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US Carriers Service Levels On Intl Flights  
User currently offlineCjuniel From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 146 posts, RR: 1
Posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 7942 times:

Repeatedly on this board, American carriers are flamed for providing inferior international service when compared with the likes of Singapore, Cathay, ANA and Qantas. However, none of these carriers even comes close to having to operate a domestic operation on the scale of the US airlines, with multiple hubs. My question is, would it be possible for US carriers to provide the same levels of service as the afformentioned carriers, while still maintaining their domestic networks?

134 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAirCanada014 From Canada, joined Oct 2005, 1513 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 7925 times:



Quoting Cjuniel (Thread starter):
However, none of these carriers even comes close to having to operate a domestic operation on the scale of the US airlines, with multiple hubs

Qantas does? Their hubs are SYD and MEL. and their secondary hubs are PER and Adelaide and Brisbane. Did I miss other hubs?


User currently offline777ER From New Zealand, joined Dec 2003, 12212 posts, RR: 18
Reply 2, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 7838 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR



Quoting AirCanada014 (Reply 1):

Also MEL.

For the size of New Zealand NZ has a big domestic operation. With 24 destinations being served from 3 hubs (AKL, WLG, CHC). NZs domestic operation just keeps on getting better with new aircraft being added frequently. NZ also has another big domestic aircraft replacement order coming up. NZs International product/service is an award winning operation. Just ask SQ managers who said at a Star Alliance meeting that they envy NZs new long haul product with 400+ hours of IFE on their long haul fleet. NZ is also starting a major short haul IFE upgrade, with PTVs being installed in their A320 and B763 fleets which will feature PTV entertainment from the second you sit down in your seat at the gate to the second you disembark the aircraft at your destination which is a world first. The domestic product is also receiving an upgrade. for an airline NZs size it certainly is proof that any airline big or small can continue to be an award winning airline in a hard enviorment. I feel that the US airlines are either too lazy or too scared to make big changes, and their lazyness has got them where they are now


User currently offlineSac From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 98 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 7691 times:

USA based airlines also have a much larger domestic operation than that of QF or NZ. That also puts a drain on the system. There are many more carriers in the USA competing on the domestic level than down under. To many planes and competition drive the prices down.

[Edited 2008-06-29 04:33:10]

User currently offlineDL767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 7497 times:

I think the hardest part for the US airlines to deal with when competing is that they are trying to offer nonstop flights from multiple US cities to one international airport. Someone like QF does have multiple hubs, but their flights are nothing like US domestic flights where flights aren't just flown out of hubs but also to other destinations in the US which is a very difficult thing to do. I can understand not having SQ interiors on domestic flights in the US but they should at least try and match someone like BA on international flights. But US airlines like DL are actually getting close to a competing product with their new seats. I think it may take some time but i think the US carriers with a little time can actually compete internationally.

User currently offline777ER From New Zealand, joined Dec 2003, 12212 posts, RR: 18
Reply 5, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7472 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR



Quoting Sac (Reply 3):

For the size of Australia, they have QF, JQ, DJ and TT competing on the main routes and main regional routes, then on the small routes you can also add REX, and many other smaller carriers that I can't think off.

For the size of New Zealand we have NZ, QF and DJ competing on the main trunk routes, but only NZ on regional. When it was only NZ and QF, we also had QO, but the competition was to severe for them and they went bankrupt after for flying for around 10 years.

It doesn't matter what size your country is, it just matters on the size of the population and the number of competing airlines. With the size of the US, you would think that with the number of airlines they have, then would be able to compete well and make profits


User currently offlineSpacecadet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3630 posts, RR: 12
Reply 6, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7434 times:



Quoting Cjuniel (Thread starter):
However, none of these carriers even comes close to having to operate a domestic operation on the scale of the US airlines, with multiple hubs. My question is, would it be possible for US carriers to provide the same levels of service as the afformentioned carriers, while still maintaining their domestic networks?

I don't really see what one has to do with the other. The level of service provided is a function of choices the airline makes vs. ticket prices. Staffing policies make a difference in the quality of the f/a's. None of this has anything to do with maintaining a large-scale domestic operation.

Anyway, certainly ANA and JAL would disagree that they don't maintain a domestic system of the same scale as most US airlines. HND is currently the second-busiest airport in the world - who do you think flies there and where do you think they're flying to/from? Yet still these airlines both manage service levels higher than any US airline on international routes.



I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
User currently offlineBillReid From Netherlands, joined Jun 2006, 1015 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7380 times:

this is a multi-tier problem.
First, US labor laws protect many employees that should be gone from the customer service front. I spoke to a FA on a DL flight yesterday and was told there are too many overweight and badly representative FA's that shouldn't be there.
From a management perspective, I fail to see a single motivator for the US carriers to deliver quality.

The US is a fifteenth world country lagging decades behind civilized regions such as Singapore Arabia, Europe, China, SouthAmerica, Canada, anywhere else in the world! The reality is the US carriers want to deliver Airline Quality at a level equivalent to Walmart.

If you want Saks Fith, you go Saks, if you want WalMart well thats different. The answer is when flying forget America and Quality,it left the country years ago.



Some people don't get it. Business is about making MONEY!
User currently offlineKoruman From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7364 times:

Quite frankly, American airlines offer rubbish products because the incompetents who manage them understand only the mantra of cost-cutting and, all sharing similar (bad) business training, they lack the wit or the ability to grasp that if you offer a better product you can commnd higher yields.

The thing about SQ, QF, NZ and the other airlines listed above is that they DO compete against carriers offering much lower (American-style) levels of service and fares and are happy to concede the cheapest, least profitable passsengers to them. They then make profits by filling their smaller fleets with passengers willing to pay considerably higher fares in return for cash-free flights with good and free food, wine, IFE and baggage. In QFs case they own one of the large LCCs, but Qantas mainline retains free food and wine and an entitlement to carry two 70 pound suitcases.

A symptom of the American malaise is United Economy Plus. By all means have slightly enhanced Economy for frequent flyers, but save First for people paying First fares. Because until First starts to generate big profits, the airlines wll continue to subsidise it by nickel-and-diming Economy passengers. It's basically the reverse business model to what profitable airlines in more sophisticated airline markets than the USA operate.

I flew domestically on Aeromexico yesterday, and received free food, drink, cushions, blankets and baggage. I had already paid my fare, so why shouldn't I expect what QF or BA manage on their (profitable) domestic networks? I'm staggered that Americans settle for less.

If ever the USA decides to move to a free market for airlines and ends despicable and unnatural practices like bankruptcy protection you will find that suicidal business practices like First upgrades will vanish and higher-value products will reap bigger profits. Until then, Americans are basically condemned to third-rate airlines flying from even worse airport terminals.

[Edited 2008-06-29 14:38:05]

User currently offlineUnitedFirst From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 478 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7333 times:



Quoting 777ER (Reply 2):
Just ask SQ managers who said at a Star Alliance meeting that they envy NZs new long haul product with 400+ hours of IFE on their long haul fleet.

Source?

(I don't necessarily disagree...just would like to see a source)


User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4840 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7287 times:

I'd like to add LH. With the EU almost being borderless and in someways similar to the USA size wise etc LH has a very big "domestic" operation within the EU... even within Germany it is quite large.

Australia isn't as populated as the USA for sure but it is about the same size roughly and QF does have 2 big hubs at SYD and MEL as well as BNE, PER, ADL, CNS not to mention its New Zealand operation or the TransTasman flights...perhaps compare them to USA carriers Canadian flights?



56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
User currently offlineUSAFDO From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 443 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7274 times:

I agree 100% with Koruman...

We Americans just sit back and take it---not only in the airline business but everywhere in our country.

We are on a devastating decline, and don't see to realize it, see it, or do anything about it.

Most of the legacy airlines have greedy p!gs running them into the ground with their incompetent actions, and destroy the inner frame work of the company---and basically steel money from the employees with their greed, special/secret contracts that line their pockets with money....regardless of whether their leadership is effective in generating profits for the company.


User currently offlineTtango From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 55 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7269 times:

I agree re: what Chapter 11 has done to the American consumer. It has slaughthered them. Its result is no Ryanair on the low end (Southwest fares are double of Ryan Air) and no Singapore-type product on the high-end. Instead the U.S. consumer pays more than any other nation for air travel and gets an inferior product.


Other key issues:
-Corporate contracts is where the revenue is in America for international business travel. Corporate travel managers believe that the schedule is the product. They look for the best price for the product that suits them best (the schedule). The onboard experience is almost taken for granted and what can be major features such as pre-flight lounge meals, true lay flat seats, etc. are overlooked.

-The US carriers' competition has been the other US carriers and nobody else. That may change a bit with liberalization. To date they have played musical chairs with their products. 'when somebody makes an improvement they catch up and that's it...no more, no innovation b/c innovation costs $ and they view it as an advantage that will just be copied anyway...thus the belief that no sustainable differentiators exist.


User currently offlineUSAFDO From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 443 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7264 times:

Interesting that none of the US legacy carriers "give in", and start modeling their operations like Southwest.

What better example of how to run an airline and make a profit have to be in your face before American Legacy carriers finely surrender!

I suppose they are going to "implode"..and collapse before they make that move...


User currently offlineLambert747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7238 times:

Quoting Koruman (Reply 8):

Quite frankly, American airlines offer rubbish products because the incompetents who manage them understand only the mantra of cost-cutting and, all sharing similar (bad) business training, they lack the wit or the ability to grasp that if you offer a better product you can commnd higher yields.

Excellent Point..   

If my dream were to come true one of the US airlines would import the head from an airline overseas or foreign consulting firm to come in and overhaul the entire operation from top to bottom. The legacies need an outside point of view on how to compete to an advantage in the international marketplace. The USA may be a wonderful place for many things. Not for the airline industry, that the World is now seeing as a total farce.

The USA is behind, the oil problems and the US economy have only gone to show that the model the US based airlines work on is for th most part faulty and with the exception of a few airlines a drain of both resources and public interest. The legacies need to worry less about attracting the nickel and dimers, and instead raise the airfares include the amenities such as the first bag charge, meals, and skycaps in the cost of the ticket. If the legacies cannot make money they need to focus on what can make money.

We have seen time and time again, on my short time here on this website how the Americans, at least some of them, are more than willing to accept that foreign ownership may be a saving grace for the US airlines. If given the chance to fly within the USA, I think for the most part people that have flown international would fly British Airways overall compared to US Airways.

Quoting BillReid (Reply 7):
If you want Saks Fith, you go Saks, if you want WalMart well thats different. The answer is when flying forget America and Quality,it left the country years ago

Agreed   

There was Pan Am and their was TWA both are long gone. The 1970's from what I can remember and into the early 1980's things were not near as bad as they are now. Service could be had. You had a choice. Somehow the US airlines lost the hallmarks on which they were founded. True Pan Am and TWA are no longer in existence. It was not because of the TWA product in the 1970's, it was not because of the Pan Am product in the 1960's. Both airlines were maligned by some of the worst management ever during the 1980's. Everything went out the door. Deregulation killed many things, including quality in the US airline industry.

TWA Late 1970'S
"A taste of Europe, flying in the USA"



Part of the tarnished service in the US airlines today is because the hiring standards have been greatly reduced. What standards TWA hired Flight Attendants in the 1970's, American Airlines did not hire in the 1990's. What standards Pan Am hired in the 1960's, Jet Blue will never hire at. Todays Flight Attendants, the new ones, or the recently hired ones have a notion that there is a totally different reason that they are onboard. I cannot tell you how many times I have overheard Flight Attendants talking about their personal lives and then some in the middle of boarding, or seemingly unwilling Flight Attendants ignoring passenger call buttons for hours on end.

Quoting Sac (Reply 3):
USA based airlines also have a much larger domestic operation than that of QF or NZ. That also puts a drain on the system. There are many more carriers in the USA competing on the domestic level than down under. To many planes and competition drive the prices down.

A few years ago airlines seemed liked they had obtained a mindset that they would operate domestic under one strategy and international under another. Before that we had airlines like Pan Am, TWA, and Eastern. All of those airlines had the same standard for service be it domestic of be it international. Take for example the 1 hour 20 minute QANTAS MEL-SYD on the A332, 738, or what ever else you have a defined quality product with a meal/snack and all. Compare that to a 6 hour JFK-LAX on Delta Air Lines, you have the total opposite. Sure it is nice Delta is putting in glossy tv's, leather seat covers, and fresh carpet. That does not suddenly lessen the need for in-flight service.

In recent years the US airlines as a majority, with a few exceptions decided to go from Meals onboard, to no meals, to now "BOB" Buy Onboard. While this is a way to increase revenue. It does not bring any sort of enhanced quality to the US markets. The other day I had relatives from Italy that flew JFK-LAX on Delta Air Lines, they were told by their Travel Agent in Italy not to expect anything when they fly on US airlines. When I met them at LAX they were famished. My one relative remarked that it felt as if they were stranded on the plane. She said she saw the Flight Attendants 3 times. Once during boarding, once during "Meals for Sale", and once during preparation for landing. My other relative said the meals for sale looked like something you saw at a vendors market after being on display for hours on end. He remarked "What next, are they going to have vendors with hot dog carts like in Central Park going up and down the aisles". In America, we have become accustomed to this. In Europe, for many they have not, as in Asia, and other parts of the World as well.

What we in the USA are accustomed to and with and the complacency in our airline industry has reached an all time low, perhaps a low we will not gain traction on for years to come.

Quoting Cjuniel (Thread starter):
However, none of these carriers even comes close to having to operate a domestic operation on the scale of the US airlines, with multiple hubs. My question is, would it be possible for US carriers to provide the same levels of service as the afformentioned carriers, while still maintaining their domestic networks?

This excuse has been used time and time again, not only in this forum but by airlines in the USA in general. The problem with the US airlines, is that they are trying to be everything to everyone. For example you have US Airways who wants to be full service international and Low Cost domestic. You have United Airlines who is full service international, but spins off "airline within an airline" every few years to compete with the Low Cost products. The same can be said for Delta Air Lines, and a number of others. The fundamental problem as I have explained above is that the train of thought for the airline industry in the USA in general with the exception of a few seems to be "They need to fly, they need us more than we need them", and "Why worry about Economy Class, we can just worry about the people in the front of the plane". These thoughts and other permeate to a wretched spoil in the US.

Continental Airlines 2006
"Take Away"



I am more than ready for foreign ownership and a different mentality running the US airlines. What we have now does not work, and cannot work for the majority of US airlines..

HELP... We need foreign ideas and foreign investment in US airlines!

[Edited 2008-06-29 15:32:47]

User currently offlineIncitatus From Brazil, joined Feb 2005, 4030 posts, RR: 13
Reply 15, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7227 times:



Quoting Lambert747 (Reply 14):
HELP... We need foreign ideas and foreign investment in US airlines!

We have it. It's called Virgin America and it is not doing very well.



Stop pop up ads
User currently offlineLambert747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7219 times:



Quoting Incitatus (Reply 15):
We have it. It's called Virgin America and it is not doing very well.

I was referring to full foreign ownership.. Not what the US currently allows..

75% is owned by VAI Partners LLC
25% is owned by Virgin Group ~ ala Richard Branson


User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21678 posts, RR: 55
Reply 17, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7198 times:



Quoting Cjuniel (Thread starter):
My question is, would it be possible for US carriers to provide the same levels of service as the afformentioned carriers, while still maintaining their domestic networks?

Probably not, unfortunately.

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 4):
I think the hardest part for the US airlines to deal with when competing is that they are trying to offer nonstop flights from multiple US cities to one international airport.

 checkmark  European and Asian carriers are able to run all their passengers through one (or sometimes two) hubs. The economies of scale make this a lot more efficient than the US case where the country is too big to have just one massive hub. Therefore you have to run three smaller, less-efficient planes from three hubs to a single international destination rather than run two larger, more-efficient planes to that destination from just one hub. That makes it harder to make money, but in order to compete with the international carriers, the revenue generated has to stay pretty much the same. Resulting in costs having to go down, meaning reduction in service levels.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineOzGlobal From France, joined Nov 2004, 2723 posts, RR: 4
Reply 18, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7149 times:

This misplaced patriotism, grasping at straws to find excuse for the American legacy carriers has got to end. They are now simply BEYOND THERAPY. There is virtually no-one working in them who knows what success as a major airline would look like. They are locked-in to Soviet style labour practices, protected from market realities by Ch 11 and from each other by the fact that all of the above is a pandemic in the US market. All seasoned American business travelers with a choice choice non-US premium carriers for the long haul trips.

Let these carriers die their natural death and rebuild from scratch. This will reduce the excess capacity and remake the mold from the ground up: new, leaner fleets, fresh blood and expatriate bosses from successful international carriers to bring the right practices.



When all's said and done, there'll be more said than done.
User currently offlineLambert747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7136 times:



Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
They are now simply BEYOND THERAPY. There is virtually no-one working in them who knows what success as a major airline would look like. They are locked-in to Soviet style labour practices, protected from market realities by Ch 11 and from each other by the fact that all of the above is a pandemic in the US market. All seasoned American business travelers with a choice choice non-US premium carriers for the long haul trips.

Agreed  checkmark 

The US airlines need outside, i.e. outside of the borders consulting firms to come in and overhaul their entire approach to service, quality, and management. At the same time I think it would greatly benefit the US airlines if they recruited overseas and import Flight Attendants, similar to what Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar Airways does. In this instance bringing people in from overseas on 1-3 year contracts and if they are good they are sustained, if not they are sent back to their nation of origin.


User currently offlineCjuniel From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 146 posts, RR: 1
Reply 20, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 7091 times:



Quoting Spacecadet (Reply 6):
Anyway, certainly ANA and JAL would disagree that they don't maintain a domestic system of the same scale as most US airlines. HND is currently the second-busiest airport in the world - who do you think flies there and where do you think they're flying to/from? Yet still these airlines both manage service levels higher than any US airline on international routes.

They dont. The only area that comes close is the EU, as ZKPilot mentioned earlier. Keep in mind, JAL and ANA use HIGH DENSITY wide body aircraft for many intra-Japan routes. Not quite the same as flying to 200 domestic cities.


User currently offlineLambert747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7058 times:

Quoting Cjuniel (Reply 20):
They dont. The only area that comes close is the EU, as ZKPilot mentioned earlier. Keep in mind, JAL and ANA use HIGH DENSITY wide body aircraft for many intra-Japan routes. Not quite the same as flying to 200 domestic cities.

That is debatable, the problem in the USA is the obsession with frequency over capacity. Please find axamples of high frequency routes with majority if not solely narrow body equipment:

BOS-JFK/LGA/EWR Market
AA. DL. CO. US. B6

ORD/MDW-JFK/LGA/EWRMarket
AA. UA. DL. CO. B6

PBI/FLL/MIA-JFK/LGA/EWR Market
AA. DL. CO. B6. NK

DCA/BWI/IAD-JFK/LGA/EWR Market
AA. DL. CO. UA. B6

DAL/DFW-HOU/IAH Market
AA. CO. WN

ATL-JFK/LGA/EWR Market
AA. DL. CO

SEA-LAX/SNA/BUR/LGB/ONT Market
UA. DL. AS. WN. VX. QX

LAS-LAX/SNA/ONT/BUR/LGB Market
AA. DL. NW. US. UA. WN. B6

SFO/SJC/OAK-LAS Market
UA. US. WN. VX

SFO/SJC/OAK-LAX/ONT/BUR/LGB/SNA Market
AA. DL. AS. UA. US. WN. B6. VX

SFO/SJC/OAK-SAN Market
AA. UA. WN. VX

[Edited 2008-06-29 18:43:20]

User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4840 posts, RR: 9
Reply 22, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7052 times:

The problem for US airlines is only compounded by the incompetancy of the FAA and/or the US Govt. The whole airspace system in the USA is quite frankly 3rd world and not what you would expect from the largest/richest/most powerful country in the world. Computers that are so old that spare parts have to be invented by their maintenance guys and that fall over whenever their is a heatwave. Part of the reason why there are always massive delays in the USA is that the airspace is not managed anywhere near as well or efficiently as it should do... thus airlines have to pad their schedules significantly, carry excess fuel, have longer taxi times and times spent in holding patterns etc. Insted of proping up the airlines every time they stutter, the US Govt should be spending money on modernising the whole system (which would make things much better for those airlines that adapt and evolve).


56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4756 posts, RR: 25
Reply 23, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7028 times:



Quoting Sac (Reply 3):
USA based airlines also have a much larger domestic operation than that of QF or NZ. That also puts a drain on the system. There are many more carriers in the USA competing on the domestic level than down under. To many planes and competition drive the prices down.

Sigh... Another sad excuse. Again, no US carrier is a government run company (READ: Commercial) and no one is putting a gun to their head to fly to wherever that doesn't make money. You cannot compare what is in the US and other countries because many other countries also have a domestic network with competition to deal with. The parameters regulating these market forces are relative so if you average it out, everyone is still having the same problem of wanting cheaper fares and there is always omeobe else out there who can offer it.

BUT this does not mean diluting your offering to match the competition. You need to differetiate yourself from the competition. What I see the US legacies are doing, they are essentially lowering themselves to the levels offered by LCCs (on the domestic front, at least). Granted a lot of these were driven by the consumers themselves who, on one hand, bitch about expensive fares, on the other hand, they also bitch about the lack of amenities on legacies once the fares are lowered.

But since this topic is attempting to discuss about INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS, I only have one thing to say. While the US carriers might have been pioneers, they have now all been overshadowed and I think they can only be compared to carries like Malev, Air China, Biman Bangladesh, TAP, Air Zimbabwe....

Seriously... Many other airlines that were considered "inferior" have now stepped up their game like for instance China Airlines, Korean Air, Turkish, SAA, etc....

I have flown AA, UA and NW on international flights and really sad to say the kind of attitudes that rule the FAs along the aisle don't do the airline any favours to boost their already lacklustre image. Flights are cheap so you pay for what you get, I guess. Since it is an international flight and there is a need to serve meals, FAs just do it for the sake of it and take no pride in serving.

No, I do not agree that the excuse for plummeting service levels is due to the LARGE domestic markets draining the resources for international flights. This reasoning is weak, lame, and really does not address as to why the attitudes of the FAs are so far behind their competition.



Welcome to my starry one world alliance, a team in the sky!
User currently offlineSPREE34 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2248 posts, RR: 9
Reply 24, posted (6 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 6978 times:



Quoting Sac (Reply 3):
USA based airlines also have a much larger domestic operation than that of QF or NZ. That also puts a drain on the system. There are many more carriers in the USA competing on the domestic level than down under. To many planes and competition drive the prices down.

What has this got to do with the level of (or lack of) service they provide?

Quoting Spacecadet (Reply 6):
I don't really see what one has to do with the other. The level of service provided is a function of choices the airline makes vs. ticket prices. Staffing policies make a difference in the quality of the f/a's. None of this has anything to do with maintaining a large-scale domestic operation.

Thank you. Saved me all kinds of typing.

BA to London in two weeks.  bigthumbsup 



I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
25 MilesDependent : I'm not convinced it's possible to save the US airlines, except for perhaps CO which is better than most. The problem is that they are trying to be al
26 Ikramerica : QF is the dominant airline in a small country. And they toss off their marginal routes to JetStar and let them provide crappy service. Singapore does
27 Ryanair!!! : I have to stop you there... Service on Jetstar is anything but abysmal. AND the amenities are really not that bad! You just have to pay for everythin
28 Nzrich : The problem i see with the legacy airlines is that the LCC quite ofte offer more services on board where the Legacy is becoming the LCC but charging l
29 Lambert747 : Singapore Airlines has an LCC? This is the first I have heard of this.. If one is trying to elude to Silkair being a LCC, that is a mistake. Silkair
30 777law : SQ owns a large minority share or small majority share of Tiger Airlines.
31 Post contains links United1 : Tiger Aviation is 49% owned by SIA http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiger_Airways http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiger_Airways_Australia http://en.wikipedi
32 Ikramerica : I think that A. many of you don't know the definition of an LCC, B. many of you don't even know what you are arguing, and C. many of you don't underst
33 Nzrich : Yes and there are also citystate carriers like EK that can have variable service levels also .. Then there are also award winning airlines that are c
34 Post contains links Lambert747 : It is all about service. This topic was started to discuss the current level of service on US based airlines. Myself and others who travel internatio
35 Post contains links Lambert747 : 2007 : Airline Strategy Awards Source: http://www.strategyawards2007.com/winners_2007.html Executive Leadership Jean-Cyril Spinetta & Leo van Wijk, Ai
36 AAJFKSJUBKLYN : AA is Shouldn't be quote the newest winners? This should be a fun wAAck AA for being chosen? OAG Airline of the Year 2008 Winner: Singapore Airlines A
37 Aither : US airlines managers should not be blamed as written above. The US airlines are just like many other things in the US : a bit rusty. The US is a very
38 Post contains images Zkpilot : So a) why don't they set up a subsiduary airline to operate this LCC service, and b) Perhaps you could explain then why it is not possible to get ful
39 DL767captain : what's not working for them? For a new start up they seem to be doing pretty well
40 Spacecadet : Moot point. What you're saying is that because the American system is inefficient and broken, they shouldn't be expected to provide good service. Tha
41 Mayor : So only the select few who live in those "larger cities" will have air service? The bias I see on here against medium to smaller cities is amazing, b
42 Cjuniel : What are you talking about? We werent discussing service levels when discussing Japan, we were discussing the breadth of their domestic operations. Y
43 OURBOEING : I am flying EWR-DEL on July 23rd and will post an update upon my return on August 15th. I am hoping to get great service!! OURBOEING
44 WorldTraveler : First, the USA has across the board accepted quantity over quality in every aspect of life…..airlines are no different. There is an undying affectio
45 Post contains links OzGlobal : This is so untrue that it's embarrassing people can still believe this in the US. A good reference, UNICEF Report on Child Well Being in Rich Countri
46 ELAL772 : From TLV, CO to EWR and DL to ATL offer a great product in coach, good entertainment systems, good food and snacks and nice service, and after flying
47 Cjuniel : Worldtraveler, I agree with you in quite a few aspects. You stated that you believe Delta will be able to compete with the Asian carriers in the comin
48 Lambert747 : This is about the most unfounded statement that has ever been posted on Airliners.net. The quality of life in the United States overall does not supe
49 WorldTraveler : it has nothing to do with a.net. Look at the standard of living in the USA vs other developed countries and look at what that buys and Americans enjo
50 OzGlobal : All major OECD, UN, WTO and WHO measures place US 12th to 79th in most important quality of life, health, education, child poverty, chronic poverty,
51 DocLightning : We don't get a choice. See, we have no recourse. We can't simply take our business elsewhere (at least many of us can't). If you live at a UA hub, th
52 Lambert747 : I can attest to having lived in both Europe and South America. The quality of life in America is no better, and in some cases it is worse. For exampl
53 AirNZ : I absolutely agree with you, and very well said. Whatever domestic flights they wish to undertake is entirely their own perogative.....I simply see n
54 LTBEWR : Many foreign airlines often get fiancial support from those who invest in the long haul - not just the next quarter or next year. They don't have to s
55 Lambert747 : Very valid points.. However, not all foreign airlines are stated owned or supported airlines. Not all foreign airlines receive favorable tax incentiv
56 Post contains links AFGMEL : Sorry, but that is nonsense. Dogma is not a substitute for facts. I have to ask, have you flown Jetstar? I am not a fan because of my height and thei
57 Ryanair!!! : So far all respondents seem to be a majority of Amercan flags, so let me chime in to offer a perspective from someone who lives outside the bubble. On
58 Lambert747 : Below you will find two very in-depth videos showing the detail that goes into Lufthansas onboard product for a FRA-EZE-SCL flight. You will see the g
59 FFlyer : Hahaa. I have lived extensive periods in the part of Europe, which has the highest living quality, and according to studies, the happies people; Scan
60 Mayor : And don't forget that universal health care in those countries IS NOT free. It may look to be free as those people don't pay for it outright but you
61 FFlyer : Hotels??? Take a typical medium-priced hotel in France or Germany, or almost any country in Europe, and compare it to an equally priced counterpart i
62 FFlyer : Yes, that is so true. However, the US system is inefficient, and costs more to run compared with the output. Individual health insurance rates are al
63 Mayor : Greece, for example, even though they are an EU member, in some ways are very much like a third world company. Now, all you lovers of Greece, don't f
64 AirNZ : Australia is a small country? Absolute rubbish......have you ever flown them? Their service is quite excellent in fact. Completely wrong on both coun
65 Post contains links Lambert747 : Try to at least research my text before responding. I pointed out the exact locations that I have lived in Europe and in South America. I never state
66 Post contains links Mayor : I never said it was worse than those cities.....I said it was worse in Athens than it had been previously.......Thessaloniki is worse than it used to
67 Semsem : When an American took over Air France about 15 years ago, the inflight food service became despicable. For a time they even cut out the snack service
68 Lambert747 : It comes down to a matter of opinion I have a number of Greek friends that live in Athens (Ekali, Kolonaki, and Glyfada), they also have second famil
69 Mayor : Perhaps because they're the upper crust and can live in those cities, they aren't bothered by those things I mentioned like it would someone in the m
70 AirNZ : Even if it were true (which it is most certainly not in your general sense of it), what has any of that got to do with standards of service by US car
71 Lambert747 : All that I can gather is that it was a desperate attempt to poke fun at Southern Europe in a grasping at straws effort to make Scandinavia seem super
72 Mayor : I meant no insult to the Greeks, which I have pointed out before. I never said the U.S. was superior.....if you can find a sentence where I said that
73 AirNZ : No, no, I never meant you said it but certainly the implication which came across (as it frequently does in these type of posts, but I don't mean by
74 Mayor : Well, somebody has to pay, one way or another.
75 AFGMEL : Yes, and if I had a choice in paying slightly higher taxes and having good medical and education or living in a country where you spend trillions on
76 United1 : Just to keep things fair, Defence spending is actually the third largest US budget item (at 549 Billion). The first two are Social Security (581 Bill
77 Marara : Maybe the US airlines need to invest in training. QF will spend over 10million on a training centre for customer service or "charm school" which all c
78 FFlyer : Maybe you should haver read what I wrote. Comparing hotels from the same price range, let's say $100-200/night level, the European hotels provide les
79 FFlyer : Some of the Southern European countries wouldn't afford the long vacations. Just look at Italy, and the way their government and the whole society ha
80 PA101 : Very valid points.. However, not all foreign airlines are stated owned or supported airlines. Not all foreign airlines receive favorable tax incentiv
81 AirNZ : Sorry, but again what exactly are you talking about? What are you referring to by "Some of the Southern European countries wouldn't afford the long v
82 Ttango : Why do American carriers have lower onboard product levels? 1. Airlines view the schedule as their product above anything else. Why? Because corporate
83 Mayor : Now who's touting superiority?
84 Dano1977 : After reading 83 posts of very good comments and ideas, but it seems that 1 major point has been missed. COST TO THE CUSTOMER Now if a family of 4 can
85 Lambert747 : Live in Italy, and then reply.. It has been my first hand experience that Italians dont take the flights from Italy to Cuba, Seychelles, Zanzibar, Ma
86 PA101 : Well - THAT doesn't match my experiences! Sure - space in Europe is the same issue as in the NYC area - it is extremely expensive and thus limited. C
87 Manfredj : A broad statement with little evidence to back it up. The thread starter does have an interesting point, and I think it should be taken into consider
88 FFlyer : Lambert, why should I list every hotel where I have stayed? Who on earth would remember that. Well, I can list some of the European cities: Stockholm
89 FFlyer : Kind of fun discussion, although way off topic. By difference in beds I meant the fact that quite a few times in European hotels I have had a narrow
90 Post contains images Lambert747 : You can find them in the Carlyle Hotel, Lowell Hotel, and Pierre Hotels in New York City..   What I am suprised at is that you made the above commen
91 FFlyer : Just got back from the latest trip on Wednesday. Moved back from Finland 10 years ago.
92 BAW716 : The Australian domestic market does not even come close to the size of the US domestic market, which is the single largest market in the world. The p
93 Lambert747 : They are doing nothing more than taking away the items that are most visible to the consumer. At some juncture they will come to a point at which the
94 PA101 : So what... Alright - sure! The King/Queen-Bed-thing seems to be an American thing. Especially smaller or cheaper hotels in Europe offer the standard
95 Lambert747 : That was the most priceless comment in this thread.. A/C at an American Embassy was that such a Überraschung?
96 Fonseca33 : US hotels are in general much better than what I have found in Europe. And yes, they do tend to be more modern, and tend to have more free internet.
97 AirNZ : It's got nothing to do with whether "about 60-70% of their services fall within this market" or not. That is the airline's choice and, as has been sa
98 Lambert747 : This topic has proved two things, and two things alone... Europeans do not view the American way of life as superior! ~The European side can keep the
99 Fonseca33 : The overall tax rate in the US is still below what is payed in the rest of the developed world, even when you include all other taxes. Healthcare cos
100 Fonseca33 : How simplistic and dumb. We can also keep our much larger living spaces, higher disposible income, best universities in the world (source: Shanghai U
101 DUALRATED : I can't belive what I'm reading on here, It is not the fault of the US airlines for a lack of service it is the american people who fly the US airlin
102 Lambert747 : As has been pointed out time and time again people of various incomes are on this website. I have an income that can afford myself to live in Los Fel
103 Fonseca33 : I backed everything with facts. You keep talking about personal experiences and nothing relative. The US economy? Reality Check: The US has a recessio
104 DUALRATED : What a pile of anti American gibberish....but nothing new. If you don't like it here and it's so bad...please don't let the door hit ya where the goo
105 Fonseca33 : This LAMBERT guy fails to explain why today, more Europeans and South Americans move to the US than the other way around? Why do they do this? Are the
106 Ttango : But Lambert you must understand that the US airlines' business product success does not rely on any "person return(ing) to an airline". It relies on
107 Lambert747 : It depends what the corporate contract is. For example look at Rosewood Hotels, a collection of luxury properties in Japan, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, the
108 MillwallSean : I love it when people want to talk about service and it ends up with a discussion about personal taste. How about saying that US airlines and their ma
109 Ttango : I agree on all counts...all good points IMHO. But if we're looking for the answer to the question of why major U.S.-based airlines have the onboard i
110 Mayor : If you love America so much, why do you love it so much, somewhere else? BTW, I'm guessing you've just lived in a large city in the U.S. I've got new
111 Mayor : Wrong. Flight attendants were on board, originally for safety reasons. Initially, they had to be qualified as a nurse. By FAA regs, that's what they'
112 AirNZ : Now, does all that fancy rhetoric make you feel better, cosy, important and knowing it all? But, as a mere teenager, you really do have a long way to
113 Fonseca33 : One reason as to why US airlines have been suffering; Since 1980, the number of millionaires has surged 6000%, and this lead to the private jet indust
114 Fonseca33 : In Y I don't see such a big difference between US carriers and others, honestly, except on domestic flights where food isn't offered. [Edited 2008-07-
115 Fonseca33 : It's not fancy rhetoric. I can provide reliable sources for everything I said that was not an opinion. Stats like consumption, disposible income, tax
116 DUALRATED :
117 Fonseca33 : The nerve, just because they know I am young, that means I must be confused and dumb. Too bad they don't realize other aspects. Maybe I should also st
118 Lambert747 : What University did you enter at age 16? To start it is a lot easier to "mooch" off of the system in the USA than in other countries. I draw criticis
119 Brilondon : Be prepared to pony up the coin because at the present level of fares you get what you pay for and nothing more. People only want to pay as little as
120 Lambert747 : At least it has been admitted.. Very true.. The Scandinavians have been very forward with internet technology. Many of the cell phones that are debut
121 DUALRATED : What... he went to college early...we have smart people in this country too! You are creating the divide, and I never said you were a bad person, How
122 Jeffrey1970 : What choice do we have. No other airline other then Continental offers free meals anymore. Funny thing is I remember back in the 70's and 80's when m
123 Fonseca33 : Try 18, UF, 2 years and a half. Oh please, there's no comparison. US has 1/3 of all the world's millionaires, and a greater portion of the ultra wela
124 Lambert747 : The problem is when we purchase even First Class and Business Class on US airlines both on domestic and international routes the service is hit and m
125 Post contains links and images Lambert747 : A half-year of job losses Source: http://money.cnn.com/2008/07/03/news.../jobs_june/?postversion=2008070310 438,000 Jobs lost in the USA in 6 months 6
126 Post contains links Fonseca33 : That's what a downturn is supposed to look like. What's your point? Other western countries are facing the same. UK, Japan, Spain, Italy, and France
127 Post contains links and images Lambert747 : What? The decline of the US economy has nothing to do with the decline in the US airline industry? The US airlines are doing everything but pissing o
128 Andaman : You mean the new Airport Hilton at HEL doesn't have a/c? That would be surprising. But I know what you mean, it can get hot inside the houses in Finl
129 Lambert747 : Indeed they do have air conditioning, as well as the Scandic Gateway-Helsinki Airport..
130 PA101 : No - not at all... Back then I simply didn't know it was the Embassy (had just moved to Berlin a few months prior) - just when I walked by I noticed,
131 FFlyer : There are a lot of cell phone models in the US, that you can't get in Europe. There are even more in Japan, that you can't get in Europe or US. Diffe
132 FFlyer : Forgot the new Hilton. Is Scandic one of the "original" airport hotels down the road (where some four or five hotels are located)? There has been som
133 FFlyer : I agree. We tend to make a big deal about really small differences. I usually fly DL, KL, AF, CO or AY across the pond. Almost always in Y. The on-bo
134 Srbmod : Since this thread has turned into an off-topic discussion on the economy and cells phones, and so on, this thread is now locked.
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