Gonzalo
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Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No IFE

Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:04 am

Hello all. Like some of you will remember, this thread was posted some days ago, and was removed after some members took the discussion totally of topic and turned it personal against me. Now I'm re posting this thread with the permission of the Forum Moderators. I hope this time the replies, if any, will be related with the topic at hand ( the service provided by this airline in two different flights ) and not with my nationality, or how many threads I start per month, or other irrelevant issues ( like the passenger affected being just a common person and not a "celebrity" ). To the people who want to talk about other topics, please do with the tools available in this site ( Non Aviation Forums , Messenger ).

The letter in the link below was published in La Nacion ( is in Spanish, so I make a small translated summary ), and describes the in-flight experience of a woman that flew a round trip with AR flying EZE-MIA-EZE . She made clear that this happened to her in two different aircraft, eliminating the chance of a random coincidence for her bad experience with the broken seats. Her complaint is based in four aspects :

1.- The seats : She couldn't recline her seat in both flights. I can understand her frustration giving the flight isn't precisely short.
2.- The food : On the flight EZE-MIA she decided not to eat the food since the texture, smell and general condition of the food was, according her words, "dubious". On the flight MIA-EZE she had "two" options : Chicken, or chicken.
3.- The IFE : The IFE was not available in the first flight ( for all the aircraft , not only her seat ). In the second flight the IFE was not functioning correctly at any time and finally was turned off without any explanation or apology. This makes the broken seat experience even worst.
4.- The crew reaction after she complain : In the flight to MIA only taking some notes in a paper and doing nothing, in the flight to EZE, a rude "Come On, I'm the captain", and, again, not a single action to provide her a solution ( like a seat change or similar ).

She makes a final question in her letter, asking "how many millions this service cost to the tax payers every year".

Definitely not a good experience.

Here you can find the original letter in Spanish, at the bottom of the page.

http://www.lanacion.com.ar/1557943-cartas-de-los-lectores

Are this kind of in flight issues becoming more common in AR , or are the exception and she got *really* bad luck ??
Any inflight experience with AR to share ?

Rgds.
G.
Gear Up!!: DC-3 / EMB-110 / Fairchild-227 / Ab318-19-20-21 / B732 / B763 / B789
 
toobz
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:37 pm

You are persistent! lol  

I can understand her being pissed off but she needs to get over it. She had a couple bad flights. We get it. She made it from point A to point B. end if story. This could technically happen on any airline. Her only recourse is to not give this airline her business again and move on.
 
jfk777
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:50 pm

Sad state of former Cathay Pacific A340's in Argentina.
 
phxa340
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:07 pm

Hey I like AR - an A340-200 is sexy plane. At least she was served food ... I think many people who don't fly enough feel entitled and just expect too much.
 
zotan
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:27 pm

I have flown AR domestically and have wonderful experiences.
 
TK739ER
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:54 pm

This kind of stuff may happen at any time any airline, I remember back in 98 or 99 in a less than a year old LH A343 the lighting was acting up and finally half of the left side quit after 2 hours into the flight.And we all know about how fussy LH Technick is about their fleet, so....
Almost all airlines having problems with acting up IFEs even today, after the so called technology matured all these years.

The best way for the paying pax to avoid these things is take their business to somewhere they'd think have better service and standards and get over it.
 
AR385
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:16 pm

I flew on LH in a 747-400 in C on a $4,000 USD ticket MEX-FRA. I was in 3A. My seat was broken. It was frozen. That´s a close to 11hr flight. Fortunately there were vacant seats in the cabin and was able to move. But if there had been none, I supoose I would have been screwed.

I flew domestic F in CO MTY-IAH 3 years ago and got food poisoning from a cold chicken salad they served. I spent close to 48 hrs living in the bathroom, for all practical puposes.

AR is an airline I would not fly for a variety of reasons, however these particular issues happen on every airline. I wonder how much is the fare on AA EZE-MIA compared to AR´s?

You get what you pay for.

[Edited 2013-03-01 13:27:11]
 
SCL767
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:34 pm

Quoting AR385 (Reply 13):
AR is an airline I would not fly for a variety of reasons, however these particular issues happen on every airline. I wonder how much is the fare on AA EZE-MIA compared to AR´s?

Compared to the two other carriers that operate non-stop flights between EZE and MIA; AR is usually the cheapest option.
 
AR385
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:38 pm

Quoting SCL767 (Reply 14):
AR is usually the cheapest option.

Well then. There you go.
 
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reffado
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:17 pm

If I may add, since AR experiences were asked for, I flew 4 flights with them back in 2008 (in a 732) and I know it's been a while, but my only complaint was the aircraft itself. Everything worked, but was dirty and just, well, old. But the service was good, the food was rather nice for a cold meal, and the F/A's were friendly. If I had the option, I wouldn't fly them again, but at the time I was looking for the cheapest fare, and for what I paid, I got more than I expected to.
 
steex
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:20 pm

Quoting Gonzalo (Thread starter):
She made clear that this happened to her in two different aircraft, eliminating the chance of a random coincidence for her bad experience with the broken seats.

I sincerely doubt that she checked registration numbers, so it's not necessarily certain to me that she flew two different aircraft - it's entirely likely she is just assuming it wasn't the same plane since the flights were many days apart. In reality, AR's A340 fleet is quite small, so the odds aren't all that bad she caught the exact same bird back.

I've only flown AR once, SYD-AKL on the 342. The flight was delayed and the cabin was a little tired, though both as I expected. I found the crew, service, and food all to be perfectly acceptable. I didn't note any loss of functionality to the seats or IFE when I walked around the cabin, just a cabin that wouldn't have minded being refreshed.
 
aerokiwi
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:27 pm

To be fair, has anyone heard anything remotely good about AR longhaul?

By most accounts, it is pretty dire.
 
AR385
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:31 pm

Quoting aerokiwi (Reply 11):
To be fair, has anyone heard anything remotely good about AR longhaul?

Not only long-haul...

Journey: MTY-MDZ; Part 4 EZE-MDZ, AR 1420 Y (by AR385 Jan 25 2011 in Trip Reports)
 
AA94
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:31 pm

I hate to play the cynic, but what exactly was she expecting? AR isn't exactly renown for its cabin service.

Quoting toobz (Reply 1):
I can understand her being pissed off but she needs to get over it. She had a couple bad flights. We get it. She made it from point A to point B. end if story. This could technically happen on any airline. Her only recourse is to not give this airline her business again and move on.

  
If you can't take the heat, you best get out of the kitchen
 
dc9northwest
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:10 am

Quoting Gonzalo (Thread starter):
The food : On the flight EZE-MIA she decided not to eat the food since the texture, smell and general condition of the food was, according her words, "dubious".

Ah, she got served airline food on a plane!

How unexpected  
Quoting Gonzalo (Thread starter):
She couldn't recline her seat in both flights. I can understand her frustration giving the flight isn't precisely short.

Can we hear the good side of the story, from the passenger(s) right behind her, who were ecstatic no one reclined into their personal space?

Quoting Gonzalo (Thread starter):
The IFE was not available in the first flight ( for all the aircraft , not only her seat ). In the second flight the IFE was not functioning correctly at any time and finally was turned off without any explanation or apology. This makes the broken seat experience even worst.

Wait, AR has IFE on their fleet? Now that's unexpected. I'd've thought they wouldn't. IFE is not really a must-have item. Perhaps she has heard of books. If I'd fly on AR I'd certainly get a book beforehand, because I don't trust them that much.

Quoting Gonzalo (Thread starter):
The crew reaction after she complain : In the flight to MIA only taking some notes in a paper and doing nothing, in the flight to EZE, a rude "Come On, I'm the captain", and, again, not a single action to provide her a solution ( like a seat change or similar ).

"Come on, I'm the captain"? That makes almost no sense in English. What's the meaning behind it? "Soy el capitan, leave me alone"? Or something else?
 
danvs
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:05 am

I'm surprised to read all the replies, most of which with views such as "she got what she paid for" or "she shouldn't have flown AR in the first place".

Sorry, but I can't help seeing the similarity of these views with absurds such as "...she was murdered? Well, she shouldn't be walking around in that neighborhood in the first place". "She got raped? Well, considering how she was dressed, she was basically asking for it".

She couldn't recline her seat on a 10-hour flight, the IFE wasn't available/was turned off and the crew blatantly ignored her calls. And after all that, was she the one to blame?

I wonder if any of those who replied "X happened to me" experienced all these bad things mentioned by the woman on a single flight. Just like accidents, each of these items (seats or IFE or bad crew) per se won't ruin a flight, but when they come all together they become a tragedy for a passenger.

My experience with AR: I have just flown with them, last December, on 3 short-haul flights. Nothing to write home about, but nothing much different from LAN (which boasts to be so much better than the rest).

[Edited 2013-03-01 19:08:33]
 
rafabullara
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:47 am

Quoting danvs (Reply 15):
My experience with AR: I have just flown with them, last December, on 3 short-haul flights. Nothing to write home about, but nothing much different from LAN (which boasts to be so much better than the rest).

Now you got the point!

Why would AR invest in a better product if the argentinian pride wouldn't allow them to fly any other airline. And by the way, LAN isn't the best airline in the world either and they are doing exactly the same thing to TAM.
 
AR385
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 5:57 am

Quoting danvs (Reply 15):
Sorry, but I can't help seeing the similarity of these views with absurds such as "...she was murdered? Well, she shouldn't be walking around in that neighborhood in the first place". "She got raped? Well, considering how she was dressed, she was basically asking for it".

Your argument just does not apply.

Murder? Who chooses to be murdered? No one. On the other hand, you can choose which carrier to fly. Are you saying that when you choose a carrier that is significantly cheaper than its direct competition, you are expecting the same service? Logic dictates there is a reason why it is so much cheaper.

Your rape analogy is just unnecesary.

Quoting danvs (Reply 15):
My experience with AR: I have just flown with them, last December, on 3 short-haul flights. Nothing to write home about, but nothing much different from LAN (which boasts to be so much better than the rest).

For one, AR has three FAs on a 737-800 whereas LAN ARGENTINA has four on an A320. Right there you can see a difference in service.

[Edited 2013-03-01 22:13:38]
 
SCL767
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 6:26 am

Quoting rafabullara (Reply 16):
And by the way, LAN isn't the best airline in the world either and they are doing exactly the same thing to TAM.

The World Travel Awards just honored LAN as the Best South American Airline! TAM has held that title for years, but LAN has introduced new products that passengers look forward to, i.e. a brand new Business Class.. Meanwhile, TAM can't figure out what to do with their existing business class on their new 77Ws. Of course LAN will fix that for TAM. FYI, TAM has historically been a loss making airline and has been poorly managed; that is until LAN took over the airline. Eventually, when ownership laws in Brasil change; the TAM brand will simply vanish, just like Varig. Deal with it!

Quoting AR385 (Reply 17):
whereas LAN ARGENTINA has four on an A320. Right there you can see a difference in service.

The only way LAN can compete with AR in the domestic market is by providing the best service possible since airfares are regulated.

[Edited 2013-03-01 22:27:34]
 
danvs
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Sat Mar 02, 2013 6:27 pm

Quoting AR385 (Reply 17):
On the other hand, you can choose which carrier to fly. Are you saying that when you choose a carrier that is significantly cheaper than its direct competition, you are expecting the same service?

Even if you choose the cheaper service, you're still entitled to the service they advertise (and which you're paying for).
For example: you can choose a 3-star hotel and a 5-star hotel. Obviously, you won't find on the 3-star hotel the same ammenities you'll find on the 5-star one. However, you still expect the 3-star hotel to be clean and have the basics working properly: running water, a TV and air conditioning, for example.
The woman in question is not asking to be treated as in Singapore Airlines or have the same ammenities. She's just complaining she couldn't recline her seat, eat, or use the IFE during the long flight (basic stuff, IMHO).
By the way, not always you can choose the carrier you fly. Sometimes the schedule of the other airline makes it impossible to fly with them. Or simply their fare is so higher than the other one that you simply can't afford paying it.

Quoting AR385 (Reply 17):
For one, AR has three FAs on a 737-800 whereas LAN ARGENTINA has four on an A320. Right there you can see a difference in service.

This only means AR FAs will have more job to do than their LAN fellows. And having more job to do hardly implies that service necessarily has to be worse.
PS: I was referring to LAN (Chile). I never flew LAN Argentina.

[Edited 2013-03-02 10:36:53]
 
joacocifuentes
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:07 am

I have had amazing experiences in AR, this definetly doesn't happend so often. Little steps shall be done, remember AR when it was owned by Marsans Group...
 
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aerdingus
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Mon Mar 04, 2013 3:58 pm

Quoting danvs (Reply 19):
This only means AR FAs will have more job to do than their LAN fellows. And having more job to do hardly implies that service necessarily has to be worse.

Does this not mean there are less seats on the AR jets? 1 cabin crew per 50 pax?
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AR385
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 08, 2013 4:38 am

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 21):
Does this not mean there are less seats on the AR jets? 1 cabin crew per 50 pax?

AR has 170 seats on its 737-800
Lan Argentina has 168 on its A320
 
RyanairGuru
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RE: Long Haul In AR: Broken Seats, Rotten Food, No

Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:31 am

Quoting danvs (Reply 19):
Even if you choose the cheaper service, you're still entitled to the service they advertise (and which you're paying for).

Precisely, and I'm with you on this.

As you say, she - presumably - wasn't expecting Singapore Airlines. BUT if an airline offers reclining seats and IFE, you would expect them to work, and if it doesn't you would at least expect an apology.

That said, she probably have found someone better to ask to fix her problems. The text that Gonzalo translated as "come on, I'm the captain", I would (with all respect) translate as "But I'm the captain!", suggesting that she asked a pilot (maybe waiting to go to the lavatory?) to fix her seat. Surely she can tell the difference between a pilot and flight attendant!
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