Boeing73G
Topic Author
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:25 am

Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:12 pm

Come April 8th, I get to go to Phoenix for spring break and I am flying on HP (first time in Y, have already flown them in First on a PHX-SFO flight, but my family always flies AS for a trip to Arizona, but HP was cheaper)
I have searched the forums and am wondering why HP is regarded as terrible and as the "trailer trash" of airlines. I haven't seen any HP trip reports on the foums, and I would like to know what Y class is like.

What specifically is so bad about HP besides the pax?  Confused
 
SFOMEX
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 3:21 pm

I've flown them many times (mostly SFO-PHX-MEX, OAK-PHX-MEX and SMF-PHX-MEX) and they are like any other airline. Mediocre in-flight service, but that's standard nowadays, and well maintained airplanes. My only complaints are that they were way late twice in the PHX-MEX leg, but that happens in any other airline. On the other hand, they upgraded me to first once just because it was my birthday, so I kind of like them.

Enjoy your flight!
The only thing worst than the GOP is the Democratic Party, think about it!
 
iowaman
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 3:42 pm

Basically HP has a bad reputation for being late all the time.
 
wgw2707
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:34 pm

America West has improved considerably, but the "HP" identifier code was historically appropriate-they were as mediocre as an airline as Hewlett Packard is as a technology company. In the 1990s, they were by far the worst US airline, with horrible service in every respect, but under the leadership of Doug Parker, they have managed to improve considerably from the days when one of the prominent aviation magazines ran an article on them with the title: "Is This The Worst Airline?"

If things go well for that airline, 10 years from now we'll be talking about Doug Parker as the next Gordon Bethune.

-WGW2707
 
flyboyaz
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:46 pm

Our reputation has improved thank god. Unfortunately with Mesa flying a huge amount of our flights, we have gotten a bad name from them as well. They were having MAJOR reliability and crew issues. Of course the passenger only sees it as America West so we take the blame. Most horror stories I hear now are from Express flights, very few from mainline. Thank fully our operation runs just like any other airline now...and a lot of times better.  Smile
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
Lockheed1011
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:54 pm

Boeing73G,

From PHX-SFO is not too long of a flight! Thank God your are not doing like LAS to JFK or LAS to MIA. It is bad, bad, bad, bad...........  Sad
The only way you will understand is once you fly them. Terrible........  Sad
 
Byrdluvs747
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:56 pm

Quoting Boeing73G (Thread starter):
and am wondering why HP is regarded as terrible and as the "trailer trash" of airlines.

HP is hardly a "trailer trash" airline. WN still holds that title(profitable or not). Go watch a few episodes of Airline.

Quoting Boeing73G (Thread starter):
What specifically is so bad about HP besides the pax?

The pax? That's just bull. Your quoting the opinion of someone who flew HP once or twice and made a rash, and poor generalization. I fly HP at least once a week, and the pax are no worse than on the majors, especially to the degree of ....

Drunk AA Pax LAX-JFK 3/18 Dies In Flight
The 747: The hands who designed it were guided by god.
 
flyboyaz
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:13 pm

I have to admit we do get an interesting crowd flying us. It was funny I noticed the other day UA cancelled a DEN mainline flight. They had the entire plane lined up at the ticket counter with one agent rebooking. No one made a peep...if that was at our counter we would need mace to keep them under control. A lot of our passengers treat us like garbage...it's really irritating. I always make an effort to be helpful, I realize it's not like that all over however.

LAS is a bad city to fly out of on any airline. Talk about a bunch of rude crabby people. I could never work there...couple that with people going to JFK and MIA and you have one rowdy bunch.
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
airlinelover
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:22 pm

America Worst... errr..West airlines is the only US airline that I will NOT fly. Their bad reputation is earned. A few examples:

They were not paying attention to their unaccompanied minors, causing one to be mis-connected and not keeping the family informed.

I thikn they "misplaced" A 2nd child as well.

When my dad flew HP once a few years ago, PHX-LAS, the plane was late. Not due to mx, atc, or similar, but due to the airline wanting to "Please" Mike Tyson. THe plane was boarded and ready to go, announcement made that they were waiting on 2 or 3 pax on thier way from security. Well, turned out to be MT and 2 of his buddies or something. He demanded to get onto an empty plane (No pax). So they made everyone get off the plane. He boarded. Then everyone got back ON The plane. Then, they sat on the taxiway for 45 minutes trying to get the AC to work, but it would not work at all, so they said screw it and took off 1.5 hrs late. My dad was meeting me in LAS, as his flight was supposed to arrive 2 hrs before mine. Well, his plane landed AFTER mine.

A few friends flew HP from DTW-LAS and back, and she usually loves flying. She was on an A320, and said it "Scared the shit out of her". She never uses the S word. But she did then. Said it was the biggest rattletrap she'd ever been on, and the crew were being total jerks. Spent 95% of the flight in the galleys doing their makeup.

HP is an airline to be avoided at all costs.

Chris
Lets do some sexy math. We add you, subtract your clothes, divide your legs and multiply
 
flyboyaz
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:34 pm

Airlinelover:

AA lost an elderly passenger a few years ago....as far as I know they never found her....that sounds a lot more scary than "misplacing" a surly little kid that was a nonrev anyhow.

I've dealt with Mike Tyson and I have to agree he's a pain in the $%^@. I don't know who made the decision to treat him like royalty but obviously it was a bad one. The key word in your statement was a few years ago...things have changed a lot since then, believe me I was there.

Airbus aircraft are very sqeaky....I've noticed it myself. Most of ours are near brand new so your friend must not have much experience flying on planes. What else is there to do on a red-eye? Is doing your makeup worse than annoying the heck out of people when they are trying to sleep? On the Newark red eye the other night, the Continental captain told the passengers they wouldn't be bothered by the crew so they could sleep. I'm sure they appreciated that.
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
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longhauler
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 11:39 pm

I fly America West all the time, as I travel to PHX a lot. My airline has only one flight a day to PHX, HP is always a good alternative.

The flights are generally on time, the planes are clean, the employees capable. I have to ask, what else do you want?? Yes, the on board service is minimal, but then that is true of most American carriers. The Customer has spoken, and he has said that low fares are more important than meals ... so be it.

Also, I note than statistically, HP is among the best with regard to safety.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
alphascan
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Sun Mar 20, 2005 11:54 pm

Every little delay is magnified by an industry-worst 30 inch seat pitch in coach.

HP's coach product is down right uncomfortable.
"To he who only has a hammer in his toolbelt, every problem looks like a nail."
 
Cactus739
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:00 am

I've taken HP a lot, seeing that I live in Phoenix and they are headquartered here. I've taken them from PHX-MCI, PHX-SFO, PHX-EWR, PHX-BOS, PHX-LAX, PHX-SEA, PHX-ANC, PHX-LAS, and PHX-RDU. In all 10 years I've been flying them, only 2 delays come to mind. A mechanically delayed PHX-EWR A320 that they kept moving us from gate to gate, and a weather delayed PHX-ANC flight; both from 1998 (admittedly not their banner year for operations).

Customer service... never had a problem with. They've always taken care of me when I've had a problem or a request. I've flown standby on the same day of my flight for free. I've gotten first class upgrades for giving up a coach seat so a family could sit together. Flight attendants? Always nice, professional and caring. Had one whimsical one from PHX-MCI once that I wrote a nice letter to HP on and got a first class upgrade voucher for.

Basically; in this thread you're going to get two responses. People like myself who have flown HP many times and only had two problems. Or, people like Airlinelover. If you read his post, none of those stories of "horror in the air" happened to him. They've happened to other people. I wonder if he's ever even flown HP?

Oh, you'll also get responses from loyal, caring employees of that company, such as Flyboyaz. Keep up the good work Flyboy.
You can't fix stupid.... - Ron White
 
jsnww81
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:24 am

I'm a pretty even-handed person when it comes to airlines - I'm not one of those types who spews garbage about how United is God's gift to the airline passenger or only Northwest truly understands the human soul.

With that said, however, America West is the one airline I will never, ever fly again.

I've flown them three times in my life (2001, 2002, 2004) and every time, my flight was at least three hours late departing (and never due to WX either). The ground staff offered little explanation (perhaps they weren't given any themselves) but once we got on board the aircraft there was never any mention made of our delays. The last straw came back in May 2004, when my flight was a mind-blowing seven and a half hours late taking off from Las Vegas.

Their aircraft were clean and modern, their crews decently friendly, but their on-time record was horrifying. I like to give all airlines a shot, but HP has lost my business forever. I'm going to Hermosillo (Mexico) in a few weeks, and I gave Mexicana/AeroMexico an extra $200 in airfare to avoid flying America West through Phoenix. I just don't trust them to get me there.
 
galapagapop
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:45 am

Quoting Airlinelover (Reply 8):
A few friends flew HP from DTW-LAS and back, and she usually loves flying. She was on an A320, and said it "Scared the shit out of her". She never uses the S word. But she did then. Said it was the biggest rattletrap she'd ever been on, and the crew were being total jerks. Spent 95% of the flight in the galleys doing their makeup.

HP is an airline to be avoided at all costs.

Has she ever flown that route before? When going over the rockies especially during the summer you can run into a whole lot of turbulence, and airbus A320/A319's are known to have their baggage compartments rattle really badly during turbulance. And this my girlfriends best friend who's cousin...... it doesn't have any creditability. And even then I wouldn't trust her opinion until she had some knowlege of aircraft some of us do. I hate to tell you or her or whoever that sometimes the FA's go into the galley, I just don't know why, but 30 minutes later they come with the cart..... a total mystery.......

i personally like HP, I don't get their bad rap, I fly them twice a year and have yet to have an issue, except for when they overbooked a JFK-PHX flight I was on I was compensated $250 and given a seat on the next flight (although that was 6 hours later)


Cheers!
 
doug_or
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:55 am

I've never had a bad experience with HP staff. One uncomforatable flight due to a drunk unruly passenger, but thats it. I haven't notice a particularly tight fit, seatguru says econ is 30-32", not sure how many of each. As far as minors go, my personal experience on Delta kept me off them for 10 years..... anyone can make a mistake.
When in doubt, one B pump off
 
NWAFA
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:55 am

I like HP...they have worked very hard and come a long way from where they use to be. I think the agents in PHX do a great job. Just like ALL carriers today in the U.S. there are good apples and bad ones..as I have said many times I try to take HP over WN any day due to the responsiveness of agents in PHX..the HP agents really get proactive when things happen. They smile. the HP agents don't act like they are doing a favor when you approach the counter.

Thanks HP!
THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!
 
srbmod
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:07 am

Quoting Alphascan (Reply 11):
Every little delay is magnified by an industry-worst 30 inch seat pitch in coach.

HP's coach product is down right uncomfortable.

HP is not the only airline with 30" seat pitch in coach. A short list:

FL
NW (On certain a/c types)
DL (On certain a/c types)
 
RIOJANEIRO
Posts: 118
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:12 am

As another HP employee I sympathize with some of you that understand that sometimes irregular operations mess with your schedule, just like at any other airline.

HP is unique in the fact that it held a very, very bad reputation for a very long time. Bed reputations always last must longer in the public eye than good ones. This is why often when a delay occurs on HP, you get the people who mention they will never, ever fly HP again, dwelling on the negative past history that we had back over 4 years ago. As far as DOT ratings go in OTP we are actually #1 for this month (so far...) for A14 arrival ratins shared by 14 major US airlines, however, I'll admit, that sometimes we are average.. just depending on weather issues, ATC, just like any major airline has in a given month.

Another fact I think people confuse is that we are a LOW-FARE airline. Due to the fact that we do have a lot of similarities with legacy carriers (due to our amenities that we've kept since our legacy-LCC transition.), and people expect the world from us, since they think that we are indeed something that we aren't anymore.

In addition, the amount of leisure travellers (aka: one-time-a-year travellers) is also quite large being that we serve mainly leisure destinations like LAS, PHX, SoCal, Mexico, etc), and therefore the one flight that they take on HP for the year can taint their image of us for years.

As an HP crewmember, I try every day in a fighting battle to turn our customers around. Although there planes may be late, you have to pay for your own headsets, and no meals are served on flights under 3 hours, I try my best to do the most friendly, efficient, and safe service that I can do with the resources that I have. In addition, I'll admit, we do have an old workforce(22 years in business), and as most people know, we come accustomed to our jobs often, so we often may not have the perkiest young crowds as opposed to some newer LCC's. However, our inflight team does a good job, but with 13,000 employees, there are those that often aren't the shining stars.

In addition, our express carrier, Mesa, as FlyBoyAZ mentioned hasn't had a stellar background on OTP or MX issues. However, people don't distinguish btwn HPX and HP mainline, and we are not in a situation right now where we can just go shop around for another regional carrier given our contract w/ Mesa.

Jsnww81, I am sorry for the experiences that you've had. However, as a flying crewmember, I can tell you that what you experienced must have been extremely rare. I think it's a bit childish to ban an airline for 3 bad experiences over the past 4 years. At any given time there are 40,000 people flying across the continental U.S., and certainly those type of situations do not happen every day on America West. Good luck to you next time.
 
NWAFA
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:18 am

RIO,

You are one example of why I continue to give my business when I can to HP. Bad apples are in every company. HP has come a LOONNNNGGGG way from where they use to be, and I congratulate you and your fellow workers on that. You should hold your heads up high.

Problems happen at EVERY SINGLE airline. Dont' give me the crap that it NEVER happens at "xyz" airline. Bunk, it does. It is how the service recovery is handled. That is another reason why I fly HP when I can. It is the way the recovery is done, unlike another one in PHX.
THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!
 
717-200
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 2:18 am

I have flown on them the last couple times on my way to SEA since
my airline does not go there yet. I have usually taken the 0716 flight
from RDU-PHX then a good hike across the Barry Goldwater Terminal 4
to catch a connecting WN flight at the C gates to SEA. The service
on HP was nothing to write home about. The F/A's were not very
friendly, especially one time when I came out of the forward lav on
a A319 I ask for a diet pepsi very nicely using the word 'please' like
a good non-rev, and she barks "Where is your seat?! I will bring it to
you later!" I walked away back to my seat waiting for this dreadful
flight to end. I was so happy to get on that connecting WN flight to
SEA. The F/A's on that WN flight were like night and day compared
to the "Soviet Aeroflot" attitudes of the HP F/A's on the RDU-PHX
flight. Maybe it was the fact the HP F/A's were not morning people
or they could not get a good night's sleep at their layover hotel but
that left me with a bad taste in my mouth with HP. I can't say I will
not ever fly on them again, I will only use them as a secondary backup
or as a last resort.
72S 733 734 735 73G 738 742 752 763 E190 M82 M83
 
texan
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 2:37 am

HP had some problems in the 1990s. I flew on them a couple times in the early 90s and had atrocious experiences. A couple years ago I needed to fly from SAN-DFW and HP offered the best price, so I hesitantly tried them. It was a great experience! The planes were clean, staff friendly, flights on time, they were great flights. HP gets a bad rap. I try to avoid the flights on Mesa, however, and book mainline HP when I fly them.

Hope you have a great trip!

Texan
"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
 
PIT757
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 2:37 am

Personally I like HP. I flew them about 2 years ago. PIT-PHX-LAS-PHX-PIT. The flights were great and the flight attendants were very friendly and there planes were clean. I like them so much that im flying them again next month, PIT-LAS-PIT. Im glad they fly here to Pittsburgh!
 
SonicKidatBWI
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 3:18 am

Quoting RIOJANEIRO (Reply 18):
due to our amenities that we've kept since our legacy-LCC transition

Since when has HP been considered a "legacy carrier"???
 
airlinelover
Posts: 5287
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 3:19 am


Airbus aircraft are very sqeaky....I've noticed it myself. Most of ours are near brand new so your friend must not have much experience flying on planes. What else is there to do on a red-eye? Is doing your makeup worse than annoying the heck out of people when they are trying to sleep?


I worked Airbus aircraft when I was a F/a. Yeah, they're squeaky. But this was beyond ordinary squeaky. This was downright scary. She's flown on airbusses numerous times too, and never dealt with that. And it wasn't that they were doing their makeup, they refused to come out and help pax that needed anything. One drink service, no trash pickup, wouldn't even come out when the call buttone were rang.

Oh- and the mike tyson thing happened to my dad.

Or, people like Airlinelover. If you read his post, none of those stories of "horror in the air" happened to him. They've happened to other people. I wonder if he's ever even flown HP?

Cactus739, No, none of these horror stories happened to me. I never claimed they did. But hearing these stories, along with not really seeing/hearing anything good about them except from a few die-hard fans leaes me with no desire to fly them. Maybe something will happen sometime and I will fly them, or they'll be the only thing with cheap seats open for a last minute thing. Who knows. It would be appreciated if you don't use phrases like "People like Airlinelover" as that is generalizing.

Chris
Lets do some sexy math. We add you, subtract your clothes, divide your legs and multiply
 
PSAjet17
Posts: 368
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 3:22 am

On any given day, you are going to have good and bad experiences with any airline. Some more than others.

America West's reputation began with it's origin. Ed Beauvais and Mike Conway may have been great in their earlier leadership roles with other carriers, but I do not believe they had the proper vision to run their own airline. From the beginning, things were going to be done "our" way. If suggestions were made like "at (insert airline name) we used to ..." it was immediately rejected. And while Ed and Mike are no longer here, the damage has been done. (Remember that Beauvais has led 3 airlines into bankruptcy.)

The airline was new and had alot of inexperienced people now in critical roles. Without the proper training or direction, mistakes were made.

I worked for Delta in San Diego as an operations agent. If I did not input the JDT (jet departred terminal) message within 5 minutes of scheduled departure, Dispatch was on the phone to me asking what's happening with the flight. America West appears to not know where their aircraft are. Too many times I would hear a gate agent tell someone one story like the plane won't be here for 20 minutes and then 5 minutes later see it taxing into the gate and the agent having to run down the jetway, or the other story that it landed and is taxing in only to have it finally arrive 25-30 minutes later.

Communication between departments seems to be a big problem. The people who come in contact with the public don't always know what is going on. Sometimes they tell you that they don't know, sometimes they tell you what they think is going on and that gets the customers upset.

From the start, the employees, were some of the lowest paid in the industry. The company has beaten down the employees for many years. Where could they go in a very tight industry that was not in the best of financial times. To keep a paycheck coming in they stayed. They also organized with a variety of labor unions. And the battle between management and the employees continues.

Rapid growth and sometime over growth has left the airline thin in many areas. A vast list of cities served from the hubs leaves little protection when a plane or two have mechanical problems or the weather decides to cause havoc. Recovery from these issues is tough. And again, that is what the flying public remembers.

Just some of my thoughts on why HP has such a reputation.
 
hawaiian717
Posts: 3139
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 3:44 am

I am neither a "die-hard America West fan" nor an America West employee. I've flown them once, in January of this year, and thought they were fine. My biggest issue with America West themselves (as opposed to Mesa) is their tendency to schedule tight connections in PHX.

Here's the link to my trip report:
http://www.airliners.net/discussions/trip_reports/read.main/53760/

David / ABQ
 
jsnww81
Posts: 2307
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 4:40 am

Rio -

I can definitely appreciate your passion and concern for the company. As I said, the crews on my HP flights were very friendly, as I'm sure you are.

As for bad experiences... I've had bad experiences on American, Delta, United, etc., etc. as well. However, my last three trips on American went without a hitch - flights on time. Same for my last three Delta trips. I've flown HP three times, and all three times, the flight was delayed. Not the sort of 20-minute ground hold delay that's common here in Chicago... long, unexplained three- and four- and five-hour delays where nobody seemed to know where the aircraft was. Three times I've given my money to America West, and three times they've failed to keep to their schedule.

I'd love to give them the benefit of the doubt again, but I can't imagine spending another seven hours wandering through LAS with nothing to do, being told by HP's staff that "we expect to board this flight in the next 30 minutes" so I couldn't leave the gate area. It was infuriating, despite their efforts to be honest and square with the passengers. I applaud your dedication to your airline, but they've lost my trust, and consequently my business.
 
nwcoflyer
Posts: 677
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RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 4:43 am

I have flown HP a few times. Nothing extraordinary. But certainly not the worst. There are bad employees at every airline, trust me. My worst flights ever have occured at the beloved JetBlue.

My HP flights have been ontime, and the employees have been friendly. I got to my destination safely with by bags. That is all I want.
The New American is arriving.
 
AirWillie6475
Posts: 2372
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 1:45 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 4:59 am

A few of these posts say that SA)">HP is having or used to have issues within the company. If they are, fine, but from the outside they look very proffesional. I would say that SA)">HP is one of the best airlines that I have flown with. I would say that the service is better than Southwest not to mention SA)">HP offers IFE. My flights are always ontime and all the flight crews looked and acted like they were happy to be there.

Also I have flown with MESA twice and I think they complement SA)">HP just fine.
 
ba319-131
Posts: 8159
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 1:27 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 5:16 am

There is nothing wrong with HP, they are just as good as the rest of the majors.

Reply 2 suggests they are always late, i've never found that. My last 5 HP flights back in december were either on time or early.

The planes are clean, FA's as good as other majors.

Nothing wrong with HP at all.
111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
 
gothamspotter
Posts: 311
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2005 1:54 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 6:19 am

I had a terrible HP experience, but after bugging them for a few months they made good...

Some friends and I were booked on JFK-LAS, a 757 scheduled to takeoff at 9am, for a short vacation in Sin City. We checked in pretty early, didn't notice any significant crowds (saw Tony Bennett checking in too) and then boarded the flight, which was on time. After boarding the whole plane and instructing everyone to prepare for takeoff, the crew announced that they noticed a crack in the windshield, the flight is cancelled, and go get your bags! Now the plane had obviously been sitting there overnight, how did no one notice the crack earlier?! Seeing it from the front later, it was a significant crack right in the middle of the glass on the Captain's side. We got our bags, got back on line at the ticket desk, which now had about 300 people on it checking in for other flights as well as a huge number of people who had been bumped from our flight because of overbooking...and exactly 3 agents to help them all (at the time, about 2 years ago, HP only had 4 or 5 flights daily out of JFK) After dozens of frantic phone calls to America West and other airlines, and about 4 hours standing in line, we made it to the head of the line. During that time the departures board kept changing the status of our flight from "cancelled" to "delayed 1 hour" to "delayed 4 hours" to "cancelled" and back again. Ultimately there were no alternatives, we had to wait for the 7pm flight a "bigger plane" they claimed, which turned out to be an A321. They did give us vouchers for food in the terminal and drinks on the flight, vouchers for $ off future flights, but we still lost a day of vacation in exchange for sitting at JFK for 10 hours straight.

After FedEx'ing letters to their top brass, and a couple of months of phone tag, they gave us 3 checks each worth 1 night's stay at our hotel, about $165 each. Classy since there was no legal reason for them to do so. However, the seats, service and IFE on the planes were atrocious, so it is very doubtful I'd ever fly them in Y again.
 
LV
Posts: 1546
Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2001 6:02 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 8:00 am

I've never flown HP myself but my dad flies them all the time and he thinks they're great. He picks them over the legacies all the time and if it is down to HP and WN and everything being equal (price and schedule) he will pick HP.
 
jjeff
Posts: 73
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:52 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 9:02 am

I travel from the LA area to PHX maybe eight to ten times a year and have for probably twelve years. I usually split my travel between HP and UA. Yes, HP on time performance was horrible for years. So bad that on more than one occasion, when arriving late at PHX for a flight home on United, I would actually switch to an HP flight scheduled at the same time knowing that it would be at least 30 minutes late in departing. However, that's the past. HP's on time performance has dramatically improved.

A few more relevant points:

(A) HP in flight service has always been comparable to UA on this route.
(B) HP frequencies to So Cal are largely full-size, two-class planes (often A320s or 757s) where UA has gone the Express/CRJ route (not that comfortable at boarding in 114 degree weather) and WN of course flogs its narrower single class 737s.
(C) HP serves more So Cal airports from PHX (5) than UA (1) or WN (4).
(D) HP avoids the seat scrambling, kitschy flight attendant, leisure traveler hell that is WN.

America West really isn't a bad choice at all for LA to Phoenix.
 
F9Widebody
Posts: 1475
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2003 5:47 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 9:26 am

I absolutely cannot stand HP either. we flew them once from DEN-PHX-OAK. We started off getting on our flight late. The Pilot explained that the delay was for an FAA inspector, who had found a crack in the heat shield of the engine. The Pilot explained that the "Crack was not big enough, so we can still fly today." Then, the engine wouldn't start, so they had to get one of those air starters. HP's air starter then failed. So they had to bring one over from UA's concourse B. Our flight ended up leaving a few hours late. We get to PHX run across the terminal and our plane to OAK is pulling out of the gate. Great! So then we wait in line for 45 mins to talk to a Customer Service agent. They put the people in front of us up in the Marriot for the night. When we get to the front of the line, we get put into the "Twin Palms," some crappy joint on the ASU campus (we got our ticket on priceline - coincidence? I think not.) which at least had an IHOP. (I don't say nice things about IHOP much, so that tells you what this place was like) We had a room next to the elevator and got absolutely no sleep, and then finished the trip in the morning.
YES URLS in signature!!!
 
greg3322
Posts: 182
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 2004 3:35 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 9:36 am

I like HP. I flew them about 4 times in the past year with no major complaints. There were two late flight legs (all on Mesa flights), but it was a minor problem (30 mins). The service has been fine and in most cases better than I have seen on UA or AA lately. I prefer to fly out of LGB, which means a hop to PHX, but it has always been a good experience. Their F class, although nothing close to AA or UA in service, is very reasonably priced and makes the trip that much more comfortable.

Jjeff - UA flies out of LAX, BUR, ONT, and SNA.


-greg3322-
 
nzblue
Posts: 563
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2004 12:44 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 10:22 am

I flew HP for the first time from LAX to SJO via PHX in January. I booked on the airline's website and I found the price to be lower than the other carriers, however I was concerned about my 54-minute connection time in PHX, especially after years of hearing nightmare stories about delays, cancellations, service, etc at HP. My departure flight LAX-PHX was at first delayed 20 minutes, then 40, then 70 with infrequent announcements providing sketchy details. I thought for sure I would miss my flight to San Jose. When we were finally boarded, I sat in the mini-economy class cabin of the 757 just behind First Class, which felt very cramped.

We landed in PHX a full 90 minutes late. My only hope was counting on the whole America West delay factor, and as it turned out, my connecting flight to San Jose (a flight which originated in San Francisco) was also delayed leaving SFO, so I made my connecting flight purely by luck. The flight from PHX to SJO was completely wide open as so many connecting passengers from other America West cities were so delayed the airline would not wait for them, so I had a row of three to myself, a blessing considering the miserable pitch for a 6'-3" individual.

Not any huge surprise, but there was no meal service for the 5hr 40min flight, only a "cafe" buy-on-board. I bought a chicken sandwich for $5 which was soggy and quite awful, and I refused to pay another $5 for the movie. The return flight SJO-PHX was on time, but I suspect the only reason it was is because the plane RON's at SJO before returning to PHX in the morning, so the plane was already there. The return flight was more crowded, on time, no meal service (I declined to buy anything this time), and by the time we were over Mexico City I had memorized all the answers for the repeating in-flight quiz on the movie monitors.

My connecting flight back to LAX was a joke. The sole gate agent was the most unkempt agent I had ever seen boarding an aircraft. His hair was not combed, half of his shirt hung untucked, and he ate his lunch at the counter in full view of all the passengers. Our flight was, of course, delayed due to a mechanical issue which was first described as "a problem with the wing" then later changed to "a broken restroom." The gate agent told us the delay was "20 minutes." Five minutes later he announced the delay was "30 minutes," and a few moments later after talking to a mechanic he came back on the PA and said the delay was going to be "20, 30, or 40 minutes." When it was finally time to board a full 70 minutes later, an older lady who had been waiting in a wheelchair was not given priority to board first. The gate agent allowed everyone else to board first, then the woman in the wheelchair was boarded. Call me crazy, but doesn't this sound a bit backwards?

Overall, I was very disappointed with this, my first experience flying America West. After hearing all of the horror stories concerning America West, and then flying on them, now I have my own story to share, but I don't plan on adding any more to my travel experiences as I don't plan to fly America West again unless they are the only option.

I know that one bad experience should not be the determining factor for not ever giving something another chance, but after hearing so many bad stories about HP so many times, it is very hard not to ignore them when making future travel plans. I would not discourage anyone from finding the cheapest fare if money is an issue....but as with all things, buyer beware!

If anything, my travels to and from Costa Rica are only that much more exciting having flown HP!

Regards,
NZblue
It's an entirely different kind of flying; all together.
 
Cactus739
Posts: 2245
Joined: Mon Jan 19, 2004 6:41 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 10:34 am

Quoting NZblue (Reply 36):
Call me crazy, but doesn't this sound a bit backwards?

Depends. Where in the plane was she seated? If she was in the front, makes more sense to board her last so everyone else can get on without having to step over her. If they had her seated in the back row against the window...maybe first would have been better.
You can't fix stupid.... - Ron White
 
September11
Posts: 3293
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 12:49 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 10:54 am

America West's mission is pretty confusing to me. In the long term, did they want to be full service airline or did they want to be an LCC airline?
Airliners.net of the Future
 
User avatar
malaysia
Posts: 2616
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 1999 3:26 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 11:19 am

I constantly fly HP from LAX-JFK, IAD-LAX, LAX-LAS, IAD-PHX, PHX-ONT/LAX
currently

I love them, the planes are decent and seats are comfortable, its pretty good for an low fare provider, even I am NON-REV, but I use to fly them on actual tickets manytimes, only problem I had was twice, my interline bags failed to make the flight I was on from SFO-PHX and LAX-PHX from Asia years ago even
the connection time was 3-4 hours. 1 made it on later SFO flight, and the other had to be mailed to me directly from the BSO.

Its a shame they pull out of IAD-LAX, so I have to find another way to get to LAX on time. so I am giving up my old miles to fly AA from IAD-LAX in April
There Are Those Who Believe That There May Yet Be Other Airlines Who Even Now Fight To Survive Beyond The Heavens
 
Boeing73G
Topic Author
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:25 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 11:44 am

Quoting September11 (Reply 38):
America West's mission is pretty confusing to me. In the long term, did they want to be full service airline or did they want to be an LCC airline?

Read an unofficial history of America West at http://www.cactuswings.com/hp/index.html

(Quote from article) A combination of ideas were used in the formation of America West. Cross-utilization of employees, brought to new extremes by PEOPLExpress, would be a major feature of America West. Pilots would also work dispatch, while Customer Service Representatives (CSR) would work as flight attendants, ramp agents, gate agents, ticket agents, or reservation agents - depending on the day. Unlike PEOPLExpress, though, America West was a full service airline, with free cocktails, free newspapers, king-sized overhead bins, and assigned seating.

Don't forget about First Class!
 
ramme
Posts: 78
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2000 9:18 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:40 pm

Why is HP so bad? Because they inconvenience travellers by overbooking.
 
NWAFA
Posts: 1843
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 10:30 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:41 pm

Ramme,

EVERY airline does that.
THANK YOU FOR FLYING NORTHWEST AIRLINES, WE TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS!
 
swacle
Posts: 367
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2003 1:41 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:13 pm

Quoting GothamSpotter (Reply 31):
got back on line at the ticket desk, which now had about 300 people on it



Quoting GothamSpotter (Reply 31):
"bigger plane" they claimed, which turned out to be an A321

First, a 757 holds ~180 pax, so why 300 there?

Second, since when did HP operate 321's?

DC
Aircraft Flown: SF3 DH8 DH4 328 ERJ CRJ CR7 CR9 E70 E75 D9S M80 712 72S 732 733 734 735 73G 738 739 739ER 752 318 319 32
 
jetdeltamsy
Posts: 2688
Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2000 11:51 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:14 pm

HP used to be very unreliable. i'm talking in the late 80's and early 90's.

this new CEO, along with the employees, deserve a little respect.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
4jaded
Posts: 246
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2004 7:31 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 2:48 pm

HP basically has earned a reputation for poor service based upon some past service issues as well as some current ones. The biggest issue that hangs over their head is a lack of training when it comes to off sked operations. Most HP employees are decent people that try hard with what they have however when something does not go as planned they tend to fall apart at the seems. Their training is very linear and they are taught exactly what they need to know in order to get the job done in normal operating circumstances. They are not often cross trained any more and this fundamental lack of understanding the big picture shoots them in the foot everytime.It's rather like an octopus with 8 arms operating completely independent of each other, working hard but failing in the end to get the brains objective completed properly. They pretty much offer basic transportation from point A to point B usually with a stop in PHX first and for the most part its unremarkable one way or the other. Since they wrote off in a landing incident a few years back the worst A320 ever assembled /this was a truly scary aircraft/ the fleet is for the most part pretty reliable. I have heard that the 757's often have reliability issues however I have only flown once on that equipment /delayed/ and really cannot say if it is true or not. However the Nevada 757 which they called Battle Born used to be called Battle Broken by staff. I must say that one thing HP has going for it is in the end the customer relations department usually tries very hard to make things right after any incident of poor service. That is one thing that Airtran could learn from HP.
 
kevin752
Posts: 684
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2003 3:18 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Mon Mar 21, 2005 3:50 pm

I flew HP once and eventhough it was a short flight i had a wonderful time on them and i would not hesitate to fly them again.
Kevin752
"Keep Climbing"
 
flyboyaz
Posts: 2077
Joined: Sat Sep 13, 2003 11:32 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Tue Mar 22, 2005 2:00 am

The reason we had such a bad operation was because of Bill Franke, our CEO that came about after the bankruptcy in the early 90's. He is basically a bean counter (and a mean one at that) with his sole vision to bring HP back in the black. He succeeded but he also dragged our name through the mud. Over-expansion, pay cuts coupled with NO employee relation skills, and outsourcing of MX all contributed to a poor operation. We made lots of money in the late 90's but most of it was skimmed to investors and not put back in the airline to improve performance. He truly created a mess.

Ed Beauvais and Mike Conway (our founders) did an excellent job of building HP in the beginning. Unfortunately things went sour after the Gulf Crisis and we had to file for bankruptcy. To their credit, when they were in charge, our customer service rating was top notch. I remember hearing about HP winning awards when I was still in middle school. They were THE airline I wanted to fly on back then. It's sad that things turned out the way they did. But like I said Doug is doing a great job to turn things around, it will just take time. Given the poor financial state of the industry, it will probably take a bit longer than it took CO to turn around in the 90's.
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
cumulonimbus
Posts: 508
Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:13 pm

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Tue Mar 22, 2005 2:39 am

I never saw HP as a bad airline at all. I flew them to PHX once from BWI and they seemed to be a fine Airline indeed with good service and on time perfomance. But as with any airline that is associated with Mesa they can get a bad name in some areas.


Mike
 
Jeremy
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed May 16, 2001 10:27 am

RE: Why Is HP Regarded So Badly?

Tue Mar 22, 2005 2:40 am

I worked at HP 1994-1999 in LAS and SEA.
We were treated terribly by management, and so we passed it on to our customers.
I really liked working there, but it was just not run well from the top, and so I left to WN, just like a lot of other HP employees.
You are now free to be sexually harassed and then terminated for filing a complaint--Southwest Airlines to me.

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