Fell for the old bait-and-switch trick

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by SnowDogDad, Jul 12, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    I'm flying from HNL to SFO in a few weeks. When I booked the ticket, I looked at the outbound flight options and aircraft. I tend to avoid the 737's and 757s if possible.

    UA396 was a 3-cabin, international 777-200ER. So, I forked over the extra dollars for a P-fare for seats in the Business cabin. Love the lie flat seats on a red-eye.

    Today, I checked the aircraft and my seats and found that it had been swapped out with a standard, domestic 777-200 and a domestic first cabin.

    Feeling a bit ripped off now. The product I bought is not what I'm going to get.
     
  2. skibum3d

    skibum3d Active Member

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    This is certainly grounds for waiving change or cancelation fees with UA.
     
  3. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Not necessarily. Both are sUA 777s so there was no change of operating carrier; they are not obligated to make the change for you. And they don't really market SFO-HNL as a 3-cabin route. A smart agent will be flexible with you but I doubt they'll honor whatever the economy fare was at the time of original purchase and that's still likely the best seat generally flying on the SFO-HNL route.
     
  4. rjollos

    rjollos Silver Member

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    Did you mean to type 757-200 rather than 777-200?
     
  5. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    Not, they went from an international 777-200 to a domestic 777-200. The international has 3-cabins.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    It is the sUA "islands" config 772, the type most commonly used for SFO/ORD-HNL and GUM-HNL/NRT. It is a step up from domestic F seating but not the international seats.

    And, FWIW, the company has been pretty clear about their plans to be moving this direction with the 777s serving HNL for a while now.
     
  7. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    It was a 3-cabin aircraft, though. Not the traditional domestic 2-cabin. So, it might not have been an international 777, but it was DEFINITELY a 3-cabin 777. HNL is my home airport and I do the SFO flight quite a bit. I typically don't like UA396 because it gets in to SFO at 4:30am.

    United juggles the 767-400's and 777-200's on the ORD, IAD, EWR, and IAH. Some days, those runs have one configuration, some days they have a different type of aircraft. We also have one flight a day to SFO and LAX that use the 777-200. Though typically in a domestic first configuration.

    What is UA's plan for the HNL market? All I see are more and more 737s.
     
  8. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    If they have. 3-class aircraft scheduled, how do they sell and price the F and C cabins? Same price?
     
  9. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    From what I could tell, this was an anomaly... I have been 3-cabin plans to HNL from the west coast before, but it is rare. I suspect that it happens when they are re-positioning an aircraft or taking one out of service for maintenance.

    When I booked this flight, I thought it weird that configuration was on that route. I looked at that flight 2 weeks in either direction and it was the typical 777-200 2-cabin plane. The F cabin was already 75% booked (I think there were only 12 F seats on the plane.) I did not pay much attention to the fare codes, though. Just the seating chart.
     
  10. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    But would they have let you pick a GF seat for the same price as a BF seat?
     
  11. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    IAD & EWR should only ever see the 764, not the 772; there are range issues on the Islands config which preclude it from making the EWR/IAD trips. Everything else (other than NRT) should be in the Islands config all the time. If you see a 3-cabin it is a swap, not the regular service for the route.
     
  12. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    I think you right about the IAD and EWR routes. I have only ridden the 767-400 to EWR, though I thought I had been on a 777-200 once to IAD, though it is usually a 767-400, too.
     
  13. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    But, back to my other question, what is United's plans for aircraft and routes to the island?
     
  14. lapointdm

    lapointdm Silver Member

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    *shakes magic 8-ball* ... All signs point to cannot predict now...

    Seriously UA seems not not know it's left from it's right lately so I'm not sure what their plans are except it's business as usual.
     
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  15. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Mostly 737s and 757s. The EWR and IAD routes will continue to have the 764s because those are the only ones which can make it that far. The 777s serving HNL will be the high density configuration. NRT will also generally keep a premium service plane based on fleet utilization and routing it in from NRT.
     
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  16. SnowDogDad

    SnowDogDad Silver Member

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    Boo! Where is the Dislike button.... :-(
     
  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Right next to the AS, DL & AA 737s flying similar routes. ;)

    Hawaiian still has widebody service to the left coast but the premium cabin is no better than the UA 777 islands config IMO.
     
  18. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Not to be a downer, but you didn't read the contract of carriage, did you? You didn't buy a particular seat style - rather you paid for a seat in a particular cabin designation.

    Did you buy a refundable ticket? If so, take the refund and show your frustration - move your business to another carrier.

    If you instead elected for a non-refundable ticket, call UA and ask for mercy. If you ask nicely (and, even better if you have status), UA may allow a free change in light of the circumstances.

    In the future, you shouldn't buy your ticket with the expectation of any particular aircraft or type of seating.
     
  19. Brit
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    Brit Gold Member

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    WA, what is the "islands" configuration? Is it the old barcalonger type seating?
     
  20. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    It is the "new" 777-200 layout with 2-3-2 up front and 2-5-2 in the back. It is 53" pitch up front so a significant improvement over domestic F but nowhere close to lie-flat. No in-seat IFE at all; everything is via streaming to your own device.

    [​IMG]

    There is a very long discussion about the type on FlyerTalk: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unit...configuration-pmua-777-domestic-aircraft.html.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2014
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  21. LIH Prem
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    LIH Prem Gold Member

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    Who reads the contract of carriage before they buy a ticket?

    Jeez.

    -David
     
  22. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Lawyers but everyone else doesn't. ;)
     
  23. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    I think there are some fanatics among us where no longer work/don't work very hard who read that stuff. The rest of us just get the occasional unpleasant surprise. :eek:
     
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  24. Brit
    Original Member

    Brit Gold Member

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    Thanks, Seth!
    You're a gem, as always.
     
  25. LIH Prem
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    LIH Prem Gold Member

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    But to throw it in somebody's face when they got the unpleasant surprise? Priceless (and right out of the FT playbook).

    -David
     
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