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solomanflyer
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Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 2:22 pm

IATA has said that, overbooking of flights is normal for airlines and they can continue overbooking of flights it seems.

But when considering about passengers, it is not that fair for them to go, catch there flight and getting disappointed due overbooking..

Respective authorities should focus there concentration on this point..
 
Drucocu
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:21 pm

Oh please. It is a legit way of covering yourself for no-shows, misconnections, and maximizing profit. Most of the time, it poses no problem for anyone. If it goes wrong, the problem usually is the way the airline handles the situation. This has been discussed since the whole UA debacle, and I myself do not see the need to open another thread on this subject.
 
LHUSA
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:29 pm

Based on?

Industry involuntary denied boardings in the US hover around 0.004%, a majority of those driven by down-gauge of aircraft, not overbooking. A high percentage of passengers happily accept compensation voluntarily.
 
cedarjet
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:34 pm

Lol, I agree, ridiculous post; at least 10% and up to 30% of pax no-show (illness, traffic, missed connections, change of plans), if you want to pay 10% more and up to 30% more for your ticket then by all means outlaw overbooking.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
flyingcat
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:37 pm

The United issue was not based on overbooking, that was a company must ride situation that necessitating pulling people off.

As to overbooking, one needs to be specific. Overbooking does happens on regular basis industrywide, and does not always result in an oversold situation. Also even when a flight is oversold, there are many times where volunteers are available and happy with the compensation. The specific issue is the involuntary situation, where someone does not want to come off.

Even if overbooking were to go away this situation will not stop. There are plenty of other situations that can cause a passenger to have to removed either before or after boarding such as weight and balance, a seat that is damaged, etc

From a pragmatic point of view airlines earn a significant amount of money from overbooking, if this were to end, then the revenue would have to be generated from other areas. So even in a world where this is restricted, the pain would shift elsewhere.
 
ILUVDC10S
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:26 pm

The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
2. You know its overbooked when you are given the assignment to handle the flight so when you get to the gate look at the numbers of checked in passengers if all are checked in and in transit to your hub and will arrive on time the time to act is then. Start soliciting for volunteers at the first instance you know you will have more passengers than seats. Start the auction phase.
3. close the stand by list scroll them over to next flight as there will be no seats open for them also non rev's on that flight removed so you can place in the paid passengers. once that is done get your volunteers out of the gate area get the compensation done PRIOR to boarding the plane get that drama done so the boarding process is smooth.
4. Give out boarding passes to those who will have seats from removed Non rev passengers and state that no seat changes will be made here at the gate.
5. Close out the upgrade list since no upgrades will be allowed due to overbooking.
6. Begin the boarding process drama free so you can pay attention to scanning boarding passes and looking for carry on compliance.
7. give final paperwork to the pilot close the door and send that flight on its merry way.

At Outstations do the overbooking process PRIOR to boarding the plane Get the drama done BEFORE you start boarding with the compensation and rebooking done too.
YOU DO NOT BOARD THE PLANE UNTIL THE OVERBOOKING SITUATION IS RESOLVED ! UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES !
There should NEVER be a case where you have to drag a person off a flight no more if you follow these simple procedures period !
Mesaba in Detroit and Pellston and American Eagle in Miami were the best at handling overbooking situations .
 
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Aesma
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:45 pm

The way people are explaining overbooking and its reasons, I'm thinking it must mostly be done in large countries with lots of point-hub-point traffic inside the same country. Basically mainly in the US. Am I right ?
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zeke
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:48 pm

I think airlines (insert hotel, car hire etc) would be happy to not overbook as long as passengers didn't want their money or booking moved to another flight if they don't show for their original flight.

In reality passengers want refunds or to be moved different flights and make the unused inventory the airlines cost.
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PITingres
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:56 pm

flyingcat wrote:
From a pragmatic point of view airlines earn a significant amount of money from overbooking ...


While I don't doubt that there is some money there, I'd love to know what sort of order of magnitude we're talking about. Is it really "significant"? I have no idea, but these sorts of statements often become common wisdom even when they aren't true. Anyone have some real life indications to share?
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LHUSA
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:06 pm

PITingres wrote:
flyingcat wrote:
From a pragmatic point of view airlines earn a significant amount of money from overbooking ...


While I don't doubt that there is some money there, I'd love to know what sort of order of magnitude we're talking about. Is it really "significant"? I have no idea, but these sorts of statements often become common wisdom even when they aren't true. Anyone have some real life indications to share?



A commonly shared number at my previous airline indicated that the airline gained 13 additional passengers for every offloaded passenger (voluntary and involuntary). The benefit came to approximately $50M quarterly, after compensation and other costs.
 
guyanam
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:28 pm

ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
.



Thank you for this response. The usual "blame the passengers as they are ungrateful inmates who should be glad that we allow them onboard" did NOT resolve the problem in the UA thread. Their attitude was that "airlines overbook and denied boardings are rare and if you refuse to comply with orders given by a gestapo like crew member expect instant arrest as you should meekly comply".

I then read in the NYT business section instances where those taken off planes, NOT denied boarding but taken OFF planes, were than abandoned by the airline once off loaded. No flight until the next morning and no hotel arrangements made for them. This is why passengers are becoming increasingly hostile and ready to document every piece of drama which occurs.

I am willing to bet that this doesn't happen in Europe where there are more stringent consumer protections than what we get in the USA.

If I were the unions I would insist that the airlines put in place proper protocols because at the end of the day its the front line staff and NOT the managers, who face passenger wrath when problems occur. Traveling in 2015 is not like 50 years ago when traveling by air was a true joy. The result is an increasingly skeptical and at times hostile passenger.
 
guyanam
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:33 pm

zeke wrote:
I
In reality passengers want refunds or to be moved different flights and make the unused inventory the airlines cost.



Bad excuse. Airlines charge hefty change fees and we are forced to pay them, or not travel. Making airlines look like the victim here is a true joke. In order to get a full refund, it either has to be a refundable fare (these aren't cheap) or a major medical emergency.

I maintain that airlines disrespect their passengers and treat their front line staff even worse as it is this group, and not the little bureaucrat hiding in his office, who face passenger wrath and the stress which ensues.
 
Tristarsteve
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:44 pm

I am willing to bet that this doesn't happen in Europe where there are more stringent consumer protections than what we get in the USA.


Two things happened in Europe. First nearly all passengers travel on non-refundable tickets, so the airline gets the money even if the seat is empty, and, Secondly the EU introduced such massive compensation that there is no incentive for the airline to overbook, One denied boarding and the profit for the flight is gone.
Inter European flights are not overbooked on purpose.
 
slcdeltarumd11
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:44 pm

The problem here is that the system worked fine when there were seats to rebook people on. Overbooking use to work fine, you would get on the next flight or another airline. Now that the airlines have such high load factors its become unfair to make people wait three days to get somewhere, sometimes long! Watch this Summer, there will be some horror stories. Last Summer i had an oversold flight out of BTV, no availability for THREE days so of course no one was volunteering. I got on the plane, didn't see how that ended.
 
flyboy_se
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:55 pm

guyanam wrote:
ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
.



Thank you for this response. The usual "blame the passengers as they are ungrateful inmates who should be glad that we allow them onboard" did NOT resolve the problem in the UA thread. Their attitude was that "airlines overbook and denied boardings are rare and if you refuse to comply with orders given by a gestapo like crew member expect instant arrest as you should meekly comply".

I then read in the NYT business section instances where those taken off planes, NOT denied boarding but taken OFF planes, were than abandoned by the airline once off loaded. No flight until the next morning and no hotel arrangements made for them. This is why passengers are becoming increasingly hostile and ready to document every piece of drama which occurs.

I am willing to bet that this doesn't happen in Europe where there are more stringent consumer protections than what we get in the USA.

If I were the unions I would insist that the airlines put in place proper protocols because at the end of the day its the front line staff and NOT the managers, who face passenger wrath when problems occur. Traveling in 2015 is not like 50 years ago when traveling by air was a true joy. The result is an increasingly skeptical and at times hostile passenger.




I can assure you that this happens as much in Europe as in the US. European airlines overbook as well. The compensation for voluntary offload is 300 EUR cash or 400 EUR travel voucher. Involuntary is usually 600 EUR or 800 EUR travel voucher . All airlines operating in EU or to and from EU must give you the leaflet with your rights when requested in case of irregularities.
I prefer to be crazy and happy rather than normal and bitter
 
strfyr51
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:56 pm

It's NOT that the passenger HAD to get off It's that the Crew that FLEW Had to get on. Look to have to stipulate in the future that you'll volunteer to get off for a set fee scale.
 
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reidar76
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:59 pm

I have been in an overbooking situation many times. Usually the gate staff ask for volunteers and this usually resolves the situation quite quickly.

One time, several years ago, it seemed like "the system" picked me out specifically as I wasn't able to get a seat assigned at check-in. I was traveling on "student fare", so that could be the reason. At the gate my name was called out, and I was then told about the overbooking, and were given some options. It was the last departure that day with Scandinavian to London, and of course they offered me a flight the next day, hotel room and compensation. But, they also gave me the option of taking a €100 in compensation (more than what I paid for the ticket) and a vacant cabin crew seat. It was a short flight, so I took the latter and arrived in London on time. This is the only time I have flown seated in the opposite direction.

Overbooking saves costs and reduces the environmental impact of the industry. It is a practice that benefit both the customers and the airline. Should the situation actually accrue that to many people show up to the gate, the airlines should apologize and be generous with the compensation. There is often a student, someone unemployed or someone living on welfare that will be quite happy to except a compensation and wait for the next flight.

Never start the boarding process before the overbooking situation is resolved! Be careful while overbooking low frequency flights, including the last flight that day.
Last edited by reidar76 on Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:12 pm, edited 3 times in total.
 
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klm617
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:07 pm

Over booking is not the real issue here it has been in force for many tears with little or no issues.. The real problem is the lack of capacity to absorb all the overbookings and getting those passengers to their destination in a timely manner. Just add capacity and the problem is solved. You can't have your cake and eat it too.
the truth does matter, guys. too bad it's often quite subjective. the truth is beyond the mere facts and figures. it's beyond good and bad, right and wrong...
 
Flighty
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:12 pm

It sounds to me like the "problem" (assuming there is one, which isn't proven) is not overbooking, or capacity, but irregular operations. Sometimes these 3-day waiting periods are because of an avoidable issue. Not overbooking, or capacity, but avoidance of, and recovery from, irregular operations.

The causes of irregular operations can be IT issues (unacceptable), weather (possible to manage better), or another issue I heard of is a shortage of reserve pilots. If you fully schedule all your pilots, and things go significantly wrong across your operation, you have NO legal pilots left to fly. This is a cost saving technique that can have a hell of a bite.
 
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Polot
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:13 pm

Is there any evidence that airlines lack the capacity to get overbooked passengers to their destination in a timely manner?

Because I don't think I have ever seen an overbooking that took more than a day for the person to get to their final destination (whether the person was voluntary or otherwise), and that was an intercontinental flight served once daily. Remember they can put you on a future flight knowing that that future flight will probably be overbooked as well, and I believe airlines have systems in place to "protect" you so that you don't get bumped off that overbooked flight.
 
WPvsMW
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:13 pm

All airlines' reservations systems (or at least all the ones I've consulted on) overbook based on statistics. As LF increases, overbooking decreases, and it's typically done in most NLCs on a network basis, so that the highest LF stage will reduce inventory between O and D with connections.
Last edited by WPvsMW on Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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klm617
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:14 pm

cedarjet wrote:
Lol, I agree, ridiculous post; at least 10% and up to 30% of pax no-show (illness, traffic, missed connections, change of plans), if you want to pay 10% more and up to 30% more for your ticket then by all means outlaw overbooking.



Missed connections are not the passengers fault and should not be lumped in with the no shows.
the truth does matter, guys. too bad it's often quite subjective. the truth is beyond the mere facts and figures. it's beyond good and bad, right and wrong...
 
manny
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:15 pm

Overbooking is another one of those laws that benefit the industry at the expense of the consumer. Yet airlines screw customers by giving them travel vouchers which are usually hard to redeem instead of actual cash/cheque.

Its time there was something done to dial back this and customers compensated more fairly.
 
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klm617
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:17 pm

Polot wrote:
Is there any evidence that airlines lack the capacity to get overbooked passengers to their destination in a timely manner?

Because I don't think I have ever seen an overbooking that took more than a day for the person to get to their final destination (whether the person was voluntary or otherwise), and that was an intercontinental flight served once daily. Remember they can put you on a future flight knowing that that future flight will probably be overbooked as well, and I believe airlines have systems in place to "protect" you so that you don't get bumped off that overbooked flight.


You shouldn't have to wait the entire day when you are involuntarily bumped from your flight their should be available space on the next flight and if there isn't than you have a lack of capacity problem.
the truth does matter, guys. too bad it's often quite subjective. the truth is beyond the mere facts and figures. it's beyond good and bad, right and wrong...
 
ILUVDC10S
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:19 pm

Flighty wrote:
It sounds to me like the "problem" (assuming there is one, which isn't proven) is not overbooking, or capacity, but irregular operations. Sometimes these 3-day waiting periods are because of an avoidable issue. Not overbooking, or capacity, but avoidance of, and recovery from, irregular operations.

The causes of irregular operations can be IT issues (unacceptable), weather (possible to manage better), or another issue I heard of is a shortage of reserve pilots. If you fully schedule all your pilots, and things go significantly wrong across your operation, you have NO legal pilots left to fly. This is a cost saving technique that can have a hell of a bite.

If that said Republic Airlines flight was truly overbooked then that flight crew shall have been placed on American a hour later they HAD seats open for both crew and Passengers from affected possible overbooked flight No excuse period. Not acting proactively here not what so ever!
 
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klm617
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:19 pm

manny wrote:
Overbooking is another one of those laws that benefit the industry at the expense of the consumer. Yet airlines screw customers by giving them travel vouchers which are usually hard to redeem instead of actual cash/cheque.

Its time there was something done to dial back this and customers compensated more fairly.



Overbooking worked well before I did it many times but I was always offered a flight in a timely manner within an hour or two of my original flight not having to wait 6 to 10 hours for my next flight option.
the truth does matter, guys. too bad it's often quite subjective. the truth is beyond the mere facts and figures. it's beyond good and bad, right and wrong...
 
ILUVDC10S
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:23 pm

slcdeltarumd11 wrote:
The problem here is that the system worked fine when there were seats to rebook people on. Overbooking use to work fine, you would get on the next flight or another airline. Now that the airlines have such high load factors its become unfair to make people wait three days to get somewhere, sometimes long! Watch this Summer, there will be some horror stories. Last Summer i had an oversold flight out of BTV, no availability for THREE days so of course no one was volunteering. I got on the plane, didn't see how that ended.
Airline should have paid for Ground Transportation to Manchester, Boston or Montreal for a open seat. Greyhound does stop at the airport toss the passenger on Greyhound and get them on their way with cash in hand from the bumping. end of story you should not be holding passengers for 3 crazy days for a seat our of your airport send them to a nearby airport that does have seats and get them on their way .
 
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Polot
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:28 pm

klm617 wrote:
Polot wrote:
Is there any evidence that airlines lack the capacity to get overbooked passengers to their destination in a timely manner?

Because I don't think I have ever seen an overbooking that took more than a day for the person to get to their final destination (whether the person was voluntary or otherwise), and that was an intercontinental flight served once daily. Remember they can put you on a future flight knowing that that future flight will probably be overbooked as well, and I believe airlines have systems in place to "protect" you so that you don't get bumped off that overbooked flight.


You shouldn't have to wait the entire day when you are involuntarily bumped from your flight their should be available space on the next flight and if there isn't than you have a lack of capacity problem.

I said it was an intercontinental flight served once daily (EWR-BRU), and the airline (CO, although after UA merger was green lit by gov) offered both a hotel room and meal vouchers in addition to the flight voucher. Obviously there was space available on the next flight or else they wouldn't have offered it, it just so happened the next flight was the next day because again it is a 1x daily flight (and it was getting late evening, after most of the European flights had left or where just about to) . I'm sure the customer could have worked with the agent to see if they can come up with a routing to get there faster, this was just a call for volunteers so obviously the itinerary will not be tailored to each individual traveler's preference.
 
clrd4t8koff
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:31 pm

guyanam wrote:
Bad excuse. Airlines charge hefty change fees and we are forced to pay them, or not travel. Making airlines look like the victim here is a true joke. In order to get a full refund, it either has to be a refundable fare (these aren't cheap) or a major medical emergency.

I maintain that airlines disrespect their passengers and treat their front line staff even worse as it is this group, and not the little bureaucrat hiding in his office, who face passenger wrath and the stress which ensues.


THIS!

I was wondering how long before someone would post this. Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight. Airlines are making BILLIONS in revenue. It would not hurt them if 1 or 2 seats went out open. They're still collecting $200+ from those 1 or 2 seats, which sometimes is even more than the ticket itself, so the airlines get to keep all the money the passenger is practically forfeiting. Give me a break and cry me a river!
 
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Polot
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:35 pm

clrd4t8koff wrote:
Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight.

Airlines are hardly the only ones to do this. Try cancelling most appointments (where money will be exchanged) <24 hours, or not showing up and trying to reschedule, and see what happens. For all industries.

There is a reason that everyone does that- they are encouraging you to actually show up when you say you will instead of just having a free for all where you have no clue how busy or quiet it will be.
Last edited by Polot on Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
Flighty
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:35 pm

ILUVDC10S wrote:
Flighty wrote:
It sounds to me like the "problem" (assuming there is one, which isn't proven) is not overbooking, or capacity, but irregular operations. Sometimes these 3-day waiting periods are because of an avoidable issue. Not overbooking, or capacity, but avoidance of, and recovery from, irregular operations.

The causes of irregular operations can be IT issues (unacceptable), weather (possible to manage better), or another issue I heard of is a shortage of reserve pilots. If you fully schedule all your pilots, and things go significantly wrong across your operation, you have NO legal pilots left to fly. This is a cost saving technique that can have a hell of a bite.

If that said Republic Airlines flight was truly overbooked then that flight crew shall have been placed on American a hour later they HAD seats open for both crew and Passengers from affected possible overbooked flight No excuse period. Not acting proactively here not what so ever!


Oh, agreed... UAL should have used those seats, but that's not an overbooking or a load factor issue, just an operational issue.

UAL has a pretty decent operations research team and they will smooth that issue out to nothing... Or else.
 
clrd4t8koff
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:45 pm

Polot wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:
Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight.

Airlines are hardly the only ones to do this. Try cancelling most appointments (where money will be exchanged) <24 hours, or not showing up and trying to reschedule, and see what happens. For all industries.

There is a reason that everyone does that- they are encouraging you to actually show up when you say you will instead of just having a free for all where you have no clue how busy or quiet it will be.


Yeah, but you're missing the point. Airlines overbook flights so when one doesn't show up another fare paying passenger is in that seat. The analogy you're giving is when one doesn't show up the business is screwed. Name another industry that overbooks appointments like the airline industry does with seats AND charges change fees like the airlines do? I can't think of one, which is why you'll get small fees from a salon, doctor's office, etc. because there's nobody waiting to take your place.
Last edited by clrd4t8koff on Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
alfa164
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:46 pm

clrd4t8koff wrote:
guyanam wrote:
Bad excuse. Airlines charge hefty change fees and we are forced to pay them, or not travel. Making airlines look like the victim here is a true joke. In order to get a full refund, it either has to be a refundable fare (these aren't cheap) or a major medical emergency.
I maintain that airlines disrespect their passengers and treat their front line staff even worse as it is this group, and not the little bureaucrat hiding in his office, who face passenger wrath and the stress which ensues.

THIS!
I was wondering how long before someone would post this. Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight. Airlines are making BILLIONS in revenue. It would not hurt them if 1 or 2 seats went out open. They're still collecting $200+ from those 1 or 2 seats, which sometimes is even more than the ticket itself, so the airlines get to keep all the money the passenger is practically forfeiting. Give me a break and cry me a river!


What would you do about those flights which are overbooked by "phantom" reservations? I have been on many a flight to South America that was overbooked by 20-30 passengers, only to find there were empty seats available at the time the flight took off. Why? It seems travel agents will make bookings and hold them for passengers who can't make up their mind which day the want to travel; they hold seats on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday... multiple days... until the passenger decides when to go.

I suspect this may happen to flights in other parts of the world, too, but it is definitely happening there. I suppose you think the airline should "take the hit" for empty, unsold seats... but, in fact, every passenger will "take the hit", because fares will rise to match the revenue needed for the flight.

Well-calculated overbooking is a necessary evil for both the airline and the flying public. Unfortunately, the few times the situation gets out of hand at the gate gets all the attention.
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clrd4t8koff
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:49 pm

alfa164 wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:
guyanam wrote:
Bad excuse. Airlines charge hefty change fees and we are forced to pay them, or not travel. Making airlines look like the victim here is a true joke. In order to get a full refund, it either has to be a refundable fare (these aren't cheap) or a major medical emergency.
I maintain that airlines disrespect their passengers and treat their front line staff even worse as it is this group, and not the little bureaucrat hiding in his office, who face passenger wrath and the stress which ensues.

THIS!
I was wondering how long before someone would post this. Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight. Airlines are making BILLIONS in revenue. It would not hurt them if 1 or 2 seats went out open. They're still collecting $200+ from those 1 or 2 seats, which sometimes is even more than the ticket itself, so the airlines get to keep all the money the passenger is practically forfeiting. Give me a break and cry me a river!


What would you do about those flights which are overbooked by "phantom" reservations? I have been on many a flight to South America that was overbooked by 20-30 passengers, only to find there were empty seats available at the time the flight took off. Why? It seems travel agents will make bookings and hold them for passengers who can't make up their mind which day the want to travel; they hold seats on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday... multiple days... until the passenger decides when to go.

I suspect this may happen to flights in other parts of the world, too, but it is definitely happening there. I suppose you think the airline should "take the hit" for empty, unsold seats... but, in fact, every passenger will "take the hit", because fares will rise to match the revenue needed for the flight.

Well-calculated overbooking is a necessary evil for both the airline and the flying public. Unfortunately, the few times the situation gets out of hand at the gate gets all the attention.


Do you realize how much a passenger is paying for a refundable and changeable fare to hold those seats? If the airline was getting shafted from offering those types of fares, then the airline could easily stop selling those tickets and allowing ticket agents to book them. But they aren't, so it must not be a big issue to airlines because when someone does actually fly and use that expensive fare I'm sure it more than covers the 1 or 2 days a seat went out empty (though I doubt they are).
 
alfa164
Posts: 3659
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 2:47 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:13 pm

clrd4t8koff wrote:
alfa164 wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:
THIS!
I was wondering how long before someone would post this. Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight. Airlines are making BILLIONS in revenue. It would not hurt them if 1 or 2 seats went out open. They're still collecting $200+ from those 1 or 2 seats, which sometimes is even more than the ticket itself, so the airlines get to keep all the money the passenger is practically forfeiting. Give me a break and cry me a river!

What would you do about those flights which are overbooked by "phantom" reservations? I have been on many a flight to South America that was overbooked by 20-30 passengers, only to find there were empty seats available at the time the flight took off. Why? It seems travel agents will make bookings and hold them for passengers who can't make up their mind which day the want to travel; they hold seats on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday... multiple days... until the passenger decides when to go.
I suspect this may happen to flights in other parts of the world, too, but it is definitely happening there. I suppose you think the airline should "take the hit" for empty, unsold seats... but, in fact, every passenger will "take the hit", because fares will rise to match the revenue needed for the flight.
Well-calculated overbooking is a necessary evil for both the airline and the flying public. Unfortunately, the few times the situation gets out of hand at the gate gets all the attention.

Do you realize how much a passenger is paying for a refundable and changeable fare to hold those seats? If the airline was getting shafted from offering those types of fares, then the airline could easily stop selling those tickets and allowing ticket agents to book them. But they aren't, so it must not be a big issue to airlines because when someone does actually fly and use that expensive fare I'm sure it more than covers the 1 or 2 days a seat went out empty (though I doubt they are).


You seem to lack knowledge about the travel industry. Travel agencies can book space and hold it without it being paid; they are often very resourceful at booking a low fare category and simply holding the space.

It is a "big issue"; and overbooking is the solution the airlines have found.
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MesaFlyGuy
Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:30 pm

ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
2. You know its overbooked when you are given the assignment to handle the flight so when you get to the gate look at the numbers of checked in passengers if all are checked in and in transit to your hub and will arrive on time the time to act is then. Start soliciting for volunteers at the first instance you know you will have more passengers than seats. Start the auction phase.
3. close the stand by list scroll them over to next flight as there will be no seats open for them also non rev's on that flight removed so you can place in the paid passengers. once that is done get your volunteers out of the gate area get the compensation done PRIOR to boarding the plane get that drama done so the boarding process is smooth.
4. Give out boarding passes to those who will have seats from removed Non rev passengers and state that no seat changes will be made here at the gate.
5. Close out the upgrade list since no upgrades will be allowed due to overbooking.
6. Begin the boarding process drama free so you can pay attention to scanning boarding passes and looking for carry on compliance.
7. give final paperwork to the pilot close the door and send that flight on its merry way.

At Outstations do the overbooking process PRIOR to boarding the plane Get the drama done BEFORE you start boarding with the compensation and rebooking done too.
YOU DO NOT BOARD THE PLANE UNTIL THE OVERBOOKING SITUATION IS RESOLVED ! UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES !
There should NEVER be a case where you have to drag a person off a flight no more if you follow these simple procedures period !
Mesaba in Detroit and Pellston and American Eagle in Miami were the best at handling overbooking situations .


Your idea sounds logical, however you need to remember that you are never sure there is an actual overbooking situation until the flight is closed for check-in, and every revenue customer that is at the gate and present for boarding has boarded.
At my airline, if a flight is overbooked by 2 per say, this is my process:
1.I get to the gate 1 hour prior to departure, start making announcements looking for potential volunteers, and page up the passengers in jeopardy of being removed and inform them of the situation, assuring them that I am trying my hardest to find out about volunteers.
2. I remove the seat assignments of the pax in jeopardy and give them new boarding passes with seat requests on them, that way they cannot try to board until I, as the lead agent working the flight, gives them their new boarding passes.
----This is specifically to avoid situations like the United/Republic debacle, making sure nobody gets onboard that shouldn't be there.
2. When the flight is officially closed for check-in, if necessary, I remove the seat assignments from anyone who had not checked in, as they are no longer going to be able to check in for the flight (I work for an airline that charges for specific seat assignments, so many times people had paid for seat assignments at the time of booking).
3. Once the boarding process begins, I keep a close eye on who is present and who is not, and at the end of the boarding process, one agent pages the remaining missing passengers in the concourse while the other goes onboard to check if they are onboard, and if they are traveling with anyone, I ask if the individual(s) is/are coming.
4. After getting an accurate account of who is/isn't onboard the aircraft, knowing how many seats I have available, I re-assign seats to the individuals who will be traveling.
5. Those passengers board, I print out my paperwork, the flight pushes back, and that's that.

Like I said up top, the only time that you know for sure that standbys/any passengers will not be traveling is once that boarding process is complete and you know who is/isn't onboard. I've been a gate agent for my specific airline for 18 months now and I've had to involuntarily deny someone boarding around five times, meanwhile around 90% of my flights are originally oversold.
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.
 
StarAC17
Posts: 3855
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2003 11:54 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:31 pm

klm617 wrote:
Over booking is not the real issue here it has been in force for many tears with little or no issues.. The real problem is the lack of capacity to absorb all the overbookings and getting those passengers to their destination in a timely manner. Just add capacity and the problem is solved. You can't have your cake and eat it too.


These are corporations they will do their damnest to do that to maximize profit. Doing that without giving the employees leverage to use discretion or easily ask for it leads to horrid customer service.

manny wrote:
Overbooking is another one of those laws that benefit the industry at the expense of the consumer. Yet airlines screw customers by giving them travel vouchers which are usually hard to redeem instead of actual cash/cheque.

Its time there was something done to dial back this and customers compensated more fairly.


This is a reason that UA will do everything they can to ensure that the Dr. Dao incident will never see a courtroom. If a judge reviews the contract of carriage they are more than likely to rip pieces of it apart and even thought Dao's lawyer says there will not be a class action at this time if UA even tries to screw around at this could become a class action quickly.

Furthermore the compensation would have to be cash, alliance vouchers so if I was bumped on UA I could use it on AC or LH etc. or give me gift cards in my country of residence like DL is doing. The EU gives cash at different tiers and this is not an issue.

clrd4t8koff wrote:
Polot wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:
Airlines want to double dip - they want to have full seats AND charge for changes to reservations or not showing up for/ missing your flight.

Airlines are hardly the only ones to do this. Try cancelling most appointments (where money will be exchanged) <24 hours, or not showing up and trying to reschedule, and see what happens. For all industries.

There is a reason that everyone does that- they are encouraging you to actually show up when you say you will instead of just having a free for all where you have no clue how busy or quiet it will be.


Yeah, but you're missing the point. Airlines overbook flights so when one doesn't show up another fare paying passenger is in that seat. The analogy you're giving is when one doesn't show up the business is screwed. Name another industry that overbooks appointments like the airline industry does with seats AND charges change fees like the airlines do? I can't think of one, which is why you'll get small fees from a salon, doctor's office, etc. because there's nobody waiting to take your place.


I am really surprised that this isn't done is sports and entertainment.

Have a condition that you must be at your event this time beyond the start (say end of 3rd baseball, 1st quarter in the NFL and NBA, 1st intermission in the NHL, specified time for concerts and shows) and failing that it can be sold to someone whom wants to attend at the door. A good way to earn more money in those businesses. You would have people on standby for those times and let them into the venue for a set price.
Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
 
Planesmart
Posts: 2891
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:18 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:59 pm

zeke wrote:
I think airlines (insert hotel, car hire etc) would be happy to not overbook as long as passengers didn't want their money or booking moved to another flight if they don't show for their original flight.

In reality passengers want refunds or to be moved different flights and make the unused inventory the airlines cost.

I always enjoy your informed posts Zeke, but on this subject, airline management takes the moral high ground - a heads we win customers, tails you lose.

The counter. How many flight crew would like to be on zero-based hours contracts? Thanks for turning up to day Zeke, but other crew beat you to the office, so you are not needed today, and you will receive trivial compensation for your efforts and emotional distress, and we can't guarantee you work tomorrow.

What should be specified, is airlines cannot select passengers, they can only offer. And the offer should start at a simple number, like 10 times the price of the ticket purchased, plus guaranteed seat on the next available flight, plus accommodation (if applicable).

If as another poster claims, bumping hardly registers, because the percentage of passengers daily is so low, then the penalty will hardly register on the bottom line.
 
Planesmart
Posts: 2891
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:18 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:06 pm

alfa164 wrote:
You seem to lack knowledge about the travel industry. Travel agencies can book space and hold it without it being paid; they are often very resourceful at booking a low fare category and simply holding."

Anyone around at the time of Laker, will be aware this was one 'cause' of the airlines demise. Legacy related travel agencies made phantom bookings to depress Laker load factors and revenue. A consequence, was the subsequent requirement for airlines to divest travel agency shareholdings.
 
mjoelnir
Posts: 9391
Joined: Sun Feb 03, 2013 11:06 pm

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:15 pm

The main point is that the people flying on the lowest fairs, have non refundable tickets. The have booked and paid that flight and loose their money with a no show. Often even the return flight. The seat going out empty was paid.
Those people are the lowest on the totem pole and the ones that are screwed over when an overbooking occurs.
 
commavia
Posts: 11489
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2005 2:30 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:18 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
The main point is that the people flying on the lowest fairs, have non refundable tickets. The have booked and paid that flight and loose their money with a no show. Often even the return flight. The seat going out empty was paid.
Those people are the lowest on the totem pole and the ones that are screwed over when an overbooking occurs.


On the contrary, many economists would argue that, in fact, the lowest-paying passengers are actually - in the long-run, on average - the ones who benefit most from overbooking.

Airlines' ability to essentially sell the same seat twice based on the (educated) guess that a few passengers will no-show or misconnect is one of the basic, underlying contributors to the entire economic model that facilitates low fares. If airlines were deprived of the additional profit contribution that overbooking generated, the net result would be that fares would have to rise - and the customers that would be disproportionately negatively affected by that are not business travelers charging their higher fare to a corporate expense account, but price-sensitive personal/leisure travelers.

The statistics clearly illustrate that airlines' revenue management and predictive analytics have gotten so effective that, in relative terms, the number of passengers actually impacted by overbooking is tiny, and the number who are involuntarily denied boarding as a result of overbooking is even more tiny. That doesn't mean that there isn't room to handle such situations better, and it certainly doesn't mean that such situations absolutely suck if you're the unlucky person affected. But, in the aggregate, it seems to me that the overall long-term economic benefits of overbooking - for both the airline and the traveling public - far outweighs the downsides.
Last edited by commavia on Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
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PatrickZ80
Posts: 4284
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:33 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:19 pm

I wouldn't call it a major issue, but it is an issue for sure. Of course it all depends on the business model of the airline.

I know Ryanair doesn't overbook their flights. They don't need to because they don't sell refundable tickets and don't offer connections so no missed connections either. Therefor they got a minimal amount of no-shows. But they don't care about no-shows either. The seat has been sold so they make money on it, if you show up or not is your own responsibility. If you're not there the plane leaves without you and you lost your money.

I think the problem is that some airlines sell full-refundable tickets. This only encourages no-shows on which the airline doesn't make any money. I think there should always be some kind of penalty on applying for a refund, let's say a maximum 70 percent refund. That way you discourage people to apply for a refund instead of just flying the booked flight.
 
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precure787
Posts: 219
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Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:26 pm

I guess that is the unintended consequence of lower fares and/or increasing flight class options. United did in fact introduce the basic economy (lower fare option in the "standard" economy class, the pricier and roomier economy plus, and the luxurious Polaris Class) as part of increasing UA's ridership. All of which combined have attracted UA customers (as the airline claimed). Unintentionally, that made the aircraft fully booked, and for employees wanting to go from point A to point B have proven more difficult, such as the incident when Dr. David Dao was dragged off Flight UA3411 after the flight was overbooked (especially when 4 employees need to get to Louisville).
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kavok
Posts: 842
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 10:12 pm

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:31 pm

There have been several good posts in this thread, but what it all really comes down to is that the penalty for the airline is not steep enough when IDBs occur.

If the penalty the airlines had to pay the IDB was higher, there would be economic advantage to have less of them occur. Maybe this would come in the form of better VDB offers, maybe there would be less overbookings, or maybe something entirely different would be implemented. Someone much smarter than me can figure that part out.

But the simple fact is this... if the airlines had to pay... say $9k in compensation to anyone who was IDB, there would be a lot less IDB situations. And the smart people at the airlines would still find a way to maximize profitability, and fill their jets. It is that simple.
 
OSUk1d
Posts: 150
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:43 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:31 pm

ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
2. You know its overbooked when you are given the assignment to handle the flight so when you get to the gate look at the numbers of checked in passengers if all are checked in and in transit to your hub and will arrive on time the time to act is then. Start soliciting for volunteers at the first instance you know you will have more passengers than seats. Start the auction phase.
3. close the stand by list scroll them over to next flight as there will be no seats open for them also non rev's on that flight removed so you can place in the paid passengers. once that is done get your volunteers out of the gate area get the compensation done PRIOR to boarding the plane get that drama done so the boarding process is smooth.
4. Give out boarding passes to those who will have seats from removed Non rev passengers and state that no seat changes will be made here at the gate.
5. Close out the upgrade list since no upgrades will be allowed due to overbooking.
6. Begin the boarding process drama free so you can pay attention to scanning boarding passes and looking for carry on compliance.
7. give final paperwork to the pilot close the door and send that flight on its merry way.

At Outstations do the overbooking process PRIOR to boarding the plane Get the drama done BEFORE you start boarding with the compensation and rebooking done too.
YOU DO NOT BOARD THE PLANE UNTIL THE OVERBOOKING SITUATION IS RESOLVED ! UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES !
There should NEVER be a case where you have to drag a person off a flight no more if you follow these simple procedures period !
Mesaba in Detroit and Pellston and American Eagle in Miami were the best at handling overbooking situations .



This doesn't make sense. what nonrev passengers are you removing from an overbooked flight before boarding? If they have a seat, they are company business and are not being removed. Their seat comes out of inventory and counts against overbooking allowances.
If a flight is overbooked, there are no space available passengers with seats before boarding
Why would you close the standby list and roll nonrevs because a flight is overbooked? Nonrevs get on overbooked flights all the time. And many times they still even go out with seats open.
Also upgrades.. that point makes zero sense since premium cabins generally don't get overbooked. If anything economy will be over with seats up front.. you'll want to upgrade people.
You sound like you just have a problem with nonrevs and are blaming them for issues that are generally not even a problem.
 
OSUk1d
Posts: 150
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:43 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:39 pm

MesaFlyGuy wrote:
ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
2. You know its overbooked when you are given the assignment to handle the flight so when you get to the gate look at the numbers of checked in passengers if all are checked in and in transit to your hub and will arrive on time the time to act is then. Start soliciting for volunteers at the first instance you know you will have more passengers than seats. Start the auction phase.
3. close the stand by list scroll them over to next flight as there will be no seats open for them also non rev's on that flight removed so you can place in the paid passengers. once that is done get your volunteers out of the gate area get the compensation done PRIOR to boarding the plane get that drama done so the boarding process is smooth.
4. Give out boarding passes to those who will have seats from removed Non rev passengers and state that no seat changes will be made here at the gate.
5. Close out the upgrade list since no upgrades will be allowed due to overbooking.
6. Begin the boarding process drama free so you can pay attention to scanning boarding passes and looking for carry on compliance.
7. give final paperwork to the pilot close the door and send that flight on its merry way.

At Outstations do the overbooking process PRIOR to boarding the plane Get the drama done BEFORE you start boarding with the compensation and rebooking done too.
YOU DO NOT BOARD THE PLANE UNTIL THE OVERBOOKING SITUATION IS RESOLVED ! UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES !
There should NEVER be a case where you have to drag a person off a flight no more if you follow these simple procedures period !
Mesaba in Detroit and Pellston and American Eagle in Miami were the best at handling overbooking situations .


Your idea sounds logical, however you need to remember that you are never sure there is an actual overbooking situation until the flight is closed for check-in, and every revenue customer that is at the gate and present for boarding has boarded.
At my airline, if a flight is overbooked by 2 per say, this is my process:
1.I get to the gate 1 hour prior to departure, start making announcements looking for potential volunteers, and page up the passengers in jeopardy of being removed and inform them of the situation, assuring them that I am trying my hardest to find out about volunteers.
2. I remove the seat assignments of the pax in jeopardy and give them new boarding passes with seat requests on them, that way they cannot try to board until I, as the lead agent working the flight, gives them their new boarding passes.
----This is specifically to avoid situations like the United/Republic debacle, making sure nobody gets onboard that shouldn't be there.
2. When the flight is officially closed for check-in, if necessary, I remove the seat assignments from anyone who had not checked in, as they are no longer going to be able to check in for the flight (I work for an airline that charges for specific seat assignments, so many times people had paid for seat assignments at the time of booking).
3. Once the boarding process begins, I keep a close eye on who is present and who is not, and at the end of the boarding process, one agent pages the remaining missing passengers in the concourse while the other goes onboard to check if they are onboard, and if they are traveling with anyone, I ask if the individual(s) is/are coming.
4. After getting an accurate account of who is/isn't onboard the aircraft, knowing how many seats I have available, I re-assign seats to the individuals who will be traveling.
5. Those passengers board, I print out my paperwork, the flight pushes back, and that's that.

Like I said up top, the only time that you know for sure that standbys/any passengers will not be traveling is once that boarding process is complete and you know who is/isn't onboard. I've been a gate agent for my specific airline for 18 months now and I've had to involuntarily deny someone boarding around five times, meanwhile around 90% of my flights are originally oversold.


You absolutely know if a flight is overbooked before the flight is closed. I can go and look if flights any time in the future are overbooked.
I doubt 90% of your flights are oversold, otherwise you're taking a lot of volunteers.
Being a gate agent for 18 months, you should probably learn the terminology.
Overbooked is at any time before the flight there are more seats sold than available. Standby passengers get on overbooked flights all the time.
Oversold is when more people check in and show up than there are seats. This happens way less than overbooking because people don't show up or misconnect.
There have been times when I'm several people down the list on a flight overbooked by 5 or 6 people and still get on the flight. That flight was never oversold.
 
OSUk1d
Posts: 150
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:43 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:41 pm

zeke wrote:
I think airlines (insert hotel, car hire etc) would be happy to not overbook as long as passengers didn't want their money or booking moved to another flight if they don't show for their original flight.

In reality passengers want refunds or to be moved different flights and make the unused inventory the airlines cost.


Exactly.. no overbooking, then no moving to another flight unless you misconnected. If you're stuck in security line, too bad. If you had a flat tire, oh well.
 
OSUk1d
Posts: 150
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:43 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:48 pm

klm617 wrote:
cedarjet wrote:
Lol, I agree, ridiculous post; at least 10% and up to 30% of pax no-show (illness, traffic, missed connections, change of plans), if you want to pay 10% more and up to 30% more for your ticket then by all means outlaw overbooking.



Missed connections are not the passengers fault and should not be lumped in with the no shows.


Yes, they should.. it happens and those passengers are not there. So therefore they are no shows and not taking up a seat.
 
OSUk1d
Posts: 150
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:43 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:49 pm

manny wrote:
Overbooking is another one of those laws that benefit the industry at the expense of the consumer. Yet airlines screw customers by giving them travel vouchers which are usually hard to redeem instead of actual cash/cheque.

Its time there was something done to dial back this and customers compensated more fairly.



Why are they hard to redeem? It's like a gift card.
 
ILUVDC10S
Posts: 259
Joined: Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:56 am

Re: Overbooking of Flights has become a major issue.

Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:51 pm

MesaFlyGuy wrote:
ILUVDC10S wrote:
The proper way to handle overbooking flights at hub stations is as follows.
1. Act proactively think ahead..
2. You know its overbooked when you are given the assignment to handle the flight so when you get to the gate look at the numbers of checked in passengers if all are checked in and in transit to your hub and will arrive on time the time to act is then. Start soliciting for volunteers at the first instance you know you will have more passengers than seats. Start the auction phase.
3. close the stand by list scroll them over to next flight as there will be no seats open for them also non rev's on that flight removed so you can place in the paid passengers. once that is done get your volunteers out of the gate area get the compensation done PRIOR to boarding the plane get that drama done so the boarding process is smooth.
4. Give out boarding passes to those who will have seats from removed Non rev passengers and state that no seat changes will be made here at the gate.
5. Close out the upgrade list since no upgrades will be allowed due to overbooking.
6. Begin the boarding process drama free so you can pay attention to scanning boarding passes and looking for carry on compliance.
7. give final paperwork to the pilot close the door and send that flight on its merry way.

At Outstations do the overbooking process PRIOR to boarding the plane Get the drama done BEFORE you start boarding with the compensation and rebooking done too.
YOU DO NOT BOARD THE PLANE UNTIL THE OVERBOOKING SITUATION IS RESOLVED ! UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES !
There should NEVER be a case where you have to drag a person off a flight no more if you follow these simple procedures period !
Mesaba in Detroit and Pellston and American Eagle in Miami were the best at handling overbooking situations .


Your idea sounds logical, however you need to remember that you are never sure there is an actual overbooking situation until the flight is closed for check-in, and every revenue customer that is at the gate and present for boarding has boarded.
At my airline, if a flight is overbooked by 2 per say, this is my process:
1.I get to the gate 1 hour prior to departure, start making announcements looking for potential volunteers, and page up the passengers in jeopardy of being removed and inform them of the situation, assuring them that I am trying my hardest to find out about volunteers.
2. I remove the seat assignments of the pax in jeopardy and give them new boarding passes with seat requests on them, that way they cannot try to board until I, as the lead agent working the flight, gives them their new boarding passes.
----This is specifically to avoid situations like the United/Republic debacle, making sure nobody gets onboard that shouldn't be there.
2. When the flight is officially closed for check-in, if necessary, I remove the seat assignments from anyone who had not checked in, as they are no longer going to be able to check in for the flight (I work for an airline that charges for specific seat assignments, so many times people had paid for seat assignments at the time of booking).
3. Once the boarding process begins, I keep a close eye on who is present and who is not, and at the end of the boarding process, one agent pages the remaining missing passengers in the concourse while the other goes onboard to check if they are onboard, and if they are traveling with anyone, I ask if the individual(s) is/are coming.
4. After getting an accurate account of who is/isn't onboard the aircraft, knowing how many seats I have available, I re-assign seats to the individuals who will be traveling.
5. Those passengers board, I print out my paperwork, the flight pushes back, and that's that.

Like I said up top, the only time that you know for sure that standbys/any passengers will not be traveling is once that boarding process is complete and you know who is/isn't onboard. I've been a gate agent for my specific airline for 18 months now and I've had to involuntarily deny someone boarding around five times, meanwhile around 90% of my flights are originally oversold.


Uh You know what you have no later than a hour prior to departure in some airports you will know sooner than that depending on where you are A sub hub like Seattle you have to account for the underground tram ride to the S gates do that adds to the min check in times in order to get thru TSA and the tram ride to the gates. Same for TPA- LAS And DFW too with AA having 2-3 of the airport.
Your way you still have the drama at the gate. again you should not board the aircraft until your overbooking situation is resolved. either by passenger count or weight penalties you incur due to heavy cargo or large bag count. There again with TSA rules you must travel with your bag if you have a overbooked flight Below the wing has to be on the ball also. Meaning do not load passenger bags until boarding commences this way you can search a cart rather than the under belly of the plane for a removed passengers bags to comply with TSA Rules So I again say get the drama over with before you board the plane it would make your job much easier and more enjoyable and better on passengers too. Proactive instead of reactive. Remember the 60-30-10 rule and followed with iron fist ! no exceptions.
60 minutes before departure check in is closed for your flight
30 minutes prior to departure gate is closed for check in This may be 45 or 60 for International wide bodies
10 minutes before departure doors close
so you have about 30-45 minutes to get the plane 100 percent ready for boarding goes for coordination with the baggage handlers to ensure TSA compliance too.
This is why you as a airline should not charge extra for window aisle or exit row seats or front of the plane seats either you would also have to send pax back to ticket counter for refund since most gate computers are limited in scope in what they can do..

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