Robbie86
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Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 10:22 am

Me and a friend had a minor discussion a few days ago regarding if the airline would celebrate you or not if you are flying on your birthday. He told me that his father got a cake from SK and another friend got champagne served by LH.

My question is, do airlines usually "celebrate" passengers who are flying on their birthday?
 
Gingersnap
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:21 am

I do know my mother was served a bottle of champagne by VS, due to it being her birthday.

That's the only example I do know of.
Flown on: A306 A319/20/21 A332 B732/3/4/5/7/8 B742/4 B752 B762/3 B772/W C152 E195 F70/100 MD-82 Q400
 
tim171080
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:50 am

Well i'd say it depends a lot on the frequent flyer status you have with that airline.
Statistically, there's a birthday passenger on every twin aisle aircraft. (~365 seats)
 
BAViscount
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:52 am

Quoting robbie86 (Thread starter):
My question is, do airlines usually "celebrate" passengers who are flying on their birthday?

From reading trip reports it appears that some do (I've read of people being given birthday cakes, cards signed by the crew etc.), although whether that is done as a matter of course or only if prompted by someone travelling with the person whose birthday it is I guess is another question. I know that I have taken my Mother on a couple of trips on her birthday and nothing was done for her - maybe I should have been a better son and made the fact that it was her birthday known to the crew!  
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777STL
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:06 pm

I've flown on my birthday plenty of times with several different airlines, including a few foreign ones. No one cared and I didn't care to tell them.
PHX based
 
Quokka
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:21 pm

Quoting BAViscount (Reply 3):
maybe I should have been a better son and made the fact that it was her birthday known to the crew!

Some airlines will make arrangements to celebrate if you let them know ahead of travel, either at the time of booking or at least a couple of days before hand. Otherwise it is up to the crew if they spontaneously do something with whatever they have on hand.

A few years ago, my mother was travelling on SQ with a friend and as the "Singapore Girl" noticed that they seemed to be having fun she made a comment in jest that "we have just married". From then on they were showered with champagne and cognac. No wedding cake though. LOL
 
CX Flyboy
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:09 pm

Cathay gives a birthday card and gifts for the very special passengers as far as I know.
 
JL418
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:11 pm

I've witnessed a passenger being given two small bottles of champers on Lufthansa Italia but when I flew them on my birthday last year I didn't get anything extra, not even a refill of apple juice! So, I guess it's up to the crew.
 
Spacepope
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:17 pm

I was on an Asiana flight SEA-ICN last year where the FAs all dressed up in masks/costumes and wished everyone on the flight with a birthday that week well. They probably made 6-8 stops through the cabin. We were about an hour out of ICN stilll, I think it also might have been an attempt to wake everyone up.
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CXfirst
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 3:40 pm

I've seen cake been given, but it is if traveling party requests it in advance (and I guess some airlines would do it, others not). Although, I've only seen cake on long-haul, but then again, most of my travel is long-haul.

This year actually I was flying on my birthday. I tend not to make a fuss, but funny thing was that two rows ahead of me, a passenger received cake from the crew. I'll admit I was a bit jealous, seeing as that cake should have been mine as well.  

-CXfirst
 
Gonzalo
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 3:58 pm

I know this is not exactly what you are talking about, but LAN add 1.000 kmts. to my LANPASS account every birthday since I'm in the FF program, some 10 or 11 years ago...
Better than nothing !!  

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SRQKEF
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:09 pm

My dad and I flew RKV-AEY-RKV on NY (Air Iceland) on his birthday 2010. He got a extra free chocolate (there are usually 1 for each passenger, he got 2)  
Nothing compares to taking off in an empty 757 with full thrust!
 
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RedTailDTW
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:40 pm

Actually, the last time I flew Southwest was the day I turned 21 on my way to LAS. While we were taxiing to the runway, the FA's had all the pax put their window shades down and turn on their flight attendant call buttons. The plane sang happy birthday to me and they gave me a couple free alcoholic drink coupons.

Turns out my dad had told them it was my bday of course, but a very nice touch and something I will always remember from WN. Too bad I didn't know so I couldn't record it...


- Mason
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timpdx
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:42 pm

Flown OZ and LH on my birthday, nothing, nada, not even when checking my passport at check-in (where the date is obvious).
 
N1120A
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:51 pm

I think they generally do something if they know ahead of time.

Quoting tim171080 (Reply 2):
Statistically, there's a birthday passenger on every twin aisle aircraft. (~365 seats)

Most twin aisle aircraft don't have so many seats  
Quoting Quokka (Reply 5):
A few years ago, my mother was travelling on SQ with a friend and as the "Singapore Girl" noticed that they seemed to be having fun she made a comment in jest that "we have just married". From then on they were showered with champagne and cognac. No wedding cake though. LOL

I think this is pretty common.
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YULWinterSkies
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 7:10 pm

Only flew once on my birthday, and that was two NW RJ flights. Nothing special happened to me.
Oh wait, no, both flights were delayed... (this is how I got my second flight actually and did not get stuck in MSP for my birthday)
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nws2002
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:12 pm

If it is mentioned, I will usually give the pax a free drink. That's about it at CO, but I assume they receive an email or a card in the mail if they are a OnePass/Mileage Rewards member. I know I receive a card every year in the mail from WN.
 
MadameConcorde
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:31 pm

I had it happening twice with Singapore Airlines. One was on the A380 inaugural return flight Sydney-Singapore and the following year also on the A380 inaugural's first anniversary flight. The cakes were big and delicious - chocolate both times - there was singing and drinks and I shared the cake with all those around me.

Other airlines used to do it too. I remember it once on an Air France flight I had a birthday cake but that was very long ago. Not sure if they do this anymore.
There was a better way to fly it was called Concorde
 
aloges
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:35 pm

I flew LH from MUC to ORD on my birthday earlier this year. When I let the F/A serving the first round of drinks know it was my birthday, he asked his coworker to get a bottle of champagne (of which I got a glass, half of which later on ended up in my lap due to my own stupidity) and a small box of Lindt truffles for me.

Since it had been quite a day due to different events, that was truly a perfect moment.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
Eirules
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:59 pm

I flew SQ SIN-SYD in my birthday and upon presenting my boarding pass at boarding I was wished a happy birthday. Midway through the flight I was presented with a birthday cake and champagne by 3 Singapore girls. Was a really lovel touch I thought
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pliersinsight
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:16 pm

I have been on several Southwest flights where somebody on board turned 100. It went something like this each time:

PA: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Phoenix. We forgot to mention we have somebody aboard our flight today who turned 100.

(there is a pause in the announcement and passengers look around and say things like "ooohh wow")


PA: On behalf of Southwest and the flight attendants, we kindly ask that you wish our captain a happy birthday when you exit the aircraft at the gate.

(hilairty ensues)



I must admit, I still laugh at that one even after having heard it several times before.
 
Scipio
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:20 pm

I had a 30-hour long 30th birthday, starting out in Europe and ending in the US. I flew United across the Atlantic. I was traveling alone and had not mentioned to anyone that it was my birthday. Nonetheless, the cabin crew came up to me, wished me a happy birthday and gave me a bottle of Dom Perignon to take home, in addition to generously pouring the stuff all along. No songs or cakes, though...

Admittedly, I was flying First Class, had a Star Alliance Gold card, and this was in the good old times when United was still serving Dom Perignon in First Class.

Presumably, the check-in staff had alerted the cabin crew, or the cabin crew were alerted of my birthday through some Star Alliance database...
 
DAL763ER
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:35 pm

I once flew DL on an eastbound TATL the day before my birthday (getting to Europe on my birthday). The man at the check-in desk wished me "Happy Birthday for tomorrow" but I didn't get anything from the crew or such. Still, it felt good  
 
spacecadet
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:38 pm

When I was a kid, I remember one birthday where three of the flight attendants got together and sang happy birthday to me in flight. They also gave me a bunch of little gifts, like pilot wings, a little plane toy, and other small things. I am guessing this was prompted by my parents, but they never told me anything about it before or after. I don't remember getting a cake, though, but maybe I did get a cupcake or something.

I've flown on my birthday a couple other times and I remember getting pilot wings once or twice in addition to that first one. I never had a big celebration other than that one, though (probably because I was older and my parents didn't say anything in advance).

Incidentally, the first time I got pilot wings, they were really nice, metal ones just like the pilots wear. The last time I got them, they were cheap plastic.
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planejamie
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:01 am

My mum on AF got a "happy birthday" at CDG when boarding a flight to MAN, when the gate agent checked her passport, but other than that, I can't think of any other times I've heard of a celebration on board a flight!
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:18 am

AS sends electronic discount certificates to their FF customers on their birthdays.
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planeguy727
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:43 am

i flew on my birthday two weeks ago and not a mention by anyone (and I'm fine with that)
I want to live in an old and converted 727...
 
rfields5421
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:55 am

I've found that most cabin crews on any airline are willing to do what they can to make a birthday special if someone tells them about it.

Same as with a restaurant.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:11 am

In Switzerland the national railway has a Happy Birthday fare that permits unlimited travel anywhere in the country on your birthday for only 33 Swiss Francs second class (about USD37, EUR27) and 49 Swiss Francs first class (USD55, EUR40). It's also valid on most private railways, buses, and on the boats that operate on many of the lakes.
http://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and...ass/happy-birthday-travelpass.html
 
ORDJOE
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:18 am

Was flying CX first on my birthday. Yyz to HKG ( pure coincidence with a bachelor party, in all honesty best possible way to do a birthday) I am OW mid tier status. No nothing, nor did I ask for anything.
 
joffie
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:31 am

Back in the days, I flew QF from SYD-MEL on the 743 and they took us to visit the pilots. Was nice - of course nothing like that happens!
 
HKG212
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:34 am

Quoting CX Flyboy (Reply 6):
Cathay gives a birthday card and gifts for the very special passengers as far as I know.

Two nice birthday incidents on Cathay in the past few years:

1. I was traveling HKG-DXB with a colleague who was a Diamond member of the Marco Polo Club. At check-in they noted his birthday and we were both bumped from business to first. I don't remember anything special on board though (champagne was free-flowing anyway, this being first class...)

2. Traveling back from DPS to HKG, in coach, with a friend whose birthday fell on that day. The purser came to greet me and introduce herself (they often do that to OneWorld Emeralds), and asked as usual to let her know if she could help with anything. I got up and found her in the galley (to keep the surprise...) and told her that well, in fact, yes, she could help, it's my friend's birthday, could they maybe bring us a glass of champagne?... About half an hour later, she showed up with two more FAs, with champage and a very cute birthday card (see below). The champagne was regularly filled for the rest of the flight. My friend is not even a Marco Polo member himself... Very classy.

Birthday on CX
 
incitatus
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:37 am

British Airways upgraded my aunt and her companion to premium economy last year GRU-LHR because it was her companion's birthday. They were on award seats with Aadvantage miles. They did not realize it and came out of the plane at Heathrow thinking British Airways had an awesome economy service. When we talked I asked about the seat assignment and they said they were in row 11. Then I told them it was not regular economy.
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777ord
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:27 am

When I turned 21, I was flying ORD-MCO for the next days MCO-MIA-SXM flights with my friends. I was carded, and it was announced over the PA that it was my 21st upon completion of the flight. Other than that, I've never seen it.
 
aviateur
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:36 am

I was first officer on a flight to Europe not too long ago. Prior to landing, the purser asked if we could make an announcement congratulating so-and-so passenger on her 16th birthday, which happened to fall exactly at midnight during our crossing.

We made a PA.

Not sure if she got any parting gifts, or if her dad was given a bottle of champagne. Probably something like that.


PS
Patrick Smith is an airline pilot, air travel columnist and author
 
7478Contrails
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:22 am

Flying Spirit from FLL to NAS there was a little girl on board that was celebrating her birthday and the captain came on the PA system and sang Happy Birthday to her which I thought was a nice touch
 
triple7man
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:52 am

I think it depends on the airline. Also when I worked at AA I could document the OSI (Other Service Information) with "passenger travelling on birthday/honeymoon/50th anniversary etc.," and usually an inflight announcement would be made and a bottle of champagne offered.

I had an experience with Cathay Pacific that I will never forget. On 27 Feb 2001 I was flying CX LAX-HKG. I asked when we boarded if I could visit the cockpit. A flight attendant came by my seat after takeoff and told me it would not be possible because this was a training flight. Another flight attendant came by my seat later and asked me if I was ok, and if was upset or disappointed I couldn't visit the cockpit. I told her I was disappointed, but I understood this was a training flight, and I was ok. In conversation I mentioned that I will be flying from HKG-LAX on 1 March which was my birthday. When we were about 3 hours out of HKG, the flight attendants called me back to the galley and gave me a box of chocolate, and a birthday card, which they made from scratch, signed by the cabin crew (much of it in their native language), and the captain. The purser came by to wish me happy birthday. Later on in the flight, a flight attendant came to my seat and told me that since it is my birthday, they will take me up to the cockpit. The cockpit crew greeted me and wished me happy birthday. That was a flight to remember.

On my return flight, I think I did mention it to a flight attendant, that it would be the longest birthday I ever had because of the time difference. I didn't get any further recognition for my birthday. I never expect or demand anything special, but the CX crew went above and beyond on the flight LAX-HKG.
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mke717spotter
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:40 am

I'm flown on my birthday the past two years and I've never gotten anything.
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T8KE0FF
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:22 am

My mom took me to Australia for my 13th birthday! We flew EK BHX-DXB-SYD. On the first leg, shortly after dinner had been served about 6 or 7 of the crew came to my seat and sang happy birthday to me! How embarrassing! Then they invited me and my mom to the galley to take some photos with them.. Then, on the second flight it happened again! Something tells me that they gave us a cake, but to be honest I don't entirely remember..
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bwvilla
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:59 am

On my birthday a few years back I went to check in for an LH CGN-LHR flight home, but they told me the flight was overbooked and that I'd been bumped. I protested politely to no avail and ended up being routed home via MUC, eventually arriving home well after midnight and so missed my own 40th birthday party! What hacked me off as much as being bumped was the brutally cold way that the staff handled and communicated the situation - this incident still colours my opinion of LH.
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AirPacific747
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:15 am

I flew with Air Canada from Vancouver to Maui on my 18 year old birthday.. no celebration by the airline, and not mentioned by anyone

I remember as a kid, I was member of Delta Airlines (kids club?), and they sent me a birthday card every year. Very nice touch.

[Edited 2011-10-21 01:22:06]
 
bennett123
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:42 am

No cakes on U2.

However, the pilot did make an announcement that "so and so" was 10 on Tuesday.

Everyobe clapped.
 
MadameConcorde
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:33 am

I have an upcoming birthday trip to Dubai. Wanted to do the First to Fly the 787 to HKG as it will fly on that day but to no avail so I set off to something else and decided that Dubai would be good for a few days and I get to see the QE2 and treat myself to some luxuries.

I am not sure there will be anything special on the flight to DXB as I am flying the day before and flying back some days after. Never mind as I will be in the fabled Lufthansa F complete with limo transport at the foot of the aircraft, superb service and foodies on board and even better on the ground with the fabled First Class Terminal in Frankfurt.

This is my treat - I owe it to myself as this will be a 10 years - younger of course!

        
There was a better way to fly it was called Concorde
 
Stratofish
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:39 am

I flew on a 2 leg LH flight on my 30th birthday, and it wasn't even mentioned by anyone, not even the friendly lady that booked me on an earlier flight that would happen to leave on the scheduled departure time of my original flight in order to make my connection at FRA. Mind you I had been partying hard the night before and was too tired to mention it to anyone myself and I only hold the blue M&M card.
The Metro might be the Sub(optimal)way
 
Type-Rated
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:45 am

Not quite a birthday but when my sister got married and flew UA to Hawaii I found out that you could preorder a bottle of champagne for the couple. I did a week in advance and paid the $65,00 charge. When the honeymoon couple came back from their trip I asked them if they enjoyed the champagne served onboard. My sister said all that happened was that when they were exiting the aircraft in HNL one of the F/A's handed them the bottle and just said "Here's your champagne" and walked away. This was back in 1978. The trip was ORD-HNL.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
JJJ
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:58 am

Quoting type-rated (Reply 44):
Not quite a birthday but when my sister got married and flew UA to Hawaii I found out that you could preorder a bottle of champagne for the couple.

AF upgraded us both legs on our honeymoon trip (BCN-CDG-SEA). I'm just a Gold FB holder, and there were several others on the flight.

Every FA seemed to know that and congratulated us, it felt just great.
 
Type-Rated
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:26 pm

I wasn't happy with the way UA handled that. When I ordered it, the res agent said it would be served to the couple with their dinner and a congratulations from the crew. Personally, I think the crew may not have been informed of this and found the bottle only when they were preparing for landing.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
infinit
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:31 pm

Travelled SIN-DPS on SQ last year on my birthday. I received a nice chocolate cake from two SQ boys and a SQ girl and champagne. It was really nice of them. Spent quite a significant amount of the flight chatting with the one of the male FAs. He happened to do his National Service (mandatory conscription in Singapore) with the Police force like myself and we we around the same intakes.

Quoting Gonzalo (Reply 10):
I know this is not exactly what you are talking about, but LAN add 1.000 kmts. to my LANPASS account every birthday since I'm in the FF program, some 10 or 11 years ago...
Better than nothing !!

That's an interesting way to celebrate too. May not be as personal but its effects are long-term. I would like that :P
 
deltairlines
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Sat Oct 22, 2011 2:09 am

The staff at the Delta SkyClub in Los Angeles sends some of their regular visitors a birthday card each year, signed by the Angels there. Got mine last month, and have had a couple of other friends get them as well.

Always great to walk into that club (at such a large airport) and be greeted by name every single time.
 
joelyboy911
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RE: Do Airlines "celebrate" Pax Birthdays?

Sat Oct 22, 2011 3:40 am

There was an advertisement for Cathay on BBC World News where the passenger was given a birthday card by a flight attendant, and "Happy Birthday : )" appeared on her AVOD screen. It seemed a nice touch, if a tad unrealistic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1QXfeFVsas

Not sure if this occurs in real life. Certainly she is a business class passenger. I'd be interested to know if this is standard procedure, or just shown in the advertisement to embody good service and going the extra mile. Certainly a few posts here have been about CX.

If she doesn't like birthday parties it kind of begs the question of why she told the airline it was her birthday, but I digress. I thought it was a good ad (and nice soundtrack too!).
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