mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:12 pm

Hey,

it has been quite some time that I took a US Airliner on a Transatlantic hop. I was just booking a ticket for my dad for Nov and realized that US Airliners are VERY expansive, as compared to the European Counterparts and some Asian Airlines - I am really surprised, why in general pay more for worse service??? Just to give you an example:

- No US Airlines below EUR 520 incl. tax for FRA-YYZ (UA, CO, US, NW, DL - the latter much more expansive). The cheapest was US, the others were higher
- European Airlines beginning aorund EUR 450 (BA, KL, AF)
- Nonstops AC and LH cheapest around EUR 510
- other alternative: AI BHX-YYZ GBP 260 - bot no interlining FRA-BHX (too bad they or PK don't operate on FRA-YYZ)
- Air Transat would have probably been the cheapest, but he didn't want to

Finally, I found a KL flight for EUR 420, which I booked. However, the first two legs FRA-DTW-YYZ are operated by NW, the return with KL via AMS. So the flight is via the US. Since it was significantly cheaper, he said OK - elsewise we started to avoid those trips via the US after really bad security screening experiences, upto harrasment at US Airports and with US Airliners)

In general, prices are a little higher due to fuel prices. Now, last flight I took with a US based airline was UA FRA-IAD-LGA / SFO-FRA. This was after 9/11. However, UA was quite decent that time, in my eyes - but security with AA (Domestic in JFK) was just insane. Now so many people told me and so many threads on the decline of service on Transatlantic hops of US Airliners.. how have things developed?

- Still free booze (yes/no -- who?). If not, he will be unhappy Big grin
- Service in general?
- How does the international transfer work? Does US-Canada count as domestic, and does custom have to be cleared in the US, or at the point of destination
- Transfer: how long does it take in DTW (minimum time)? I mean he has plenty of time, but still I wonder whether seamless transfers are possible nowadays in the US?

Thanks for some info/opinion. And yes.. my dad will fly a NW DC9 from DTW-YYZBig grin
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
flashmeister
Posts: 2671
Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2000 4:32 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 2:32 am

I just got back from a trip to Eastern Europe last Saturday, so I have some "fresh" information for you...  Smile

Just for a frame of reference, we flew PDX-ATL-CDG on DL, and then CDG-BUD on Air France. The return was vice-versa.

Here's how Delta shaped up:
-No free booze unless you're in BusinessElite. They wanted 5 Dollars or 5 Euros per drink.

-Service: Ground was hurried and rather rude on both sides. They want your butt in the seat and buckled in right this damn second. Inflight was nothing special. No hot towels in coach. Polite, but not overly attentive. Food was airline quality, but the snacks were fairly substantial and quick. One thing Delta's always good at is coming around a lot with beverages, sometimes with the cart, other times with coffee/tea/water on trays. That was nice. IFE was a few movies, audio channels, and moving map. Again, nothing special. The 777s we flew were actually completely filthy on the outside, but OK inside.

- US-Canada is still international. Where you clear depends a whole lot on the route that you fly (and I think your carrier, but I'm not sure).

- Detroit is a mystery... never been  Smile
 
Jano
Posts: 744
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2004 1:48 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 3:25 am

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):

Hey,

it has been quite some time that I took a US Airliner on a Transatlantic hop. I was just booking a ticket for my dad for Nov and realized that US Airliners are VERY expansive, as compared to the European Counterparts and some Asian Airlines - I am really surprised, why in general pay more for worse service??? Just to give you an example:

- No US Airlines below EUR 520 incl. tax for FRA-YYZ (UA, CO, US, NW, DL - the latter much more expansive). The cheapest was US, the others were higher
- European Airlines beginning aorund EUR 450 (BA, KL, AF)
- Nonstops AC and LH cheapest around EUR 510
- other alternative: AI BHX-YYZ GBP 260 - bot no interlining FRA-BHX (too bad they or PK don't operate on FRA-YYZ)
- Air Transat would have probably been the cheapest, but he didn't want to

It appears NW is the least expensive. For NW/KL it is NW that sets prices for eastbound trips USA-EU-USA, KL does that for westbound trips.

Quote:

Finally, I found a KL flight for EUR 420, which I booked. However, the first two legs FRA-DTW-YYZ are operated by NW, the return with KL via AMS. So the flight is via the US. Since it was significantly cheaper, he said OK - elsewise we started to avoid those trips via the US after really bad security screening experiences, upto harrasment at US Airports and with US Airliners)

DTW is a VERY nice airport.

Quote:

In general, prices are a little higher due to fuel prices. Now, last flight I took with a US based airline was UA FRA-IAD-LGA / SFO-FRA. This was after 9/11. However, UA was quite decent that time, in my eyes - but security with AA (Domestic in JFK) was just insane. Now so many people told me and so many threads on the decline of service on Transatlantic hops of US Airliners.. how have things developed?

- Still free booze (yes/no -- who?). If not, he will be unhappy Big grin

free on both NW and KL

Quote:

- Service in general?

Standard NW/KL service.
Eastbound: dinner (chicken or pasta) and a breakfast (jogurt, OJ, buscuit w/ egg )
Westbound: dinner and small pizza + ice cream

FA's browse the aircraft regurarly. They offer water and OJ. NW A333s have AVOD, which is very nice.

Quote:

- How does the international transfer work? Does US-Canada count as domestic, and does custom have to be cleared in the US, or at the point of destination
- Transfer: how long does it take in DTW (minimum time)? I mean he has plenty of time, but still I wonder whether seamless transfers are possible nowadays in the US?

DTW gotta be the easiest airport. I think he will have to clear the customs. It typically takes about an hour in DTW.
The Widget Air Line :)
 
laca773
Posts: 2032
Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2004 7:10 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 11:06 am

Out of all the US carriers I think you'll find the service on UA to be the best on Transatlantic/pacific out of all of them.

In my opinion the rest:
AA, DL, NW, US. I think out of this bunch AA is better than most but isn't consistent at all. Food is pretty minimal even on the hot meal services, flight crews are very senior for the most part and don't want to be bothered and this includes the front cabins. I believe that DL outshines AA on inflight service in BIZElite compared to premium cabins on AA. NW & US are also probably better than AA.

No complimentary booze anymore on any US carrier internationally.

International carriers are the way to go with the exception of IB. I have yet to hear anything on a positive note about them as well as they seem to be about as frugal as the US carriers.

LACA773
 
Airlineslover
Posts: 59
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2005 12:50 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 11:18 am

From my point of view this is what I can say:
My flights between America and Europe had been in USA Airlines most of the time and I can tell you that is better choose the national airline of the country that you have to flight I mean, if you have to fly USA-Germany choose LH or USA-France with AF.... the only airline that really YUCKS!!!!!!! Is IB's flts in whatever route that they have.... bad service, bad smells, bad meals and bad humor of the people who works in this "airline", I live now in Italy but I am Mexican and I flew several times MEX-YMX-MAD with IB's flt and always had a really bad experience with them.... now times changed and I choose AM's flt, but I always recomended to people who wants to fly to Europe that they have to fly in the national airline of the country that they want to visit (except Spain and IB's flts).... Cheers
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 7:45 pm

Thanks for your replies!

Quoting Jano (Reply 2):
For NW/KL it is NW that sets prices for eastbound trips USA-EU-USA, KL does that for westbound trips.

Jano, thanks for your detailed info. Now, this is surprising! Why not other way round (NW for trips originating from US, KL from Europe)?

Quoting Jano (Reply 2):
DTW is a VERY nice airport.

In 1997, it wasn't (I transferred from a NW DC-10 to a 727.. those were the days  Smile ). Good to know it has improved!

Quoting LACA773 (Reply 3):
No complimentary booze anymore on any US carrier internationally.

Wow! This is surprising! Even on Transpacific? Btw, your info does not match the one of Jano.


Now, on another note. In the unlikely event that NW gets liquidated (Ch 7?), what happens? the ticket is issued by KL. I guess my dad would be rebooked on the latter, unlike if he held a NW ticket?

I hope this doesn't happen though! No loss of employment in the US airline industry please - we need a strong sector globally!
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
N801NW
Posts: 558
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2004 8:56 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 8:37 pm

The Northwest WORLDGateway @ DTW opend 2/2002. It is very nice and very easy to deal with. My only international transit there has been to YYZ so I cannot tell you about customs/immigration there. NW/KL and UA are the only two US carriers that still have free booze in TATL Y-class. It is $5 (cash only) on US/Can. flights.

It is extemely unlikely NW will be liquidated.
 
Billy
Posts: 890
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 8:46 pm

I would never transit through the US to Canada or Mexico. In some cases you need to apply for a visa to change planes. As there is no airside transfer facility in the US you have to enter the US. As far as I am concerned, I would rather make my connection in Europe rather than in the US, even if that means missing the chance to ride a DC-9.

I have always found the US product more basic than the European equivalents. But most other comparisons are very subjective, depending on the aircraft, crew and your mood on the day. I like BMI, but they do not offer YYZ now.
 
bobnwa
Posts: 4460
Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2000 12:10 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 8:49 pm

Quoting LACA773 (Reply 3):
No complimentary booze anymore on any US carrier internationally.

Not true: NW and believe UA do not charge for booze. The NW policy was sated a few times in messages just before yours. Suggest you go back and read them!
 
mats
Posts: 543
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2003 11:20 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 8:54 pm

I think it's worth taking a nonstop from Frankfurth to Toronto. The hassle of flying to Canada by way of the United States can be overwhelming.

Here is how it will work in terms of "red tape"

1. Interview and baggage inspection (by hand) prior to check-in
2. European airport security
3. (Select airports) Second frisking/baggage inspection for US departures
4. (At the gate) Interview and additional frisking, hand baggage inspection, and/or shoe inspection

Flight

5. US customs and immigration
6. TSA Security screening
7. Flight to Canada.
8. Canadian customs and immigration.
 
Jumpseat70
Posts: 359
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 9:03 pm

You people kill me. You look for the least expensive fare, yet you want free booze. Those days are over. Read it and weep. You get what you pay for.
"Up, Up and away with TWA"
 
laca773
Posts: 2032
Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2004 7:10 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Fri Sep 23, 2005 11:47 pm

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 8):

Bobnwa: You don't have to be sarcastic and talk to me like you're my parent. My understanding was that they did charge for booze. What I should have written was the majority, charge for booze. Sorry Daddy.

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 10):

Jumpseat, right on. You hit it on the bullseye. I think the majority of people that get really upset are those who end up paying a full Y fare, vs. the heavily discounted fares. Those who are upset about shotty and frugal service in P/J cabins I feel have justified complaints.

LACA773
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:07 am

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 10):
You people kill me. You look for the least expensive fare, yet you want free booze. Those days are over. Read it and weep. You get what you pay for.

Bullocks. So why do Asian carriers offer cheaper prices and free complements? And, I did not say I want free booze, I asked whether it is provided.

Quoting Mats (Reply 9):
I think it's worth taking a nonstop from Frankfurth to Toronto. The hassle of flying to Canada by way of the United States can be overwhelming.

You have provided damn good arguments! In future, I will pay a little more instead (personally). My dad, however, has the position that it is his vacation and that he does ot have anything to hide. He might change it though after all the hassles he will have to undergo. A good experience for him (he hasn't been in the states for years, and he will realize how the "liberal" climate has changed form teh beginning of the 80s, when we moved).
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
TWA902fly
Posts: 2869
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 1999 5:47 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:08 am

Maybe it is because all the fares are similar except US Airlines have more taxes added to them - for connecting in a US airport with "september 11th fees" and other such charges. from what ive seen on this side - european airlines are about on par with american ones. ORD-LHR will cost about the same on AA,UA,BA

'902
life wasn't worth the balance, or the crumpled paper it was written on
 
Jano
Posts: 744
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:21 am

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 5):


Quote:

Quoting Jano (Reply 2):
For NW/KL it is NW that sets prices for eastbound trips USA-EU-USA, KL does that for westbound trips.

Jano, thanks for your detailed info. Now, this is surprising! Why not other way round (NW for trips originating from US, KL from Europe)?

No. It's no surpise. I guess I should have worded it better.

NW sets prices for trips with the outbound leg being eastbound, that means USA -> EU -> USA, which means trips originating in the USA.

KL sets prices for trips with the outbound let being wetsbound: EU-> USA -> EU, which means trips originating in the EU.

KL and NW have a Joint Venture for TATL operations. Both KL and NW adhere to the same standard of service, with a few exceptions, like on KL WBC one gets those small houses as "thank you" for flying WBC.

Out of all hubs where I have been in the USA (ATL, IAD, ORD, MEM, PHL, DTW) the NW's DTW is definitelly the easiest to transfer.
The Widget Air Line :)
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:29 am

Quoting Jano (Reply 14):
No. It's no surpise. I guess I should have worded it better.

Sorry.. no my bug. I did not read your response properly  Wink
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17055
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:31 am

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 10):
You people kill me. You look for the least expensive fare, yet you want free booze. Those days are over. Read it and weep. You get what you pay for.

I agree with your argument in principle. However if Euro and Asian carriers, who operate the same routes, have free booze, it's understandable that this is a competitive disadvantage for the US carriers. On VS, you get a free amenity kit, kick-ass IFE and free alcohol in Monkey Class. But then again you get smaller pitch than on AA. So the informed traveler will decide which he or she prefers.

Somewhat self serving but I think AA Exec Plats should get free wine regardless of class Big grin


For the record, AA over the pond ranges from barely acceptable to pretty good. Unfortunately this very much depends on the crew in general and the F/A in your section in particular. I have always found that the average Eurocarrier is just a little bit better, on average. While most US F/As are very nice, they tend not to be very service minded. Some are downright awful. These crews, with their seniority contracts, tend to be the downfall of the US carriers when it comes to the in flight experience.

As I have repeatedly stated on this board: If you don't measure and compensate cabin crews at least in part based on service quality, service will suffer. Why should they do that little bit extra if they never get recognized for it?

The point when I finally realized this was a losing cause was when I got reply from AA customer service stating (based on my inquiry) that they couldn't mandate their F/As to smile. That's just absurd! I'm not saying they need to paint the smiles on but a little smile goes a long way.


Signed "A Very Loyal AA Customer, for better or for worse"
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
UN_B732
Posts: 3529
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:58 am

I don't like however how people stick their ideology about getting free stuff and not paying for it into seeminly every thread related to service quality.

NW should be good, 333 is a nice plane, equivalent to, if not nicer than KL.
What now?
 
CO767FA
Posts: 388
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 1:45 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:25 am

Quoting LACA773 (Reply 3):
Out of all the US carriers I think you'll find the service on UA to be the best on Transatlantic/pacific out of all of them.

In my opinion the rest:
AA, DL, NW, US. I think out of this bunch AA is better than most but isn't consistent at all. Food is pretty minimal even on the hot meal services, flight crews are very senior for the most part and don't want to be bothered and this includes the front cabins. I believe that DL outshines AA on inflight service in BIZElite compared to premium cabins on AA. NW & US are also probably better than AA.

What, no review on CO? CO is consistently rated as one of the highest North American Carriers for service. Maybe you haven't flown across the Atlantic or Pacific with us.

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 8):
....UA do not charge for booze

Yes, they do.

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 12):
So why do Asian carriers offer cheaper prices and free complements? And, I did not say I want free booze, I asked whether it is provided.

It called "Government subsidies"!
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:33 am

Quoting CO767FA (Reply 18):
It called "Government subsidies"!

As the infant industry argument suggests, a sector that has not fulfilled its potential can receive subsidies, without distorting the market. No matter, even Asian Airlines without subsidies (Jet Airways, Singapore (?) AL) do much better, and even if some airlines did not receive subsidies, they would do better. You do not consider that the situation in their home-market countries is often different and hence legitimates the use of subsidies.. and: when the US decides to have a competition-led approach, why should Asian airlines be forced to do so to (OK, there are WTO laws)? But air transport has a different function in some countries, that goes beyond the business ethos
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
laca773
Posts: 2032
Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2004 7:10 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 9:52 am

Quoting CO767FA (Reply 18):

CO767FA: My apologies to you and the rest of our friends @ CO!! I actually didn't forget about you guys now that I think of it. I was mixing you in with the international carriers as your inflight service far out weighs that of any of the US carriers by a long shot with UA in a far second. You guys are the best in regards to the domestics on transatlantic/pacific flights.

Regards,
LACA773
 
FriendlySkies
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Joined: Fri Aug 13, 2004 3:57 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:15 am

Just to set the record straight on UA...

They started charging for TATL. TPAC is still comp though.
 
satx
Posts: 2771
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 7:26 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:41 am

Quoting FriendlySkies (Reply 21):
They started charging for TATL. TPAC is still comp though.

Forgive my ignorance, but...TATL, TPAC, eh?
Open Season on Consumer Protections is Just Around the Corner...
 
Avianca
Posts: 5270
Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 5:33 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:48 am

my last trip with an US Airline was nearly 2 years ago was with AA from LHR-MIA and BOG-MIA-LHR.... the ground service in MIA was a horror... the service on the B777 flights from and to LHR was good, good food but no free beer Sad . The BOG-MIA service on B767 wasn´t bad just the FA´s were not the greatest...

The last time I used DL on transatlantic was 5 years ago... the service was these days good, but AF (I had AF flights on the west bound flights...were much better)

regards
Avianca
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
LongbowPilot
Posts: 526
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:52 am

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 10):
You people kill me. You look for the least expensive fare, yet you want free booze. Those days are over. Read it and weep. You get what you pay for.

Amen!

I'm glad that planes have PTVs and Ammentities that provide the common day tech junkies with something to do on a flight. Me I'm still partial to my walkman and a book. Screw the 5 in screens and the impending head ache that come with trying to watch them.

It seems people believe that an airline runs on the alcohol service. I'm surprised considering that jet fuel is the reason we have high prices as well.. Maybe we should serve Jet Fuel for drinks and put the vodka in the tank. Oh well, Asian carriers are nice, but come on people... When was the last time you flew an "Asian" carrier domestically. Hullo, I think they are mostly INternational routes (as the thread states). Just my 2 cents... (left over from my last plane ride).
 
CO767FA
Posts: 388
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 1:45 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:28 pm

Quoting SATX (Reply 22):
Forgive my ignorance, but...TATL, TPAC, eh?

Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific
 
satx
Posts: 2771
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 7:26 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:59 pm

Quoting CO767FA (Reply 25):
Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific

Thanks! I should have figured that out, but for some reason it just didn't click.

So, that means we have...

NW free on TATL and TPAC
UA free on TPAC

And that's it for free booze on US airlines in Y.

What do I care, I bring my own.  Big grin
Open Season on Consumer Protections is Just Around the Corner...
 
AC787
Posts: 330
Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2005 10:25 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:45 pm

Quoting Mats (Reply 9):
I think it's worth taking a nonstop from Frankfurth to Toronto. The hassle of flying to Canada by way of the United States can be overwhelming.

Here is how it will work in terms of "red tape"

1. Interview and baggage inspection (by hand) prior to check-in
2. European airport security
3. (Select airports) Second frisking/baggage inspection for US departures
4. (At the gate) Interview and additional frisking, hand baggage inspection, and/or shoe inspection

Flight

5. US customs and immigration
6. TSA Security screening
7. Flight to Canada.
8. Canadian customs and immigration.

For these reasons I would rlly recomment against flying NW to toronto. I flew YOW-DTW-FRA on NW last winter and was impressed with the service. However when flying back I had terrible time because of the hassles of flying a US carrier. I got picked for a interview while in the check in line, had to go through two rounds of security with heavy frisking, then in DTW you have to get your bags and go through security and customs once again. On top of all this when I arrived in Ottawa I found out my bags didn't make my flight because the TSA felt it prudent to hand search my bag. I was on a 3 hour layover in DTW, they couldnt do it on time for the flight, give me a break. I wouldn't do it again, even though I thought the service was fine and the airport was rlly world class,the hassle of transit through the US is NOT WORTH it.
 
Stoicescu
Posts: 79
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2005 2:39 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:53 pm

I plan to go in vacation for 3 weeks to Romania around December 15th. I found a ticket on Yahoo Travel 770.25 $ round trip with US Airways.

I will fly :

1)From here to Philadelphia Intl. in a CRJ (operated by Air Wisconsin) a 1 hour flight

2)From Philadelphia Intl. to Rome Fiumicino, Italy in an A330 (operated by US Airways)

3)From Rome Fiumicino, Italy to Bucharest Otopeni in an MD80 (TAROM flight operated by Alitalia

And the return is the other way around except LROP - LIRF is operated by TAROM 737-300

Did any of you guys ever booked a flight with Yahoo Travel ? I know that if I cancel I will loose a lot of money but I'll take that risk. Is one of the cheapest flights (the majority are over 1000$) what do you guys think about US Airways?
 
vega
Posts: 1161
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:56 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 4:54 pm

Quoting Stoicescu (Reply 28):
what do you guys think about US Airways?

The flight to Rome on the 330 will be as pleasant as on any other U.S. based airline. I have flown this route numerous times in Envoy (Business) Class and twice in Coach Class. A potential difficulty will be navigating the complexities of Philadelphia's airport. You don't mention your origin, but I'll assume since you are coming in on a CRJ, you'll arrive into Terminal F. Your flight to Rome will leave from the International Terminal A - a long way from F. You'll need to take a Bus from a specially marked gate in F to A (West), which depending on when you arrive, can be a bit confusing. As soon as you deplane from Air Wisconsin, I suggest you contact a US Airways rep. for directions to the bus and your Rome flight.
We are but a moment in this vast Universe and when gone we will never have existed.
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 11:51 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 7:15 pm

Quoting AC787 (Reply 27):
For these reasons I would rlly recomment against flying NW to toronto.

Yes, as said before, I agree. However, I proceeded this time. Let's see what daddy says. As he will travel FRA-YYZ more often in future, it might affect his choice. Too bad AI does not interline with LH or BD to feed their BHX-YYZ  Sad

Quoting Stoicescu (Reply 28):
Did any of you guys ever booked a flight with Yahoo Travel ?

Yes, indeed I did, because I was commencingthe journey in a third country. Hence it was much cheaper. Tickets were couriered, and I was very satisfied with them (though I prefer the ethnic agents babaraba Big grin ).
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
Jumpseat70
Posts: 359
Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2004 12:52 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 7:32 pm

Dear Stoicescu,

I have two things to say to you....LOST LUGGAGE and DEAD MEAT if you have a problem with your ticket.

You better hang on to your bags because three transfers screams lost bags for weeks.

Secondly, I am sure your ticket is either a consolidator or , "CAN"T TOUCH THAT", ticket. (Check the rules before you buy)

Call the airlines and get a seat assigment NOW, if you purchase. Dont wait and become a statistic.

It's great to save money until your are met with an insurmountable problem and then you start screaming at the airlines about bad customer service in a ticket that we are unable to change.

You better hope that the three first numbers on the ticket number are from a strong airline with long tentacles.

From one who knows.
"Up, Up and away with TWA"
 
User avatar
Starlionblue
Posts: 17055
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 9:20 pm

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 19):
As the infant industry argument suggests, a sector that has not fulfilled its potential can receive subsidies, without distorting the market.

All subsidies distort the market. However, there are cases when it could be argued they are a good thing. This is a very fuzzy area of economic theory.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
mrniji
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 9:37 pm

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 32):
All subsidies distort the market. However, there are cases when it could be argued they are a good thing. This is a very fuzzy area of economic theory.

I agree with the quintessence of your statement. However, the airline industry is a very special case in some senses. Hence, one can have a proper debate about this. And yes, Starlionblue, you took part in such a debate ages ago, and I enjoyed (and RESPECTED) your inputs a lot  Wink :

Economic Liberalism Vs. Regulation (by Mrniji Oct 17 2004 in Civil Aviation)

This was one of the best threads on anet, in my eyes. Very educative and polite in language, a real debate

the area of theory might be "fuzzy", but damn interesting  Smile
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
Stoicescu
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:52 pm

My connection time in Philadelphia is around 3 hours and 20 minutes so I should be fine. I will have only carryon bagage so that won't be a problem. My main concern is that I only have 1 hour and 20 minutes connection time in Rome but I should be fine (if I'm lost I'll just ask and someone should help me)

There is also a flight to PHL - CDG and the connection times are less creazy

[Edited 2005-09-24 16:08:03]
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 1:43 am

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 33):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 32):
All subsidies distort the market. However, there are cases when it could be argued they are a good thing. This is a very fuzzy area of economic theory.

I agree with the quintessence of your statement. However, the airline industry is a very special case in some senses. Hence, one can have a proper debate about this. And yes, Starlionblue, you took part in such a debate ages ago, and I enjoyed (and RESPECTED) your inputs a lot

I agree the airline industry may be a special case, but you can find examples for the contrary. For example, Virgin Atlantic, Jetblue, Southwest, Ryanair and others have started from nothing without a penny of public money.

Thanks for the compliment btw. In any case maybe I'm not really qualified to discuss this stuff much anymore, since my degree in Economics is 10 years old. Things like that make me feel old, or maybe it's just that my first child is almost cooked...
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
SR 103
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 4:48 pm

Hey Subin,

As you know, I have done my fair share of NW/KL flying over the last few years. While most of your questions have been answered, I figure I would go ahead reiterate what most have said here.



Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
- Still free booze (yes/no -- who?). If not, he will be unhappy

NW still has free booze in economy as does KL.

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
- Service in general?

Hit or miss on NW, but that is standard with any US carrier, even the beloved CO that members rave about on this forum. I fly quite a bit of NW/CO/KL and will save my opinions for a later time to avoid an ugly war in this thread! I find KL's service however to consistently be one of the best, in fact I rate as my top European airline in terms of service.

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Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
- How does the international transfer work? Does US-Canada count as domestic, and does custom have to be cleared in the US, or at the point of destination

Yes he will have to clear immigration and customs in DTW, as will everyone else on the plane.

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
- Transfer: how long does it take in DTW (minimum time)? I mean he has plenty of time, but still I wonder whether seamless transfers are possible nowadays in the US?

International to Domestic can be time consuming; however, last time I did an AMS-DTW-MCO connection I had no problems. We landed at 10:45am and I was at my gate to MCO at 11:30. I consider that pretty smooth if you ask me, especially since this is the United States.

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 5):
In 1997, it wasn't (I transferred from a NW DC-10 to a 727.. those were the days ). Good to know it has improved!

Old Northwest Terminal:

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New Northwest Terminal:

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Photo © Muchswatch



Quoting CO767FA (Reply 18):
What, no review on CO? CO is consistently rated as one of the highest North American Carriers for service. Maybe you haven't flown across the Atlantic or Pacific with us.

I have, and while I think Continental is good, it is no better or worse than NW or US or UA. While my preferred carriers are NW and CO, there are certain aspects where I prefer one or the other. Thus in my opinion both equal out in the end. Sorry to burst your bubble. CO is good, but they have yet to prove to be great.

Also Subin, I have a few trip reports posted on NW and KL in these forums. While most are on Business Class, it can give you a general idea on service and connections at DTW.

SR 103
 
777Purser
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 5:10 pm

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 16):
As I have repeatedly stated on this board: If you don't measure and compensate cabin crews at least in part based on service quality, service will suffer. Why should they do that little bit extra if they never get recognized for it?

With seniority systems we are just a number. Never recognized UNLESS you..yes you, the passenger goes out of your way and write to the company when you have a good experience. Does not do much but it goes in our personal file which can be of use.

People seem to be more willing to write bad letters than good letters. While it is important to know what we are doing wrong, it is just as important to know what we are doing right.
 
777Purser
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 5:27 pm

Quoting Avianca (Reply 23):
my last trip with an US Airline was nearly 2 years ago was with AA from LHR-MIA and BOG-MIA-LHR.... the ground service in MIA was a horror... the service on the B777 flights from and to LHR was good, good food but no free beer . The BOG-MIA service on B767 wasn´t bad just the FA´s were not the greatest...

Yup, no free beer. And you know what? I am GLAD. Passengers on my flight Bogota based FA's. I have to say that when I have non rev (often) to South America I noticed the Foreign National FA's cut a lot of corners. They do not follow procedure when it comes to the service. They do one less beverage service than their APFA US based counterparts. I recently came back from vacation in EZE with the Argentine FA's... I was upset at how they destroyed the First Class Service...I was tempted to call Professional Standards on them, but decided to let it go.

Work Ethics are good in the US. We for the most part follow prcedure, and procedures are deevloped to stay competitive. Passengers when nice can see us go the extra mile...we bend over backwards for a nice passenger...You catch more flies with honey...
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:07 pm

Quoting 777Purser (Reply 37):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 16):
As I have repeatedly stated on this board: If you don't measure and compensate cabin crews at least in part based on service quality, service will suffer. Why should they do that little bit extra if they never get recognized for it?

With seniority systems we are just a number. Never recognized UNLESS you..yes you, the passenger goes out of your way and write to the company when you have a good experience. Does not do much but it goes in our personal file which can be of use.

People seem to be more willing to write bad letters than good letters. While it is important to know what we are doing wrong, it is just as important to know what we are doing right.

I agree that sending good feedback is important, and I sometimes do.

If you want to implement measurement by customer satisfaction, peer assesment works rather well at other airlines (CSA, Qantas) and plenty of companies in other industries. While there are risks of abuse these are normally minimized as F/As tend to fly with a large group of colleagues over time.

I see the unions as being the biggest hindrance for good customer service on US carriers. They have an interest in keeping the seniority system to protect their weaker members. Now, I have no problem with unions protecting members from abuses by the employer, but they have far too much power in the US airline industry.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
mrniji
Posts: 5382
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:35 pm

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 35):
Thanks for the compliment btw. In any case maybe I'm not really qualified to discuss this stuff much anymore, since my degree in Economics is 10 years old.

And this makes you MUCH stronger! Real life experience of your economic background knowledge! Some "personal empirical testing" Big grin

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 35):
maybe it's just that my first child is almost cooked...

Congrats for that..! Luckily I am not there yet  bigthumbsup  (nd won't be that soon  Wink - hopefully Big grin )

Quoting SR 103 (Reply 36):
Hey Subin,

As you know, I have done my fair share of NW/KL flying over the last few years.

Anoosh, thanks for your comprehensive response, Herr Kronberger!  Wink - It helped a lot.. will show my daddy your report.. he might know your parents anyways

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 39):
People seem to be more willing to write bad letters than good letters. While it is important to know what we are doing wrong, it is just as important to know what we are doing right.

I agree that sending good feedback is important, and I sometimes do.

I second these sentiments, 777Purser, and I have already written positive feedback to the respective departments.

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 39):
I see the unions as being the biggest hindrance for good customer service on US carriers.

I disagree, but that is another story for another thread  Wink
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
laca773
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 12:12 am

Quoting 777Purser (Reply 38):

777Purser, I personally apreciate what you have to say about what you have observed about sloppy, sub-standard service from a TRUE airline professional. I'm sure you provide wonderful service but the problem lies when one or more ruin for the rest of you. It's a real shame this has to happen. When you observe these things in regards to short cuts in service, etc., I'd sincerely hope the carrier you work for {I have a feeling AA} would have a confidential employee hotline to report things that are not being done appropriately, short cuts, rude, unacceptable service and etc. Most companies do have that now. I for one haven't had but decent service on AA more than a handful out of about fifty or so flights [using as a true example].

LACA773
 
SA7700
Posts: 2940
Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2003 9:38 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 12:45 am

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 31):
Dear Stoicescu,

I have two things to say to you....LOST LUGGAGE and DEAD MEAT if you have a problem with your ticket.

Funny that you should make such a statement. I checked my luggage in at SYD, through to SFO. Got on the plane/s and flew SYD-JNB-DKR-JFK-SFO for about 47 hours. My suitcase arrived in 1 piece, with me, in SFO.

A week ago I flew on a domestic flight JNB-BFN (1h05min) and my bag was lost. The airline delivered the bag the following morning at my home.


Rgds

SA7700
When you are doing stuff that nobody has done before, there is no manual – Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs)
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:05 am

Quoting SA7700 (Reply 42):
Funny that you should make such a statement. I checked my luggage in at SYD, through to SFO. Got on the plane/s and flew SYD-JNB-DKR-JFK-SFO for about 47 hours. My suitcase arrived in 1 piece, with me, in SFO.

A week ago I flew on a domestic flight JNB-BFN (1h05min) and my bag was lost. The airline delivered the bag the following morning at my home.

This lost bag thing is just like the bad F/A. The bag will arrive on time and in one piece the vast majority of times, and yet pax will only remember when the bag didn't. Likewise, most F/As are at least passably pleasant, and yet pax will only remember the annoying ones.

Can you say human nature?
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
777Purser
Posts: 215
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 4:47 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:33 am

Quoting LACA773 (Reply 41):
When you observe these things in regards to short cuts in service, etc., I'd sincerely hope the carrier you work for {I have a feeling AA} would have a confidential employee hotline to report things that are not being done appropriately, short cuts, rude, unacceptable service

Our Union has a department called "Professional Standards" Incidents are reported to them and the Union contacts the FA to discuss and hopefully resolve the issue among peers, rather than getting management involved right away.

We NEVER as union members go to management acusing a coworker. (the customer usually takes care of it with a letter -usualy exagerating the incident though-

Like I often say in this forum, Unions are not the enemy, they work together with management to improve safety, service and working conditions...and yes, they defend ALL its members, not the strongest, not the weakest.

Believe me, for the most part, we are proud to be able to continue the thave adition of years of service to our passengers. We do the best with what we have and work miracles to minimize customer perception of all the cuts we have implemented in catering or elements of service in order to regain profitability.
 
dfwagt
Posts: 72
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:46 am

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 16):
Somewhat self serving but I think AA Exec Plats should get free wine regardless of class

I am inclined to agree with you on this matter. I am AA ground staff at DFW, and let me tell you it is very hard to keep people like you comming back. I wish there were more I could do. I think that not providing free booze in economy class was a rather smart move by most carriers. It cuts down on pax getting intoxicated and then having to divert to remove that pax.
 
777Purser
Posts: 215
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 2:02 am

Quoting Dfwagt (Reply 45):
Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 16):
Somewhat self serving but I think AA Exec Plats should get free wine regardless of class

I am inclined to agree with you on this matter. I am AA ground staff at DFW, and let me tell you it is very hard to keep people like you comming back. I wish there were more I could do. I think that not providing free booze in economy class was a rather smart move by most carriers. It cuts down on pax getting intoxicated and then having to divert to remove that pax.

Yes, I am all for charging for alcohol, incidents had gone down since. We are in the transportation business and while we want to offer you a curteous, comfortable and enjoyable product, we are not a bar and we do not need drunk, aggresive people while at 35,000 feet in the middle of the ocean.

Let me break the news to you: Executive Platinums are not immune to the effects of alcohol. However, istead of suggesting we make the majority of the passengers in Main Cabin like second class citizens by offfering wine to a few Executive Platinums...either buy your booze like everyone else, or feel free to use your miles to get an upgrade where we will be happy to provide you with all the elements of service intended for a Premium Cabin.
 
brons2
Posts: 2462
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2001 1:02 pm

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 3:38 am

Quoting Stoicescu (Reply 28):
Did any of you guys ever booked a flight with Yahoo Travel ? I know that if I cancel I will loose a lot of money but I'll take that risk. Is one of the cheapest flights (the majority are over 1000$)

Yahoo Travel is actually powered by Travelocity. I have used both Yahoo Travel and Travelocity many times to my satisfaction. This year I booked BA BWI-LHR, DL AUS-CMH and AA AUS-MCI on Yahoo travel.

Sometimes I will use it to find fares and then go to the respective airline site because it's a few bucks cheaper, for example last year I flew NW/KL DFW-MEM-AMS-FRA and back FRA-DTW-DFW. It was $10 cheaper on NWA.com.

Quoting 777Purser (Reply 46):
We are in the transportation business and while we want to offer you a curteous, comfortable and enjoyable product, we are not a bar and we do not need drunk, aggresive people while at 35,000 feet in the middle of the ocean.

Hey! I'm a mellow drunk. Can I have another of those $5 beeeraaaaahs pllz??
Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Sep 26, 2005 5:02 am

Quoting 777Purser (Reply 44):
Like I often say in this forum, Unions are not the enemy, they work together with management to improve safety, service and working conditions...and yes, they defend ALL its members, not the strongest, not the weakest.

While unions are no doubt beneficial in many ways, I feel you are painting a little too rosy a picture. If the union protects bad (not weak, bad) employees, this brings down service standards and gives all the good employees a bad rep. Also it ensures that when staff has to be cut it's not the bad employees who get fired, but the ones with shortest service.

Of course if you don't go by seniority the systems is opened up to abuse by the employer, but the union should be able to counter such abuses by having a say. Also, as it stands the system can be abused by individual employees instead.

Quoting 777Purser (Reply 46):
Let me break the news to you: Executive Platinums are not immune to the effects of alcohol. However, istead of suggesting we make the majority of the passengers in Main Cabin like second class citizens by offfering wine to a few Executive Platinums...e

First of all, my comments about Exec Plat getting free booze regardless of class was made half in jest. But never mind.

I don't see how this whole "effects of alcohol" thing comes into the discussion of who to serve. I could either buy the alcohol or upgrade to a higher class of service. Will I get less toasted in Biz class or First perhaps? If no more alcohol to pax decreases unruly behavior, why not implement it in the entire aircraft? The argument doesn't hold water. It's a cost cutting measure (on the alcohol, not the diversions) pure and simple.

Also, think serving alcohol to pax with a lot of status might make give some other pax an incentive to fly more often on the airline. In any case, 99% of those other pax would never notice you weren't paying for alcohol.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
vincewy
Posts: 533
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2005 8:32 am

RE: US Airlines Transatlantic Service Quality

Mon Oct 10, 2005 11:43 am

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 12):
Bullocks. So why do Asian carriers offer cheaper prices and free complements? And, I did not say I want free booze, I asked whether it is provided

Efficiency, low frequency-ensuring seats are filled, using widebodies for both long haul and regional.

Quoting Jumpseat70 (Reply 10):
You people kill me. You look for the least expensive fare, yet you want free booze. Those days are over. Read it and weep. You get what you pay for.

Correct, even worse, people want the most convenient schedules, thus airlines have to offer higher frequencies in US. People want low fares, freebies, conveneint schedules, if the mass market in US can let go just one of them, US airlines will be in much better shape.

Quoting CO767FA (Reply 18):
Quoting Mrniji (Reply 12):
So why do Asian carriers offer cheaper prices and free complements? And, I did not say I want free booze, I asked whether it is provided.

It called "Government subsidies"!

????, aren't US airlines getting bailed by creditors? SQ, CX, CI, and even BR have been operating profitably without any outside interventions.

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