gilesdavies
Posts: 2274
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:51 pm

US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 5:52 pm

I get the Airliners.net Daily Aviation News emails and don't usually read the US news and just read the UK news based articles, but today for some reason the below news article from the USA Today caught my eye.

It is a real scaving attack on US Airways' reliability across the Atlantic from their PHL base, they may not have highlighted CLT because the number of routes is so small by comparison... I appreciate the press can sometime bend the truth, but USA Today seems to quote a number of figures and one would assume these have come from a reliable source.

The shock to me was the delays they incurred this this summer and the small chance on some routes, of actually arriving on time. You only have a 17% chance of arriving in Glasgow on time this summer and a 24% chance of landing into London Gatwick on time. With the average delays being 89mins and 68mins respectively! Some of the other European routes were not much better...

It also goes on to mention about crew shortages, and how many flights leave with the minimum number of crew, which is regularly made up of trainees and some flights do not even have crew who speak the local language of where they flying from or to... I thought this would be illegal and be interested to know how the safety instructions are carried out on these flights. Im English speaking, but if I was flying for example VCE/ATH-PHL, I would at least expect one/two crew to speak the language of the local market. Maybe I am expecting too much, it may even be common place not to have foreign speaking crew of UK/US airlines flying to foreign speaking destinations - but I would be surprised!

I liked the section about the MUC-PHL flight that was delayed for over 50hrs due to the aircraft going tech, then US decided to fly the parts in on the next days scheduled service and this aircraft flying the parts in went tech en route!

I 'll let you read into it what you like, but I think it makes some interesting reading!

http://www.usatoday.com/travel/colum...2007-08-26-us-airways-europe_N.htm
 
tpaewr
Posts: 396
Joined: Sat May 19, 2001 9:01 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 6:11 pm

I don't think it matters much anymore, US has been bottom-feeder to Europe for sometime now.


Back in early June I flew ATH-EWR on CO, the guy sitting next to me in J, told me his travel agent offered him a much, much lower fare on US. So low in fact he knew something was wrong and refused it, paying more to fly CO.
 
BHMNONREV
Posts: 1209
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2003 9:17 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 6:25 pm

Excellent article, and all of the readers comments are spot on!!

This is one of the main reasons I took my Gold Preferred business from US to KL/NW (although they are not much better). Parker and Co. better do something quickly, lest they not have an airline left to run. The scary part of this article is the mention about the lack of maintenance...
 
D328
Posts: 214
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2007 1:50 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 6:44 pm

USAirways can't hold anything together. Not even on clear sunny days at PHL...They need to give up and do something with PHL, ie. move back to PIT, or atleast 1/3 of the ops back to PIT.
 
clipperno1
Posts: 641
Joined: Tue Jun 01, 1999 12:47 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 7:10 pm

I flew FRA-CLT-SEA-PHL-FRA with US Airways last month.

The flights in and out CLT were fine and on time. Both flights were heavily overbooked. I did choose a connection via CLT due to the fact that I absolutley hate Immigration at mega hubs like ATL, ORD, JFK etc. CLT prooved to be a very good choice and is a nice airport to connect. Also noticed that the US staff showed a lot of dedication there, which I hardly find anywhere in the USA anymore.

PHL was a different experience. The flight PHL-SEA came in 1 hour late and I already knew that my 55min connection time at PHL was going to be risky venture anyway. Arrived in PHL at gate B13 (I think) 10 min prior to the scheduled departure of my flight to FRA at Gate A24 (Murphy's Law). I was out of breath when I reached the flight and sat down in my seat. Sure enough 30min later we were still at the gate and the captain let us know that the cargo door of our B762 wouldn't shut. In addition to that a couple of overhead bins weren't closing. Pushed back around over an hour late. Joined the evening rush on the taxiway and were number eight-f'n-teen for departure.

I wonder how many of the listed dealys in the article involved the B762. I'm not the guy who bashes an airline for operating 15+ years old. I work in air cargo operations and consider every aircraft younger than 15 years as a modern, just-off-the- line aircraft  Smile
But the B762 was definetley showing its wear and tear and just doesn't seem to be fit for the transatlantic stuff US is doing anymore. They are on the way out of the fleet by the end of this year so let's see how US is doing the next summer.
"I really don't know one plane from the other. To me they are just marginal costs with wings."� Alfred Kahn, 1977
 
HPRamper
Posts: 4603
Joined: Sat May 14, 2005 4:22 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 7:44 pm

Just another opportunity to blast US  Smile

All will the PIT talk please stop already? It's a pipe dream. US is just as likely to firesale all its Airbus and go all-Boeing as it is to move operations from PHL to PIT...hehe.
 
helvknight
Posts: 784
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 10:35 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 7:51 pm

Quoting Clipperno1 (Reply 4):
I wonder how many of the listed delays in the article involved the B762. I'm not the guy who bashes an airline for operating 15+ years old. I work in air cargo operations and consider every aircraft younger than 15 years as a modern, just-off-the- line aircraft

You could have something there. Looking at the article and checking the US site most of the really bad delays are either on either 762 or 757 routes. The 333 routes aren't too bad which you would expect as the Airbii are a lot younger than the Boeings.

It's a combination of the old planes that should really be retired and PHL which is oversubscribed and a shambles.

I did notice looking at the past articles that the writer does seem to have a bit of a thing about US, he takes a pop at them every time he can, mind.
I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member - Groucho Marx
 
764
Posts: 486
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2001 6:34 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:15 pm

Well, I have made the mistake of flying US transatlantically once and actually had my ticket transferred to a UA flight on the return segment because I hated the though of being stuck with US on another long flight. All their flights were late, the ground crews terrible (both unprofessional and uncourteous) and the customer service nonexistent. The cabin cres were mostly decent and one of the ladies on the PHL-ORD segment was actually quite pleasant. The worst must be the seats though. In the rear section of the 330s they have squeezed in even more rows, giving you unbelievably little space. I fly a lot and Us had the worst Economy seating ever. The rather excellent IFE is not much fun if your legs hurt the entire time (and the person in front of you won't stop trying to recline her seat even though she knows that your knees are a fraction of an inch from her spine....).

Thank You so much to the lady in MSP who let me transfer the ticket to UA.
 
extspotter
Posts: 617
Joined: Wed May 30, 2007 12:45 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:42 pm

I know this is only one experience, but when I was passing through MAN a few weeks back, the US flight to PHL was delayed by like 7 hours. I thought at the time that it was just a one off and it happens to everyone, however, when I do fly transatlantic I will probably try and steer clear for now.
AF BE BY FR MV PD SZ U2 VZ DHC6, 8-3/4Q, 732/8, 763ER, A319, A380
 
Flighty
Posts: 7720
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:07 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 9:13 pm

Their 757 seems not to be fully adequate for the services such as BRU either.

Basically they are pushing the 767s hard, and they can take it, but the PHL weather does cause problems of all sorts for the hub.

How is customs at PHL with all this additional Europe traffic this year?
 
warreng24
Posts: 573
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 9:38 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 9:18 pm

Quoting Helvknight (Reply 6):
The 333 routes aren't too bad

The A333's are just as bad. The A333 flight from PHL to SJU is delayed quite often. There is a thread on FlyerTalk about avoiding the A333 to SJU.
 
cityguy
Posts: 72
Joined: Sun Dec 25, 2005 3:12 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 9:29 pm

It cannot be said enough. PHL, US and Parker are all a disaster. I am now going to EWR for my transatlantic business.
 
IADLHR
Posts: 612
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2005 10:25 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 10:33 pm

Quoting Cityguy (Reply 11):
It cannot be said enough. PHL, US and Parker are all a disaster. I am now going to EWR for my transatlantic business.

Right on, right on. In a few weeks my wife and I are going to LIS. We live in DC and rather than change in Europe we were thinking of taking the train to PHL and flying PHL-LIS. I am a 1k flyer with UA and have been for quite some time. The idea of getting the miles on UA was a factor. Hoiwever, in the end we are flying CO-EWR-LIS. Over time I have heard horro stories and more horro stories about US. It just seems that they have not hit bottom yet on their reliability and customer service.

I also have close to 150,000 miles on US and have not flown them for a few years. In January I was faced with "using or losing" my miles. To avoid losing them, I cashed in some and my wife and I flew DCA-PBI for a long weekend. We were afgraid we might encounter something unplesant. However, the flights were on time, customer service the absolute worst. The PA system at the US gate was not working, the plane left from another gate than what was posted etc. etc. etc. Amazingly both flights, despite the problems, arrived on time. However, i do not plan to push my luck anymore until another close to 18 months pass and it will be time to cashe in some more miles before we "use it or lose it"

My job take me to NYC quite often and sometimes to BOS. I notice the travel on Amtraks Acela Express is way, wa up. I have to wonder how much of it is a direct result forn the awful, shabby, terrible customer service of US in DCA,LGA, BOS. I know I have met more than a few pax that were riding Amtrak becasue of poor, poor customer service and reliability on US, at least in the NE corridor. ,
 
skoker
Posts: 279
Joined: Sun Apr 09, 2006 5:49 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 11:29 pm

You don't have to fly with your miles. You could do any sort of account activity and have them renewed for another 18 months.
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Tue Aug 28, 2007 11:53 pm

Quoting Gilesdavies (Thread starter):
I thought this would be illegal and be interested to know how the safety instructions are carried out on these flights. Im English speaking, but if I was flying for example VCE/ATH-PHL

It is not illegal, by any stretch. It is good customer service to have crew who speak the language of the destination onboard. As for the safety demo, the FAA only requires the safety demo to be done in English, at least for US carriers (again, language of destination is good customer service). This is one of the reasons the safety card is done in pictures (hopefully easy to understand by all, regardless of language spoken).
You can't cure stupid
 
coa747
Posts: 380
Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2005 3:11 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:15 am

I flew out of PHL a month ago and got the typical bad experience I have come to expect from US Airways but what made it even worse was the BS explanation that we got from the flightdeck for the delay. The guy up front had the balls to blame PHL airport and the airport authority and the city and suggested we write to them and express our anger because they give Southwest preferential treatment and allow them to use the short runway but not US Airways. I laughed as did the dead heading pilot next to me, because we know it was a bunch of BS. That situation is a huge competitive disadvantage for US Airways at PHL for passengers to sit on your plane and watch Southwest planes come and go for hours while you don't move an inch. But that just goes to show you the difference between a well run organization and a walking disaster like US Airways. I avoid US Airways when ever possible, and would never even consider flying them internationally. I am dumb founded how they continue to stumble along for decades.
 
rafflesking
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:08 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:24 am

You guys just need to fly with me.

I recently flew PHL-MXP on a 762 and PHL-CDG on the 333 and had wonderful on-time flights. The cabin crew did not speak Italian on the MXP flight which resulted in a little confusion when taking drink orders, but that seemed to be about it.
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:31 am

Quoting RafflesKing (Reply 16):
The cabin crew did not speak Italian on the MXP flight which resulted in a little confusion when taking drink orders,

Did the crew attempt to speak it? (This is in no way against US (as in US Airways) crews) I speak bar cart languages. I can get by in Japanese, Italian, Hebrew, Arabic, Mandarin, etc.. You fly routes long enough, you pick it up. Or at least ask someone to help out. That and a smile goes a long way.
You can't cure stupid
 
by188b
Posts: 550
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2003 10:46 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:33 am

I flew PHL-LGW a few years back on US A330. It was an overall excellent flight, on-time and great service.
next flights : BD LHR-TXL J, FR SXF-STN Y, SN BRU-LHR Y, MA LHR-BUD Y, BA BUD-LHR J, BA LCY-SNN-JFK J, BA JFK-LHR J, BA
 
PSA727
Posts: 845
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2006 7:49 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:55 am

I've made 3 trans-Atlantic roundtrips this summer. 1 with US and 2 with CO. And
actually, it was CO that had the delays for me, not US. Because of a mechanical
delay on a 764 AMS-EWR flight, i didn't get into DCA until the following afternoon
and had to stay overnight in Newark. On an eastbound flight to Europe, I arrived 6
hours late because of a delay. Do I blame CO? No...things like this happen. I make
about 15 trips a year to Europe, with most of the flights arriving close to schedule.
ATC decisions as well as weather are usaually the cause of most of my delays.

As for the article...I read it and thought it to be a little "unresearched" but typical for
a USA Today piece. The writer talks about on-time departure performance, but does
not include on-time arrival performance; which to me is the more important issue.
For example: My DUB-PHL flight at the end of July was about an hour late departing,
but arrived into PHL about 15 minutes behind schedule. I didn't even miss my PHL-DCA
flight, plus it took me about 5 minutes to clear immigration! The problem was waiting
for my luggage before customs, which is a problem with US at PHL. Normally, I just
have a carry-on piece so that's how I usually avoid that problem, but I know that most
people don't.

Does US have issues it needs to resolve at PHL? It sure does. Does it stop me from
flying them? No, because if I pick any airline, I can find faults with all of them...
UA at ORD and IAD, DL at JFK, CO at EWR, BA at LHR, blah,blah,blah.
fly high, pay low...Germanwings!
 
panam330
Posts: 1967
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2004 11:58 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:55 am

Quoting Clipperno1 (Reply 4):
They are on the way out of the fleet by the end of this year so let's see how US is doing the next summer.

No, they most certainly are not. In fact, US is refurbishing the interiors with new Envoy seats (that look like they're 1000 steps ahead of the current junk) and leather seats in Y.
 
Adam T.
Posts: 796
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 7:01 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:56 am

I flew CLT-FRA and back on US earlier this summer and the experience was okay. Our flight was delayed about an hour going to FRA and overall customer service was fairly good. I had some very nice flight attendants on both flights and some not so nice ones as well.

The aircraft was an A330-300 which I have to say on the outside looked fantastic, inside was another story. The cabin was old, dirty,parts of side on a lav. door were missing, and I thought the overhead bins were going to fall off when we took off. Needless to say I was disappointed with the cabin on this particular A330.

Quoting Clipperno1 (Reply 4):
CLT prooved to be a very good choice and is a nice airport to connect. Also noticed that the US staff showed a lot of dedication there, which I hardly find anywhere in the USA anymore.

CLT really does have some great staff! For awhile a couple of years ago they got a little rude but have really improved in the past couple of years! I always have pleasant experiences with CLT based crews as well.
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:06 am

Quoting Gilesdavies (Thread starter):
which is regularly made up of trainees

The quote regarding that is:

"Still more were hastily staffed with trainees or reserves when the original crews timed out after long ground delays".

This happens with any airline. It is not unique to US Airways. When crews time out, you send in the reserves. Airlines staff reserves for that very (one of many) reason.

The writer of this article must not fly much, that or has no clue how airlines work. I'd expect perfection from him at his workplace always, based on his article.
You can't cure stupid
 
flydreamliner
Posts: 1928
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 7:05 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:11 am

I'm really hoping that US Airways incredible incompetence causes them to cave so that some real airline (like Delta....) can come buy them out.

Somehow the combined, new US Airways has all the disadvantages of both old US and America West.. it's uncanny. With my luck, I moved from PHL, where my hometown airline was nothing but a headache to MSP, where I get more of the same, just with airplanes painted a different color (and with blue camo seats).

Quoting Helvknight (Reply 6):
Quoting Clipperno1 (Reply 4):
I wonder how many of the listed delays in the article involved the B762. I'm not the guy who bashes an airline for operating 15+ years old. I work in air cargo operations and consider every aircraft younger than 15 years as a modern, just-off-the- line aircraft

You could have something there. Looking at the article and checking the US site most of the really bad delays are either on either 762 or 757 routes. The 333 routes aren't too bad which you would expect as the Airbii are a lot younger than the Boeings.

Really, the thread starter points to two routes as the worst for delays, GLA and LGW, and I'm pretty sure PHL-LGW is an A333 route. The A333s are no better than the 762s. Those 762s are still as strong as they ever were mechanically, however their interiors really are in rough shape. There is a picture floating around a.net of a US 762 with a movie screen made of 8.5 X 11 sheets of copier paper taped up on the wall. Exactly the kind of intercontinental service you expect crossing the atlantic..... I'm embarrassed as an American that "US" is on the side of that airplane... I'd be sick to think of them as our flag carrier.
"Let the world change you, and you can change the world"
 
flyboyaz
Posts: 2077
Joined: Sat Sep 13, 2003 11:32 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:18 am

Much of the blame can be placed on the ATC system.....I mean you read articles and see stories on the news about it almost daily....it's not unique to PHL, but they do seem to get it worse there for some reason.

People love to hate us...so even when things get better, we'll still get picked on by the same bunch of jerks that we do now.
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:19 am

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 23):
I'd be sick to think of them as our flag carrier.

All US (American) carriers are flag carriers.
You can't cure stupid
 
panamair
Posts: 3767
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 2:24 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:51 am

Quoting Flyboyaz (Reply 24):
People love to hate us...so even when things get better, we'll still get picked on by the same bunch of jerks that we do now.

You can only blame the 'haters' for so much....but those 762s ARE in very bad shape at least interior-wise, even from most objective observers. I flew three transatlantic Envoy flights (yes, all paid Envoy trips) in the last month and a half, all on the 762s, and frankly I haven't seen such a run-down and dilapidated cabin since the last days of TWA and Pan Am. At least those carriers had an excuse - they were broke, but US has no excuses, pulling in 9% operating margins in the last quarter and making $$ despite so many opeartional issues.

On all the flights, the IFE was out (on two of them, the system was completely out for everyone on the plane, and the FAs didn't even bother to mention it because, as one of them told me, it has become such a common occurence that we (they) actually think it's part of the routine, and on the other flight, half the cabin had sound while the other half didn't.) Then there's the usual fraying Envoy seats, the abundance of duct tape on armrests of Envoy seats, filthy (and I do mean filthy, sticky) PTV screens, as well as some seats that have malfunctioning reclines and legrests....

Service-wise, some of the FAs try hard but you can tell that they are also worn down by the poor product and having to apologize time and time again to passengers. There is also minimal staffing of the FA crews on most of these flights: for example, on the 762 in Envoy, there are only 2 FAs for 23 passengers (compared to 4 for 28 on AA (763); 4 for 35 on DL (763); 3 to 3.5 for 24 on CO (762)). On the A330s, it's only 9 FAs for 289 passengers...

[Edited 2007-08-28 18:53:32]
 
iadguy73
Posts: 111
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2005 2:48 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:56 am

Quoting Gilesdavies (Thread starter):
It is a real scaving attack on US Airways' reliability across the Atlantic from their PHL base

Gee, what a shocker! I think it's so expected and a fact of aviation that it wouldn't even deserve to be called news. USA Today should point out something more out of the ordinary.

Quoting Flyboyaz (Reply 24):
Much of the blame can be placed on the ATC system.....I mean you read articles and see stories on the news about it almost daily....it's not unique to PHL, but they do seem to get it worse there for some reason

This has been discussed before...ATC has nothing to do with it. It's the airlines who schedule more flights into the airport than it can handle. Waiting for gates on arrival, and other delays at the gate is strictly an airline ops issue unless weather is a factor. And no, I'm not a controller nor do I work for the FAA. While the equipment ATC use is outdated, crowding the the airspace by the airlines does not help. Maybe the future of aviation is capacity, not frequency as Airbus hopes to fulfill that with the A380. No, I don't work for Airbus.  wave 
 
whappeh
Posts: 1058
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 4:47 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:56 am

Quoting PSA727 (Reply 19):
Does US have issues it needs to resolve at PHL? It sure does. Does it stop me from
flying them? No, because if I pick any airline, I can find faults with all of them...
UA at ORD and IAD, DL at JFK, CO at EWR, BA at LHR, blah,blah,blah.

Hey, finally some intelligence and rational thought!
-Travel now, journey infinitely.
 
LAXdude1023
Posts: 4460
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 3:16 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:57 am

Maybe its just me (but I know it isnt), but it seems like all of US's problems are PHL centric. And small wonder, PHL is a crappy airport. PHL needs an overhaul BADLY!!!! Ive flown US out of CLT and PHL several times. CLT was a breeze, it was great! PHL SUCKS!!!! Flights were delayed, the airport is in bad shape, the ground staff was horrible, etc. US really needs to do something about it.

Quoting Adam T. (Reply 21):
CLT really does have some great staff! For awhile a couple of years ago they got a little rude but have really improved in the past couple of years! I always have pleasant experiences with CLT based crews as well.

Yes they do! In my mind CLT shows off the good of US and PHL shows off the bad.
It is what it is...
 
silentbob
Posts: 1540
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 1:26 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:06 am

Quoting Flyboyaz (Reply 24):
Much of the blame can be placed on the ATC system.....I mean you read articles and see stories on the news about it almost daily....it's not unique to PHL, but they do seem to get it worse there for some reason.

The weather in PHL has been worse than in recent memory this year too.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 22):
The quote regarding that is:

"Still more were hastily staffed with trainees or reserves when the original crews timed out after long ground delays".

This happens with any airline. It is not unique to US Airways. When crews time out, you send in the reserves. Airlines staff reserves for that very (one of many) reason.

The "trainee" bit strikes me as unlikely. I don't recall US hiring any FAs for PHL in a long time. About a year ago they hired some for PHX but I thought most of the them in PHL were displaced from PIT or have been in PHL for a while.

That said, the aircraft do need to be cleaner.

Quoting Coa747 (Reply 15):
The guy up front had the balls to blame PHL airport and the airport authority and the city and suggested we write to them and express our anger because they give Southwest preferential treatment and allow them to use the short runway but not US Airways. I laughed as did the dead heading pilot next to me, because we know it was a bunch of BS.

WN does get preferential treatment in PHL, that's not even debatable at this point. One could even argue that all of the flights that WN has added to PHL has negatively impacted the ATC problem there. Parker has said that the PHL airport's desire to move DL to A West did cause them to add international flights at a faster rate than they had planned. That is why the aircraft are being pushed to the limits. I'm not justifying it, just giving some background.
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:10 am

Quoting Silentbob (Reply 30):
The "trainee" bit strikes me as unlikely

My point exactly. Yet another "travel expert" giving their view of the "reality" of it all. Just because you travel, does not make you an expert on airline operations.  Yeah sure
You can't cure stupid
 
AlexPorter
Posts: 1655
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:10 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:23 am

Quoting 764 (Reply 7):
Thank You so much to the lady in MSP who let me transfer the ticket to UA.

I wonder if this is the same woman who rebooked me due to a significant delay on MSP-PHL (causing me to very likely miss my connection) onto a SkyTeam itinerary culminating in a transatlantic Continental BusinessFirst seat, despite my original itinerary being entirely in Y class?

That said, my return flights CDG-PHL-MSP were all great, but according to my friends who did wind up on PHL-CDG, that flight left the gate on time but didn't takeoff until over an hour later.
Last Flight: SCX701 MSP-PHX B738 8Jan2008
 
phlwok
Posts: 439
Joined: Mon May 28, 2007 11:41 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:29 am

US used to be at least an acceptable transatlantic option, particularly when the 767 interiors were in better shape and the A330s were newer and in their original configurations. However, if you haven't been on them this year, you can't use a US flight from even a year ago to compare - the operation has pretty much collapsed this summer. I used to fly them regularly across the pond, but now go out of my way to take someone - anyone - else. Should they manage to win their China application, you can bet that I won't be using them, even though PHL-PEK is a route I do several times a year.

US has had its customer service issues for some time, but this year they've reconfigured the A330s to make them less comfortable, added ETOPS 757s in a not-so-comfortable config (avoid row 4 on that subfleet) and have scheduled the aircraft so tightly that one being out of service for even a day causes a ripple effect through the system. This isn't uncommon, but appears to affect US much worse than others. The MUC issues show how this can happen. PHL is of course part, but by no means all, of the problem, as we've had a good number of storms this summer and that has caused massive runway and taxiway delays that the airport can't easily recover from during the evening rush as it doesn't have enough of either.

The only points of hope going forward are new business seats (I believe starting with the 767s this winter) and maybe some A350s down the road. Short of a change in management or a massive overhaul of TA ops, though, do not expect this get better in the near to medium term. Operations might get a bit more reliable as they don't push the planes as hard once the seasonal destinations end in Sep/Oct, but that's about it.

If you have to fly US across the pond, you have a better chance of being on time via CLT, but PHL ops problems can and do frequently spill over to CLT given the number of US aircraft transiting PHL, so they are not immune by any means.

I'm someone with well over a million flown miles on US in the past decade and have purchased many, many full fare Y, F and transatlantic C tickets on them. I was loyal through two bankruptcies, but at this point, with management both incompetent and seemingly under the illusion that there's nothing wrong, I'm flying as much as possible on other carriers. I don't want to - I'm not a fan of unnecessary connections for instance being PHL based - but at this point it's more reliable, and often more comfortable, to fly someone else. For transatlantic, at least there are plenty of other good options out of PHL (BA, AF; to stay on Star, LH, good connections to UA). So what if I have to connect in FRA on LH to get to MUC? At least I'm pretty unlikely to take two days to get there. And if my client is paying $5K+ plus in business fares to get me there, making a habit of showing up even 6 hours late is unacceptable.
 
sk601
Posts: 896
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:30 am

Of course the statistics do not show very nice results, but one can only give a good conclusion when compared with other airlines and with a breakdown of the delays in "within airline control" (tecnical/staff shortage etc.) and "beyond airline control" (atc, weather).

I work in AMS and honestly, KL intercontinental ops are not performing very well this summer  embarrassed   no  .
KL eur ops is performing relatively good btw, despite the frequent KLCityhopper delays.
 
silentbob
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:04 am

Quoting PHLwok (Reply 33):
US has had its customer service issues for some time, but this year they've reconfigured the A330s to make them less comfortable

That will change for next year.
 
toltommy
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Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2003 9:04 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:11 am

Quoting Gilesdavies (Thread starter):
It also goes on to mention about crew shortages, and how many flights leave with the minimum number of crew, which is regularly made up of trainees and some flights do not even have crew who speak the local language of where they flying from or to...

EWRCabinCrew is right, there is no requirement to speak any language other than English on a US carrier.

As for the comments about the flight being regularly made up of trainees, thats simply incorrect. International flying pays a premium, and has more time off betweent trips, the senior FA's love int'l flights. As for the trainees, don't forget that the HP/US FA seniority merger hasn't happened yet. US is hiring new FA's, but they are not PHL based. Those new FA's are only flying on West metal right now. PHX based. They don't work on East metal. East still has FA's on furlough.
 
flyingcat
Posts: 350
Joined: Tue May 29, 2007 10:33 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:21 am

Quoting Silentbob (Reply 35):

What are they changing for next year?
 
Adam T.
Posts: 796
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 7:01 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:43 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 29):
Maybe its just me (but I know it isnt), but it seems like all of US's problems are PHL centric. And small wonder, PHL is a crappy airport. PHL needs an overhaul BADLY!!!! Ive flown US out of CLT and PHL several times. CLT was a breeze, it was great! PHL SUCKS!!!! Flights were delayed, the airport is in bad shape, the ground staff was horrible, etc. US really needs to do something about it.

I was thinking the same thing. I have not experienced PHL ops but I have noticed that most of the complaints I see on here about US Airways are PHL based or Tempe based. I don't see US problems at CLT, PHX, or LAS written about nearly as much as PHL.
 
SJUSXM
Posts: 261
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:52 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:58 am

Quoting Coa747 (Reply 15):

Sure US has its problems but blaming it on WN isnt entire BS. Philly was a mess before, but the airport decided WN could come in and add however many flights they wanted. They got 60 (?) a day now. and PHL is already in the busiest air corridor in the world with IAD DCA BWI JFK EWR LGA and BOS so close. WN does get preferential treatment. Look at the airport getting DL to move to A just so WN can have more gates to add more flights to congest things even worse.
AT7, ER3, ER4, ER5, CR7, E70, E75, F100, M82, M83, 722, 732, 738, 752, 762, 763, AB6, 320, 321, 772, 77W
 
silentbob
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:10 am

Quoting Flyingcat (Reply 37):
What are they changing for next year?

Parker said the 330 config was a mistake shortly after they rolled out but it was too late to fix this summer. He said the issue will be "addressed", I'd like to think that means there will be some type of change.
 
GLAGAZ
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:30 am

Is there a tech 757 in LIS? This just appeared on the GLA screens:

22:00 US739 LISBON VIA LISBON CANCELLED
23:00 US739 PHILADELPHIA AND PHILADELPHIA CANCELLED

Odd time and i imagine would be stopping for fuel, obviously cancelled now though.

Gaz

[Edited 2007-08-28 21:31:00]
Neutrality means that u don't really care cos the struggle goes on even when ur not there, blind and unaware
 
JGPH1A
Posts: 15080
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:40 am

Quoting GLAGAZ (Reply 41):
22:00 US739 LISBON VIA LISBON CANCELLED
23:00 US739 PHILADELPHIA AND PHILADELPHIA CANCELLED

Something went wrong...

** US - US AIRWAYS **
0739/28AUG
N LIS/LX THIS FLIGHT IS CANCELED FOR MAINTENANCE
N GLA/LX THIS FLIGHT IS CANCELED FOR MAINTENANCE
P PHL/PRE 900P L07:50

SKED LIS ORIG 1025A GTD 23 SHIP 999
PHL 110P TERM GTA A10
>

US739 is scheduled LIS PHL - did it divert to GLA ? The LIS "Landing Cancelled" is wierd though, why would they send that out ? Most odd.
Young and beautiful and thin and gorgeous AND BANNED ! Cya at airspaceonline.com, losers
 
PanAm1971
Posts: 440
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:00 am

You guys finally got me. I've read these forums for years... and this subject pulled me in and got me to sign up. I've traveled all over this planet. I've been on great airlines... like Pan Am when she picked up her first 747-100's... and I've flown Belavia to Minsk with a seat pitch that still makes my neck hurt when I think about it. But I've never seen anything like I saw a PHL on my way to MUN on US last September. I flew in from LGA and had to go to the counter because I was nonreving.(My best friend is a pilot-no-not for US). There was a just a small line. Maybe 8-10 folks. Should have taken about 10 to 20 minutes to clear through. There were four ticket agents. Not a problem. I had about 1:15 to make my connection. Nothing happens. Literraly. The line is dead stop. Two folks are being served by one agent. The others are typing away or walking around. Half an hour passes. Two more people are now being served. The line behind me is now getting pretty long. I see two elderly folks, Germans I think, get up to the desk. They asked for seats together. The agent-a fat, in fact obese, female ticket agent, yelled at them at the top of her lungs. And she kept yelling. The other agents just kept going on like it was just another day. The two elderly folks looked shattered. My friend and I couldn't say a thing-he could have gotten in trouble. A Brit behind me asked the ticket agent if that was really necessary. You can guess what happened next. I'm a proud patriotic American... a former US Marine to boot. I've never been so ashamed in all my life. The worst part was-no one at US lifted a finger to correct an obviously out-of-control situation. It wasn't a case of low morale. There WAS NO MORALE! I even got the vibe of "us against them." I know US has been through a lot. However, there is no excuse for this. PHL, as an airport, is a nightmare for hub ops. That's another subject though. BTW-we made our flight. I'll never forget that scene. Sorry to drone on.
 
TUNisia
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Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 3:24 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:02 am

Quoting Flyboyaz (Reply 24):
Much of the blame can be placed on the ATC system.....I mean you read articles and see stories on the news about it almost daily....it's not unique to PHL, but they do seem to get it worse there for some reason.

People love to hate us...so even when things get better, we'll still get picked on by the same bunch of jerks that we do now.

You seem to believe everything that comes out of the sandcastle in Tempe. Those in Tempe have no clue how to run a TATL flight properly. Have you even flown on a european carrier on a TATL flight and then compare it to a flight on US? Did you see the pic of the US flight using 8X11 sheets of printer paper for a movie screen on a flight to ATH?

My family/friend and I were going to fly US this summer to Europe but we opted out at the last minute and paid more to fly with SAS. We wanted peace of mind, and sadly that isn't what you get when you fly with US... hopefully that will change. I WANT to see US turn around and become a great choice to Europe. Until then, they won't be getting my money.
Someday the sun will shine down on me in some faraway place - Mahalia Jackson
 
Flighty
Posts: 7720
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:11 am

Well I checked most all of today's US Europe arrivals.

ZRH is about 3 hours late. LIS diverted to GLA for some reason. And the FRA 333 was canceled. 2 non-completes in one day is not good.

But, the rest of the operation looks very good -- on-time or early, for the other 20 or so Europe flights. The 767 in particular seems to have had a perfect day with only 1 delay.
 
SkyyMaster
Posts: 1082
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RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:32 am

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 23):
Somehow the combined, new US Airways has all the disadvantages of both old US and America West.. it's uncanny.



Quoting TUNisia (Reply 44):
You seem to believe everything that comes out of the sandcastle in Tempe. Those in Tempe have no clue how to run a TATL flight properly.

It's been over two years since this merger took place. Parker and company should have had their sh*t together long before now. You can't blame all this mess on PHL or bad weather or ATC. The airline certainly has a problem, at it starts at the top and trickles all the way down. My employer refuses to book any of our employees on US, regardless of price and destination, even when more convenient. And to think these guys actually believed they could buy and integrate Delta into their system. If any airline in this country returns to BK court in the next few of years, US will be the one to do it. Their only hope is to axe Parker and get a competent management team in place.
 
frntman
Posts: 204
Joined: Thu Jul 10, 2003 10:23 pm

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:40 am

Quoting PanAm1971 (Reply 43):
The worst part was-no one at US lifted a finger to correct an obviously out-of-control situation. It wasn't a case of low morale. There WAS NO MORALE! I even got the vibe of "us against them." I know US has been through a lot. However, there is no excuse for this. PHL, as an airport, is a nightmare for hub ops. That's another subject though. BTW-we made our flight. I'll never forget that scene. Sorry to drone on.

Which ticket counter did this occur at? The domestic one at terminal B/C or the international in A-West?
 
Flighty
Posts: 7720
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:07 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:42 am

Quoting SkyyMaster (Reply 46):
Their only hope is to axe Parker and get a competent management team in place.

What do you mean, axe Parker. He has already achieved the impossible. Maybe he is no Doug Steenland or but he is an okay CEO. Doug has been lying low but he can hopefully see that his airline's #1 problem is customer service.

US needs to hire people from the hotel and hospitality business -- real live hotel management master's degree holders. Place a few of them -- not internal former F/As or what have you -- as managing directors in charge of US customer service and you will see things come around. Or, they can keep ignoring reality.

Oh, the people of US are pretty good. But their playbook just isn't high class enough for the stylish jet flying business they want to be a part of. It's time to improve the product while there's still time.
 
BlueElephant
Posts: 1662
Joined: Fri Dec 29, 2006 7:16 am

RE: US Airways - European Routes In Meltdown?

Wed Aug 29, 2007 5:55 am

Quoting D328 (Reply 3):
USAirways can't hold anything together. Not even on clear sunny days at PHL...They need to give up and do something with PHL, ie. move back to PIT, or atleast 1/3 of the ops back to PIT.

 checkmark 

The Reason why all the flights are getting delayed out of PHL is obvious. There are simply too many flights trying to get out around the mid evening departure rush with really 1 usable Runway for Departures. I think that PHL should really use BOS and PIT as backups for their International Flights so that it eases the use on that Single Runway.

My Suggestion is move some of those 330 Flights to PIT and some of the 757s to BOS. This would probably ease the tension in PHL and allow for less departure delays.

I bet it doesn't help when it comes to NYC traffic and slot times.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 9):

How is customs at PHL with all this additional Europe traffic this year?

Customs is not actually that bad. They have a good facility there at PHL.