aa777flyer
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AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 1:20 am

Want a snack? It'll cost you: Next month, American will test selling meals on 5% of domestic flights, following the lead of a number of its competitors. The Wall Street Journal (subscription required) says food boxes will cost $3-$7; individual snacks will go for $3, including a can of Pringles or a package of beef jerky. As with JetBlue, American also will offer snacks such as granola bars, pretzels and Rice Krispie treats. A $5 lunch/dinner meal could include a choice of one-half turkey Florentine wrap or a small Italian hoagie, bagel chips, cream cheese spread and yogurt-covered raisins. For $7, you might have a full-size turkey Florentine wrap or Santa Fe chicken salad with pita chips, vegetable cheese spread, raisins and a Toblerone chocolate bar. American's test mostly will run on flights to and from Dallas/Fort Worth and New York JFK. Half of the nation's 10 largest airlines sell food on board, depending on the length of the flight and time of day. Posted at 8 a.m. ET

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SafetyDude
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 1:50 am

American's test mostly will run on flights to and from Dallas/Fort Worth and New York JFK.
JFK? With the exception of Miami and Carribbean routes, the other routes AA serves from JFK (the West Coast, Europe, South America, and Japan) are not exactly routes where meals should be taken away, unless AA decides to get rid of food on trans-cons.

Interestingly, the AA website has not said anything.

-Will
"She Flew For What We Stand For"
 
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ERJ170
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:13 am

Is this AA mainline or AE also?
Aiming High and going far..
 
ckfred
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:16 am

If this test goes systemwide, would it replace the free Bistro service on long-haul flights, such as ORD-LAX, or would long-hauls still get free food, while shorter flights, such as less than 3 hours, offer only food for purchase.

I'm curious why AA doesn't try this at ORD. It seems like testing of food service is always done at New York or DFW.

Finally, I've read a lot of media reports that say selling food on board is problematic. Their is either too much or too little food put on board, and the F/As have to deal with collecting cash and making change. That's one of the reasons why AA has gotten rid of headseat rentals.

Considering the availability of check-in kiosks and on-line check-in, I would use that as the way to buy meals. Simply select what meal you want and pay with the credit card used to buy the ticket. A friend of mine is a 757/767 F/O with AA, and catering usually shows up about 35 minutes prior to departure. Since AA requests passengers check-in 90 minutes prior to departures, this would give catering ample time to put the right number of meals on board.
 
FA4UA
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:19 am

Good luck to the flight attendants on those test flights! When UA introduced BOB (Buy on Board) customers had really mixed reviews. Many thought the food was better and a prefferred option rather then "Mystery Meat Airline Food", while others were offended they had to buy food onboard. (I've been shouted at on two occaisions because someone didn't want to purchase the food).

According to UA's survey's and exemplified by a further roll-out of BOB on more flights, it's been a success for us. Once people realize how the food is excellent and remember that the fares are so rediculously low, they seem to understand why we're doing this.

My two cents...
FA4UA
The debate continues... Starwood or Hyatt... which is better
 
qqflyboy
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:46 am

Sigh... it's official. I just read it on the flight attendant website. Following is a letter sent to flight attendants about the program. I can't link to it since it's a password protected site for flight attendants only.

"Beginning in September, customers on select flights will have the opportunity to help American Airlines choose a new on-board food option for its main cabin.

"American will trial two new Buy on Board [BOB] food options -- SnAAck Box and LSG Sky Chefs In-Flight Café -- that the airline may consider rolling out on domestic routes based on customer and flight attendant feedback.

"Throughout September, customers on select flights may buy an In-Flight Café breakfast and lunch/dinner combination meal for $5-7 or an a la carte snack for $3. The meals include a fresh sandwich or a salad and a variety of pre-packaged snacks, such as Quaker Fruit & Oatmeal Cereal Bars or Kettle Classics Potato Chips. The In-Flight Café will be offered on flights between the following markets:

Dallas/Fort Worth-Hartford, Conn.
Dallas/Fort Worth-New York JFK
Dallas/Fort Worth-Reno, Nev.
Dallas/Fort Worth-Portland, Ore.
New York JFK-Seattle
New York JFK-Phoenix

"During the last two weeks of September, passengers flying on other select flights will be able to purchase a breakfast or lunch/dinner SnAAck Box for $3-5. The SnAAck Box will contain four to five pre-packaged brand-name snacks such as Kellogg?s® Nutri-Grain® Muffin Bars, BALANCE® Bar, and Pepperidge Farm® Milano® cookies. The SnAAck Boxes will be offered on flights between the following cities:

Dallas/Fort Worth-Orlando, Fla.
Dallas/Fort Worth-Orange County, Calif.
Dallas/Fort Worth-Philadelphia
Nashville-Los Angeles

"Also, as a part of the trial initiative, passengers flying on select flights will have the opportunity to choose from a variety of new complimentary snacks. Flight attendants will provide customers with a high-quality selection of snacks, including ReaLemon Lemon Cookies, Jelly Belly Jelly Beans, Ocean Spray Craisins and Rold Gold Pretzels. Customers will have the option of selecting a snack they would like during the service. The Periodically Available Treats test concept will be offered on flights between the following cities:

Dallas/Fort Worth-Seattle
Nashville-Los Angeles

"American is committed to making travel easy and convenient for customers, and we look forward to hearing what they say about the option of buying food during flights," said Dan Garton, executive vice president-Marketing. "These food tests are another example of ways that American Airlines works to better understand what customers value."

"All three options will be offered in conjunction with American's complimentary beverage service.

"American continually conducts research to meet the needs of its passengers, including reviewing the food options it offers traveling passengers. Recently, American introduced low-carbohydrate, high-protein options to first-class passengers flying on domestic flights. American is committed to providing its customers with a robust food program."

American had been telling us for a while they were looking at better, increased options for FREE snack service on our flights, and that a vendor change in the fall would permit this new service. But they never offered any details. As far as BOB programs go, AA has always talked about how logistically they were complex, created excess work for crews and very little positive feedback from passengers. They did say, however, that they were looking into a BOB program in which AA wouldn't pay for the food and then attempt to sell it. They wanted to a program that was provided by another company to shield them from losses due to unsold food.

It appears from the "Questions and Answers" part of the letter that AA is paying for these tests and don't involve any revenue sharing with an outside company. They also said that should the tests prove successful, they will begin a phased roll-out of the program in early 2005, but the markets are yet to be determined.

As a flight attendant, I look forward to being able to offer pax a variety of free snacks, but I do not look forward to selling food. Someone above mentioned AA doesn't rent headsets anymore, and although that is correct, we SELL them now, we don't rent them. So, we still have onboard sales with the headsets, and of course, liquor.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
DIA
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:52 am

I've flown on UA several times within the past year, and when we were offered these similar choices. . .it seemed almost everyone bought something (These were 777 flights DEN-SFO / DEN-LAX). I'm pretty darn positive A^A will recieve the same measure of success with these type of in-flight food programs. I'd be very surprised if they did not.
Ding! You are now free to keep supporting Frontier.
 
DIA
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 2:56 am

Oh yeah, I forgot, I'm flying A^A next month DEN-LAX-SFO-LAX-DEN. Looks like I'm out-of-luck when it comes to food purchasing on these flights. Crying Oh well, the important thing is. . .I'm flying. . .good enough for me.
Ding! You are now free to keep supporting Frontier.
 
moman
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:00 am

Darn, when I flew DFW-PDX last year on AA they gave us an excellent sandwich "Bistro" pkg. Too bad they are making people pay for it now.

Moman
AA Platinum Member - American Airlines Forever
 
StearmanNut
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:04 am

Airlines have gone from full meals to sack lunches to snack lunches. Now, they offer the option of buying what you want from a cart vender. Just like the European airlines.

Maybe WN should start this, too. A little pack of pretzels (no mo peanuts due to allergic people) and a soda are a little light for a flight of over 2 hrs.
If wishes were horses, a Tail Dragger I would fly...
 
ltbewr
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:06 am

This is new? PeopleExpress did this 20+ years ago! BOB makes sense in many ways. The time of the flight, the opportunity for one to have a snack/meal before boarding a flight, or sometimes you don't want a full meal or a snack as just had one or will be having a meal on the ground when get to destination; maybe you just aren't hungry for a snack/meal, or trying to watch your weight. With BOB you have the option for a meal/snack to fit your situation. If this can hold down costs for an airline and hold down fares, especially on short to mid-range flights, so be it. WN doesn't serve big snacks or meals and they they make a profit - maybe a connection?
 
SafetyDude
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:08 am

New York JFK-Seattle
New York JFK-Phoenix

These two routes make sense, as AW's JFK-PHX has BOB, and B6's JFK-SEA has snacks.

Finally, I've read a lot of media reports that say selling food on board is problematic. Their is either too much or too little food put on board, and the F/As have to deal with collecting cash and making change. That's one of the reasons why AA has gotten rid of headseat rentals.
I too have heard of these problems, but also that the airlines do make a profit. Since when did AA stop with headset rentals?

Considering the availability of check-in kiosks and on-line check-in, I would use that as the way to buy meals. Simply select what meal you want and pay with the credit card used to buy the ticket. A friend of mine is a 757/767 F/O with AA, and catering usually shows up about 35 minutes prior to departure. Since AA requests passengers check-in 90 minutes prior to departures, this would give catering ample time to put the right number of meals on board.

A few problems, people will change their mind. Now, it is not that hard of a concept to decide what you want and then stick to it, but a lot of people would say that they no longer want the food, or want a different meal. As we all know, all of the passengers on a flight do not all check-in thirty minutes prior to departure. While planes are serviced are forty-five minutes prior to departure, the food on the catering vans has to be loaded way before that, not to mention putting it on carts, creating an inventory, and so forth. There is no way that catering would run up to a plane at the last second to make sure that requested meals are loaded on - which is why international flights request a 12 hour advance notice for special meals.

The SnAAck Box
They just could not help themselves to put in that extra "A".  Big grin

-Will
"She Flew For What We Stand For"
 
qqflyboy
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:20 am

After reading some company e-mails about the program, it appears the BOB meals are being offered by LSG Sky Chefs and they alone will hold financial responsibility, and they alone will profit from sales of the meals. The good news, for the flight attendants anyway, is that LSG Sky Chefs is offering an incentive program so that flight attendants can gain from the added work.

Also, the FREE snack service with several options is being looked at as a replacement on BISTRO flights. Although, it is plausible that BOB programs could be introduced at some point on all or some BISTRO flights. Either way, it looks like the days of BISTRO are coming to an end.

[Edited 2004-08-26 20:21:06]
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
Ken777
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 4:04 am

Good idea to give the FAs some incentives. Free food might be the first thing to offer, along with a bit of commission.

WHile I tend to moan when some one in mid management actually makes a decision this might work, IF the food is actually good.
 
JAFA
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 4:47 am

I work for NWA and we sell food on some of our flights. It not very difficult and only takes a few miunutes for one FA to go through the cabin even on a full 757. Like anything new it did seem wierd at first.
All you have to do is make an annoucement, open the cart, and roll it into the aisle. Think about it, instead of serving everyone you just serve a few people. I only ran out of choices once out of about 50 flights. Many customers seemed to appreciate it. We used to be able to eat the leftovers and it was generally very good food. Much better than the stuff we give for free on some flights.
I hope we never see the day of charging for soda and coffee like some european carriers do. I guess we would be issued a change belt or have a register mounted in the galley or on one end of the cart. But then again some of our chaep customers would probably just go without eliminating any work for the crew.
 
Carfield
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No More Complimentary Meals On Long Haul Flights

Fri Aug 27, 2004 5:08 am

From what I understand, AA still serves complimentary hot meals on transcontinental USA flights, so JFK to PHX and JFK to SEA should qualify under that category.

I guess for the first two weeks, the usual hot meals will be eliminated on these two transcontinental flights, and the BOB program will be introduced, and then after these two weeks, hot meals will return. Is this a same assumption? I guess AA is testing water for BOB program for transcontinental flights as well...

I guess if AA is really going to promise lower walkup fares, I understand why BOB programs make sense. But unless AA is going to further simplify and lower its fares, I am against BOB.

For some reasons, I actually think AA's transcon meals are okay in coach, except portion wise, especially breakfasts and that awful chicken with bean and Mexican rice entree... the meals are fine... At least, they serve a piece of real cake for dessert.

Carfield
 
moman
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 5:24 am

Actually I forgot to add that when I flew TED back in Jul, they offered a really good bag of cookies for $2 (name brand but can't remember which). I'd pay $2 anyday to have that bag of cookies over the crappy pretzels they serve. TWA used to have that "cheesy snack mix" that was really good.

Moman
AA Platinum Member - American Airlines Forever
 
panamair
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Fri Aug 27, 2004 5:46 am

Delta already sells food in Y on virtually all of its long-haul domestic flights (including JFK-LAX/SFO/SEA/SAN, ATL-LAX/SFO, etc.) with the exception of HNL..and according to survey after survey, passenger response has been overwhelmingly positive. I think they offer salads and gourmet sandwiches from the Atlanta Bread Company as well as Savorings. Looks like BOB is here to stay, like it or not...
 
FLIBOYZ
Posts: 196
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2003 2:33 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 5:02 am

As for one that MAY be working one of these Flights, I am NOT thrilled of this concept. Just sell it at the gate or don't even bother.

I don't think it's going to be a success. The F/A group will NOT be thrilled with this B/S
 
bongo
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 5:07 am

On my next trip with AA I will buy my own lunch and some munchies at Publix  Big grin
MDE: First airport in the Americas visited by the A380!
 
aa777flyer
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:48 am

Fliboyz-
I dont think AA really cares if the F/A's will like this or not. It will be part of your JOB! Ya know the thing you are paid to do, not sit at the back of the airplane and whine that you took pay cuts and have all this extra work because they cut back on staffing, work these long hours, dont get fed anymore, shorter lay overs.
If you dont like your work and dont want to do anything, go get a job with the TSA.
The TSA was created to make the post office look efficient!
 
aa777jr
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 7:29 am

That sucks about losing the Bistro meals, those little sandwiches with mustard and chips on the side are really filling. The dessert is always really good too! I frequent AUS-DFW-SNA-DFW-AUS, so I'll have to try the breakfast BOB.

AA777jr
A liberal is a man who is right most of the time, but he's right too soon.
 
CMK10
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 7:39 am

I don't like the idea of losing the free hot meal on the JFK-SEA flights. If that falls we may see the loss of hot meals on JFK-SAN/LGB/SJC and others. JFK-PHX makes a limited degree of sense as it is currently a bistro meal. I personally do not like this idea, why not keep the bistro bags on the flights that have them (listed above) and sell meals on flights that don't have any meals? ORD-PHX comes into mind.
"Traveling light is the only way to fly" - Eric Clapton
 
Thrust
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:10 am

This is good news, I'm really glad to hear it, but...correct me if I'm wrong, aren't these snacks a bit overpriced to anyone?
Fly one thing; Fly it well
 
SafetyDude
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:51 am

I dont think AA really cares if the F/A's will like this or not. It will be part of your JOB!
No one ever said that you had to like every part of your job.

correct me if I'm wrong, aren't these snacks a bit overpriced to anyone?
In every-day life, yes, but when factoring in such costs as catering, it does seem logical.

Most airplane food is on the same price range. I have heard comments from people about how the food looks good, but is just expensive. Perhaps if airlines lower the cost a bit, they might get more customers for the food.

-Will
"She Flew For What We Stand For"
 
FLIBOYZ
Posts: 196
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2003 2:33 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 9:21 am

AA777Flyer-

Before you ASSUME that I sit in the back of the airplane and WHINE about the paycuts we F/As gave up, sit back and SHUT UP!!!!

Because I am NOT whining about what I gave back to AA to save the company from going into BK....Now DID I???????

I simply said that it is a ridiculous idea and I don't see this concept being successful!!!! And I also said that I don't want to be a part of it!!!

I am one of the MANY PROUD employees at AA who are still working there butts off everytime I fly and make sure that I provide the best service I can with what I have. Not to mention being vigilant at ALL times during the flight.

Too simply assume that I am whining about my paycuts is ridiculous. I never mentioned anything in that category.

AND, to be honest with you, THIS NEW BOB..Buy On Board deal is NOT A PART OF MY JOB DISCRIPTION......GO find it in my contract.....and see if YOU can find it!!!!

Have a nice weekend. But that's another story.

 
aa777flyer
Posts: 1017
Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2001 8:45 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 10:25 am

Fliboyz-
Taking care of the customer IS part of your job. It is no different from selling beer and wine on a flight. You have no choice but to be a part of it. So get ready for it.
The TSA was created to make the post office look efficient!
 
flflyguy
Posts: 191
Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 7:26 pm

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 10:51 am

Perhaps this sounds selfish (!) but I don't think I'd mind selling it if I could also eat the leftovers!!
The views expressed are my own, and not necessarily those of my employer.
 
Trolley Dolley
Posts: 548
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 11:05 am

Sigh, this post makes me realise how lucky I am. AA's oneworld partner, Qantas, has just announced it's bring back domestic hot evening meals for economy and increasing the size of the business class meals for all medium/long domestic flights. (I suspect that will be any flight over about 90 minutes within Australia- but don't quote me on that one!)

As a passenger I wouldn't mind paying for a meal if I'd bought a internet super special, but what about those passengers on full fares, they're not cheap?! Would there be a way of identifying them to get a free meal once on board?

 
qqflyboy
Posts: 1617
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 1:47 pm

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 12:27 pm

Well, I have mixed feelings about participating in this project also. Not because it increases my work load, but because we stand to gain very little from it as employees and as a company. AA is simply allowing Sky Chefs to offer this program on board the airplane. AA won't profit from it, and neither will the flight attendants. After reading the guidelines for the service, I am a bit peeved at how it's set up.

Sky Chefs has included diagrams of how they want us to set up the top of the cart to display and advertise the food. They also want us to inventory the meals before we serve them and after. They also won't let us eat the leftovers. They are offering incentives, but they are drawings so you may or may not win anything. The significantly increases the workload without any real incentive for the flight attendants. The flight attendants themselves won't get paid anything extra, they can't eat the food and the company doesn't profit from it either. And although I don't my the added work, I want something for it. Allowing me to eat a meal is all the incentive I need.

As for AA777flyer... the flight attendants have the ability to kill the program. We simply don't have to offer the items. The food will go unsold and can simply be documented as unwanted. Sky Chefs has all the reason in the world to make this program attractive to flight attendants because we alone can make or break the prgoram.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
ILSApproach
Posts: 398
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:59 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sat Aug 28, 2004 1:37 pm

Dave Letterman was joking about that tonite (friday) anyone else see it?

End of his joke was: "even the pilots in the cockpit at AA have to buy their own bloody mary's now"

Don't wish to offend any pilots here, but it was funny!

Mike
 
RogerThat
Posts: 505
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 4:30 am

the flight attendants have the ability to kill the program. We simply don't have to offer the items. The food will go unsold and can simply be documented as unwanted

It's attitudes like qqflyboy's that will send AA the way of Eastern and send him to the unemployment line. Take heed to what AA777Flyer is trying to tell you: It's your job to do all you can to provide the passenger with the best possible flight experience. Throwing out the food because they don't want to do it your way is childish.

You should go work at a nursery school if you want to act like a baby.
 
AA767400
Posts: 1892
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2001 2:04 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 5:14 am

OK, I think that it is a good thing. Why? Because if you look at B6, they have the same fare as AA from JFK to SEA. Now...If AA charges the same fare to SEA that B6 does, but serves a hot meal, how does AA gain from that? B6 is gaining because they don't spend money on hot meals. If AA sells food on board, and does not have to spend money on hot meals, then that is the smart thing to do. Times have changed, And people want low fares. If you want a low fare, great! But if you want a low fare and a meal, then you are going to have to pay up to eat. When airlines charge $99 bucks across the U.S., and serve a hot meal, you are not going to make a profit. Problem with the flying public, is that when they think of AA, they think of full service, and that includes a free meal. When people hear of B6, they think cheap fare, no food, no frills. People always ask me, "when will you be serving the second meal?" And I tell them "Do you eat 2 full meals in 3 hours?" Again, great idea, everyone is doing it. Survival of the fittest! And I will go out there in that cabin and sling out some food, so that my airline does not spend more money on crappy cardboard tasting meat, that no one wants to eat, and curse me out if that is all I have left for a choice on the back of the 757 slave ship.
"The low fares airline."
 
radelow
Posts: 415
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2004 3:07 am

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 5:50 am

I remember flying in Europe and there being a little snack kiosk setup at the gate. Passengers just grabbed a little plastic bag and took what they wanted. There were things like yogurt, chips, cookie, fruit, etc. etc. Seemed like a good way to do things. However, over in Europe gates are seperated from the walkways with glass walls so it might not be as easy in the US.

Mark
 
phatfarmlines
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Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2001 12:06 pm

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 6:24 am

As for AA777flyer... the flight attendants have the ability to kill the program. We simply don't have to offer the items. The food will go unsold and can simply be documented as unwanted. Sky Chefs has all the reason in the world to make this program attractive to flight attendants because we alone can make or break the prgoram.

That's nice to know that there are FA's with such callous attitude.
 
Tasha
Posts: 537
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2004 2:34 pm

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 6:24 am

Qqflyboy:

"As for AA777flyer... the flight attendants have the ability to kill the program. We simply don't have to offer the items. The food will go unsold and can simply be documented as unwanted. Sky Chefs has all the reason in the world to make this program attractive to flight attendants because we alone can make or break the prgoram."


That would be a sad thing as this program actually eases the workload of the FAs. If they pass out a menu of sorts before takeoff, or better still have AA print it in their in flight periodical (in which case a simple announcement is all that is required). I can see this program becoming relatively popular if the snacks/meal offered is worth eating. I guess that this particularly will be the make or break of the program as peanut butter and jelly sandwiches don't sell very well.

Tasha  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

 
adriaticus
Posts: 989
Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 3:29 pm

RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 6:28 am

Trolley Dolley hit the nail... It used to be most certainly different... I am glad not to fly AA unless absolutely necessary (and that, usually when traveling to the miriad of Caribbean islands on business)... shitty service, though...

Roger that: << It's attitudes like qqflyboy's that will send AA the way of Eastern and send him to the unemployment line. Take heed to what AA777Flyer is trying to tell you: It's your job to do all you can to provide the passenger with the best possible flight experience. >>

And the airline is excluded from this mission, right? It's the FA's duty alone.

As a comparison, let me tell you about my last meal on board AM's domestic (GDL-MEX) business class: Warm almonds entree; salmon with capers, cheese, olives and goat cheese; fresh green salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar; Danish pastries and red wine. The flight is 45 minutes long.

AM is getting to the black numbers. What about AA?

__Ad.





A300/18/19/20/21 B721/2 B732/3/G/8 B741/2/4 B752 B762/3/4 B772/3 DC8/9/10 MD11 TU134/154 IL62/86 An24 SA340/2000 E45/90
 
AA767400
Posts: 1892
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 6:39 am

Adriaticus, AM is not plagued with LCCs in Mexico like AA is in the U.S.. Sure it's great to get a full meal on a 45 minute flight, but is it really financial feasible? Maybe it is in Mexico, but not in the states.
"The low fares airline."
 
RogerThat
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 11:45 am

Adriaticus,

Of course the airline executives - and everyone else - has an obligation to do all they can to provide the best possible flight experience. But an executive didn't say he was going to throw out the food because he didn't like the way Sky Chefs told him to dress up the trolley and that he couldn't scarf down the left overs.

It was a flight attendant advocating irresponsible conduct. That's why I had to point out how foolhardy this flight attendant is. Hopefully, qqflyboy is the odd man out.

How's AA doing you asked? In the black last quarter.

 
lauda777
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 9:04 pm

I agree with Trolley Dolley, if I get a bargain ticket with a LCC I don't expect anything more than a seat to sit in and to get to my destination on time.
However if I pay for a full price ticket with a full service carrier (at least thats what AA is claiming to be) then I expect a meal and IFE.
It's amazing that Qantas just announced it's upgrading it's full economy domestic service to include hot meals on all flights and theres no other full service airline in Australia to compete with so go figure!  Smile
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adriaticus
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Sun Aug 29, 2004 11:45 pm

AA767400:<< AM is not plagued with LCCs in Mexico like AA is in the U.S.. Sure it's great to get a full meal on a 45 minute flight, but is it really financial feasible? >>

Actually, yes they are... Azteca, Aviacsa, AeroCalifornia, Magnicharters (in despite of its rather cojunctural name) have become a competitive headache for mainline carriers MX and AM, and "mainline domestic" like Aeromar, or AM's and MX's regionals, AeroLitoral and Aerocaribe.

All those four make a furious competition in the routes between the major destinations; cheaper fares are published on the newspapers everyday... I'm sure you get the picture... But that hasn't stopped the desire to provide decent full service on board MX or AM's metal. Actually, a while ago MX had "downgraded" cabin service to make the FA's integrate dishes out of bulk baskets into the little trays, but backed off; flying (whether on a LCC or mainline) in Mexico is still considered a luxury for a significant percentage of the population, and the perception of getting on board an airplane to be treated like cattle (as AA routinely achieves to do), backfired. So it's back to normal.

Much like Lauda777 and Trolley Dolley stated about Qantas - in both AM and MX you'll get warm meals even in un-challenged domestic routes -throughout the cabin. This is, even the cheapest fare on board gets a warm meal, complimentary drinks, wine and liquor... even simple cocktails like a bloody mary, at no extra cost. Smokin cool

In despite of the large lower-cost offer, both mainline carriers are positioned (AM mainly) in a market niche that preferes better service for a slightly higher fare. Even when they are betting on the better-yield pax, the one that contributes with the most revenue, they are not forgetting the other, lesser-contributing ones... Both carriers are expected to be in the black this quarter (maybe not, with the soaring fuel prices!). I am glad AA is too - but still, they won't get my business unless there's no other option.

Cheers,
__Ad.
A300/18/19/20/21 B721/2 B732/3/G/8 B741/2/4 B752 B762/3/4 B772/3 DC8/9/10 MD11 TU134/154 IL62/86 An24 SA340/2000 E45/90
 
Sean-SAN-
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Mon Aug 30, 2004 12:37 am

It's amazing how the two AA FA's are so sure this program will be a failure and a bad idea, when it's already a success at several other airlines. I guess doing anything besides sitting back in the galley the entire flight and slinging pretzels is too much to ask... Then again, after the pay cuts and layoffs, who can blame them.
 
RogerThat
Posts: 505
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Mon Aug 30, 2004 4:59 am

I agree with Adriaticus, Lauda777 and Trolley Dolly, even though it reads like I was arguing with them. The few extra dollars spent on the passenger can go a long way towards fending off LCC competition. AA's management has completely debased the value of the first class cabin on most routes where its not even worth the extra $35.00.

The F/A's that want to sabotage the program need an attitude adjustment, as in a new line of work.

My dad worked for AA in the 1940s and 1950s. Back in those days, the stewardesses were fired when they got married or turned 30. And if a girl made it to 30 and wasn't married.....that's a whole different topic.

Perhaps AA should re-adapt this policy in their quest for profitability.

 
AA767400
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Mon Aug 30, 2004 12:39 pm

Guys, only one sour apple said he thinks it will be a failure, and he can sabotage the program. Once again, If AA charges the same fare for the same routing that B6 or HP does, then the passenger should get the exact same level of food service that the other LCCs give. (Which is basically nothing.) Up front AA is starting to bring back a meal service on shorter flights.

Adriaticus, I just don't see how Mexico has the amount of LCCs that the United States have. Nor has Mexico the amount of competition with LCCs and legacy airlines a like. Up here we have to MANY players on the field, and somebody has to go! Sure Qantas can bring back a meal, How many freaking airlines are there in Australia? Let's not compare something that is completely different.

Folks, Once again, Just because some Flight Attendant on here says something like that, does not mean we all think and act that way. It is just amazing how many people jumped on that one so quick.  Wow!
"The low fares airline."
 
NWAFA
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 1:49 am

When BOB was first introduced I was one that thought it was wrong. But I am from the old days of flying too.

After a long time in place now, the passengers are use to it...and appreciate that something is being offered instead of just soda and pretzels.

AA FA's will get use to the program just like we at NWA, HP, UA, have done. The times have changed, and no thanks to the LCC's for it too.
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ckfred
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 4:01 am

I'm and AMR shareholder, and this is an idea that needs some finetuning. Why make the F/As try to act as salespeople? Their roles are to aid in keeping the passengers safe and to make their flight enjoyable. It does not include trying to convince passengers to buy food. If F/As wanted jobs trying to hard sell stuff, they could be car salespeople.

That said, I still like ordering a meal from the kiosk at ticketing, or having the agent ask if you want to buy a meal. Then, everyone can pay with a credit card.

Believe it or not, I know people that don't carry cash. Between plastic and debit cards, they just don't use cash. So what do you do at 35,000feet with AMEX, MC, VISA, and a bank debit card, but no cash? Starve?
 
brons2
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 4:30 am


I don't think it's going to be a success. The F/A group will NOT be thrilled with this B/S


Sir, can I get you a little cheeze to go with that whine? Thanks for choosing AA!!  Big grin Big grin Big grin
Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
 
brons2
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 5:27 am

I'm and AMR shareholder, and this is an idea that needs some finetuning. Why make the F/As try to act as salespeople? Their roles are to aid in keeping the passengers safe and to make their flight enjoyable. It does not include trying to convince passengers to buy food. If F/As wanted jobs trying to hard sell stuff, they could be car salespeople.

It would be cool if this could be integrated with the flight purchase experience on AA.com! One single transaction for flight, seat selection and meal selection. Airline gets to use JIT inventory on the already purchased meals, sounds like a win-win situation!
Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
 
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VIflyer
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 5:58 am

This will be very interesting considering the same BOB program was tired on MQ about 6 months ago and it never really took off. While a BOB program looks good on paper the biggest problems (which we had at MQ) were the pricing of the items for sale, storage of the sale items (I know we had a hell of a time storing all these box lunches on a EMB-145), quantity of items places on the a/c (either you ended up running out of stuff or more often ended up throwing away about 75%+ of lunches) and most importantly people were bringing there own food bought in the terminal for cheaper than what we were selling it for.

MQ BOB program lasted about 8 months and was very quietly terminated.

On a sidenote one of the most interesting thing about the BOB program was that we were able to take credit cards as payment for a while. Skychefs who we ran the program thru originally supplied us with these Compaq iPAQ with a credit card reader attached. It was preloaded with a program that allowed us to invatory the stock and use debit or credit card. Only problem was that is kept crashing and no one told us FA's how to use it. There was no lead-in training on it, they just showed up at the gate, put the food onboard, handing over the paperwork and iPAQ and left. Hopefully if AA/Skychefs goes this route they'll offer a little more training and fix the bugs in the system.

VI
I reject your reality and subsitute my own
 
qqflyboy
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RE: AA To Start Selling Snacks On Board!

Tue Aug 31, 2004 7:13 am

How do I begin... such love from the a.nutters board.

Let me reiterate some things I said above before I was attacked...

1) I never said I'd try to kill the program
2) I said, "Well, I have mixed feelings about participating in this project also. Not because it increases my work load..."
3) I also said, "And although I don't my (typo ((mind))) the added work, I want something for it. Allowing me to eat a meal is all the incentive I need."

Actually, if you re-read the post, I was stating my concerns with how the program is set up. Obviously, the trial period for this program, which is for the month of September only, will tell what works and doesn't. It appears, however, that there are problems with program from the outset.

Before I dive into those issues I see as potential problems, let me address the idea that I am a "sour apple." I was not speaking for myself when I was informing AA777flyer that flight attendants could kill the program. I was stating a simple fact. There are plenty of sour apples at AA, and every other airline for that matter, but I am certainly not one of them. I am well aware of what my coworkers are and aren't capable of, and I am embarrassed on a regular basis by those with true "sour apple" attitudes.

This test period is coming on-line in a very limited market, and depending on the flight attendants on those flights, they have the very real capability of making the program work or fail. All that was in response to AA777flyers, "I don't think AA really cares if the F/A's will like this or not. It will be part of your JOB! Ya know the thing you are paid to do, not sit at the back of the airplane and whine that you took pay cuts and have all this extra work because they cut back on staffing, work these long hours, don't get fed anymore, shorter layovers. If you don't like your work and don't want to do anything, go get a job with the TSA."

If AA and SkyChefs have a vested interest in this project, then AA and SkyChefs need to have a vested interest in the flight attendants that bare the sole responsibility to make the program work. Like I said in my original post, allowing the flight attendants to eat a meal is all the incentive I need, and I am sure the majority of my coworkers will agree.

Now let me address the issues as I see problematic. AA and SkyChefs want the flight attendants to pass out menus to all the passengers in main cabin. This is a big turnoff to the flight attendants. Although it is minimal added work, it is being perceived as unnecessary by the flight attendants I've talked with since this program was announced. Someone above mentioned adding it to the inflight magazine. That is the best idea I've heard for the program so far, and I've already submitted it to the company for review.

Periodically, AA has surveys onboard the aircraft for flight attendants to hand out. In general, there are about 30 or so in each envelope. Those usually end up "lost or forgotten." Convincing a work group that is already disgruntled to pass out 166 menus is not an easy task. Offering real incentive, is. The incentive program SkyChefs has created is being perceived as an insult, only offering prizes based on drawings in which the flight attendants have to register for online. Real, tangible and guaranteed incentive is simple, easy, and cost effective.

Lets go back to my idea of allowing flight attendants to eat a meal. The combo boxes contain an assortment of fresh and shelf-stable products. The fresh items that go unsold will be thrown away at the end of each flight. Why not allow the flight attendants to eat what's left? You know, and I know, the flight attendants will eat those items anyway, but giving permission to do so will greatly change the attitude of a lot of flight attendants. In turn, they'll be more dedicated to make the program work. And it wouldn't have cost SkyChefs a thing, as the food would have been tossed anyway.

Flight attendants have expressed concern of becoming salespeople on board the aircraft. Someone above mentioned flight attendants sell liquor, so this isn't any different. It is. Flight attendants have never marketed liquor before. Passengers know it's available and buy when they want. This new In-Flight Cafe program requires flight attendants to market the program by 1) two announcements, one before takeoff and one inflight, 2) pass out menus to each and every passenger and 3) set-up displays on top of the cart. We can take this a step further and compare it to selling Duty Free. Even then flight attendants don't market the goods. There is a video that does that and a catalog in each passenger seat. That right there reiterates what a good idea it is to include the meal offerings in the inflight magazine.

When you look at the whole program, I agree it isn't a tremendous amount of added work. In fact, I look forward to being able to offer passengers the food. But convincing 26,000 flight attendants who are feeling tired, overworked and underpaid that its a good idea, isn't easy. But I wholeheartedly believe if SkyChefs were to offer tangible incentives instead of the, "you might win, you might not" idea, flight attendants will embrace the program and strive to improve it, streamline it, and make it a success. Flight attendants are among the most creative group of people I've ever met, and have the potential to make the program a bigger success than AA or SkyChefs ever thought possible.

One more thing... Why do I think allowing flight attendants to eat un-used meals will be enough incentive? If you survey flight attendants about their current working conditions, here's what you'll hear complaints about: Long hours, too little rest, low pay and no food. Here is a simple way to address one of the top four biggest complaints of a substantial work group. Just like when AA added MRTC, passenger surveys came back with not only high scores in comfort and leg roorn, but flight attendants were rated friendlier and the quality of meals on those flights with meals seemed to improve, even though the only thing different was more leg roorn. If flight attendants are offered these leftover meals, the day may not seem so long and they may not feel as tired, even though they were only fed a leftover meal.

I think the only person who needs a real attitude adjustment is Roger That, ie, reply #42.
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