LongbowPilot
Topic Author
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Cry Baby Passengers

Mon Jan 17, 2005 10:31 pm

Ok all, if you get on an airline and don't like the service don't fly it ever again. If you go to a Travel Agent and ask for the best price, or if you doing a business trip and your company Travel Agents pick the flight. You can do one of the following.

Take the ticket and SHUTUP!

or

You can decline the ticket, and request the airline you want to fly and pay more.

So in other words, you pick your own fate. If you want to gamble on a low cost adventure or put any restrictions on your travel arrangement than you are making the bed. So just lay in it, and don't fly them again.

I personally think the most complaints a Airline Employee receive are the cheapskate passengers who went on Travelocity, or Priceline and though they were paying a high price for tickets. Sorry folks 100.00 doesn't even cover the cost of the pilot for 10 minutes on most flights.

 
schooner
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Mon Jan 17, 2005 11:54 pm

and your point being?
Untouched and Alive
 
BostonGuy
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 12:07 am

Yeah... I'm having a difficult time figuring out what the point is, too.

Perhaps this is about putting the blame for poor service on paying customers (an incredibly bad business strategy). Or maybe it's about linking poor service with low fares (which is completely false as one can easily see when one pays a low fare and receives outstanding service on airlines such as JetBlue or Southwest).

If I pay a fare high enough for an airline to make a profit on my travel and someone else on my flight pays a low fare that doesn't provide a profit... what happens if we both receive poor service on that flight? Would that make me a cry baby, too?
 
AsstChiefMark
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 12:19 am

Maybe he's upset that there's isn't any mail delivery today.
Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Red tail...Damned MSP...Red tail...Red tail
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 1:49 am

Sounds like an Army Aviator too huh . . .

What'd he say anyway????

FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
BritPilot777
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 2:00 am

Ummmmm anyone as confused as me?
Forever Flight
 
kanebear
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 2:03 am

{Insert huge "PLEASE DELETE THIS ENTIRE THREAD" sticker here}

[Edited 2005-01-17 18:03:52]
 
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RE: Cry Baby Passengers

Tue Jan 18, 2005 2:04 am

Sorry everyone, but Longbow has a very valid point. Typically, the customers who whine and bitch the most are the ones who pay the least.

It makes no sense, but it's true. And unfortunately, the vast majority of them come from or have something to do with Expedia, Travelocity, or Orbitz.

Perhaps this is about putting the blame for poor service on paying customers (an incredibly bad business strategy). Or maybe it's about linking poor service with low fares (which is completely false as one can easily see when one pays a low fare and receives outstanding service on airlines such as JetBlue or Southwest).


Oh stop. All he's doing is venting about the propensity for those who paid the least to expect the most and complain incessantly about anything and everything.

Is it the customers' fault? Hell no. I blame airline management, who has, unfortunately:

  • trained customers to wait only for big sales

  • created the unrealistic expectation that $200.00 roundtrip should get you ANYWHERE in the U.S.

  • mismanaged their companies horribly, for the most part

  • chosen employees as the scapegoat


  • From the employee's perspective, their pay and benefits are being cut for the sake of continuing to offer dirt-cheap tickets to record numbers of unappreciative, overly-demanding customers.

    Is it fair to say that it's true, and that customers are to blame? Not entirely - but to a point, it IS true - much the same as we the consumers are to blame for Wal-Mart's frenzied growth and the problems created by that.

    As consumers, we're our own worst enemies. We want everything for nothing, and eventually there's a price to pay for that mentality.

    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 3:15 am

    *sigh*

    We've been all through this:

    http://www.airliners.net/discussions/general_aviation/read.main/1886429/

    Charles, SJ
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 3:59 am

    Wow...sorry to burden you with another thread, Charles.  Big grin
    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:12 am

    Wow...sorry to burden you with another thread, Charles

    I'm only pointing out we still have a "let's demonize the customer" thread that is active; This one seems redundant and vitriolic in a rather inappropriate way.

    LongbowPilot:

    Do you really hate your customers that much?

    Charles, SJ
    (Lemming #3,458,662)
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
    kanebear
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:22 am

    Welcome to dealing with the public. You think any other consumer-focused industry is any different? Grocery stores, retail outfits, etc... ALL deal with problem customers that make unreasonable demands, are pushy, etc. In some of those cases too, those that shout the loudest are the bottomfeeders (bought the item on sale, etc). Commercial aviation isn't unique so if you can't deal with them I suggest you find another line of work that DOES NOT deal with the public.
     
    KabAir
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:27 am

    "One time a guy wanted a refund because of turbulence. He said, "He is scared for his life that the wing was going to fall off it was flapping so hard!'"

    My former roommate just got back from the east coast last night. Said he'll never fly USAirways again - I asked why - he said the flight was terribly turbulent, probably due to the "old aircraft" he was on. I tried very hard not to laugh at him. But failed.  Smile He's a good guy and all, but I just COULD NOT convince him that had he been on a UA 777 - he STILL Would have had the bad turbulence. He's a nurse - so I think I might tell him I hate my healthcare provider because I got a cold last week. And they didn't prevent it.

    Be careful though about ripping "low paying customers" and insinuating that they somehow don't deserve excellent service. I remember hearing a story (can't be sure if it's 100% true) about a CEO of a major company hubbed in Illinois which used an airline out of Chicago for A LOT of business travel. We're talking many, many thousands of dollars each week spent on economy tickets. This CEO had heard some things, and decided to buy a cheap economy ticket for himself on a short trip and "test" the service to see what would happen. He was essentially met with the "sit down and shut up because you're a low paying economy customer and we don't give a crap about you" attitude. That next week he pulled the company's travel "account" or whatever with that airline, losing them MILLIONS of dollars. Anyone know which company this was? I just heard the story second hand. In any case, I think it illustrates how careful you must be, and that EVERY customer deserves to be treated well (within reason of course).
    wow, there sure are a lot of expert economists on this forum....
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:31 am

    This CEO had heard some things, and decided to buy a cheap economy ticket for himself on a short trip and "test" the service to see what would happen. He was essentially met with the "sit down and shut up because you're a low paying economy customer and we don't give a crap about you" attitude.

    ...And everyone wonders why competition for first class upgrades is so intense.

    Charles, SJ
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
    KabAir
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:34 am

    Charles, no wonder indeed!

    Confuscious say: "Man who insults his customers may soon have no customers to insult!!"  Smile
    wow, there sure are a lot of expert economists on this forum....
     
    777STL
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:37 am

    So now we're pigeonholing people who use Expedia and Travelocity......

    Great.

    -77
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:44 am

    Wow...sorry to burden you with another thread, Charles

    I'm only pointing out we still have a "let's demonize the customer" thread that is active


    Oh I know, I was just giving you a hard time in a joking way, hence the wink. I understand your point.

    So now we're pigeonholing people who use Expedia and Travelocity......

    No, just people who have unrealistic expectations and/or whine and bitch incessantly.

    It just so happens that the majority of them tend to also come from Expedia and Travelocity for some reason.
    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    dan-air
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:45 am

    From the employee's perspective, their pay and benefits are being cut for the sake of continuing to offer dirt-cheap tickets to record numbers of unappreciative, overly-demanding customers.

    Is it fair to say that it's true, and that customers are to blame? Not entirely - but to a point, it IS true - much the same as we the consumers are to blame for Wal-Mart's frenzied growth and the problems created by that.

    As consumers, we're our own worst enemies. We want everything for nothing, and eventually there's a price to pay for that mentality.


    You're right - customers want and will pay the lowest possible price. The airline *chooses* to offer those prices so that it may *compete*. That does not absolve it of providing the services that it advertised and for which the customer is paying, namely:

    - the ability to check-in in a reasonable amount of time, the airline providing sufficient numbers of trained staff to handle the number of customers that are expected to show up at any given time.
    - compensation offered when the carrier chooses to cancel a flight for economic reasons.
    - staff that answer questions in a courteous and professional fashion, remembering that they are there for the sole purpose of transporting customers from point A to point B, regardless of how little or how much they have paid for the service.

    That's all most customers want from an airline. The product for which they paid.
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:46 am

    Oh I know, I was just giving you a hard time in a joking way, hence the wink. I understand your point.

    Sorry EA CO AS. I'm a little more thin skinned than usual this morning.  Smile

    Charles, SJ
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
    KabAir
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:47 am

    "It just so happens that the majority of them tend to also come from Expedia and Travelocity for some reason"

    Sources, please  Smile
    wow, there sure are a lot of expert economists on this forum....
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 5:27 am

    Sources, please

    Well, seeing as I'm a customer relations supervisor for a major airline and have noticed this trend firsthand, I guess you can call ME a source.

    Or were you hoping for a linked article from the Associated Press or Reuters titled, "Studies Show Expedia and Travelocity Customers Bitch More"?  Insane

    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    ANNOYEDFA
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 5:31 am

    Kabair: Tell me what hospital your friend works out because he is a complete idiot and I would be glad to tell him. Any nurse that dumb should not be working in a Hospital... Sorry!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
    "TWA... One Mission, Yours."
     
    KabAir
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 5:40 am

    "Kabair: Tell me what hospital your friend works out because he is a complete idiot and I would be glad to tell him. Any nurse that dumb should not be working in a Hospital... Sorry!"

    Ah, Annoyedfa - so we meet again!  Smile Actually he's a really smart guy overall but just really really - well - not smart when it comes to planes. Kinda like how overall my brain works for the most part but I have no mechanical talent. I can't hardly change my own windshielf wiper fluid to save my life. We all have our areas I guess. Anyway, we're flying your airline next month so if you could please make sure we don't hit any turbulence, I'd appreciate it.

    EA CO AS - I was just giving you a hard time about "sources". Hence the smiley face afterwards. No offense intended.... Of course being on the job is always the best source.
    wow, there sure are a lot of expert economists on this forum....
     
    ckfred
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 5:44 am

    I think the point is that many travelers think that if one airline offers a cheap fare, then every airline that flies that route should offer the same fare. But, if one gets a cheap fare on a legacy carrier, one still thinks he should get pillows, a full meal, etc.

    If people think an airline seat is a commodity, then they should expect similar, no-frills service throughout the industry.

    On the other hand, if people picked hotels the way they pick airlines, then everyone would stay at Motel 6 or Red Roof Inn. Obviously, people do stay at Hyatts, Hiltons, Marriots, and Westins, because they want the amenities that cheaper chains don't have, such as pools, fitness centers, business centers, multiple dining options, locations in business districts, meeting space, etc., and they are willing to pay considerably more on a per-night basis.

    As for the airline dilema, I don't know how it can be solved. No legacy carrier is about to advertise that its fares are higher, because it has better on-board service.
     
    Tango-Bravo
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:06 am

    "It just so happens that the majority of them tend to also come from Expedia and Travelocity for some reason"

    Sources, please


    Along with EA CO AS, I find the same to be true. And like EA CO AS, I am squarely in a position -- with an airline -- to sort out fact from fiction on this issue. So add me to the list of airline customer service employees who will tell you that EA CO AS is totally correct in noticing that Expedia and Travelocity customers (and agents) tend to be more notoriously inclined to be cry baby passengers.

    Imagine whatever you wish, but unless you have a "ringside seat" in the customer service area of the airline industry, as both EA CO AS and I do, consider the liklihood (in our case, consider it a certainty) that we are aware of many situations to which self-proclaimed experts are totally oblivious.
     
    777STL
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:12 am

    "I guess I'll have to speak like the lemmings (passengers) so they understand"

    Because you're SOOOO superior because you work for an airline, right? I still don't understand why you're bitching at us about this?

    Do you work for an airline or fly Apaches?

    -77
    PHX based
     
    lehpron
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:12 am

    I still don't get his point though, so what if pax who pay less bitch, what is the problem? Does he not want to hear it? Does he prefer they pay more, what?

    Unless he is willing to pay for a chartered flight he will have to put up with other people. Paying for a seat is simply renting the spot and purchasing the food that goes with it, you don't have a say over the lot (rest of the plane).

    Again, I say, if you want to change the way people think, teach them. I don't see what yelling does...

    ...unless he's just venting, that's okay provided he learned from it somehow.
    The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
     
    kdeg00
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:13 am

    OK, let me try to understand the approach to the low price ticket discussion. If, for example, I purchase a ticket from Travelocity or a consolidator via my travel agent that costs less than the full published fare, should I have a lesser expectation of the basic servicies and quality of the flight than someone who paid more for their ticket in the same class?

    If (real example here) I bought Y tickets on a US legacy carrier for a trip to the UK and on all 4 legs the audio port did not function (yes, I tried multiple headphones) and the none of the reserved child meals for my daughter were available, do I have less of a right to my annoyance than the C or F passenger?

    I agree wholeheartedly with the threads discussing the growing lack of civility by passengers toward airline staff. I work in retail and have the pleasure (tempered by occasional unpleasant interactions) of interacting with customers every day. I try to treat my customers the way I would like to be treated, and I believe that we should all treat airline staffs with respect and understand the pressure of their jobs and the industry conditions they are coping with.

    I don't treat my customer differently because he or she bought their bottle of wine at this week's sale price rather than last week's full price. I use the occasion to introduce the customer to the services I offer and potentially educate them on other products I carry that are not on sale.

    I then expect that whatever airline I fly offer me the same service as the other passengers in my class. I also expect an airline to live up to the promises it makes in pitching its service to me. If I am offered the opportunity to reserve a child's meal for my daughter I expect it to be delivered barring some unforseeable problem. The same goes for other in-flight services.

    No, it is not acceptable to vent frustrations on a FA or counter/gate staff (and obviously counter-productive as well) but an airline had better be willing to listen and respond to valid complaints and frustrations the same way my customers expect me to listen and respond to their concerns.
     
    ATLhomeCMH
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:35 am

    Welcome to dealing with the public. You think any other consumer-focused industry is any different? Grocery stores, retail outfits, etc... ALL deal with problem customers that make unreasonable demands, are pushy, etc. In some of those cases too, those that shout the loudest are the bottomfeeders (bought the item on sale, etc). Commercial aviation isn't unique so if you can't deal with them I suggest you find another line of work that DOES NOT deal with the public.

    Amen. I have also experienced this first hand back in college, working for Best Buy and TGI Fridays. I even wrote an Op/Ed piece for my college newspaper, themed: "A lesson on customer etiquette from a retail employee."

    The moral of the story: People suck. They're like animals. Because of this, I try to be as nice as possible to the poor sap getting my Chicken McNuggets...even if they make mistakes...b/c I can relate to the lowlifes they have to deal with.

    The flip side is that these very same sucky "people" pay your bills, so you have to deal with them...and if you're in the airline industry, you have to deal with them in droves.

    Luckily for me, I have a job where I hardly have to deal with anyone at all and just sit in a cubicle all day...Office Space style...and I couldn't be happier  Smile

    [Edited 2005-01-17 22:40:34]
    "The most terrifying words in the Engligh language are, 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"-Ronald Reagan
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:41 am

    Imagine whatever you wish, but unless you have a "ringside seat" in the customer service area of the airline industry, as both EA CO AS and I do, consider the liklihood (in our case, consider it a certainty) that we are aware of many situations to which self-proclaimed experts are totally oblivious.

    As an airport chaplain I do have a ringside seat. Literally. I also spend a lot of time doing "line management" because several of airlines are too understaffed to do it themselves, i.e. making sure everyone is in the right line, trying to weed out people who can use the check-in machines, and provide a little stand-up entertainment to boot.

    But I also have to see the situation from both sides, and I have witnessed a number of times when employees have been unreasonable, stressed out, or will make a bad situation worse by unprovoked rudeness.

    The bottom line, as Kanebear correctly says, it's all part of the fun of dealing with the public. We're all human. We can all be unreasonable at times. Perhaps if all of us stopped to think what it's like being in the other person's shoes for a few moments there might be less conflict. Treating customers as self-loading cargo or calling them lemmings is not helpful.

    Charles, SJ

    P.S: Yesterday at SEA we were cleaning up after an ice storm that left PDX closed Saturday and part of Sunday. Everyone was calm, taking the long delays in stride, and there were few incidents of rude customers according to the employees I talked to, though there was a fair bit of anxiety. For the most part customers handled the situation well. Why don't we see any threads when customers don't whine?
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
    ATLhomeCMH
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:52 am

    Why don't we see any threads when customers don't whine?

    Because this is the expected behavior of civilized adults. You don't get a big shiny medal, a blue ribbon and the key to the city just because you refrained from chewing somebody out today.
    "The most terrifying words in the Engligh language are, 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"-Ronald Reagan
     
    airgeek12
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 6:56 am

    Nice. I'll keep that in mind.
     
    fraspotter
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:03 am

    777STL,

    This is a forum, this is the place where all us a.neters can discuss topics and say how we feel on certain issues. The guy is venting and rightfully so. It is his topic, if you don't like it, either exit out of it or just don't reply. Oh and by the way, Illesheim is a Army base in Germany near Ansbach where a large Apache unit is based. So NO he is probably not in the airline buisness!
    "Drunk drivers run stop signs. Stoners wait for them to turn green."
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:06 am

    Why don't we see any threads when customers don't whine?

    Because this is the expected behavior of civilized adults. You don't get a big shiny medal, a blue ribbon and the key to the city just because you refrained from chewing somebody out today.


    ATLhomeCMH, in addition to being 100% dead-on with that reply, just caused me to get looks of confusion from some of my co-workers after busting out laughing and nearly falling out of my chair in the process.  Big thumbs up

    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    ctbarnes
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:17 am

    Because this is the expected behavior of civilized adults. You don't get a big shiny medal, a blue ribbon and the key to the city just because you refrained from chewing somebody out today.

    Judging from what I read here, I would have guessed differently  Big grin

    We're awfully quick to criticise when someones dares to complain. How quickly are ready to (genuinely!) complement someone for their patientce, cooperation, or flexibility.

    No one's asking for a medal here. Just to be treated with dignity.

    Charles, SJ
    The customer isn't a moron, she is your wife -David Ogilvy
     
    777STL
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:17 am

    "He was told by my sup and manager that he can lodge the complaint with the airline's customer care department. I mean c'mon he wanted a refund or enough miles to buy his wife a ticket so she could fly with him and "DIE" with him if it happened. The cool part was he was the only person on the flight of 150 who complained about the "Turbulence."

    FRAspotter, by reading this I'm led to believe he works for an airline. If he doesn't work for an airline, why is he complaining in the first place? Perhaps he flies helicopters and is a CSA on the side?

    I dislike this topic not because he is venting, he has every right to vent, this is a free forum so to speak. Rather it is because I dislike his atittude. He might try to be slightly less condescending to the people who disagree with him. I assure you, I'm not another Expedia-using "lemming" passenger as he described. And once again, I don't understand why he's bitching at us about this as if we are the ones to blame? If he dislikes his job so much maybe a career change is in order....

    -77
    PHX based
     
    Regis
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:18 am

    I guess in the end it is our (the customer) fault for taking up the airlines on the fares they offer. Yes sir, it is me, and only me to fault when AA bombards my mail box every week with USD 99 fares and begs me to get into their planes. How dare I accept their offers. Shame on me.
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:25 am

    And once again, I don't understand why he's bitching at us about this as if we are the ones to blame?

    I think it's already been explained that he's simply venting, so with all due respect, there's nothing to understand. He's only expressing his opinion. Yours may be different, and that's fine - but it doesn't mean his is any less valid.

    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    777STL
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:35 am

    " I think it's already been explained that he's simply venting, so with all due respect, there's nothing to understand. He's only expressing his opinion. Yours may be different, and that's fine - but it doesn't mean his is any less valid."

    Alright let me pose one last question. How is this thread constructive, what is to be gained from this? We lock and delete non-constructive threads here everyday, how is this one any different? I think we can devise better threads than ones full of ranting and complaining.

    -77
    PHX based
     
    Tango-Bravo
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:45 am

    OK, let me try to understand the approach to the low price ticket discussion. If, for example, I purchase a ticket from Travelocity or a consolidator via my travel agent that costs less than the full published fare, should I have a lesser expectation of the basic servicies and quality of the flight than someone who paid more for their ticket in the same class?

    Gimme a break -- and get serious!!! Please tell me who ever said or even implied in any way that Travelocity or consolidator fare pax should have lesser expectations than other pax??? What has been stated is quite to the contrary. What has been said by EA CO AS and myself is that Expedia, Travelocity and other bottom feeder pax have no valid basis for higher expectations -- which is what they tend to have, which is the only meaning that can be taken from our words. To twist our words in the manner quoted above shows to me a woeful lack of reading comprehension or taking liberty to distort what another has said and trying to make it say the opposite of what has been stated with due clarity.

    The way I -- and my colleague EA CO AS -- treat "bottom-feeder" pax (regardless of who has issued their ticket) in the "real world" of the airline industry is to 1) totally look past who issued their ticket for how much ...it's not in any way their fault that our airline is stupid enough to allow our flights to be booked on the likes of Travelocity or at absurdly low wholesaler rates; however, on the flip side, 2) neither are such pax entitled to more (or less) than the rules of their fare call for.

    Anyone who has read the replies of EA CO AS and myself should be able to see that the only remarks we have made about pax who book through Expedia, Travelocity and other high-maintenance, high cost, (to our airline) low yield channels is that they have a pronounced tendency to presume that they are entitled to more than what is offered by our loss-leader fare rules, to which which EA CO AS and myself alike say "nyet!"
     
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    EA CO AS
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:54 am

    How is this thread constructive, what is to be gained from this?

    It's constructive because the poster got to air his viewpoint. He was able to get something off his chest, and in the process, blow off some steam.

    He also learned he's not alone in his views, since others (like myself) agree with him, at least to a point.

    So let me ask you a question, then - is a thread of no value to anyone simply because it had no value to YOU?
    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    KabAir
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 7:57 am

    "it's not in any way their fault that our airline is stupid enough to allow our flights to be booked on the likes of Travelocity or at absurdly low wholesaler rates"

    This is where I'm honestly a bit confused. I use Travelocity and Expedia quite a bit - not to book flights - but just as a quick way to see what various flight times/options are on multiple airlines without visiting all of their websites. I find the flights I like and want, and then go to the airline's website to book the flights. Why? Because I have found (just my personal experience) that 99.9999% of the time, I will actually get a slightly BETTER price directly from the airline! Usually about $3 - $5. Not much, but hey it's McDonald's money right?  Smile A few months ago I was bringing a friend out from Nashville. AA price on Expedia: $247.41. AA price on aa.com: $243.81. Last month was looking for flights to SJC, specifically on AS (long story). Expedia price: $331.50. AS web price: $326.65. So I truly don't get the argument about people buying these crazy cheap deals on Travelocity and Expedia, and them being the "bottom feeders". Priceline maybe. But Travelocity and Expedia - those people probably paid $5 more for their ticket than I did straight from your airline.

    Anyone else had different experiences in terms of pricing? Maybe I just suck at using Expedia!  Big grin
    wow, there sure are a lot of expert economists on this forum....
     
    kdeg00
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 8:18 am

    No, of course you didn't "say" that discount customers deserve lesser service, but yes, it is implied by many of the people writing in this and other, similar threads.

    I was trying (apparently not very well) to illustrate a point that there is a perception of the value of a customer based on the price they pay. What I find from my customers is the inverse of what you are suggesting. I find that the customers that complain the most tend to expect the lowest prices. A subtle but, I think, telling difference.

    I agree with you that in the long run, discount tickets through agencies like Travelocity, etc. are a stupid business decision on the part of the airlines and very obviously contribute to the ongoing degradation of airline employee wages, benefits and job security.

    My remarks weren't a personal attack on you or EA CO AS and anyone reading them should recognize that.
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:00 am

    My remarks weren't a personal attack on you or EA CO AS and anyone reading them should recognize that.

    FWIW, I've not seen your remarks as a personal attack.

    Let me explain a bit further regarding the "Big 3" online agencies, and why most airline personnel are easily frustrated by them.

    Expedia, Travelocity and Orbitz DO, in many cases, offer fares far lower than what the normal "published" rates are. This is because air carriers either have partial ownership of them (like Orbitz) or because they simply realize they're a large driver of bookings and want in on the action.

    So the airline goes to one or more of them and says, "We'll create a special fare that can only be sold through you - customers won't be able to get these fares via normal agencies, our reservations personnel, or even our own company website!"

    The carrier goes away grinning from ear to ear, thinking they've scored a major deal. They create a special discount fare, show it only available for sale to that particular online distributor via ATPCO (think of it like a publisher for airfares), and sit back and wait for the bookings to come flooding in.

    The problems?

  • The "Big 3" online agencies typically have low-experience agents to help the customers (or worse - they've outsourced the jobs to India, where they have ZERO experience) and provide next to no customer support of any kind. This makes even the most simple informational queries irritating for customers.


  • They rely on the air carriers to handle even simple changes - things that most agencies usually do on their own - costing the air carrier more money, since it costs more for their inhouse personnel to change tickets than to go back to the original agency.


  • Unfortunately, customers have the nasty tendency to book themselves on the wrong flights, dates - even to the wrong destinations! This ultimately results in a call to the online agency, who then can't (or won't) make the changes and sends the customer back to the airline, resulting in - you guessed it! - higher cost to the airline.


  • And who ultimately gets to deal with the angry, disillusioned, fed-up customers? The airline personnel like LongbowPilot or Tango-Bravo have to try and both calm them down AND take care of their needs, or I get them when they get really steamed and demand a supervisor.

    It's easy for airline personnel to get frustrated with these online agencies, since they bring in lower yield customers, yet create MORE work and higher cost to the air carrier - not to mention creating irate customers in the process!

    Add in the fact that for some reason, as referenced above, customers who book through them tend to have even higher service expectations than customers who purchased tickets by other means, and et voila! - you have posts venting about crybabies.  Big grin

    [Edited 2005-01-18 01:02:39]
    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    cyclonic
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:10 am

    To quote a song lyric:

    "Incompetent people are the loudest"..... You're always going to get some whiny bitch/bastard that expects the world for next to nix.
    Keith Richards: The man that Death forgot...
     
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    ODwyerPW
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:13 am

    Worst treatment I ever received was on a 1 way ticket from Roanoke VA to Albany NY that cost $439.

    Best I ever received (sans Air New Zealand and Qantas over the Pacific) was on a round trip from Albany NY to Orlando FL for $139.
    learning never stops.
     
    Vez
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:43 am

    I think it has more to do with attitude than everything else. Sometimes, members of the staff are so impolite they should be fired, but sometimes customers act like animals. In every business it is like that.

    BTW, my brother once went on a flight and his barf bag was not a brand new one. Did he have the right to complain then?  Smile Seriously I know he did complain, but in a way that put the flight attendant in a defensive position.
     
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:23 am

    BTW, my brother once went on a flight and his barf bag was not a brand new one.

    Was it merely old, or perhaps written on?

    Or was it USED for its intended purpose?  Sad

    Did he have the right to complain then?

    Depends. If it was used, absolutely! If it wasn't, then only if he PLANNED on using it.  Big grin

    Seriously I know he did complain, but in a way that put the flight attendant in a defensive position.

    Defensive how, though? Was he really direct? Did he yell? Did he whip it at her head?

    "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

    Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
     
    lincoln
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:48 am

    I am speaking with none -- zero -- expertise here, but re: the Travelocity Bashing---

    I think it may be because people who buy through Travelocity, et. al. may be more "sophisticated" when it comes to bargin prices and expectations than Joe who just calls airline X directly (or books on their website or ...).

    I have done 90+% of my long haul flying with NWA because I've enjoyed good service and, well, they're my only choice into PLN which is where I end up 90+% of the time I fly.

    I have never -- and likely will never -- bought a ticket through NWA's website. I've bought through agents, and I've bought through Travelocity and Orbitz. The fares work out to be about the same, (usually in the $400+ range, which for a student...) but I sometimes get better times and I have the advantage of having an extra party to contact if there's an issue (not that it does much good since it's a NW plated ticket, but still...).

    Also, the reason I've done my more recent travel with Travelocity/Orbitz (except my AS/AA flights in December) is they'll sell me routings that I could never find on an airline website... And for someone who enjoys flying LAX-DTW-PLN and SAN-DTW-PLN can get real boring... Orbitz sold me LAX-ORD-DTW-PLN-DTW-ORD-LAX with UA for the first and last two legs (got a 747, 777 and a DC-9, plus got to see ORD out of that) and Travelocity sold me SAN-ATL-DTW-PLN-DTW-CVG with DL for the first and last two (Got to see ATL, CVG, and fly a 767, DL and Comair for the first time...).

    You can't buy that on anyone (except possibly AA's) website...and heck, DL wouldn't even sell it to me over the phone (I drove some very friendly agent's call time way up with that one while she and a supervisor tried getting their res system to take that routing...or anything even resembling it).

    And if you're going to sell me a ticket in the Y cabin, I should have a right as your customer to expect the same level of service as everyone else in the Y cabin (Yes, many pax have unreasonable expectations regardless of fare. Airlines could probably do a better job of managing expectations).

    Just because "you" were willing to sell me a ticket at a price lower than rack rate and I accepted does not mean I should lower my expectations to match, nor does it give me any less right to complain when there is something legitimate to complaing about (destroying my bag, for example).

    If I were to buy an article of clothing on sale, it seems to me (and I could be wrong) -- by that logic -- that I should expect it to be inferior to the same article of clothing not on sale?

    I completely agree that some pax go "overboard" have unreasonable expectations (and don't know that they have a right to any expectations with a service like Priceline) and will complain about absolutely everything but don't write off their complaints just because they purchased online. Keep in mind that you're at least getting some money with a butt in that seat vs. flying an empty seat around. Yield management is a science.

    Lincoln
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    Vez
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    RE: Cry Baby Passengers

    Tue Jan 18, 2005 11:13 am

    Was it merely old, or perhaps written on?

    No, it was full of what it is intended to contain

    Defensive how, though? Was he really direct? Did he yell? Did he whip it at her head?

    Sorry... I wanted to write in a way that did NOT put the attendant in a defensive position. Changes the sense of the sentences a lot!

    I just wanted to say that despite the gravity of some things (I mean c'mon, having the nose in someone else's barf), some customers can keep calm and it helps very much the staff. You also get rewarded for that, by the staff who act in a much more friendly way.

    In my business (graphic design) you would be amazed at the effort we put in satisfying friendly customers versus stupid ones. I guess it is the same in every business.

    But then again, there are a**holes everywhere.