Sn26567 From Belgium, joined Aug 2004, 129 posts, RR: 4 Posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 6678 times:
BRU-FRA-BRU with LH (31 Jan 05)
I travelled on a flexible economy ticket at no less than €699 (No other choice for a day return!). The LH monopoly keeps increasing the price every year on BRU-FRA. I was booked on LH4571, etd 8:25. The plane, an Airbus A320-200 "Klewe" registered D-AIQW, arrived late in Brussels.
Boarding was delayed and the actual departure time was 8:35. In addition, Frankfurt airport was congested (what a surprise!) and we circled some 20 minutes before landing. Finally, we could not get a gate (yet another surprise at FRA!) and had to be bussed from the tarmac to the terminal, where I arrived 30 minutes late. I was therefore 20 minutes late in my meeting. Incidentally, the load factor was 100%, more than one third of which in business class. Why decrease the price under such conditions? This is a gold mine for LH!
The nice feature about the flight was that, in addition to the usual German cabin crew making the announcements in German and English, there was a Belgian stewardess who translated some of the announcements in French and Flemish (not Dutch, as you could tell from the accent).
Well done, Lufthansa! (...if it were not for the cost and the late arrival)
Just one question: is it a new policy at LH to hire local people from countries they are flying to, in order to speak the local languages?
This nice exception did unfortunately not occur anymore on the return flight, LH4586, etd 17:20, operated by an Airbus A321-100 "Regensburg" registered D-AIRT.
TriStar500 From Germany, joined Nov 1999, 4690 posts, RR: 45 Reply 3, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 6232 times:
Nice report! A monopoly is such a "nice" thing, isn't it? At least you got to subsidize the low fares LH is offering on some other routes, where they have intensive competition (e.g. many of the routes to London).
Regarding non-native speakers, I remember to have read somewhere that LH is employing route-spcific speakers on some flights, e.g. to Russia and Asia. Although it could have been pure coincidence that you actually got a Belgian flight attendant on your trip, you never know with LH, they are usualy highly organized, so it could be a crew scheduling on purpose.
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
Sn26567 From Belgium, joined Aug 2004, 129 posts, RR: 4 Reply 5, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 2 hours ago) and read 6184 times:
Thanks for your comments.
In a little more than one year, the ICE high speed train will do the trip in 3 hours for a fraction of the cost, even in first class. I might consider this as a serious alternative.
FYI, the next day I made the BRU-MAN-BRU trip on SN Brussels Airlines for EUR 313. A longer trip for a 60% lower price. With more comfort and better food. It is also a BA-SN codeshare monopoly, but these airlines made the monopoly affordable.
LH431 From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 81 posts, RR: 0 Reply 7, posted (8 years 10 months 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 5856 times:
At the moment the ICE needs 3:30h for Brussels-Frankfurt and costs 263euros in 1st Class for the return trip, without any restrictions. Coach would be 178euros return and without restrictions too.
But the first ICE from Brussel-Midi arrives in Frankfurt at 10am and the last non-stop train leaves Frankfurt Central Station at 6pm. So may be an alternative way for you to travel to Hessen.
Sn26567 From Belgium, joined Aug 2004, 129 posts, RR: 4 Reply 10, posted (8 years 10 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 5408 times:
Indeed, I can't wait for the high speed track to be completed between Liège and the Belgian-German border. And also for the ICE to have the licence to go at 300 km/h (instead of the current 200) between Leuven and Liège. That will cut the time between Brussels and Frankfurt to 3 hours or less, and that will introduce a suitable alternative and some competition to LH.
However, three ICE trips a day is not enough. Wake up, DB!
FXMD11 From Thailand, joined Aug 2004, 184 posts, RR: 0 Reply 11, posted (8 years 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 5363 times:
I understand from the LH Office here in BKK that they currently have 75 Thai Citizens on their flights to and from FRA/MUC as well as from BKK to KUL/HCM and MNL. I flew once on LH and met some really nice japanese staff flying for LH on the Japan Route. Both were on the flight from HAM to FRA meeting their plane there for NRT. I trust it is a good thing to have "locals" working on board because the majority of the passengers do not understand nor speak English or German, especially when flights originate in more exotic countries like Thailand, Vietnam, China etc.
Airsicknessbag From Germany, joined Aug 2000, 4723 posts, RR: 36 Reply 12, posted (8 years 10 months 20 hours ago) and read 5352 times:
Once a Belgian applies for a stewardess position and meets the criteria, she will be hired - thanks to the EU freedom of movement. Crew scheduling usually takes staff´s language skills into account when assigning rotations (as TriStar500 already hinted).
>>>However, three ICE trips a day is not enough. Wake up, DB!
The problem is the Thalys which takes exactly the same time as the ICE but is way more expensive.
>>>I can't wait for the [...] ICE to have the licence to go at 300 km/h (instead of the current 200) between Leuven and Liège
It won´t anytime soon. The ICE has serious issues sucking up stones from the tracks, and they hit the train´s bottom. Recently, when Deutsche Bahn applied for the 300 km/h licence on the Loewen-Luettich track, they got only 230. As usual, a bunch of amateurish clowns, both Bahn and the manufacturers´ consortia.
Airsicknessbag From Germany, joined Aug 2000, 4723 posts, RR: 36 Reply 13, posted (8 years 10 months 19 hours ago) and read 5349 times:
Also, to become a purser, you must talk a third language besides German and English. Hence, steward(esse)s´ language skills cost LH money - they´ll make damn sure a Russian speaker is not wasted doing FRA-AMS all the time.
Interestingly, talking Esperanto will meet the 3rd language requirement.
Dutch is very popular among those LH steward(esse)s who will learn a 3rd language while on the job (as opposed to those who are already trilingual when hired) - because it´s so similar to German.