United Airlines Boeing 757
United Airlines has been holding off for quite awhile from buying any new planes. They had talked about reducing their fleet, however, now they plan to order up to 150 aircraft by this fall.
As they have been waiting for a good time to buy, their fleet of almost 400 aircraft have aged. Now they are looking to replace their wide-bodied jets and Boeing 757’s with new aircraft. They are also hoping to get rid of their almost 30-strong fleet of Boeing 737’s.
It’s a large order, which gives them tremendous buying power. United Airlines states they are in talks with Boeing and Airbus and only want to purchase planes from one of the two manufacturers. This could be a huge payoff to the winning bidder and will probably create a lot of interesting deals for United to consider. With airlines cancelling orders for aircraft already being built, this could be a better than average boom for either Airbus or Boeing.
Source: KOMO Image: code20photog
Does Southwest Airlines giving out free drink coupons help them to acheive #1 status?
According to the Customer Service Satisfaction Index, airline passengers feel the airlines are doing a 3.2% better job in customer service compared to the year before.
Although fees are up, the numbers of passengers are down. This means less lines, fewer bumped people, and more room since you might have no one sitting in the center seat.
Southwest Airlines was #1 for customer satisfaction for the 16th year in a row with it’s highest rating ever. The biggest gainers were Delta Airlines, US Airways, and Continental who improved by margins of 6.7% to 9.7%. American Airlines saw the largest decrease (3.2%) and United Airlines ended with the lowest overall score for the year.
It will be interesting to see if the airlines can keep this positive trend going, since hopefully by next year we’ll have a strong economy and fuller planes (and lines).
Source: USA Today Image: tsmyther
United Airlines Boeing 777-222 N772UA is on short final
“Man this flight is gonna bite,” is along the lines of something I say when I find myself in the middle seat. But on a recent United Airlines flight from LA to London, a woman decided to do some biting on her own. After enjoying some nice prescription drugs, wine, and (my personal favorite) liquid soap, she got aggressive with the flight crew and acted “like a dog.”
The flight was diverted to Bangor where the unruly passenger gets to face federal charges of assault and interference with a flight crew.
Source: Boston Herald Image: Thomas Becker
Sometimes it is impossible to get customer service!
With prices going up and amenities going down, it shouldn’t be too surprising that complaints are going up. Airline complaints increased about 60% from 2006 to 2007.
While the complaints increase, more and more companies are cutting call centers, outsourcing, and automating, increasing the distance from the customer to someone in the company who can do something about it.
Christopher Elliot (former National Geographic Traveler’s reader advocate) lists the 8 most common mistakes people make when complaining.
1- Frivolous grievances: complaining about stuff that is not a big deal (not the right soda, someone was a little short with you).
2- Calling instead of writing: there is no record and normally nothing good comes from it.
3- Making a laudry list: too many complaints will just make you look like a complainer and people will stop listening.
4- Wasting their time: make sure it is worth they time to make a right from a wrong.
5- Writing long: keep your complaint short and sweet.
6- Not offering a solution: let them know what would make you happy to solve this problem.
7- Being impolite: you get more flies with honey than vinegar.
8- Threatening: saying you will never fly with the airline again will do nothing.
Just know that sometimes when you complain, you will be treated well and things will be made right. Others you will be ignored. Show how you feel by not flying that airline again!
Source: CNN Image: Schmidt-Family