United Airline
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Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:55 am

OK UA has decided to keep its first class. Is this a permanent one? When they take delivery of new planes will F be installed? I mean at least on international flights. I remember UA used to offer Godiva and Don Perignon on first class. Do they still do that? Also Mcdonald's happy meal for kids?

Also which international business class will the choose? PMCO's or PMUA's? I mean when they install them on new planes. Which one has more features?
 
gigneil
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:59 am

We have no idea if they will in fact continue to have planes delivered with F. I think that they will.

The 763s and the 787s are getting the CO biz class. We don't know what will happen in the future.

NS
 
blueflyer
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:52 am

I think we way end up with more two-class aircraft than we do now for international service, but the demand is there to keep F at least to LHR, FRA and BRU in Europe, and NRT and KIX in Asia for the time being. It's quite possible there is enough demand in more Asian cities for F (HKG perhaps) but I am not as familiar with that market to judge.
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TWA772LR
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:53 am

I think for now it is UA first, CO BizFirst, EconomyPlus, then Economy. Correct?
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trent1000
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:04 am

Quoting United Airline (Thread starter):
I remember UA used to offer Godiva and Don Perignon on first class.

You must have flown some time ago... two years ago when I was in F from NRT to LAX, when I asked about the champagne they had, I was told to ignore the little menu booklet. I'd get whatever they had on board that day and NO, it wasn't anything half as nice as Dom Perignon! First and business passengers get basically, if not the same food and beverages.But F might have a (limited) few more wine options.
 
blueflyer
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:04 am

No. Each division retains its (new) seating. All pmUA aircraft are being retrofitted with the new UA business class ordered before the merger, and the same goes for pmCO aircraft.

New aircraft that have yet to be delivered will receive their seating based upon which pre-merge airline placed the order. The exception is the 787 fleet that is entirely going to be equipped with the latest version of pmCO BusinessFirst.

Brands have changed. TATL/Asia business class is called BusinessFirst on pmUA as well now. UA's international first class is now GlobalFirst.
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slcdeltarumd11
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:04 am

The lie flat business seat will be the first class killer for everyone but the top service airlines
 
bananaboy
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:11 am

Quoting United Airline (Thread starter):
I remember UA used to offer Godiva and Don Perignon on first class. Do they still do that?

2001 I believe was the first (and last) time that I was offered Dom in UA F class. Now, it's fizz barely better than Babycham.

The McDonalds Happy Meals for kids went away around 2001 too as far as I remember.

Interestingly, here's a similar thread from several years ago covering part of the same question.

UAL's Children's Meal. Still Mcdonald Food? (by United Airline Apr 9 2001 in Civil Aviation)

Interesting list of service reductions in that thread - I had forgotten how much has changed over the years.

The Friendly Skies Meals will continue to be boarded until all of the supplies have been depleated. Therefore, some stations may have the Friendly Skies Meal, while others will have the United Kids Meal.

As far as what is being cut from flights, be very careful when reading the following, as there are VERY SPECIFIC flights which the supplies are being cut from, and the changes DO NOT effect all flights.

NORTH AMERICA MEAL SERVICE CHANGES

-McDonald's Friendly Skies Meals no longer offered. United will board the standard children's meal currently used at non-McDonald's locations. Apparently, the company is working on a special United-designed children's meal and packaging that they "hope to introduce later this year."

-Removing Mrs. Fields cookies in UF on pre-arrival service flights. This is the second service warm cookie. However, the cookies will still be boarded when it's the primary dessert on short haul flights.

-Removing grapefruit juice, olives, and lemon peels from the beverage units.

-Removing Godiva chocolates from all flights.

-Changing ratios and choices from beef to pasta on lunch and dinner flights in Economy. This reduces the amount of the beef and chicken entrées and increases pasta.

-Removing refresher towels in all cabins on North America flights LESS THAN 3.5 hours long.

-Removed United First tray table linens on flights LESS THAN 3.5 hours. Passenger meal trays will now be placed directly on seat tray tables.

INTERNATIONAL MEAL SERVICE CHANGES

-Reducing refresher towels by one in most cabins. EVERYONE will still receive a refresher towel!

-Removing Godiva and all chocolates from United First and United Business in all international markets.

-Replacing Dalwinnie/Glenmorangie with Johnnie Walker Black in United First and United Business.

-Removing the welcome page from international menus for UF and UB.

-Eliminating cheese and cracker from tray setup in Economy.

-Removing United Economy menus in all Atlantic markets.

-Removing the soup course (FC/BC) from trans-Pacific, Narita-Singapore and Narita-Bangkok flights.

-Changing Mexico City to San Jose, Costa Rica, from full lunch and dinner service to a snack.

-Removing United Economy menus in all Latin America markets.

VIDEO CHANGES

-Boarding videos will no longer be provisioned and United will be returning to standard boarding music. FYI...boarding videos are the videos that have pictures of fish, etc. playing...


-United will go back to twice a month short subject programming for North America flights. Still better than most airlines.

-The second movie will be eliminated on westbound Transcon flights.

PROVISIONING

-The children's wings, playing cards, coat tags, portfolio paper and children's activity kits will be eliminated. Intra-Asia amenity kits will be eliminated

F L Y 7 7 7 U A L



Mark
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United Airline
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:55 am

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 2):
It's quite possible there is enough demand in more Asian cities for F (HKG perhaps) but I am not as familiar with that market to judge.

HKG, SYD have super high F class demand of course

Quoting trent1000 (Reply 4):
You must have flown some time ago... two years ago when I was in F from NRT to LAX, when I asked about the champagne they had, I was told to ignore the little menu booklet. I'd get whatever they had on board that day and NO, it wasn't anything half as nice as Dom Perignon! First and business passengers get basically, if not the same food and beverages.But F might have a (limited) few more wine options.

I fly a lot but I didn't order champagne when I flew UA first last time.

Wonder if all these will return.
 
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:57 am

If UA orders a new long haul aircraft in the future, let's say the B 777-300ER, A350-1000, A380 or the B747-8 or whatsoever etc, what business class will they get? Also will they install first class?
 
UAL777UK
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 8:42 am

F on UA to certain markets as stated above IMHO will stay for some considerable time. UA have reduced the capacity of F on the longhaul fleet with the IPTE product and right sized it for those markets.

Quoting United Airline (Thread starter):
I remember UA used to offer Godiva and Don Perignon on first class.

Those were the days and dont forget the Caviar in F as well.
 
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 9:50 am

Quoting ual777uk (Reply 10):
Those were the days and dont forget the Caviar in F as well

CX and SQ offer them still I am sure.

Will these be back on UA some day?
 
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STT757
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:41 pm

I think instead of maintaining the current three class set up UA should look to upgrade Economy plus into a premium economy product, more than just extra legroom, on their Trans-Atlantic routes.

Businessfirst/ Premium economy/ economy.

For a handful of their most lucrative routes they can look at keeping, or incorporating, First class. On those routes they could offer:

First/Business/Premium economy/ economy.

More upsell opportunities.
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tommy767
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:44 pm

Quoting Bananaboy (Reply 7):

Wow. UA had a lot of cuts starting Pre-9/11. Very interesting to read, thanks.

Quoting STT757 (Reply 12):

It's a possibility I'm sure but AA or DL would have to try it first.
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:46 pm

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 13):
It's a possibility I'm sure but AA or DL would have to try it first.

Why?
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tommy767
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:20 pm

Quoting STT757 (Reply 14):

Well to put it bluntly: United isn't exactly being an innovator these days. One airline would have to spend the money to try it out and if it's successful, others will follow.
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STT757
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:22 pm

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 15):
Well to put it bluntly: United isn't exactly being an innovator these days. One airline would have to spend the money to try it out and if it's successful, others will follow.

Aren't DL and AA copying UA's E+?..

[Edited 2012-06-01 07:25:00]
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tommy767
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:28 pm

Quoting STT757 (Reply 16):

UA started E+ in 1999-2000 back when they were a innovator. DL and AA followed because they had no choice, only to compete with United in it's present state.

If any airline will try this first, my money is on DL. They seem to be setting the trend these days and taking more risks than United.
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Tdan
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:11 pm

Short answer is no, they will not. UA just modified it's planes with IPTE and it would have been very expensive to rip all of the first class seats out and modify the seat order for planes not yet reconfigured. First will go away during the next round of seat modifications. Additionally, AA will be doing the same thing in time...maintaining F on the 77Ws is curious, particularly when it is being removed on the 772s. All I can think of for justification is that the 77Ws will frequent routes that both AA and BA operate in order to standardize the product.
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tommy767
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:21 pm

Quoting Tdan (Reply 18):

Evidence? Source?

Again, why would they have no intention of keeping F if UA is still doing the mods on the PMUA IPTE 777s in a 3 cabin setup? To remove these seats would be backwards and costly.
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jfk777
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:12 pm

IF United has smaller long haul planes like 787's and 772ER then First will probably be history. IF an A380, a 777-300ER or the A350-1000 come then a small First Class could be on those planes.
 
roseflyer
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:46 pm

There are some markets that do dictate first class. NRT, HKG, and SYD are there where first class goes out full and often leaves upgrades behind. Other cities in Asia have less F demand such as ICN and KIX, but it is still there.

LHR, FRA, GVA, ZRH, and BRU all warrant first class.

There are other airports such as AMS, CDG, and FCO that do not warrant first class. Fortunately UA has been transitioning some PMCO airplanes to these routes.

I think a limited first class will stay for now. When the next generation of airplanes comes, we'll see. Since AA is dropping F on even more routes, I would see UA possibly following.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 5):
No. Each division retains its (new) seating. All pmUA aircraft are being retrofitted with the new UA business class ordered before the merger, and the same goes for pmCO aircraft.

That's not what I've heard. The 2-class PMUA 767-300s which had been mainly operated to Hawaii will be getting the PMCO BusinessFirst seat.
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Tdan
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:50 pm

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 19):

That's what I get for trying to type quickly and not reading over my response! What I should have said is that it seems more than likely that UA will be discontinuing F in the next round of modifications. As to why they didn't just start reconfiguring the old 777s to two-classes, the seats had likely already been manufactured even though they had yet to be installed and by canceling/modifying the order, UA would have incurred a significant and unneccessary expense. This is typically how aircraft reconfigurations are handled from and airline and vendor perspective. This doesn't even take into account the costs that would have occurred if UA ripped out F from the 744s and 763s that had already been reconfigured. The most telling sign that F's days are limited at UA is that the 787s will not have F. It doesn't make sense to only have F on a particular longhaul fleet, especially when the aircraft are interchangeable. The only scenario where this makes some sense is the AA/BA scenario that I described above.

Again, it's not a foregone conclusion, but all signs point towards the end of international F at UA
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gigneil
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:11 pm

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 5):
. All pmUA aircraft are being retrofitted with the new UA business class ordered before the merger,

That's just flatly wrong and it gets discussed every single day.

The sUA 2 class 763s are being refitted to the sCO 767 standard: seats, bins, avod, everything.

NS
 
SonomaFlyer
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:25 pm

To be clear, UA has two different 763 sub fleets. One has three class service (21 planes) and one two class (14 planes). The two class birds get sCO's BizFirst product with matching changes as stated by gigneil.

The 3 class birds already received their upgrades and the two class birds will start receiving the upgrades shortly if they are not already underway.

United/Cont. Existing Fleet Upgrade Status 11 (by LipeGIG May 16 2012 in Civil Aviation) for details on UA's fleet mods.

There is a demand for F products and UA won't cede that market. They will however, "right size" their fleet to fit the demand for PAID first class. The city pairs mention above seem to correspond with where UA's first class demand is centered. Expect the 359's to have F. Expect the existing birds with F to retain them but when those are retired, the number of a/c with first class will decrease along with the number of seats.

If the world economy goes on a tear for a few years, UA could and likely would alter their plans to take advantage of folks willing to spend $$$ on first class. Don't expect them to keep F just to accommodate frequent flyers and impulse upgrades.
 
tommy767
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:38 pm

There is ZERO proof that F will be removed. Show me a news article, publication or any reliable source that they will start removing F cabin in favor of sCO J?

In case some of you haven't noticed they just rolled out a GLOBAL FIRST product. If they didn't care about their first class cabins, they wouldn't be streamlining the menu's, amenities, and pricing for such a product. Remember, BF is getting a slight downgrade in catering in favor of the new Global First menu's.
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trent1000
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:58 pm

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 25):
Quoting tommy767 (Reply 25):
In case some of you haven't noticed they just rolled out a GLOBAL FIRST product. If they didn't care about their first class cabins, they wouldn't be streamlining the menu's, amenities, and pricing for such a product. Remember, BF is getting a slight downgrade in catering in favor of the new Global First menu's.

When did this happen? What does the brand new F suite look like?
"Streamlining" does not necessarily translate to "better". But you are actually stating that business class will have a lower quantity and/or quality food & beverage service...
 
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 3:42 am

Quoting trent1000 (Reply 4):
First and business passengers get basically, if not the same food and beverages.But F might have a (limited) few more wine options.

What a waste. At 8,000 feet pressurization and 0% humidity, you're not going to be able to get the full flavor of expensive wines.
 
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:44 pm

In 10 years United's very good F hard product will be dated. I expect the reverse..10+ years from now "under the headline of keeping up with the Jone's" we will see an updated, perhaps smaller, First Class. Company contrast require it..as does my company. And don't underestimate the massive amount of people who can and will pay 15k for it. Even TAM keeps one or two rows of an "ok" First Class- so it's not just Asia and certain European cities.

I have ZERO proof of this other than watching all airlines upgrading their premium cabins for 25 years. Will UA ever emulate Emirates, SWISS or Singapore?... doubt it. But they will have a version.

As for product innovation, I think they need to create one functioning and consistant airline first. Then after that maybe UA will put a lounge on an A350 or (hopefully) a 748i. (I would call it the Tulip Lounge!   )
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blueflyer
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:21 pm

Quoting gigneil (Reply 23):
That's just flatly wrong

Then I am flatly corrected...
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Schweigend
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:13 am

Quoting VC10er (Reply 28):
I expect the reverse..10+ years from now "under the headline of keeping up with the Jone's" we will see an updated, perhaps smaller, First Class.

I agree. Smaller, and filled by a greater percentage of revenue pax. Not going away.

Quoting VC10er (Reply 28):
Then after that maybe UA will put a lounge on an A350 or (hopefully) a 748i. (I would call it the Tulip Lounge! )

OMG, the Tulip Lounge would rock!

Has KLM done it yet?

 
 
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RE: Will UA Keep Its First Class In The Long Run?

Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:33 am

Quoting VC10er (Reply 28):
I have ZERO proof of this other than watching all airlines upgrading their premium cabins for 25 years. Will UA ever emulate Emirates, SWISS or Singapore?... doubt it. But they will have a version.

UA used to be in the same par as SQ, CX etc especially in the 90s. I suppose these airlines were not so big at that time especially CX.

Wonder if all the amenities they axed will return

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