danwoodman00
Topic Author
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:24 pm

Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:25 am

I've seen a lot of threads about poor customer service flying UA. Sounds like they've all been deserved, as the experiences of some folks are truly awful. But I had to ask -- am I the only person who has had predominantly positive experiences flying UA?

Living in Seattle, I used to fly Alaska quite a bit. But I'm almost 7' tall, and have to fly coach for business trips. UA E+ has been a big improvement.

Since then, I've flown about 100k base miles in the last 14 months, including two international trips.

In that time, there was only one real "failure," a mechanical on an A320, that was eventually resolved by replacing the plane with another A320. Fortunately, it was SFO -> SEA, and they had an identical plane available. Total delay was about 3 hours, and the UA crew were telling people well in advance. We walked off one plane, walked on to the replacement, and took off pretty quickly. The UA crew dealt with some irate passengers in an entirely professional, patient fashion.

Otherwise, every flight has basically taken off and landed on time (minus a few ATC-induced delays, which were minor), the flight crews have all been pretty good (well above average, in my 1M mile+ flying lifetime), the planes were all in very good condition (only one exception - a particularly ancient 777 grey/blue that was used as a substitute to LHR during the "network outage" last June), and United's "digital service" (web site, even with the CO-site switchover, iPhone app, mobile boarding pass), have, for me, worked without a hitch.

I'm just curious - anybody else have a decent experience on UA, or am I just that "fortunate $O8" who's lucked in to consistently good flights?

- d
 
RushmoreAir
Posts: 26
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:29 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:48 am

United is now my airline of choice based on the service and price.

I have come to expect that most of my flights will be delayed/baggage lost/bumped etc. Until the NWDL merger, I was a loyal NW customer. But once DL took over, the IRROPS management went down the toilet. DL was never able to get me home within a reasonable time frame, and never had good service. When they started raising their prices to the destinations I frequent, and started reducing frequencies to my home airport (RAP), I'd had enough.

So I switched to United and I couldn't be happier. UA has a slightly less crappy on-time record IMO, but they are able to handle IRROPS better every time. UA has booked me on other airlines even in case of weather delays if it gets me to point B faster.

UA also bends the rules for the benefit of the customer: Once, I was traveling to MCO with my family, and we had a long layover in DEN. There was a earlier MCO flight, but it was too expensive for our trip. When we arrived in DEN, we went to the gate for the earlier MCO flight. Without charging a same-day change fee, UA was able to get our family on the earlier flight, and seat us together (the load was 80%+). It was a really nice gesture that made me feel like an appreciated customer. We had tried the same thing on DL a year earlier, but just got the "$50/person for a same day change" line.

It is true that the UA mainline crews are very grumpy in general, but the UA Express (OO in particular) crews couldn't be friendlier. Since I fly on Express routes 80% of the time, I don't mind dealing with the bad mainline crew in exchange for on-time flights.
UA DL F9 CO WN LO QF FI AC MU CA EU LH DY
 
LOWS
Posts: 1194
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2011 5:37 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:04 am

I never have understood why OO crews are always so positive (not that I'm complaining). They're really great, especially compared to other regionals but also including UA mainline.
 
usflyer msp
Posts: 2234
Joined: Tue May 23, 2000 11:50 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:24 am

Most of the UA complaint threads are about United since their computer system merger with CO on 3/3. UA switched to CO's computer system which generally has less functionality and is far-less user friendly than pre-merger UA's. The employees have been struggling with the switch. Before that, they were very good IMHO.
 
sccutler
Posts: 5580
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2000 12:16 pm

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:32 am

I have flown CO a fair bit, never any issues. Have flown UAL exactly once, when AA could not recover from weather disruptions at their hub in DFW. United's service was exemplary.

We were in E+, for which I would gladly pay extra if U's rovings from DFW were at all useful o more than a few markets (they are not- too bad).
...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
 
danwoodman00
Topic Author
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:24 pm

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 4:12 am

USFlyer - regarding the recent posts, I agree, the switchover caused problems for folks. There have been other IRROPS and problems (network outage, weather, et al), as well as just plain old 'bad customer service' problems that I've read about for the past 18 months or so, a lot of it attributed to the merger.

Of the UA posts that I've seen, most have been (legitimately) of that variety, so I was curious if others were having the 'better' experience that I have over the longer period of time.

Sounds like there are a few above who are getting (overall) good service, along with the folks who have had problems.

I'm fortunate that the switchover was painless for me (and I was travelling at the time), the June network outage didn't keep me and my daughter from our trip to London, and I get my window E+ seat on a regular basis.  

Here's to more people getting the same, and less of the other.
 
aloges
Posts: 14842
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2006 3:38 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:57 am

Quoting danwoodman00 (Thread starter):
But I had to ask -- am I the only person who has had predominantly positive experiences flying UA?

You're not, I'm in the same boat. Although I do have to say that, generally speaking, my experiences with pre-merger UA crews have been better than those with pre-merger CO crews.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
IAHFLYR
Posts: 3943
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 12:56 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 3:54 pm

I have been reading these posts and watching media reports of issues with UA, particularly since March 3rd. Like quite a few others who disliked the pending merger and what Smisek did, I was very unhappy with what I saw coming down the road. Hate to admit it, but I'm slowly finding out it wasn't the end of the world just a change I'm learning how best to deal with for my travel.

Since March 3rd, I've had six flight segments on UA and not any great issues period. Yes I've had the 30-45 minute flight delay for a due to weather or maintenance issues, stuff happens.

Last Thursday evening we were booked on an IAH-SAN flight which was delayed inbound to IAH due to maintenance. Even though it was listed as one hour late leaving IAH, we all of a sudden got an email letting us know of a new gate assignment. I had mentioned sort of tongue in check to my wife that a plane swap could possibly happen, and sure enough, we got a new gate and new aircraft getting us into SAN 10 minutes early. That was a well coordinated plan in order to avoid customer inconvenience and I applaud the PMCO staff in Houston for thinking ahead.  
Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
 
hamad
Posts: 731
Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2000 6:29 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Wed Mar 21, 2012 5:26 pm

I have always had good experience with united airlines when i lived in Arizona. The main thing i noticed in customer service, it depended on the hub and the station. In phoenix, being a premier at that time, the check in and gate agents were few in number, so they knew me (not personally), but we whenever i traveled i interacted with them, so when i saw them again, it was nice. In Denver, they were normal, i wouldn't say they were the best, nor the worst, to me they were just doing their job. If you talk about IAD, i wouldn't say they were the worst, but honestly, a lot of my encounters were not the best, however there were few ones who were nice at IAD.

LAX, SFO and ORD, the agents were a hit or miss.

The last time i flown through IAD was 2009, just before the merger, so i don't know if things are still the same or changed.

As for bad experience with UA, I have seen unpleasant interatctions between customers and agents where it got really nasty, but then if you look at it: There was only one agent handling the flight, people getting irritated, venting their frustration on the agent. put those things together and ofcourse you will have a bad experience

[Edited 2012-03-21 10:29:22]
PHX - i miss spotting
 
kurtjeter
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2011 1:32 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Thu Mar 22, 2012 1:29 am

I'm glad to read of some good experiences with UA! In May I'll be flying them IAH - FRA and back, my first flights with United in over 10 years (usually AA or DL). I've been reading all the bad press they've been getting, so what I'm reading here is somewhat encouraging.
 
hamad
Posts: 731
Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2000 6:29 am

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Sat Mar 24, 2012 11:47 am

Quoting kurtjeter (Reply 9):
I'm glad to read of some good experiences with UA! In May I'll be flying them IAH - FRA and back, my first flights with United in over 10 years (usually AA or DL). I've been reading all the bad press they've been getting, so what I'm reading here is somewhat encouraging.

Every experience for every person is just different. try them out and let us know..

cheers
PHX - i miss spotting
 
Herc4ever
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2009 11:44 pm

RE: Any Good UA Customer Experiences Besides Me?

Sat Mar 24, 2012 6:42 pm

I have had many great experiences on United. On my last flight with then, my from from FRA got into SFO late and I missed my flight to LAS. They were all great and got me rebooked on a later flight. The supervisor at the counter even gave me a pass to get into the United Club because I didn't throw a fit about having to sit in SFO for 7 hours or whatever it was.

Quoting LOWS (Reply 2):
I never have understood why OO crews are always so positive (not that I'm complaining). They're really great, especially compared to other regionals but also including UA mainline.

Besides one incident flying AA, every bad customer service experience I've had with an airline has been while flying an OO-operated flight with OO employees. Goes to show everybody's experiences are different I guess.
GTF PDX EUG DEN SLC SFO SEA SAT DFW ORD MSP ATL PHL JFK CLT BWI ADD CGN FRA HHN PMI GSE RMS FRF AVB IUD KIK KWI BGW HBE

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