FinnWings
Topic Author
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Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:09 pm

Hi,

It is very nice to see that some airlines are nowadays upgrading their in flight services and especially catering. The first one here in Europe was SN Brussels airlines recently and today Finnair announced of major upgrade as a result of customer feedback. They will offer hot meals on all flights in economy class which are longer than 2 hours... also on flights from Helsinki to Oslo, Gothenburg and Copenhagen is served hot breakfast even those sectors are shorter than 2 hours. Business class meals will be upgraded too and variety increased. All these upgrades will be done 5th May.

What do you think about this? Do we have passed the worst downturn and the strongest and healthiest airlines are ready to upgrade their services? I hope to see more major airlines doing the same after AY and SN... I think this will be tough thing for SAS as they currently offer very limited catering services inside Scandinavia. For example on CPH-HEL flight only small sandwich served on SK flights and now AY offers hot breakfast..

Just some positive news during these hard times..

Regards,
FinnWings

[Edited 2004-03-22 11:32:55]
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:16 pm

Yes, but this food - which is bound to be sub-standard, like virtually all airline food - is just going to result in higher airfares, as the undoubtedly high cost of providing it is naturally going to be added to the ticket prices. Everyone can go without a drink or snack on a coach or train or in a car for 2 hours, so why can they not in the air? The answer is, in part, to do with what they are used to - and, frankly, it sucks. Doing away with 'free' food and drinks and charging passengers for it if they want to buy it onboard not only considerably reduces costs, but can also generate large income.
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
FinnWings
Topic Author
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:29 pm

Pe@rson,

I understand your point very well, it makes sense in some cases... but I have to slightly disagree with you.

It isn't so obvious that airline will increase their prices if service is upgraded. All depends of overall flexibility and effectiveness of the whole airline group. If the whole organization is well managed they can save money in other areas than customer service. Believe me, complimentary catering isn't at all so expensive for airlines as they usually are willing to tell... In some cases your theory might be true, but not always... What if an airline does an massive advertisement campaign in major newspapers and TV which is extremely expensive, does this effect to ticket prices? Most likely not.... just an example.

In my opinion well enough streamlined organization may upgrade customer service without increasing ticket prices. And if the ticket price will increase just an Euro or two, I'm willing to pay it gladly.  Smile

Regards,
Finnwings
 
leviticus
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:35 pm

Actually, every LH flight I have beenn on the last 12 months or so have had hot meals so this is nothing completely new, meybe in northern Europe.
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:40 pm

Of course providing food and drink costs a great deal. Imagine £1 per passenger x 50,000 passengers per day = £50,000! In just 20 days, that would be £1 million. Times that by 364 or something days, and that'd be quite a few million indeed - just for food and drink! £10+ million per year might not be a great deal for an airline, but if you can cut it out - without many problems - and also generate income through the sale of food and drink, it's surely a very good thing. On longer-haul flights (say 4 hours and above), however, more 'frills' would be necessary, so people will be more willing to spend to a higher level than on a short, 2-hour trip.

"What if an airline does an massive advertisement campaign in major newspapers and TV which is extremely expensive does this effect to ticket prices?"

Hardly a fair comparison, as advertising generates passengers. Costs have to be met and hopefully exceeded, primarily through ticket sales.

[Edited 2004-03-22 11:43:01]
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
QIguy24
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:46 pm

If people want to fly with airlines that serves food and want to pay the price the ticket costs. Then let them. I am personally one of those. Food on an airplane has always been a great part of flying in my opinion.
Some people have their standards like Pe@rson. He dont care if he gets food on short flights or not. And I am one of those who enjoys it.
I don't want to concider my self as a lyxury person by writing this and I DON'T want to offend anyone who uses lowcost carriers either.
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:53 pm

"If people want to fly with airlines that serves food and want to pay the price the ticket costs. Then let them."

Yes - choice is good for the consumer, but for the airline providing food and drink - which is not purchaseable onboard - is an unnecessary and avoidable cost.

"Some people have their standards like Pe@rson. He dont care if he gets food on short flights or not. And I am one of those who enjoys it.
I don't want to concider my self as a lyxury person by writing this and I DON'T want to offend anyone who uses lowcost carriers either."


Yes I do have my standards - and these will continue when I am a lawyer in two years time.

-----------

QI - when you go by train for a 2 hour trip, do you expect to food and drink to be given to you? When you go by coach for a 2 hour trip, do you expect food and drink to be given to you?
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
Lufthansa747
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 7:55 pm

Agree with QIguy24 completely. I used to like SK more than AY but with their recent cuts, most likely all my future bookings will be on AY/oneworld if they're not too much more expensive.
Air Asia Super Elite, Cebu Pacific Titanium
 
QIguy24
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:02 pm

QI - when you go by train for a 2 hour trip, do you expect to food and drink to be given to you? When you go by coach for a 2 hour trip, do you expect food and drink to be given to you?

Actually no... Because I know its not possible to get food unless you buy it.
And It's very very rare I go by train or bus at the first place. But when I am up in the air i wouldn't mind have a little sandwich or something.

But like I wrote earlier.. Some people want to pay for this and other people don't. And the people that don't want to pay for it they should fly LCC's. But many people who flies LCC's shouldn't complain about not getting any food. Because they didn't pay for that.
And I know many people do that..
 
tokolosh
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:04 pm

Why not have the choice of saying you want a meal or not when you book your ticket and pay a little extra if you do? Then you have satisfied customers and more efficiency since the airline is able to cater much more exactly (just have a few reserve meals on board for last minute passengers or late bookings which they can buy on board). Seems to make a lot of sense to me. Personally I prefer to have a meal on board a 2+ hour flight since I might not have had the chance to eat anything or have coffee packing, rushing to the airport, checking in might take too long to allow you to buy something at the airport (which is also expensive because of the "captive consumers"), and once at your arrival airport you still need to get to your destination. So, a 2+ hour flight can be quite a long trip without anything to eat and drink!
Did the chicken or the egg get laid first?
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:12 pm

Question: "When you go by train for a 2 hour trip, do you expect to food and drink to be given to you?"

Answer: "Actually no..."

---

"So, a 2+ hour flight can be quite a long trip without anything to eat and drink!"

Indeed, as can a trip by train, car or coach. I do not expect anything there, so why the distinction between flying and going by road? It seems very silly. Does flying induce hunger? I think not. Do people expect food and drink because it is traditionally served? Yes, and this is the problem.

---

Anyway, we won't ever all fully agree, so let's not try.
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
aviaction
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:19 pm

Pe@rson
So in two years' time you will be a fully-fledged lawyer... perhaps even with your own office. Do you plan on charging your clients 2 pounds for a cup of tea or will you encourage them to bring their own?

However, following your own reasoning, you will forget about any complimentary items ... think of the savings, let's say 15 clients a day, 1 pound per client (coffee, tea, water, mints), 200 working days a year, wow, that's a whopping 3000 pounds per year.

Oh, no, my calculation doesn't work ... as after 6 months there wouldn't be any clients any more. They would most certainly consider you to be a cheap and very stingy person. They would take their business somewhere else, where they are treated with respect.

Serving decent food and a good choice of drinks on board free of charge is a sign of hospitality - and should be regarded as such.

Decent flying to all of us.
Aviaction


German by nationality, European by heart!
 
tokolosh
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:25 pm

In the UK, don't coach services stop at roadside service stations every couple of hours? If you have a longish car trip people often take sandwiches and drinks along or stop at roadside services and, unless you are on short commuter train trips, many European trains have a meals and drink service on board. I don't see what the problem is having meals on board planes if you order them beforehand (just like ordering special meals like halal or diabetic in advance).

Greetings
Did the chicken or the egg get laid first?
 
EZYcrew
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:25 pm

In any case I find it very hard to meet passengers' expectations. When we served complimentary meals and drinks, we always had a percentage of people who would complain about it anyway.
And now that they have to pax extra for it, they complain even more.

Maybe we should find some sort of balance : free drinks, but paying hot meals for exemple. I always find it difficult to charge for water or coffee.
 
QIguy24
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:39 pm

You are right Pe@rson. We will probably not agree on this matter because we are to different travelers..
 
AIR MALTA
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 8:54 pm

Airlines who charge for catering are not necessarily the one that have lower fares. I tried to book a flight 4 weeks ago from Frankfurt to Vienna. I looked at LH and OS fares. OS had special internet fares but you had to purchase the ticket with your own credit card. The fare was 198 euros. At LH or OS travel shop it would have cost between 450 euros and 600 euros which is unbelievable for a 1h30 flight. OS charge for food on those flights. Thanks god, I finally called Adria Airways to book the FRA-VIE flight for just 232 euros and I got a descent inflight catering : a sandwich, a chocolate and two drinks. And it was onboard a nice and tidy CRJ200... So cutting frills does not mean lower fares. And I will always go for "full frills" airlines as they make your trip a special one. I take enough boring busses and trains and I don't want my flight to be as boring as them...
Next flights : BRU-ZRH-CAI (LX)/ BRU-FCO-TLV (AZ)
 
BestWestern
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 9:09 pm

Pearson - you travel for a different reason. In two years when you are a lawyer, and if you travel frequently for work you will begin to realise the value of service onboard airlines. You also begin to value the benefits of properly located airports, allocated seats, online check-in, frequency, leg room and friendliness aboard... Even the lounge at the airport.

FR doesnt offer this. EZY offers some of it, at a similar level to IB and EI. For work, I refuse to travel Ryanair, but will travel EasyJet. BA and BD offers most of it, and I reward this with my loyalty. AY - well never been to Finland - not an issue for me...

Don't tell me that you will be the first lawyer ever not to accept his expenses?
You are 100 times more likely to catch a cold on a flight than an average person!
 
AIR MALTA
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 9:09 pm

I also wanted to add that I flew Finnair last year LHR-HEL-LED-HEL-LHR and I found the catering very good especially on the LHR-HEL-LHR sectors. BRAVO Finnair.
Next flights : BRU-ZRH-CAI (LX)/ BRU-FCO-TLV (AZ)
 
babybus
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 9:55 pm

I think Pe@rson has got his wires crossed. Not all airlines in the world need to be low cost. The ultimate conclusion of his argument would be that even in First and Business class cutbacks in service need to be made.

The current aviation market is confused. There is Ryanair doing what an LCC is supposed to do, IE fly you at the cheapest price possible. Then there is BA, LX, SK on short routes pretending to be low cost.

Last week I had to get to Oslo. FR were offering £49 to Torp and BA £129 to OSL. Due to my schedule I took BA. All I got was a cake, a tea and a sandwich no longer than my finger for an extra £80! As far as I believe a hot meal tray is only £5 per pax. I think for the extra £80 I and my fellow high fare paying pax deserved one of those.

and with that..cabin crew, seats for landing please.
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 10:01 pm

"I think Pe@rson has got his wires crossed. Not all airlines in the world need to be low cost."

I don't have my wires crossed as I never said all airlines need operate like that... but there is evidently a problem with the major airlines, because they are not earning sufficient profit - which is odd - in comparison to low-cost airlines, particularly FR. This says something about these so-called 'traditional' airlines. ALL airlines need to improve efficiency.

There will always, of course, be full-frills carriers from which to choose, probably eventually only three (BA, AF and LH) in Europe, which will offer many connections and leave point-to-point flying to no-frills carriers.
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
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HeyMach
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 10:15 pm

So in two years' time you will be a fully-fledged lawyer... perhaps even with your own office. Do you plan on charging your clients 2 pounds for a cup of tea....

He certainly will - invoiced as a "disbursement". Big grin
 
SK973
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 11:13 pm

I think this is a good sign!
Nice food and service onboard will always bring you happy customers!

For example I'm thinking about going to ZRH later this spring and right now I would choose SK over LX since LX doesn't serve food in economy on intra-european flights!
 
mn
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 11:15 pm

I think this is very good change. Finnair's service begun to remind me of British Airways service. Now their in-flight service is getting back to normal Finnair level.
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Finnair Offers Hot Meal On Flights +2hrs

Mon Mar 22, 2004 11:19 pm

"So in two years' time you will be a fully-fledged lawyer... perhaps even with your own office. Do you plan on charging your clients 2 pounds for a cup of tea....

He certainly will - invoiced as a "disbursement"."

I won't be paying for the tea, so they can have as much as they like free-of-charge.  Laugh out loud
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."