A1ring23 From Australia, joined Jun 2009, 196 posts, RR: 0 Posted (3 years 5 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 2822 times:
This idea just occured to me and I was wondering if anyone else has thought of it before?
Similar to book-the-cook on SQ's J class, why can't this theory be applied to all classes for all international and domestic flights on non LCCs.
Currently on most airlines, you get to choose from a variety of meals in all classes. Normally 3-4 in J/F and 2-3 in Y. In the booking process, can't all meals be pre-ordered such that there would be no need for selection of meals? Also this would help pax by giving them what they want, so that when the trolley came down to them, 'their meal' would not have run out by then?
With regards to saving resources, I was wondering if this would save weight/galley space in terms of the amount of meals airlines had to carry onboard their a/c. I know currently there are almost always spares or extra meals carried onboard just in case. Does anyone know how much extra is carried, and how this figure is calculated?
I just thought that by streamlining the pre-ordering of meals, there would be alot less hassle in the process of delivering the meals to the pax, less weight in terms of the menus provided, possibly less weight in carrying less meals (?), and also satisfying the pax with being able to deliver the exact meal that they want. I guess this theory can also be applied to drinks, in particular in J/F, where there are a very large selection of drinks available. Maybe in the booking process, the pax could nominate their 3 (?) favourite drinks so that the airline doesn't have to carry as much, saving weight/space etc etc
Captaink From Mexico, joined May 2001, 5093 posts, RR: 13 Reply 1, posted (3 years 5 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 2810 times:
All passengers would have book online and pick a seat beforehand. Currently alot of seats are assigned on the day of travel at the ticket counter y/o at the gate. That would make the process difficult as the passenger would have to be located by name.
BlueFlyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 3119 posts, RR: 1 Reply 3, posted (3 years 5 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2663 times:
Passengers do trade seats, some show up at the last minute, some don't show up, gate agents re-assign seats at the last minute... You've got to communicate all that to the galley quite literally seconds before closing the door, and pray not too many people decide to move around before meal time...
"Will the passengers originally seated in 24F, 12C, 30A and 20B ring their call button so we can give them their meals please?"
Ditzyboy From Australia, joined Feb 2008, 680 posts, RR: 1 Reply 4, posted (3 years 5 months 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2532 times:
A special meal in Australia costs the airline $35-$50 to provide. Where the special meal is the same as a regular meal (VLML on some breakfast flights) it still costs $15 for catering to print and affix the sticker to meal!
The number of issues with the relatively small amount of special meals is considerable - you would be surprised. So many errors can happen at so many point from the customer making the booking, to the production and supply of the meal, to the serving of the meal to the customer onboard. So many, it would take all day to list them.
SQ get away with it as it is limited to much fewer customers and not on all flights. It simply would not work across the board.
David21487 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 228 posts, RR: 0 Reply 5, posted (3 years 5 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 2315 times:
I agree with the above posts.
I just don't believe that it's possible. And airlines have a hard enough time getting it right with the pre-ordered special meals that are currently allowed. I'm actually suprised that they haven't done away completely with the vegetarian meals, Hindu meals, kosher, etc, just to save on the cost of them...
AI From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2005, 318 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (3 years 5 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 2070 times:
David - it is impossible to ignore the needs of vegetarians & people with special medical/dietary needs. If at all the airlines should do away with non veg meals as all nonvegetarians can have vegetarian meal aswell but the other way around doesnt work.
Tonystan From Ireland, joined Jan 2006, 1172 posts, RR: 2 Reply 7, posted (3 years 5 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 2038 times:
Do you have any idea how CHAOTIC this would be????
Airlines are reducing crewing levels all over the shop. Suddenly we have 300 passengers all allocated specific seats. We have 300 meals of whch all the hots are in several ovens and the trays split between between 12 meal trolleys (or even 24 if only half trolleys) all of which now need to be labelled up with the choice and seat number of the customer concerned. Then you would need to make sure that they are labelled up in such a way so that when you go through with the trolleys all the meals are in order by seat row number...the only other option would be to run the meals by hand from the galley which would just take forever! The whole process would be disguistingly time consuming with all crew preoccupied and unable to break free to do anything else that may be required!!!
Then you get the typical passenger who will say things like "oh I didnt realise it had eggs/mushrooms/that thing I dont like but will eat only if im forced to" so can I have the other one? Not to mention those that sneakily swap seats with other passengers during boarding, people who are fickle and change their minds more then they change their underwear and those who claim they didnt order their meal option even though it is clearly on their booking!!!!!
Then there is the administritive complexities. The airline websites would have to be updated with the catering offerings from various stations down route which can often change without warning. The airline would have to be robust enough to cope with hundreds of thousands of meal orders coming through and the airports will need to have the time to print of full passenger information lists with ALL names listed several times so each galley has its own copy of what everyone has ordered resulting in miles and miles of printed paper!!!!
Finally what happens if there is suddenly an aircraft change or worse yet, a flight is cancelled and passengers accomodated at short notice on another flight! OMG they wont get their specially ordered chicken madras with extra coriander and dal!
No, dont let this madness happen! The current system works. Ok, sometimes a small handful of people dont get what they want but by and large it is an efficient system!
Vasu From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2005, 3761 posts, RR: 0 Reply 8, posted (3 years 5 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 2016 times:
Quoting AI (Reply 6): David - it is impossible to ignore the needs of vegetarians & people with special medical/dietary needs. If at all the airlines should do away with non veg meals as all nonvegetarians can have vegetarian meal aswell but the other way around doesnt work.
Interesting... I actually wonder if any airlines out there do that? What about, say, India - where meaty-meals are actually labelled "non-vegetarian" ?
A1ring23 From Australia, joined Jun 2009, 196 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (3 years 5 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1940 times:
Quoting BlueFlyer (Reply 3): Passengers do trade seats, some show up at the last minute, some don't show up, gate agents re-assign seats at the last minute... You've got to communicate all that to the galley quite literally seconds before closing the door, and pray not too many people decide to move around before meal time...
Not saying for one minute that the logistics wouldn't be easy, but since meals are generally served early on in a flight, maybe there could be an annoucement for all pax to stay in their assigned seats until the meal service has concluded? Just a suggestion...
Quoting Tonystan (Reply 7): Do you have any idea how CHAOTIC this would be????
LOL. No need to get your knickers in a twist. It was just a suggestion, nothing more.
Quoting Tonystan (Reply 7): OMG they wont get their specially ordered chicken madras with extra coriander and dal!
I was implying stock meals, of course there is no selection of other ingredients, no less tomato/more sauce etc. There is meal 1, 2 and 3. You pick one. Essentially the same system - just that you pick when booking online.
A "suggestion" would "suggest" that it is a workable idea.....yours is clearly ludacrise! LOL!
And another point....airline reservations systems have enough trouble getting dietry needs meals from booking to catering to aircraft!!! Could you imagine if they had to get it right for EVERY passenger??? Ooooh the mind boggles! Mind you, your thinking sort of reminds me of some of the bright sparks we have managing at BA at the moment!
BFS From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 734 posts, RR: 2 Reply 13, posted (3 years 5 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1508 times:
It's been done! I remember in 1997 travelling on a package holiday with Airtours International. At the time of booking, you were able to choose your meals from a list of around 8 I think - one of the early 'optional extras' the charter airlines were beginning to offer around then.
A1ring23 From Australia, joined Jun 2009, 196 posts, RR: 0 Reply 14, posted (3 years 5 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1496 times:
Quoting BFS (Reply 13): It's been done! I remember in 1997 travelling on a package holiday with Airtours International. At the time of booking, you were able to choose your meals from a list of around 8 I think - one of the early 'optional extras' the charter airlines were beginning to offer around then.
Ckfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 4651 posts, RR: 1 Reply 15, posted (3 years 5 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1346 times:
Why do you have to match meals with seat assignment? If a carrier has two meals in coach, and X number of pasta meals are ordered and Y number of chicken meals are ordered, then catering only has to put on what's ordered.
The easy solution would be to print the meal that is ordered on the boarding pass. Then, when the F/As start meal service, the passenger just has to look at his boarding pass, so that he knows what to tell the F/A.
Granted, if a passenger ordered pasta several months ago, when he made his reservation, then decided after takeoff that he wanted chicken, he's screwing things up in the galley.
What I like about this is the potential to return hot meal service in coach. I would be willing to pay to have a hot, full meal, especially on longer flights over meal time. It gets old wolfing down fast food at a gate or trying to carry food on board, when I already have a rollerboard and a briefcase.