefully! BMI can not go on as it is. I fly about twice every three months on BD 419 (LBA-LHR) and the 319 has never been more than 60% full.
However in my experience the LBA dase crews were very friendly and cheery.
Next flights: MAN-ORK-LHR(EI)-MAN(BD); MAN-LHR(BD)-ORK (EI); DUB-ZRH-LAX (LX) LAX-YYZ (AC) YYZ-YHZ-LHR(AC)-DUB(BD)
Lite From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 4787 times:
bmi is my local airline, so it's a company that I'm fiercely proud of for all that they've acheived, but will admit that their strategy has been difficult to decipher over the last couple of years. On the one hand they have a mainline product from LHR which is low-cost (though some routes still have business class), they have a full-service longhaul product, full service regional airline and a low-cost regional airline. Also don't forget bmi charter and bmi cargo as further components to a group of airlines that only has combined about 60 aircraft. I think that the merger with BMED will put more things into perspective for bmi, as they look towards being a niche carrier, fitting somewhere in between BA and Virgin out of LHR. From what I've heard bmi regional and bmibaby are both profitable, so even though it all looks like a mess, they must be doing something right, though I could potentially see bmibaby being sold off or merged back into regional as the airline streamlines their business.
Awthompson From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 542 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 4601 times:
I have had the same thoughts about BMI. I feel they have their fingers in both pies: low cost AND full service and their overall strategy is not that evident.
I use BMI quite a bit from Belfast City to Heathrow when connecting on long haul flights with other airlines and have flown on the majority of their short haul fleet. Delayed recently coming back from Doha to LHR with Qatar, I missed the last connection to Belfast. I had to sort out my own accomodation and pay again for my flight the next morning back to Belfast. I wish we still had at least one full service airline flying into Northern Ireland.
On the BHD-LHR route you have the choice of economy fares, typically £9.00, £16.00 or £32.00 each way plus airport tax OR extortionate premium economy and business fares which can be as high as £198 or £204 each way plus airport tax resulting in total return fares in excess of £400 !!! Something in between would be appreciated. My long haul flights to the far east with which I am connecting are usually not much more than that!