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Meal Service Onboard At Gate...how Unusual?  
User currently offlineseapek888 From United States of America, joined Jun 2010, 34 posts, RR: 0
Posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 11740 times:

I've been a high mileage traveler for over ten years now, and experienced something for the first time yesterday.....was on ZH9666 CGQ - CAN, we had a delay after boarding (approx 1.5 hours...in addition to a 65 minute boarding delay). During the delay, we received a hot meal service and two beverage services while on board at the gate. I've never seen this before during the many delays I've experienced over the years, where perhaps water or beverages are occasionally offered, but never food. How unusual is this? (one could joke that meal service is unusual in and of itself these days, but what would prevent a 'buy on board' service in similar circumstances...)

BTW - never did get an explanation re: the delay beyond 'ATC'...guessing that weather in-route was the cause, but just a guess. Also...this was my first trip on ZH and came away impressed despite the delay.....efficient, friendly service on a comfortable and new A320.

35 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineantonovman From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2001, 720 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 11641 times:

was it food from the a/c or was it brought in from an airport restaurant or caterer ?

User currently offlinetennis69 From Qatar, joined Apr 2007, 401 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 11630 times:
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This is not uncommon in China as it keeps the pax happy and calm.

User currently offlineseapek888 From United States of America, joined Jun 2010, 34 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 11517 times:

Quoting antonovman (Reply 1):
was it food from the a/c or was it brought in from an airport restaurant or caterer ?

This was the normal catered meal service intended for en-route service.

Quoting tennis69 (Reply 2):
This is not uncommon in China as it keeps the pax happy and calm.

I don't doubt that this has happened on other domestic CN flights, but it simply hadn't happened to me previously. Generally speaking, I've found the reaction of passengers to delays on domestic flights in China to be far 'better' that what I've experienced on domestic US flights. I recall this James Fallows (of the Atlantic) description last year of US vs. CN pax reactions to delay.....I couldn't agree more: http://www.theatlantic.com/science/a...-better-news-air-china-dept/16587/


User currently offlinemandala499 From Indonesia, joined Aug 2001, 6858 posts, RR: 75
Reply 4, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 11359 times:

The same thing happens in Indonesia... after a delay of a certain time, catering gets off loaded and served at the gate.

Although there is 1 route that gets the "meal service" done at the gate... CGK-TKG on SJ... "meal/snack box" is distributed at the gate, since it's only a 20min flight.

Mandala499



When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
User currently offlinetcxdegsy From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2006, 517 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 11299 times:

Not quite a full hot meal service, but BA did bring out snacks on a delayed take off from JFK. It was a sleeper service flight and they did serve drinks, and for those in Club/First, the Sleeper Service snack was served, which was warm.


next flights: BA1441 0566 0581 1446 EDI-LHR-MXP-LHR-EDI
User currently onlineWNCrew From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 1472 posts, RR: 10
Reply 6, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11155 times:

As long as they didn't utilize carts for the service it sounds like a great thing to do!

Carts should never be in the aisles on the ground (in the US it's an FAR violation) because they block the aisle should the need arise for an evacuation.



ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineairbuseric From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 4269 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11075 times:

Also JL does it before longhaul departures from Europe to Japan. When heavy delays occur for some reason, a meal service on the ground is performed. After takeoff, which are in the evening, passengers can immediately sleep.

Sometimes an extra snack is delivered by the catering to be served on board during the flight at a time in between.

So, it's not uncommon at all.

One of the reasons; it's better to keep the passengers on board. Because, then you can depart any time when there is a possibility to go!
Once passengers are back in freedom in the terminal, they go shopping etc and spread out. Also, you need to re-perform security check in some airports. This costs more time etc. So better keep passengers on board and start service to keep them calm and 'busy'  



"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
User currently offlinebabybus From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11035 times:

Quoting WNCrew (Reply 6):
Carts should never be in the aisles on the ground (in the US it's an FAR violation) because they block the aisle should the need arise for an evacuation.

When I was on a Virgin 747 out of JFK once, the aircraft broke down and they decided to serve the meal after a few hours. We were still on the ground and there were trolleys in the aisle too.

Despite sitting on the plane for 6 hours it never did take off and we were transferred to another aircraft and airline the next morning.


User currently offlineBoeing77W From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 206 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 10904 times:

On a flight with MH (in Y) from LHR-KUL we were delayed on departure, after pushback we were given a slot restriction somewhere over Poland. The cabin crew came through with rolls, sandwiches and various other snacks as well as a wide selection of drinks. Definitely helped to keep us happy but it was the first and only time I've ever had something like that happen.

User currently offlineckfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 5236 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 10757 times:

Once, I was flying AA from LAS to ORD in first. Boarding was delayed 20 minutes. Then we sat on the AA maintenance pad for 2 hours while waiting out a nationwide ground stop at ORD.

Even though the flight was sceduled to depart LAS at 9:40 and arrive at ORD at 3:20, the flight had been catered for breakfast.

The F/A said that if we were to hold on the ground beyond noon, she was going to call catering and have a lunch set-up brought out to the aircraft.

Meanwhile both first and coach were getting beverage service during the ground stop.


User currently offlinesmi0006 From Australia, joined Jan 2008, 1533 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 10357 times:

Quoting WNCrew (Reply 6):

Carts should never be in the aisles on the ground (in the US it's an FAR violation) because they block the aisle should the need arise for an evacuation.

Same with QF in Aus, however many other airlines do use carts....but hey different strokes

EK do them on the ground also, infact they often do a full meal service on the ground if the flight is cancelled it gives the ground staff sufficient time to organise accomodation and transport and allows the passengers to watch movies eat drink and relax while waiting. This policy works well for late night flights as well when the kitchen may not be open for room service at some of the hotels.


User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4226 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 10290 times:

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 7):
So, it's not uncommon at all.

It is uncommon but not unheard of especially in North America. Where the airlines would rather starve their passengers and lock them on board the aircraft during a lengthy ground delay, then keep them comfortable. That's the American/Canadian way. , not that it really matters when you are going only a couple of hours. The quality of the meals is not what you would call all that great so I would prefer not to be served meals any way.

[Edited 2010-08-15 09:33:44]


Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently onlineWNCrew From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 1472 posts, RR: 10
Reply 13, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 10290 times:

Quoting smi0006 (Reply 11):
but hey different strokes

Ha! Well, in a way yes, there are a variety of safety-regulations throughout the world.

I think it makes sense to not have them out in the cabin while on the ground though.... but as I mentioned it's just not allowed by US Carriers in the US per the FAA.



ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlinefrontierflyer From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 216 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 10258 times:

Happened to me on Olypmic from ATH to TLV on a delayed flight . Slept the whole flight.

User currently onlineWNCrew From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 1472 posts, RR: 10
Reply 15, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 10258 times:

Quoting brilondon (Reply 12):
Where the airlines would rather starve their passengers and lock them on board the aircraft during a lengthy ground delay, then keep them comfortable. That's the American/Canadian way.

Well, given that airlines don't carry meals onboard for (just in case) it makes sense. Maybe when the traveling public decides price is no longer paramount some of the creature comforts of the 60's will come back!



ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlinesk601 From Belgium, joined Jun 2005, 976 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 9739 times:

We were served a meal while we where still on the ground in April this year. It was on a DL flight from AMS-DTW. Flight left the gate +/- 45 minutes late due late inbound from DTW. We taxied to a remote stand, a/c parked and the captain told us we had a 3 hour ATC delay due to the volcano in Iceland.
The crew gave us the option of having the meal while waiting on the ground, or after take off. Pushback was at 09:00am, actual take off 11:50am. That was a looooooong wait! The crew did the first meal service twice. First time for those who wanted the meal while parked at the stand, second time after take off.


User currently offlinereadytotaxi From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2006, 3261 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 9438 times:

Quoting babybus (Reply 8):
Despite sitting on the plane for 6 hours it never did take off and we were transferred to another aircraft and airline the next morning.

Do I have this right, they sat you in a plane,on the ground for six hours, fed you,and then off loaded you for a flight the next day?
This was an evening flight back to the UK?
Did they put you in a hotel overnight?
What time did you fly out the next day?
Horror story.  Wow!



you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
User currently offlinetoobz From Finland, joined Jan 2010, 785 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 9057 times:

AY has dinner setup for C class pax on the ground for it's Asia flights. I believe this is due to the late departure out of HEL

User currently offlineiainbhx From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2008, 242 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 8437 times:

Had breakfast and cold drinks served on a LH BHX-DUS earlier this year due to a 90 min delay at DUS due to T-storms in the Ruhr area. We had a full beverage run done on the flight by the Eurowings crew (who I must say were very good).


iainbhx
User currently offlineRising From United States of America, joined May 2010, 272 posts, RR: 1
Reply 20, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 8370 times:

I was on an American flight in the late 90's and they had a cooler in the gate right before you got on board where you can pick up a snack box. I will never forget that.

Also, in my experience, when delayed, some airlines will pass out water, juice, and snack bars to passengers.



If it doesn't make sense, it's because it's not true.
User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9638 posts, RR: 52
Reply 21, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 8343 times:

I was flying British Airways BLR-LHR-SEA. In LHR we boarded and after an hour were told that we were being moved to a different plane since there was a mechanical problem. 3 hours later, we boarded a second 777. Unfortunately while on the ground there was another mechanical problem so the crew timed out. On the second 777 at the gate, we received a full meal service while they were waiting for customer service to arrange for hotels since it was December 31. I had a full 3 course business class meal. They also turned on the IFE system at the gate. We watched movies and were wined and dined until hotel rooms were available. We ended up departing the next day. Since it was the same meal service catered, the flight attendants let people who did not get their first choice on the ground choose their option since everyone had already tasted it.

Here is a trip report

BA Sucks-Club World BLR-LHR-SEA With 3 Delays! (by RoseFlyer Feb 5 2007 in Trip Reports)

In the US, full meals are less likely since there are regulations against having carts in the aisles with passengers on board while the plane is no the ground. From what I understand, the carts cannot be in the aisle if the plane is on the ground and the door is shut.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineaviasian From Singapore, joined Jan 2001, 1486 posts, RR: 14
Reply 22, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7321 times:

I was onboard Singapore Airlines' inaugural A380 flight from Singapore to Tokyo-Narita on 20 May 2008 when the flight was diverted during the final moments of its descent ... and eventually landed at Nagoya Centrair Airport. While on the ground at Nagoya, arrangements were hastily made with an airport caterer (probably a Japanese restaurant) for a bento meal to be served. After a ground time of about 1.5 hours, we were back in the air and enroute to Tokyo-Narita again.

In September 1981, I was boarding a British Airways flight (operated by a Trident) from Zurich to London-Heathrow ... and at the lower end of the aerobridge, our meal (in a box) was handed over to us and once airborne, all the crew did was provide beverage service.

These are my two unusual airline meal delivery encouters. But Singapore Airlines' often cater for a lavish meal at the gate holdroom at Changi Airport for significant inaugural flights and this has happened on the inaugural B777 flight to Jakarta, all the A380 inaugural flights, the first flight to Milan, Barcelona, Moscow etc.

KC Sim


User currently offlinejeffrey1970 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 1336 posts, RR: 12
Reply 23, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 6404 times:

I know this is not quit the same thing, but I remember when American Airlines used to have those bags of food that you could pick up at the gate just as you got on the plane. I forget what they called those bags of food.


God bless through Jesus, Jeff
User currently offlineokie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3039 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (4 years 1 month 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5920 times:

Quoting jeffrey1970 (Reply 23):
. I forget what they called those bags of food.


Bristo Bags I belive, stop gap measure between full meal service and now no meal service.

Quoting Rising (Reply 20):
Also, in my experience, when delayed, some airlines will pass out water, juice, and snack bars to passengers.


Somewhere in the mid 70's I was on an AA flight ORD-OKC and about half way to the runway we came to a stop and the captain announced we had 2 flat tires on the NLG and there would be a delay on the taxiway but once we were in the air "drinks would be on the house". After about 20 minutes the captain announced that MX had lifted the nose gear to replace the tires and since we were in the air that the FA's would be able to start the free drink service. It did not dawn on me until after arrival in OKC, 2.5hrs late, that we obviously had left the gate at ORD with two good NLG tires and that we must have run over something (like a light or a sign) to damage the tires.

Okie


25 Yflyer : This is the first time I've ever heard of an actual meal service on the ground, but I have heard of a few occasions (though never experienced one myse
26 BOACCunard : DL also had these. They were called Sky Deli.
27 ASFlyer : The big coolers they were in on the jetway were known affectionately as the "deli dumpsters".
28 e38 : Quoting okie (Reply 24), "Bristo Bags." Well, that was close. The actual names of the small bags of food American used to have in the jetway for passe
29 dc10widebody : I remember the hot sandwich baskets and bistro bags on AA. They were a nice snack, I know those days are gone but I wonder why airlines don't have the
30 tennis69 : Out of curiosity how many CN domestic flights have you had? Personally I've had 148 domestic CN flights and I have seen quite the range of behavior f
31 brilondon : AC tried that type of service in conjunction with a local restaurant but found it was not cost effective or reliable. I don't know if they would have
32 Navigator : This procedure was sometimes used on SAS domestic routes in Sweden back in the 1980:s but nowadays they do not serve anything on those flights. It wa
33 seapek888 : I don't know how many, but quite a few for sure. I was Beijing based from Oct '07 until Feb '10...on weeks that I was not traveling outside of China,
34 airbuseric : Not a restaurant of course. Airline caterers can arrange themselves last minute request very well.
35 rojam : Think it was back in 2001, after 3 hours delay and no light at the end of the tunnel....while in one of the lounges (if not the only one) in HAN (was
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