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twal10114ever
Topic Author
Posts: 48
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:00 am

American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 8:06 am

Ok, I was one of the lucky passengers to experience how crazy things can get when a few storms encompass the DFW airport. Last night I was flying from BHM-DFW on the M80 and we left the gate on-time only to be held on the taxiway for two hours in BHM due to ATC flow. After sitting there for 30 minutes the F/A's announced they would be doing a beverage service but "would not do another service once we were airborne." So thinking possibly that was because they would be out of drinks, I understood. Although having been a F/A I knew that probably wasn't the case. However when standing in line for the aft lav I noticed the F/A restocking one of the carts and moving cans of sodas around and she ended up with an entire full cart of sodas. So for a one hour and 30 minute flight which took over four hours after you tack on the ground time in BHM and the 30 minutes of hold time in the air closer to DFW, the F/A's could only muster up one drink service? Pure laziness in my estimation, especially since the one F/A was busy reading her People magazine on the back jumpseat and the other was busy standing in F Class talking with the F/A up there. The point here is NOT that I didn't get a second drink.........I could care less about that........but the point is no wonder passengers go crazy these days with the lack of service an airline provides during lengthy delays (and this wasn't even that lengthy when you look at other delay horror stories). In this case it appeared to be nothing more than pure laziness on behalf of the crew. If they really wanted to do another service, they sure could have without a problem, but instead reading the People Magazine took priority. Just makes me shake my head!
 
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LHRBFSTrident
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Lazin

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:16 am

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Thread starter):
Pure laziness in my estimation, especially since the one F/A was busy reading her People magazine on the back jumpseat and the other was busy standing in F Class talking with the F/A up there

they'd better watch out or their jobs will be outsourced to India - much higher productivity!  Wink

the one I like is; ' Due to the short duration of today's flight I'll remain seated in my jumpseat, and you can ring the flight attendant call button if you'd like water' on a 1 hour flight within California

most everywhere else can serve a full meal tray and bar service (albeit very quickly) and the cabin crew get snaps from all the pax for their well-rehearsed and precisely executed routine (e.g. LHR-MAN 51minutes on a BA A320 last month - and the British aren't exactly famous for work-ethic - remembering the 1970s 'What we want is jobs, not work!' refrain from the pre-Thatcher Trades Union)
 
ikramerica
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:29 am

This is the main reason I switched to CO for most of my travels. AA has a better network, and better access to frequent flyer awards, but for the day to day things, the little things, their once stellar service took a nose dive, and this was before the "cost cutting." It came directly from the attitude of the employees, as they see pax mainly as a nuisance getting in the way of their chats and magazine reading, rather than as actual customers.

There are obviously exceptions to this, but this was the general feel I got as a loyal AA customer over the period from the late 90s through 2001, and why though I'd been flying AA almost exclusively since the mid-80s, I looked to another airline in 2001. Flying AA recently (3 trips this year) I don't see much difference. In premium class, they are nice enough, but everywhere else in the system, from check-in to gates, the attitude seems to be inferior to CO and even DL (who I think has absolutely great in flight staff but indifferent ground staff).

My current trip I flew LAX-MIA on a 777 on AA in J on Saturday, then flew SRQ-EWR on CO in Y yesterday, and the CO experience was better overall. At LAX, the check-in CSRs were ignoring premium customers waiting for someone to tag their bags (not in favor of Y pax, just ignoring everyone...). Even in the LAX admirals club, the bartender was very interested in reading his newspaper and very disinterested in serving customers who had to stand and wait for him to get through his paragraph before getting service. (a whole bunch of chairs were ripped, too, which was shocking, but that's not a staffing issue). The front desk also didn't have the new access rules straight, and were denying entry to customers who were clearly allowed access by the new rules. And I had to use my Amex Platinum despite the new rules clearly allowing me access on my J fare to Miami (it was right there on the placcard, which they were reading incorrectly). The F/A for my aisle on the 777 was great, but most of the rest of the staff was busy talking loudly most of the flight (kind of annoying). And for a 4.5 hour flight, they didn't come by and ask if any J pax wanted anything for the 2 hours between lunch was served until the milk and cookies (CO doesn't let pax stew for that long in Y class let alone F/J).

We'll see how things go tomorrow night on JFK-LAX on AA in J. It's a night flight, so as long as they aren't too noisy, I'll be asleep. And the staff at the new admirals club at JFK seemed quite nice last time.

I wonder if there's a part of the training manual that says "we expect all AA employees to keep up on current events in Sports and Entertainment news, and will test them on it weekly?"  Smile
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
AA767400
Posts: 1894
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:31 am

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Thread starter):
In this case it appeared to be nothing more than pure laziness on behalf of the crew.

Your view does not look at the whole picture of course.

Flight 2221 was their second leg of three that day. That M80 shows being double catered for THREE legs that day! That Crew flew DFW-BHM-DFW-CMH that day, and do you know what time they landed in CMH? 0145! Now could they have done another service? Sure but with coffee and water. You saw her in the galley working on the carts for the next leg because if she was lazy and it was the last flight that night should would have not done that. They reached CMH and had a nine hour layover only to do it all over again the next day.


AA offers bare bone service on their aircraft and the Flight Attendants have to beg at the next station for catering items. Flight Attendants are tired of making excuses for AA due to their lack of offerings. Unfortunately Flight Attendants are the only thing you see, and they get the blunt of people's anger.

I am not taking sides but your view is not looking at the whole picture.

Quoting LHRBFSTrident (Reply 1):
most everywhere else can serve a full meal tray and bar service (albeit very quickly) and the cabin crew get snaps from all the pax for their well-rehearsed and precisely executed routine (e.g. LHR-MAN 51minutes on a BA A320 last month - and the British aren't exactly famous for work-ethic - remembering the 1970s 'What we want is jobs, not work!' refrain from the pre-Thatcher Trades Union

Different markets. As you can see from the rest of the United States, air travel has become so mainstream that it is right there with Greyhound. Pay $69 and you will get a $69 service. People want Caviar service at a Kmart price, and we are not in the 70s anymore! There is no piano with a cocktail bar waiting for you anymore.

Reality is hard to understand sometimes. And outsourcing to India? Not in this lifetime, for now companies can still hire straight off the street like most people think they hire.
"The low fares airline."
 
worldtraveler
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:39 am

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Flight 2221 was their second leg of three that day. That M80 shows being double catered for THREE legs that day!

so is it the customer's fault that mgmt does not provide enough resources to provide more than bare bones service?

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
That Crew flew DFW-BHM-DFW-CMH that day, and do you know what time they landed in CMH?

does the customer care what the crew does before or after the flight the customer paid for?

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
air travel has become so mainstream that it is right there with Greyhound.

yet, other airlines DO provide higher service levels and they carry the same fares AA does.

Onboard service is SO incredibly cheap compared to some things (like employee salaries). Cutting corners on a can of Coke (and the costs of recatering if necessary on delayed flights) is simple foolishness. I agree that those decisions are not necessarily the FAs but the theme over and over again is that AA mgmt is cutting the resources out from under its employees and the employees just take it out on the customer. As an American employee, you should be very concerned about the number of passengers who are saying they are taking their business elsehwhere.
 
Paddy
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:50 am

I flew AA LAX-BOS-CDG-JFK-SFO in Y last summer and I never came across anything I would consider laziness. Airport staff was always friendly and available . In flight, some of the FA's were gruff bordering on rude, some were very attentive and genuinely friendly (I had a particularly good crew on LAX-BOS). Either way, I didnt notice any of them doing a whole lot of sitting around. All in all, the service was nothing to write home about, but it wasn't as bad as some experiences I've had with DL, NW and US. Then again, I'm not an AA FF so my expectations arent particularly high to begin with.
 
twal10114ever
Topic Author
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Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:00 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 11:17 am

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Flight 2221 was their second leg of three that day. That M80 shows being double catered for THREE legs that day! That Crew flew DFW-BHM-DFW-CMH that day, and do you know what time they landed in CMH? 0145! Now could they have done another service? Sure but with coffee and water. You saw her in the galley working on the carts for the next leg because if she was lazy and it was the last flight that night should would have not done that. They reached CMH and had a nine hour layover only to do it all over again the next day.


AA offers bare bone service on their aircraft and the Flight Attendants have to beg at the next station for catering items. Flight Attendants are tired of making excuses for AA due to their lack of offerings. Unfortunately Flight Attendants are the only thing you see, and they get the blunt of people's anger.

I am not taking sides but your view is not looking at the whole picture.

Having done the same job, I completely understand long days and delays with full planes of passengers, but frankly the passenger doesn't care if it is their first or their seventh leg of the day. To see a F/A totally dismissing the passengers by reading her People magazine after she has an entire plane full of passengers that have just gone through a two hour delay sitting on an aircraft at the end of the taxiway is inexcusable. You mean to tell me that once that plane got back to Dallas it wouldn't be catered again for the flight to CMH? PLEASE! They had plenty of supplies to do another service, but they chose not to, instead choosing to have social hour in the F Class cabin or quiet reading time in the rear of the aircraft. I see the whole picture because I have done the same job for many years and I know there are ways around that if you want to go "above and beyond' for the passengers. This crew just chose not to. Use what you have for the passengers who were inconvenienced and call ahead to get more supplies at the next station. There ARE ample supplies at the DFW station even if the plane was not going to be catered again and there are ways to get them if you really want to. When I was a F/A there wasn't 15 minutes that went by when I wasn't at least walking through the cabin to check on the passengers, but it wasn't until we were 40 minutes outside DFW when the F/A's came through to collect trash on this flight (although they did it when we were on the ground in BHM).

Oh and yes, I saw her working on the carts, but I also saw her reading her magazine because it was SUCH a hard day working that second leg (DFW-BHM-DFW) that she needed a break. Come on, gimme a break! F/A's have a tough job, yes because I was one of them, but putting forth a little effort sometimes can go a long way, especially when you have a plane load of inconvenienced passengers.
 
OHLHD
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 11:39 am

In May ´91 I was stuck in UA 727 at ORD for 6 hours beeing in line number 74 for take off. They did serve one round of drinks and thats it. My father asked for some more ( I was 11 at that time) but was told that they were already out of their duty time so they would not serve anything more.

In Oct ´01 I flew LAX-HNL-SFO on DL 763 and was stuck at HNL for 2 hours because of bad weather and the DL FA´s were running around like mad serving dirnks after drinks after drinks.

Maybe you just had bad luck.  Smile
 
scalebuilder
Posts: 605
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 11:40 am

Quoting Paddy (Reply 5):
I flew AA LAX-BOS-CDG-JFK-SFO in Y last summer and I never came across anything I would consider laziness. Airport staff was always friendly and available

Ditto. I flew from DFW to IND a while ago coming in from OKC. AA actually held the flight for us guys running for life as we were slightly delayed coming in anyway. We just barely made it.

The crew aboard our MD-80 to Indy? Absolutely fantastic! We all endured a three our delay before we could depart from DFW due to a problem with the flaps. Never will I forget the good attitudes of the cabin crew on that flight (this was their 3rd flight that day). They went out of their way to ensure that everyone was comfortable during the wait to get airborne. It simply must be as hard for the crew to go through this as it is for the passengers (knowing little about crew service limitations) They are trained for this scenario, but likely I was better compensated than them to just sit there and relax in my seat while they took such good care of me.

Cabin crew are greatly under-appreciated for what they do. Give'em a smile and they'll smile right back at you!. If you can't, you're biased!
Go the extra mile......and avoid the traffic!!!
 
khobar
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 1:10 pm

Quoting LHRBFSTrident (Reply 1):
most everywhere else can serve a full meal tray and bar service (albeit very quickly) and the cabin crew get snaps from all the pax for their well-rehearsed and precisely executed routine (e.g. LHR-MAN 51minutes on a BA A320 last month - and the British aren't exactly famous for work-ethic - remembering the 1970s 'What we want is jobs, not work!' refrain from the pre-Thatcher Trades Union)

I'd really love to be on one of these magical BA or other European flights that serve the full meal on a short flight. I've been on so many BA/BMI flights over the years, and the most I've been offered is a slimy sandwich of sorts and a Club bar (BMI, London to Belfast). My recent flights on BA London to Dublin had no food whatsoever, though I think we got some sort of coffee service, but that was it.

And something else - the F/A's were old, tired, and frumpy - not at all what someone reading a.net would expect.
 
ly204
Posts: 120
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 2:40 pm

I know we have some die-hard AA fans on this site, but I truly think AA is very far behind virtually every other major (and LCC) in terms of their service level.

The state of their aircraft, for one, is telling: (1) aging, tired "Super 80s" being used on non-stop routes from as far as Boston to DFW for example and, more often than not, re-appearing on connecting flights, that lead flyers to be stuck on these narrow sardine cans across the continental US; (2) abysmal, dirty, again 757s with broken-down 1986 vintage in-flight entertainment systems; (3) continued use of A300s (I know there have been countless threads on this site about whether or not the A300 is safe...but there have been a fairly long list of problems with AA-maintained A300s over the years (several engine fires, etc.) that seem to not be as pervasive on other carriers' A300s (e.g. Lufthansa); and (4) when newer models have come on-line (e.g. 738s), they are devoid of many basic amenities (e.g. flat screen overhead monitors every few rows back, personal air vents) -- these things all are indicative of AAs lack of regard for maintaining aircraft that provide a pleasant flying experience for passengers.

The service of AA personnel has been well covered on this site. I know there are many good people that do their best every day at AA...but there are far too many disgruntled, unmotivated people working the front-lines these days...and it shows. Two recent examples of my own: (1) April 2004 -- MIA-->JFK, plane was held on the tarmac for about 75 minutes after pulling out from the gate, APU was unattached/engines were off...no A/C running on the aircraft...an elderly gentleman sitting next to me asked the flight attendant for water to drink to take his medication...the flight attendant said "you have to wait until take off"...after another 30 minutes, the plane took off and upon reaching cruising altitutude, the gentleman reminded the same flight attendant that he would like a glass of water, only to be told "we start beverage service at the front of the a/c...you will have to wait your turn." Given that we were 4/5 to the back of the 757, the gentleman had to wait another 20 minutes before getting a small glass of water; (2) October 2005 -- JFK-->ZRH (business class), upon entering the plane with a garment bag holding a suit, I asked the flight attendant if he could help me hang my garment bag...he said "please do it yourself...there is a closet toward the end of this section."

I know there are some loyal AA fans out there, but for those of you who hold the company in such high regard, you should take these experiences from myself and others into account and work to change the culture/service levels of this company...AA cannot continue to call itself a "full service carrier" when they offer such an inferior product to LCCs and other mainline competitors.
 
AA767400
Posts: 1894
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2001 2:04 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:49 pm

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
does the customer care what the crew does before or after the flight the customer paid for?

No, and that is why they could care less.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
and the employees just take it out on the customer

I agree, Now how many times has a passenger take it out on an employee? If a passenger pays the employee's salary, does that warrant taking TSA regulations,airline's lack of service, and that bag the airline lost on the way over out on employees?

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
As an American employee, you should be very concerned about the number of passengers who are saying they are taking their business elsehwhere.

As an American employee I have found a second job and now work less flights because of things like this.

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Reply 6):
she has an entire plane full of passengers that have just gone through a two hour delay sitting on an aircraft at the end of the taxiway is inexcusable.

She should have done a service in the air, but other than that I really don't know what you want from a Crew on a M80 with no IFE. But wait? Maybe that lack of IFE is what makes people look for the Crew for entertainment.  silly 

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Reply 6):
You mean to tell me that once that plane got back to Dallas it wouldn't be catered again for the flight to CMH? PLEASE!

You really have not caught on? Since you know so much about AA, you should also know how cheap they are.

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Reply 6):
I have done the same job for many years and I know there are ways around that if you want to go "above and beyond' for the passengers.

And that is why I think you left the job in the first place. You do have a place in inflight management because you do have an eye for service. I also could not help but notice you are a TWL1011 fan. Could you have worked for TW and then got furloughed from AA?

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
I know we have some die-hard AA fans on this site, but I truly think AA is very far behind virtually every other major (and LCC) in terms of their service level.

Yes it is my friend, but how's fault is that? Its time for AA (Not the Flight Attendants) to overhaul their inflight product.


It was lazy of her to not do a service. But AA is just at fault here for not providing more when things go wrong.
"The low fares airline."
 
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seabosdca
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:49 pm

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
(1) aging, tired "Super 80s" being used on non-stop routes from as far as Boston to DFW for example and, more often than not, re-appearing on connecting flights, that lead flyers to be stuck on these narrow sardine cans across the continental US;

I fly AA S80s more often than any other a/c (except maybe for AS 738s) and this doesn't match my experience. (I'll grant that you're right about the 757s -- that interior overhaul can't come soon enough.) As long as I can stay forward of row 22 or so, I enjoy the S80s better than competitors' 737 or A32s a/c.

First, they're not "tired." The S80s have been redone relatively recently. They have newer seats with adjustable winged headrests and reasonably new walls and bins. They may not be the most economical a/c, but given MD durability they should be fine for as long as AA chooses to fly them.

Second, their narrowness is an asset, not a liability. With 3-2 seating there are half as many center seats to get stuck in when you buy a ticket late. If you get a window on the 2 side, you only have to crawl over one person to reach the aisle.

I've also found AA cabin and ground staff to be variable, but not that bad on average. Of the airlines I fly regularly, AS is better; US, UA and NW are all worse. I don't hesitate to book AA (unless I have to connect in ORD on a summer afternoon).
 
scalebuilder
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:13 pm

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
know we have some die-hard AA fans on this site, but I truly think AA is very far behind virtually every other major (and LCC) in terms of their service level.

It should be noted that I am by no means associated with AA, and when I travel for business, arrangements are pretty much made for me by someone else. The airline I fly with is very much a random choice, and it depends on where I am going.

Maybe I was just lucky that day. However, I flew on six different flights with AA within 3 days. It was all seamless and on-time with the exception of our mechanical delay at DFW. It was an evening flight and the last one for me, and delayed for three more hours. Glad to finally make it home that evening.

I was just really impressed with how the AA crew handled the situation that day. I guess my experience must be "hit and miss". However, I do travel quite a bit and do find the unrelentless critizism of airline standards in the US somewhat unwarranted.
Go the extra mile......and avoid the traffic!!!
 
aanyc
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:42 pm

Bravo to AA767400....


TWAL10114ever...a lot of our flights are now double catered and it is a pain in the neck for the Flight Attendants. I am sure they would have been more than happy to provide you with a service in the air from BHM to DFW, the only thing is...what would they then serve to the passengers who board in DFW for their next leg? I have been in that situation where I board a flight go into the galley and realize that inbound crew used my supplies...so guess what, there is no service on that 1 to 1 1/2 hour flight because there isn't anything to give our passengers. Do I get angry, you bet. However, our comments fall on deaf ears down at headquartes. Upper management at AA has done all they could to find ways to cut cost so they could bonus and along the way the forgot hat we are in the customer service industry. They cut way to deeply and now leave it up to all of their front-line employees to bear the brunt or the customers anger.
 
iairallie
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:21 am

Seems odd but two theories on why.
A) the captain had told them there was a strong possibility of bad turbulence once up in the air so not to do service in the air. Seems likely given that weather was the reason for your delay. Turbulence is difficult to predict. It can look like things will be horrible and then you get there and it's smooth skies or vice versa.

B) Yes, the cart was fully restocked but the plane was catered round trip so if they did a second service there would be nothing left but club soda and tonic water for the return passengers.

I doubt it was because the FA's were lazy. I rarely encounter a co-worker that is truly lazy let alone a full plane of them.
Enough about flying lets talk about me!
 
semsem
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Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 1:06 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:36 am

You are lucky they did not give you their "Snack Box." If you complain too much that's what you will get.
 
bwaflyer
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:11 am

How would they run out of supplies? Our airline flies high density 73Gs and 2 class 757s. Both have galleys that are the same or smaller than the equivalent aircraft on AA (looking at their seat maps). We manage to carry 2 sector long haul (6 plus hours each sector) catering on every flight, drinks, meals, BOB snacks, duty free, toilet supplies, and often a second meal service as well. Surely it's possible to stock a limited range of drinks (which from what I read would be the only thing served) to cover the sectors and some contingency? We even have a delay box loaded with OJ, bottled water and glasses especially for ground delays. Even though AA have removed galleys from their aircraft, I still fail to see how they can't carry enough drinks?
 
caspritz78
Posts: 232
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:51 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:17 am

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Different markets. As you can see from the rest of the United States, air travel has become so mainstream that it is right there with Greyhound. Pay $69 and you will get a $69 service. People want Caviar service at a Kmart price, and we are not in the 70s anymore! There is no piano with a cocktail bar waiting for you anymore.

 checkmark 

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
yet, other airlines DO provide higher service levels and they carry the same fares AA does.

Yes, but they pay much less their employees. Somewhere you have to cut costs.
 
WNCrew
Posts: 996
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 11:22 pm

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:25 am

Quoting IAirAllie (Reply 15):
Seems odd but two theories on why.
A) the captain had told them there was a strong possibility of bad turbulence once up in the air so not to do service in the air. Seems likely given that weather was the reason for your delay. Turbulence is difficult to predict. It can look like things will be horrible and then you get there and it's smooth skies or vice versa.

I loathe situations like this. The pilots are only looking out for our safety when they DO ask us to stay in our jumpseats and leave the seatbelt sign on, BUT when it ends up that the turbulence either isn't noteworthy, OR is nonexistent, the pax seem to think we're just sitting for the sake of sitting. What they don't seem to realize if that if turbulence WAS forecast either the weather has moved through or the pilots have made a concerted effort to get us around the weather. Would you RATHER it be hellishly turbulent, OR know that the reason it isn't bumpy is because your pilots are making the effort to get you around the weather....NOT because the flight attendants just don't feel like getting up.

Me, I hate sitting in the jumpseat or being asked to remain seated because FIRST I like my job and I want to serve our pax, and SECOND I get to spend the entire flight saying, "Ma'm you are aware that the seatbelt sign is illuminated and that the captain has requested that everyone including your flight attendants stay seated for their safety right?" Her response..."So it's not even safe to get up and use the restroom?"

My DREAM response, "No, but if you were getting up to do cartwheels or yoga it's perfectly safe."
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
n5014k
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2007 2:19 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:34 am

Quoting LHRBFSTrident (Reply 1):
the one I like is; ' Due to the short duration of today's flight I'll remain seated in my jumpseat, and you can ring the flight attendant call button if you'd like water' on a 1 hour flight within California

Before hub-and-spoke arrangements became the norm, flights often made numerous stops as they hopped across the US. I can remember getting beverage service BAL (now BWI) to DCA, CVG-DAY, SAN-LAX, DFW-AUS, MEM-LIT and many others. It was expected.

On domestic US flights I believe it is best to expect nothing in the way of service, at least in Y. Any service that comes your way thus becomes a pleasant surprise. I don't know that I would blame the cabin crew for this in most cases. I expect this is a management decision intended to respond to keep costs down. Over time passengers expect less and so become more accepting of bare-bones in-flight service. An entire generation of air travelers has never known the type of service that once was considered routine.

How long has it been since you've seen a flight attendant walk down the aisle before takeoff distributing magazines?

[Edited 2007-09-01 18:39:02]
 
sfoqqaa
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2007 9:42 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:49 am

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
Two recent examples of my own: (1) April 2004 -- MIA-->JFK



Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
(2) October 2005 -- JFK-->ZRH

Allow me to provide some examples that are not 2 years old... Two weeks ago I flew AA from SFO to JFK in First Class on their 3 class 767s and was surprised at how excellent the service was. The crew was extremely attentative and the upgrades to their meal service and in-flight entertainment made it a great flight. The return flight in Business was also of the same caliber only this time we had a 2 hour delay waiting on the inbound aircraft and the captain himself made several announcements at the gate keeping everyone informed.

Last week I flew LGA-STL roundtrip on two of those tired old MD-80s and was surprised at how clean the planes were (and I was not on morning flights). In coach on both legs, the cabin crew again were great and provided very attentive service to the customers. I even witnessed one of the flight attendants kneeling next to a customer trying to console her after learning she was traveling to NY after the death of her sister. Would I have liked more than a cup of soda? Sure! But the staff does the best they can with what they are given.

I have certainly had my share of travel issues as well... the understaffed ticket counters, mechanical delays, rude employees etc. But I find AA no different than many other US legacy carriers.
I
 
iairallie
Posts: 2326
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 5:42 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:55 am

Quoting Bwaflyer (Reply 17):
How would they run out of supplies? Our airline flies high density 73Gs and 2 class 757s. Both have galleys that are the same or smaller than the equivalent aircraft on AA (looking at their seat maps). We manage to carry 2 sector long haul (6 plus hours each sector) catering on every flight, drinks, meals, BOB snacks, duty free, toilet supplies, and often a second meal service as well. Surely it's possible to stock a limited range of drinks (which from what I read would be the only thing served) to cover the sectors and some contingency? We even have a delay box loaded with OJ, bottled water and glasses especially for ground delays. Even though AA have removed galleys from their aircraft, I still fail to see how they can't carry enough drinks?

Trust me it happens. Space or not many carriers in the US do not stock extra supplies especially in recent years. It costs a lot of money to haul around extra soda cans on the off chance that you might need them on one out of every 1000 flights. AA used to carry delay snacks and extra water on every flight but they stopped that after 9/11.
Enough about flying lets talk about me!
 
qqflyboy
Posts: 1635
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 1:47 pm

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 2:17 am

Quoting Bwaflyer (Reply 17):
How would they run out of supplies?

The difference here is you are catered for contingencies. We are not. On an AA MD-80, if you are double catered you will receive one beverage cart for each leg. That's it. There are no contingencies. If you use that one cart for a service on the ground, there would be very little to offer on a second service. If it were a longer flight, you might receive an extra insert of sodas for a second service, but these flights were scheduled to be short in duration and the few extras aren't boarded on these flights.

Is it acceptable only one service was done? Absolutely not. But STOP blaming the cabin crew. Their hands are tied. I am willing to bet that although there were not enough supplies to offer a second beverage service to the entire cabin the crew would provide at least water and/or juice to those who requested it inflight.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
when newer models have come on-line (e.g. 738s), they are devoid of many basic amenities (e.g. flat screen overhead monitors every few rows back, personal air vents)

The only aircraft in AA's fleet without Gasper vents are the 762s/763s. Every MD-80, 737, 757, 777 and A300 have them. I don't know how you figured AA's 738s don't have Gasper vents. What makes the LCD monitors so much better than a regular monitor? To be honest, I often hear complaints about how difficult it is to see the LCDs (TWA 757). It seems that your grasping at straws here.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
abysmal, dirty, again 757s with broken-down 1986 vintage in-flight entertainment systems;

It has been covered here on A.net several times AA's 757s are about to under go an overhaul which will include state of the art digital file servers for their IFE. And just an FYI, the 757s already utilize digital file servers for the audio channels and have for several years now. Oh, and you'll get your precious LCDs with this overhaul.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
continued use of A300s

Completely safe. Ignorance, on the other hand, is ever so dangerous.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
please do it yourself...there is a closet toward the end of this section."

What is wrong with that response. I know a lot of airlines that would say, "We don't have closets. You'll have to put it in the overhead bin." Chances are you asked the director and they can't leave the a/c door. They are there to tell pax which aisle to go down to find their seat. And what's wrong with helping yourself? The flight attendant told you could hang it and exactly where to hang it. I don't find how that isn't good customer service.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
txagkuwait
Posts: 1388
Joined: Fri Aug 27, 1999 7:39 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 2:54 am

I am a fan of WN but ppromise not to let that cloud my comments.

I lived in El Paso for 3 yrs 2002-2005. My job with the US Govt required that I fly on the contract carrier at the govt Y fare.

That was generally either WN or AA.

The typical AA flight from ELP-DFW (where you almost always connected) was about an hour and a half.

The FAs would roll the cart down the aisle once, collect the garbage, and that was that. If you dared ask for a drink refill you got looked at like you had made the most incredibly demanding request ever. Sometimes you'd get another splash of coke on your ice, sometime you would get told it was too close to landing (even if you hadn't passed MAF or ABI and started your descent).

On WN to DAL, AUS, or SAT (similar length flights) you would get a drink and a bag of cookies or wheat thins. 15 mins later or so the FA would be collecting the cups, cans, and glasses and before taking your stuff, they would ask if you would care for anything else.

A world of difference. And it is why, to some of us, a seat assignment is irrelevant.

Having flown UA, US, DL, and CO recently I would suggest that the only one of those carriers where you might expect better service than on AA would be CO. None of the legacies have anything really significant to brag about when it comes to their domestic Y.

The LCCs, WN in particular, might have a very basic Y product but it is executed consistently and well, and that's one of the reasons they continue to prosper.
 
AA767400
Posts: 1894
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:05 am

Quoting TxAgKuwait (Reply 24):
The LCCs, WN in particular, might have a very basic Y product but it is executed consistently and well, and that's one of the reasons they continue to prosper.

And why is this? Did you know that Flight Attendants at WN are the highest paid in the United States? Did you also know that top pay for a AA 777 Captain is the same for a WN Captain on a 737?

I am a firm believer in "If you don't like your job then find another." But WN is a perfect example of paying it's employees well, and treating them well. This as you have experienced shows on board.
"The low fares airline."
 
User avatar
LHRBFSTrident
Posts: 574
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RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Lazin

Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:20 am

Quoting N5014K (Reply 20):
On domestic US flights I believe it is best to expect nothing in the way of service, at least in Y. Any service that comes your way thus becomes a pleasant surprise. I don't know that I would blame the cabin crew for this in most cases

Well precisely - but I'd much rather be told, 'There'll be no service on this flight because we just don't offer it' rather than some excuse about the length of the flight, and time and motion studies, etc etc

Quoting Khobar (Reply 9):
I'd really love to be on one of these magical BA or other European flights that serve the full meal on a short flight. I've been on so many BA/BMI flights over the years, and the most I've been offered is a slimy sandwich of sorts and a Club bar (BMI, London to Belfast). My recent flights on BA London to Dublin had no food whatsoever, though I think we got some sort of coffee service, but that was it.

And something else - the F/A's were old, tired, and frumpy - not at all what someone reading a.net would expect.

having lived in the US for 11 years now, this was my first UK domestic flight in a decade so, well, i was surprised too, which is why i thought it worthy of comment. and I am NOT willing to comment on the 'old, tired and frumpy' thing, because it's just not relevant (to avoid frumpy apparently you have fly SQ
 Smile )

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Different markets. As you can see from the rest of the United States, air travel has become so mainstream that it is right there with Greyhound. Pay $69 and you will get a $69 service. People want Caviar service at a Kmart price, and we are not in the 70s anymore!

sure, different markets, but maybe not as different as you think - the LCC/LFC explosion in the EU has meant a huge paradigm shift for the legacy carriers - suddenly they ARE able to offer a meal and a drink included in a reasonable fare - oh - and my US credit card statement for that flight shows $71 (and that's at a 2:1 exchange rate, terrible!)
 
ly204
Posts: 120
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:33 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:25 am

Quoting Seabosdca (Reply 12):
I fly AA S80s more often than any other a/c (except maybe for AS 738s) and this doesn't match my experience. (I'll grant that you're right about the 757s -- that interior overhaul can't come soon enough.) As long as I can stay forward of row 22 or so, I enjoy the S80s better than competitors' 737 or A32s a/c.

S80s have been spruced up over the past few years...that is indeed a fair point. The bigger issue with the S80 is the fact that they are devoid of any amenities that have become standard on

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 23):
Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
please do it yourself...there is a closet toward the end of this section."

What is wrong with that response. I know a lot of airlines that would say, "We don't have closets. You'll have to put it in the overhead bin." Chances are you asked the director and they can't leave the a/c door. They are there to tell pax which aisle to go down to find their seat. And what's wrong with helping yourself? The flight attendant told you could hang it and exactly where to hang it. I don't find how that isn't good customer service.

Look...it's hard to argue with folks that are die-hard AA fans. We are all entitled to our opinions. Your implication with your last statement is that I was some sort of primadonna that, on a $6,000 flight from NY to Zurich, I was unjustified in asking a flight attendant to take my garment bag (no thicker or heavier than a coat on a hanger) and put it in the business class closet. All I can tell you is that I fly business a fair amount and on CO, BA, VS, DL, and Swiss this would never, ever happen.

Folks that are AA fans can make excuses for the below-par service...but facts are facts. The service level is generally inferior.
 
JRDC930
Posts: 882
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2007 5:36 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:29 am

No Doubt what i will say may offend the AA chearleaders, but i have never had a good service experience on AA. I know alot of people on Anet, more than likely those who dont pay or there tickets,may assume that service has no effect on passengers, and could care less about inflight service. Ithink this may be true of some passengers but not most. We put up with being treated like cattle because of Hubs and frequencies, which tend to be monopolized in cetain areas. II dont know what it is about AA's management, if they dont care about econ passengers, they should just becme a premium airline (HA!),and even there they cant cut it. Contrary to popular belief, a bit o inflight servive or a free meal on a tanscon light, WILL NOT bankrupt an airline. Its also funy that a "full service carrier like AA" has less service than LCC's. Maybe its about time they change their buisiness model and just call themselves a "No Frills" airline. The lack of employee moral only makes things worse because management cant see any connection between happy employees and productivity. If AA and many other legacies just made a small effort to improve service and not starve both their crews and passengers on all domestic lights, maybe they just might do a bit better. It is not all about cutting all costs; you can only abuse passengers so much beore they look else where. This is just my humble opinion, having flown on AA (unfortunately) many times. I will not any more. Unhappy employees and a greedy incompetant management team make for an unpleasent flight experience

My 2 cents
U.S. Legacy carriers,STILL leaders in lowering industry standards...
 
MD11Engineer
Posts: 13899
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2003 5:25 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Lazin

Sun Sep 02, 2007 4:39 am

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Flight 2221 was their second leg of three that day. That M80 shows being double catered for THREE legs that day!

so is it the customer's fault that mgmt does not provide enough resources to provide more than bare bones service?



Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 23):
The difference here is you are catered for contingencies. We are not. On an AA MD-80, if you are double catered you will receive one beverage cart for each leg. That's it. There are no contingencies. If you use that one cart for a service on the ground, there would be very little to offer on a second service. If it were a longer flight, you might receive an extra insert of sodas for a second service, but these flights were scheduled to be short in duration and the few extras aren't boarded on these flights.

Is it acceptable only one service was done? Absolutely not. But STOP blaming the cabin crew. Their hands are tied. I am willing to bet that although there were not enough supplies to offer a second beverage service to the entire cabin the crew would provide at least water and/or juice to those who requested it inflight.

Just a hint: I have also been working in places where the management does not support the front line workers with adequate supplies, tools, manpower etc. to do their job properly. Often talking to management is like talking to a wall or they deny requests straight away (You need this special tool to do this job? How often do you have to do this job? A few times a year? No, then we will not buy it. Think of some improvised method, that's what we are hiring you for. We don't want to hear of problem, we want to see signed task cards or tech log pages, we don't care how you do it!).
If I'm really not able to do the job (after looking for a safe, doable solution), I'll write into the shift report that I was not able to do the job due to following reasons. I know the customer, who reads the report too, will be p*ssed off and then put pressure on the mangement.
Also, when I was working in passenger handling, my hands were often tied through lack of resources. In this case I would explain to the passenger involved what the problem was and suggest to him to write a complaint to the boss. Often complaints from the customers are the only thing to get management listen to their staff, especially if it comes to manpower issues. If the employee complains to the management himself and requests additional staff, he'll be shrugged off as being lazy, but if an outsider talks to the boss, like "I have seen your guys working. They work hard, but have reached their limts", you'll often have more success.

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
twal10114ever
Topic Author
Posts: 48
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:00 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 4:44 am

FYI, I wrote to customer relations to let them know about the situation and here was the response.

September 1, 2007

Dear XXXXX:

Every day we depend on our people to leave our customers with a positive impression.
The expense of selecting, training and motivating our personnel is of little value if
we then fail to satisfy our customers. I am disappointed that you did not receive the
treatment you deserve and we expect our employees to deliver onboard flight 2221.
Please accept my apology.

I'd like to explain that most flights are "double catered", meaning the onboard
catering is intended for two or more segments flown by the same aircraft. Still, in
situations involving lengthy ramp delays, we know that additional catering may be
required upon arrival. I'm sorry that our crewmembers were not more sensitive to the
discomfort of our customers on August 30 and I've shared your email with our Flight
Service Manager.

Thank you for giving us this opportunity to better serve our customers in the future.
Please do not be discouraged from traveling with us again soon. We are eager to
restore your confidence.
 
SPREE34
Posts: 1744
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2004 6:09 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:07 am

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
AA offers bare bone service on their aircraft and the Flight Attendants have to beg at the next station for catering items. Flight Attendants are tired of making excuses for AA due to their lack of offerings. Unfortunately Flight Attendants are the only thing you see, and they get the blunt of people's anger.

Actually, on my last AA flight I also got to see the baggage office TWICE in one day. Yes twice. I sat in SJU customs for a hour waiting for my bag to make the next flight. SJU to MIA, yes one drink only, "no you may not have the can".
Arrive JAX, 2nd time in one day with no bag. The bags were not loaded in MIA due to weight restrictions. "So you left my bag behind on purpose?" I asked. "Yes sir..(oppologies etc) MIA does this all the time." Granted, MIA to JAX was Eagle, that is AAmerican Eagle. Not main-line's fault? Mainline sold me the ticket that included the Eagle leg.

I wrote AA a letter of complaint concerning this flight, and the declining service I had seen on my previous 4 flights this year. I got the form letter back with a $150 voucher. In my mind this letter may as well have said "Fuck You Customer" and here's a $150 enticement to come back for more abuse.

I won't be back. I have since used CO,F9,and FL on my westbound flights and had pleasant experiences. this is all discretionary (pleasure) flying. I'm retired, I have the bucks to travel, so I do. AA just won't get anymore of my bucks.

The $150 voucher? A friend used it to come visit. She said average flight, $3 for a $1 bag of chips, and they won't give you the whole can.

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 3):
Pay $69 and you will get a $69 service.

Absolutely! I don't have a problem with that at all. I say charge what the product is worth and make money.
I didn't pay $69. I paid $759 and change, had bags lost twice, was lied to, and couldn't even get the second drink while I was being bent over.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
so is it the customer's fault that mgmt does not provide enough resources to provide more than bare bones service?

Only if the customer continues flying American Airlines. When enough customers quit spending their money at American, management will be forced to do something. Unfortunate for the employees and stock holders.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
does the customer care what the crew does before or after the flight the customer paid for?

No. Nor should they. They (customers) also shouldn't be unreasonable if the reason for something is explained to them. Seems truthful explanations are in short supply as well.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
yet, other airlines DO provide higher service levels and they carry the same fares AA does.

YES!! So why fly American? Fly the other carriers, enjoy the better service. The other carriers are obviously run by smarter critters who know how to both spend and make money, and make both their employees and stock holders happy.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
As an American employee, you should be very concerned about the number of passengers who are saying they are taking their business elsehwhere.

And if Arpey won't listen, get the employee groups together and talk LOUDER.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
I know we have some die-hard AA fans on this site, but I truly think AA is very far behind virtually every other major (and LCC) in terms of their service level.

Absolutely. In the last year I flew AA on 5 trips. In the same period I also flew AirTran, British Airways, FlyBe, and Continental. The service, attitude, and equipment were all superior to AA.
The trip to the Caribbean (SJU etc) I mention above was the end for AA. There are other options.

Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):
AA cannot continue to call itself a "full service carrier" when they offer such an inferior product to LCCs and other mainline competitors.

They can, and will. AA = Arrogant Airlines

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 23):
Is it acceptable only one service was done? Absolutely not. But STOP blaming the cabin crew.

Write the complaint letter to the company. Every time. And if you insist on flying them again, at least you'll have a discount voucher. Why pay more for mediocrity that is necessary?

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 23):


Quoting LY204 (Reply 10):continued use of A300s
Completely safe. Ignorance, on the other hand, is ever so dangerous.

Nicely put. There is nothing wrong with the A300. How it's taken care of and flown seems not to be the same at AA, vs other carriers.

Quoting TxAgKuwait (Reply 24):
The LCCs, WN in particular, might have a very basic Y product but it is executed consistently and well, and that's one of the reasons they continue to prosper.

Their's is the most copied and/or built on model out there.

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 25):
And why is this? Did you know that Flight Attendants at WN are the highest paid in the United States? Did you also know that top pay for a AA 777 Captain is the same for a WN Captain on a 737?

The Southwest FAs are also the most productive. I went to airlinepilotcentral.com to check on this. Close, but not the same.
Why should a 777 Capt make more than a 737 Capt? The Southwest guy is doing more actual flying isn't he? I know that's not the way it's been for the last 50 years. Bigger plane meant more money. But it's 50 years later, so why more for the heavy jet? FedEx doesn't pay for type, just for seat, and they seem happy.

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 25):
I am a firm believer in "If you don't like your job then find another." But WN is a perfect example of paying it's employees well, and treating them well. This as you have experienced shows on board.

They also work at a company where everyone has "bought it" to the sucess of their organization. In thin times it was thin for everyone, in fat times it has been fat for everyone. AA's HQ hasn't figured this one out yet. Ramper can't afford braces for his kid's teeth, yet HQ guy just got a bonus because the stock is up.

Quoting JRDC930 (Reply 28):
you can only abuse passengers so much beore they look else where.

And they (pax) are looking else where. AA's HQ doesn't care. Aparently a lot of the frontline AA employees either don't care (mirror management) or have given up. I have quit flying AA. I worked for what I have, I'll spend it where I think it means something.
I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
 
OB1504
Posts: 3988
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:16 am

Seeing as how the flight attendants weren't really lazy, but rather stocking the supplies for the next trip, couldn't AA institute a policy where flight attendants are not to stock the next trip's supplies in front of passengers, thus eliminating any misunderstandings like this?
 
ZBBYLW
Posts: 1625
Joined: Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:17 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:29 am

I had the unfortunate opportunity to fly on AA from ORD-CUN because my YYZ-CUN flight I was originally going to fly on was full. While I wanted to get on a UA flight it left 2 hours later so I thought I would try and get on the AA flight. I was seated in the back of a 757. The seats where very poor, and about half the passengers where VERY overweight. Having this many overweight people on the flight made it extremely unpleasant due to the fact that I could only use 3/4 of MY OWN seat. And people kept bumping into me in the isle. The IFE was the worse I have seen (and I fly AC quite often in the "old" interiors on the 767's). Now with all this aside there was one thing that could have made for a decent flight, in-flight service. Well guess what, it was the worse experience I have ever seen. I wont go into to much detail regarding the little things (F/A not giving me the can, or 2nd snack (things I have come to expect from my travels on AC)) but the F/A never came around for a water service, about 1.5 hours into the flight I got up and asked for water, the F/A pointed to a sign that if you can believe it or not said WATER HELP YOUR SELF with a bloody arrow pointing to some cups and a jug of (warm) water. I was in shock all the F/A's where doing was chatting about my son doing this, my daughter doing this, where are you flying next month etc... Although I have only flown F with UA I can only imagine that UA has a better Y product then AA's. That was the first, and is going to be the last time that I will fly with AA. Service on UA has been EXCELLENT the few times I have needed to take them vs AC.
Keep the shinny side up!
 
OB1504
Posts: 3988
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:47 am

Quoting ZBBYLW (Reply 33):
(F/A not giving me the can, or 2nd snack (things I have come to expect from my travels on AC)) but the F/A never came around for a water service, about 1.5 hours into the flight I got up and asked for water, the F/A pointed to a sign that if you can believe it or not said WATER HELP YOUR SELF with a bloody arrow pointing to some cups and a jug of (warm) water.

When was this? On my last AA flight, I was given the full can:

http://img209.imageshack.us/img209/8973/0002ir9.jpg

Not only that, but the F/As came around about three times throughout the course of the flight (a lot considering that the flight was just over an hour in length). I find it odd that my short flight would get better service. My crew was DFW-based, IIRC.
 
worldtraveler
Posts: 3417
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2003 6:18 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:53 am

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 11):
Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
does the customer care what the crew does before or after the flight the customer paid for?

No, and that is why they could care less.

Because it is not the customer's concern how an airline runs itself. A heart patient shouldn't care that the operating room was used before him for a gall bladder job. Every airline offers a service to each customer. It is expected that the employees be in a position to provide that level of service, regardless of what happens before or after. Again, WN serves more domestic passengers and usually has them for a shorter time (due to shorter flights legs) yet they deliver a consistently higher quality product.

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 11):
Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
As an American employee, you should be very concerned about the number of passengers who are saying they are taking their business elsehwhere.

As an American employee I have found a second job and now work less flights because of things like this.

And that is sad but I know it happens. You should think farther down the road to your pension. The less secure AA goes, so also does your pension.

Quoting Seabosdca (Reply 12):
First, they're not "tired." The S80s have been redone relatively recently.

Alhough I have seen AA MD80 flights be cancelled for cracks in the wing and other structural issues. Those things just don't happen on younger aircraft except under very rough handling.

Quoting Seabosdca (Reply 12):

I've also found AA cabin and ground staff to be variable, but not that bad on average.

and that is exactly the problem. US airlines need to set a standard for service and then make it mandatory. There will always be those that deliver exceptional service but the minimum level is far too low.

Quoting IAirAllie (Reply 15):
B) Yes, the cart was fully restocked but the plane was catered round trip so if they did a second service there would be nothing left but club soda and tonic water for the return passengers.

again, that is not the passenger's problem. If AA is so reluctant to restock beverages after a lengthy delay then it is a management problem. The letter from their customer service dept. above indicates they will restock if necessary. Who knows what is true.

Quoting Caspritz78 (Reply 18):
Yes, but they pay much less their employees. Somewhere you have to cut costs.

But AA has the highest labor costs per ASM of any US airline. They are NOT taking it out of employee pay. Productivity may well be a part of the issue since AA pilots are the least productive of any US airline's (as measured by flight hours per month). Maybe if you through about 20, 000 AA employees overboard, the rest of you could work alot harder and be compensated better.

Quoting SPREE34 (Reply 31):

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
As an American employee, you should be very concerned about the number of passengers who are saying they are taking their business elsehwhere.

And if Arpey won't listen, get the employee groups together and talk LOUDER.

Or better yet, write the Board of Directors and cite these kind of circumstances and tell them you are tired of providing sub-standard service. AA has a history of offering decent service. you should demand they give you the tools necessary to do that. Other airlines and their employees can do it - AA can and should or they will be losing customers. It is THAT simple. And AA will continued to be filetted on a.net, FWIW.
 
caspritz78
Posts: 232
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:51 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:59 am

Quoting TWAL10114ever (Reply 30):
I'm sorry that our crewmembers were not more sensitive to the
discomfort of our customers on August 30 and I've shared your email with our Flight
Service Manager.

That happens when a company is putting so much pressure on their employees to cut costs that employees have no benefit of showing initiative. Instead of doing what is best for the pax they will do to please their management. I think the answer from AA customer service is just lame. Blame the flight attendants. That is the easiest way. Changing the culture of a company that is hard.
 
PanAm1971
Posts: 444
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:28 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 7:57 am

Everyone flying AA knows they are a legacy trying to pretend they are an LCC. I think the problem is that their old customers haven't made the switch mentally and emtionally to the new reality. However, in this ruthless business environment, there's just no choice. Besides, share holders now expect every possible penny squeezed out... no matter what the cost to passangers, crew or reputation. To be fair, I've flown first class several times over the past few years. It was as good (or bad, depending on one's point of view) as any other US based airline. I do wish AA the best and hope they have better days ahead.
 
atlflyer
Posts: 731
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 11:13 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 7:58 am

AMERICAN IS A HORRIBLE AIRLINE!

I NEVER read anything positive about American these days. They waited much too long to start replacing their aging fleet and now the only way for them to make money with an S80 on a route with other carriers flying newer, fuel-efficient 737-800 or 900s is to cut almost all amenities, cleaning the planes less and hiring less people to do more work.

I always read about how American's products are worn out, their FA uniforms are old, and their lounges need help. A recent article by the WSJ visited three of American's Admiral's clubs and found them dirty--crums on the seats, worn furniture, filthy bathrooms...and noted you now have to PAY for drinks as well!

American always responds with an excuse to why things are dirty and never makes any progress at changing it.

Come on American...get with the program and AT LEAST OFFER CLEAN AIRPLANES AND LOUNGES!
 
TPAnx
Posts: 1007
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 4:53 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:00 am

Quoting ZBBYLW (Reply 33):
about half the passengers where VERY overweight.

And this AA's fault??
TPAnx  Yeah sure
I read the news today..oh boy
 
SPREE34
Posts: 1744
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2004 6:09 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:25 am

Quoting ATLflyer (Reply 38):
and noted you now have to PAY for drinks as well!

You pay for drinks in the Admirals Club? That's like paying for them twice. I have only used the British Airways Lounges so those are all I can comment on. You don't pay for anything there. It's a service included in Business and First Class fares.
I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
 
Lufthansa
Posts: 2639
Joined: Thu May 20, 1999 6:04 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:37 am

Quoting Aanyc (Reply 14):
They cut way to deeply and now leave it up to all of their front-line employees to bear the brunt or the customers anger.

This all comes down to one thing. Lack of leadership!!!!! I think AA's management have done a great job of surviving a crisis... that crisis is now over and they've failed to realize those savings are just temporary measures. Cutting back on the customers this much means two things... firstly pissing off your customers in the first place, and secondly creating low staff morale which pisses off your customers yet again.
 
worldtraveler
Posts: 3417
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2003 6:18 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:44 am

Quoting ATLflyer (Reply 38):

American always responds with an excuse to why things are dirty and never makes any progress at changing it.

There was a story on AA's service as part of the Today Show - I believe - but Arpey was interviewed by I think Ann Curry. Whoever it was, she was relentless in trying to ask why AA's service had deteriorated so bad - esp. its ontime. Arpey talked about the thunderstorms at DFW, ATC etc. and Ms. Curry repeatedly asked if that was the only reason and wouldn't accept his canned answers, providing evidence that AA really is doing more poorly than other carriers. Finally Arpey conceded they need more block time on their flights and they have been overly aggressive in cutting costs.

US was in exactly the same position a year ago... doing quite well financially but running an absolutely horrific operation. It's still not a whole lot better but they too realize they have to get the product improved or they will lose passengers. Sadly, some companies will push the limit and will only change things when EXTERNAL measurements show how bad things are becoming. A well run, customer focused company has its own INTERNAL metrics that show how things are going and they begin to make changes before all of the dirty laundry has been aired in public.

AA will recover but they have ticked off alot of people in the process. In the meantime, other carriers have and will continue to grow in markets competitive w/ AA - and they will not hesitate to remind their clients - esp. corporate customers who they can talk w/ one on one - how badly AA is doing. It will take time for AA to regain the advantage it once had. And it doesn't make it any easier considering that AA also has a more stretched balance sheet because they haven't been through BK.

I have said before and I will say again that AA's choice not to file for BK in this cycle when every other carrier did only makes it that much harder now and in the future. Other carriers cleaned up their balance sheet, restructured their operations, and their employees have been re-engaged in running their airline. AA is not at that point despite being one of the first carriers to restructure its finances (although out of BK). Until AA can complete the same depth of restructuring that other carriers did and have everyone there move on, it will continue to be difficult for AA and its employees.
 
WhiteBirdFlyer
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2006 7:18 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 9:54 am

I lived in Texas for 10 years and DFW was my home airport. I flew AA almost exclusively then. This was in the 1980's. The service, crews and aircraft were great and the fact you could comfortably fly non-stop or one-stop/connection to almost anywhere in the world (so it seemed) made AA a great experience.

However, these days I will not fly them at all, ever. The few experiences I've had with them in the last few years were terrible. My colleagues who fly AA out of business necessity are forever scheming to get on F9, CO, WN or anyone else but AA.

What I've noticed is not that the FA's have suddenly turned "bad" but the current management's emphasis on squeezing every last penny out of every flight has crossed the line so that a majority of passengers that speak on public forums are complaining. Often loudly and with good cause. Other airlines made this same mistake and are restoring services on many flights. If AA's management realizes it has gone to far in the cost-cutting direction and makes some changes it might be ok. But in today's competitive environment, it will be hard to lure former good customers back. If at all.

Cordially,
WFB, former AAdvantage Gold member with a zero FF balance on AA who isn't going to be changing that anytime soon.
WhiteBirdFlyer, currently near SFO
 
iairallie
Posts: 2326
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 5:42 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 10:35 am

Quoting Khobar (Reply 9):
I'd really love to be on one of these magical BA or other European flights that serve the full meal on a short flight.

I travel a lot on airlines world wide and on the short european flights offer little for free. Some even charge for water (Aer Lingus). I've certainly never recieved a complete hot meal on a short haul flight in Europe.

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 4):
so is it the customer's fault that mgmt does not provide enough resources to provide more than bare bones service?

Of course not. They were just pointing out how laziness is not the reason for the lack of a second service it was a lack of catering supplies.
Enough about flying lets talk about me!
 
iairallie
Posts: 2326
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 5:42 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 10:49 am

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 35):
Quoting IAirAllie (Reply 15):
B) Yes, the cart was fully restocked but the plane was catered round trip so if they did a second service there would be nothing left but club soda and tonic water for the return passengers.

again, that is not the passenger's problem. If AA is so reluctant to restock beverages after a lengthy delay then it is a management problem. The letter from their customer service dept. above indicates they will restock if necessary. Who knows what is true

Again the FA's were not as the thread suggested LAZY they were working with what they were given. I never said anything about it being the passengers problem. I was just saying there are logical explanations besides the employees are lazy. Trust me we get more stressed out than the passengers do when we run short on supplies and are unable to get more. It is a flight attendant nightmare.

Good luck getting someone to come out and restock you in T-storm after you have pushed.

Quoting OB1504 (Reply 32):
couldn't AA institute a policy where flight attendants are not to stock the next trip's supplies in front of passengers, thus eliminating any misunderstandings like this?

So when are the FA's supposed to restock? On the ground during a 30 minute turn when pax are comming and going. Maybe during the 10 minutes (if you are lucky) that the FA's have to use a restroom in peace or run into the terminal to eat. FA's are NOT paid a penny on the ground beyond expense pay.
Enough about flying lets talk about me!
 
ly204
Posts: 120
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:33 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 11:41 am

Quoting WhiteBirdFlyer (Reply 43):
There was a story on AA's service as part of the Today Show - I believe - but Arpey was interviewed by I think Ann Curry. Whoever it was, she was relentless in trying to ask why AA's service had deteriorated so bad - esp. its ontime. Arpey talked about the thunderstorms at DFW, ATC etc. and Ms. Curry repeatedly asked if that was the only reason and wouldn't accept his canned answers, providing evidence that AA really is doing more poorly than other carriers. Finally Arpey conceded they need more block time on their flights and they have been overly aggressive in cutting costs.

Interesting...anyone have a link to this video clip? It would be telling indeed...
 
atlflyer
Posts: 731
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 11:13 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:03 pm

Quoting WorldTraveler (Reply 42):
There was a story on AA's service as part of the Today Show - I believe - but Arpey was interviewed by I think Ann Curry. Whoever it was, she was relentless in trying to ask why AA's service had deteriorated so bad - esp. its ontime. Arpey talked about the thunderstorms at DFW, ATC etc. and Ms. Curry repeatedly asked if that was the only reason and wouldn't accept his canned answers, providing evidence that AA really is doing more poorly than other carriers. Finally Arpey conceded they need more block time on their flights and they have been overly aggressive in cutting costs.

I saw that clip on the Today Show as well. Arpey blamed the weather on ontime arrivals, which Ann Curry said were at an industry low of 65% for AA. She also noted other ways AA is falling behind other carriers and Arpey had no response that anything was going to change. It basically seems like AA is ok with offering an inferior product, dirty planes and sub-par lounges. I did not walk away from the interview feeling any better about AA's product/service...

On another note, here's a link to a Today Show story about one amazing UA pilot:
http://video.msn.com/v/us/msnbc.htm?...7e-4bac-a197-7a12b7a7709e&f=00&fg=
 
twal10114ever
Topic Author
Posts: 48
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:00 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:11 pm

Quoting WhiteBirdFlyer (Reply 43):
Cordially,
WFB, former AAdvantage Gold member with a zero FF balance on AA who isn't going to be changing that anytime soon

AMEN on that! I've grown so tired of AA's inferior in-flight product that I'm on my way to doing the same. The flight I took which started this thread was the "straw that broke the camel's back" and I'm finished. I have several reservations through the end of the year which I'll use, but I'm just going to start using CO out of DFW and DAL. Their product is so far superior to AA, it's embarrasing. Yes I'll be giving up my elite status, but I'm willing to forgo that in order to travel with an airline that seems to give a hoot and actually provide a decent product. Of course AA will survive me ceasing to use their airline, but word of mouth is powerful. Coupled with the fact that I am responsible for making travel arrangements for our entire office will take a few dollars out of their pockets. Maybe sooner or later they will get the message. Remember Branniff? They had the big stronghold on the DFW hub and I read a book that said...Braniff was using the slogan...."We Better Be Better. We're Braniff." And people took it as....Yeah! You better be better! Cuz you SUCK! AA is well on their way to being the "next Branniff" because their DFW hub was INFAMOUS for horrible service.
 
twal10114ever
Topic Author
Posts: 48
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:00 am

RE: American's Lack Of In-flight Service, Or Laziness

Sun Sep 02, 2007 12:42 pm

Quoting AA767400 (Reply 11):
And that is why I think you left the job in the first place. You do have a place in inflight management because you do have an eye for service. I also could not help but notice you are a TWL1011 fan. Could you have worked for TW and then got furloughed from AA?

No, actually I worked for Delta, I didn't work for TWA. That being said, I can remember the many times over the years I flew from STL-MLI (30 minute flight) when the F/A's were busting their humps to provide a full beverage service. These days you fly AA from DFW-STL and the only thing that AA provides on an AM flight is a water/coffee/juice service for an hour and 20 minute flight? Pathetic!

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