Have "Happy Days" Returned/Come to the New United?

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by NYCUA1K, Jun 20, 2012.  |  Print Topic

?

Are Happy Days Here Again at UA?

Poll closed Aug 8, 2012.
  1. Emphatic 'Yes'!

    13.2%
  2. Dream on!

    31.6%
  3. Wait and see...

    52.6%
  1. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,743
    Likes Received:
    5,088
    Status Points:
    4,270
    Following the new UA's migration to a single computer system on March 3, it seemed that the new airline had bitten off more than they could chew. There was widespread condemnation of its operation, with folks reporting one problem or another in nearly every aspect the airline's daily travel activities or frequent flyer program. Things got so bad that the airline felt compelled to issue an apology, promising to work as fast as they could to resolve the many issues. Well, it's been a few months since, how have they done?

    For me, who was quite vocal in condemning the lapses in service, I feel that they have done pretty darn well, so it is only fair that I give credit where credit is due. On Sunday, I completed my third trip since "tax day", which was when we were told things would begin to improve: Two long-haul TPAC trips (JFK-MEL and JFK-PEK) and a quick LGA-ORD hop. For all three trips, it seemed like ol' times:

    • Each trip started and ended without a hitch.
    • Miles for each flight posted correctly within 2-3 days after completing the trip in each direction.
    • The two long-haul trips, combined, had a total of 10 segments for which I cleared all the upgrades but for one segment (using GPUs).
    • The segment that did not get upgraded was E+ to BusinessFirst on the long segment (SFO-PEK) of the JFK-SFO-PEK trip. I called today to ask that a GPU be returned to me because the U/G for that long-haul segment did not clear and it was done within minutes, while I held the line.
    • Calls to 1K Desk have been answered almost instantly.
    • It might be my imagination but it has seemed to me that the FAs have been cheery of late...
    In short, I feel that the long promised "leading airline" may be just around the corner...

    How about you? Do you feel that Happy Days are here again at UA? If so, please take the poll and tell us why; if not, well, still take the poll and tell us why not...
     
    LizzyDragon84 likes this.
  2. Sedosi

    Sedosi Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,546
    Likes Received:
    9,504
    Status Points:
    7,425
    I think there are signs of improvement, but time will certainly tell. I've certainly noticed that their CS has gotten better of late, and that you're not on hold forever these days. They still have some glitches to work out, most notably making changes to an itinerary with no notification (that's happened to me twice this month) but overall things seem to be a getting better in increments. I've got 5 flights booked in 5 months starting in July, a couple of medium-ranged flights (IAH-LAS, IAH-ANC) a flight to Puerto Rico and a long-haul to Rome.

    I've got high hopes, and I'm crossing my fingers because when you're based in Houston UA really IS the best option.
     
    NYCUA1K likes this.
  3. Gtitan
    Original Member

    Gtitan Gold Member

    Messages:
    7,069
    Likes Received:
    12,437
    Status Points:
    12,520

    So is Fonzie really SMI/J and will he "jump the shark"?:p In all seriousness, I think that it is working pretty well. RPUs/GPUs (at least for me) don't go back into the account the way they should at times, but other than that, service in the air and on the ground has been pleasant and professional. I am a pleased 1K. YMMV
     
    NYCUA1K and Sedosi like this.
  4. Captain Oveur
    Original Member

    Captain Oveur Gold Member

    Messages:
    7,243
    Likes Received:
    14,058
    Status Points:
    12,520
    I think it's way too early to declare "Happy Days" to be back (or even having gotten worse).

    Personally, I'm just now experiencing some of the complaints others have experienced (seat re-assignment, loss in upgrade list). I have experienced some of the other ones commonly cited for awhile.

    For me "Happy Days" will happen when these three elements are restored:

    - Labor harmony. There are still things that have yet to be hashed out among front-line staff. That kind of stuff matters to me, especially knowing that part of the contract involves some criteria in what pilots can legitimately accept or reject an aircraft.

    - Reservations system, two parts. The ability to do things that FastAir was able to do AND staff that aren't having to refer to a pre-printed or handwritten notes to offer the most basic of things, such as changing seat assignments.

    - Upgrades. Completely self-serving, but I do have an expectation to at least have a shot at getting an upgrade, not being taken out of the hunt by folks who seldom fly. I have been a 1K for too long, approaching 2MM rapidly, to be beat out by people who have provided a fraction of a fraction of the business I have given United in nearly 20 years.

    While I'm in the wait and see crowd, I'm driving next week for something I would have normally given UA the business.
     
  5. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

    Messages:
    28,222
    Likes Received:
    61,772
    Status Points:
    20,020
    Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    <deep breath>
    HahahahahahahahahahahahahaHahahahahahahahahahahahaha
     
  6. goalie
    Original Member

    goalie Gold Member

    Messages:
    3,003
    Likes Received:
    7,460
    Status Points:
    5,145
    Instant ticketing (or lack there of), "random" seat changes, ToD'$, not being able to apply an upgrade instrument within 24 hours of flight, PNR splitting, false partner inventory or inventory existing via reservations but not showing on-line, OLCI not working properly for international flights and "lost" reservations are just a few issues that to not make for happy daze afaic
     
    stephenbgarvan likes this.
  7. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

    Messages:
    28,222
    Likes Received:
    61,772
    Status Points:
    20,020
    At least two of the items you listed aren't actually true. Keep up the good work. [​IMG]

    I'm not saying that things are running 100% perfect, but I do prefer to keep my energies focused on the things which are actually broken.
     
  8. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,743
    Likes Received:
    5,088
    Status Points:
    4,270
    On the other hand, I have been receiving too many notifications of itinerary change, which were not actual itinerary changes, but just upgrades clearing. No biggie, except that it is a waste of resources to require a passenger to call in every time a seat upgrade request clears...

    I thought it was it the ONLY option:D...

    Just how widespread are these "problems"? The intl OLCI works the way it has always worked for me. I just completed an "experiment" to test it out, which I will relate when I can find the thread in which this issue had been discussed last...
     
  9. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Messages:
    27,358
    Likes Received:
    60,275
    Status Points:
    20,020
    I've still had no major glitches. I've had a few hiccups along the way, but none were out of the ordinary for either airline pre-merger. In fact, for the most part, my many flights on both sCO and sUA have been business as usual. What few issues I've had with delayed flights or cancellations were handled as well as they could have been, given the circumstances. I've had a few lost seat assignments, only on ERJ operated flights, so I just make it a point to check those particular seat assignments often. But, I've done that for years, as PMUA flights booked through my corporate travel agent have consistently lost seat assignments, moving me from E+ to E-, for years. So, in that regard, this is an improvement over PMUA for me, but a worsening of service over PMCO. But, it's so infrequent that it's not a huge deal to me.

    So, I'm still in the "Wait and see" crowd, but I haven't status matched anywhere else, and I haven't booked a non-UA airline ticket since March.
     
    snod08, IMRU, sfogate and 3 others like this.
  10. goalie
    Original Member

    goalie Gold Member

    Messages:
    3,003
    Likes Received:
    7,460
    Status Points:
    5,145
    So which "at least two"? And where you say you prefer to keep your energies focused on the things which are actually broken, what do you perceive as broken?
     
    Captain Oveur likes this.
  11. Misplaced Texan
    Original Member

    Misplaced Texan Gold Member

    Messages:
    16,874
    Likes Received:
    26,170
    Status Points:
    20,020
    From my perspective all is well.

    There were clearly some big issues immediately after 3/3. PMUA tickets were a cluster, agents really weren't up to speed on SHARES, etc. Those seem to have all been solved by time.

    Everything I've flown in the last couple of months has been smooth. Upgrades have cleared at the usual rates, no abnormal delays (typical WX stuff including one memorable day when WX in both SFO and DEN really derailed my getting home from LAS, but that happens), and both agents and FAs seem to be getting the swing of the merged airline.

    Oh, and the catering changes on transcons are a change I like. And by catering changes, I of course mean the sundae. Also, the DCA-SFO route is :-:.

    To me the thing with a real chance to throw a spanner in the works is labor. I'll take the pilots on TOBB at their word that there's nothing going on yet...but I, like a lot of people, remember 2000. Until there's a new joint contract and we're sure that things aren't going to get to that level, I'm still taking a slight "wait and see" approach.
     
    NYCUA1K likes this.
  12. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,548
    Likes Received:
    1,935
    Status Points:
    1,120
    I'm still a little bugged by the lack of replies to legitimate complaints submitted via ua.com. Of the 4 that I have submitted this year, none have received a reply. I'm particularly bugged by an email (it was time-sensitive, or I would have mailed it) I sent to Smisek which resulted in a phone call the next day. That person promised another call to resolve the issue within 24 hours and it never came. That was in April.

    I'm just a lowly Platinum, so I now get fewer upgrades than I did as a PMCO Silver. I have accepted that (what other choice is there?) and have self-repaired the problem by buying Business or First tickets when it's really important to me. The one positive result of that is that the extra PQMs will make me 1K next year or later this year, but I'm also flying more.

    Finally, the most insulting, irritating practice that doesn't appear to have changed is the holding of front cabin inventory until 30 minutes before scheduled departure and offering upgrades at the kiosk to everyone with a pulse while we wait. I have been first in line for upgrades a couple of times where they have sold out at the last minute. One could say that I could pay if I really wanted the upgrade, but if I am number one on the list one hour prior to departure with 2 or more seats open up front, how stupid would I have to be to pay for something that I am likely to get for free?

    I'm a big fan of profit, so I don't blame them for trying to maximize it, but not after touting the MileagePlus program and luring us with "free upgrades" only to yank the rug out from under us within the final hour. Loyalty is a two way street, but they have turned it into a one way street and are driving in the wrong direction.
     
    EWR764 and dhammer53 like this.
  13. dhammer53
    Original Member

    dhammer53 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,574
    Likes Received:
    2,928
    Status Points:
    1,470
    Feel free to tell UA to shove it.

    My (our) relationship with UA is like a good marriage suddenly gone bad. They're already past the point of no return. With so many negative threads (more than I can ever remember) on Flyertalk, I wouldn't be surprised if you told me that United planned this implosion. :mad: I read a thread earlier in the UA forum on FT where a flight attendant told a pax that she was seeing less and less 1k's on board.

    All these years to build a brand, and only 3 months to destroy it.
     
    SC Flier and Scott Schmidt like this.
  14. bseller

    bseller Silver Member

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status Points:
    135
    Of course, it goes without saying that over all those years of being moved to E-, you were simply being moved to a seat that was as good / or better than any Economy seat offered by CO. Isn't that right??
    Dave
     
  15. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,743
    Likes Received:
    5,088
    Status Points:
    4,270
    Any specifics as they relate to your own experience of late?

    This seems to be stuck in the past, IME. I was where you seem to have gotten stuck but I kept an open mind. Why? Well, simply because it was clear that what the new airline was attempting to do had great peril. The only question was whether they would sink or float, and the answer, IME, seems to be the latter. Unlike you, I have seen a dramatic drop. rather than an increase or continuation, in the number of so-called 'negative threads', many of which I had started or gleefully contributed to at the height of the mess....

    My recent experience, related in the OP, suggests to me that "condemning with an open mind" was the right course -- it kept pressure on the airline to shape up, and I think they have.

    YMMV, but the notion that the UA brand has been "destroyed" in just three months is so melodramatic that your 'divorce' from the airline should be permanent -- good luck with another airline that has an intact or better brand...
     
  16. dhammer53
    Original Member

    dhammer53 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,574
    Likes Received:
    2,928
    Status Points:
    1,470
    I agree. YMMV.
     
    SC Flier likes this.
  17. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Messages:
    27,358
    Likes Received:
    60,275
    Status Points:
    20,020
    No, because I'd still take an exit row on CO over any E- seat on UA. Leg room usually trumps everything else for me in Y.

    And, honestly, my upgrade rate on CO was so darn good, as was my success in landing good exit row seats at the time of ticketing, that sitting in a regular CO Y seat was an exceptionally rare occurrence.

    Both airlines had a lot to love before the merger, as well as a lot to dislike.
     
  18. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

    Messages:
    28,247
    Likes Received:
    33,912
    Status Points:
    20,020
    Well DEN did have a BBQ day for employees yesterday and I was invited to partake during my layover. So it was quite refreshing to have a Hamburger cooked on the ground versus the onboard Cheeseburger :D.
     
  19. ssullivan
    Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Messages:
    27,358
    Likes Received:
    60,275
    Status Points:
    20,020
    Amen.

    It was a given that the brand identity of both UA and CO would change with the merger. To think otherwise is nothing but wishful thinking. No airline merger has ever occurred with the brand identities of the previous airlines remaining intact. Look at today's DL – it has a lot in common with DL before the NW merger, but it has changed in many ways. And, for all of the complaining that's gone on regarding UA now feeling more like CO, well, those of us who really flew CO a lot over the years can attest to the fact that the current UA feels quite different from the old CO. The current UA is not the UA I had 1K status on, but neither is it the CO I was a Platinum that flew over 100,000 EQMs/year on. Keeping an open mind is key. I continue to see improvements, and they've really given me no reasons to leave.
     
    IMRU and NYCUA1K like this.
  20. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

    Messages:
    28,247
    Likes Received:
    33,912
    Status Points:
    20,020
    What people won't realize is that they are so disillusioned in their thinking that it's the same United or the same Continental they've flown or worked for... It's time for the blue pill in their realization that it is indeed an new United albeit some nostalgia from both carriers seemingly carried over into the new company.
     
    Sedosi and NYCUA1K like this.
  21. Captain Oveur
    Original Member

    Captain Oveur Gold Member

    Messages:
    7,243
    Likes Received:
    14,058
    Status Points:
    12,520
    I don't see in the text you quoted where the person said there has been an increase of 'negative threads.'


    Your priorities and/or observations might be different than others.

    While I agree 'destroyed' might be a little premature at this point, keeping the United name was a big mistake, in my opinion.
     
    stephenbgarvan likes this.
  22. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,743
    Likes Received:
    5,088
    Status Points:
    4,270
    This is what I was referring to:
    There might have been many negative threads at the height of the mess but that is a thing of the past...at least it seems to be on MP.

    ...and there is even a shorthand for it too: YMMV. However, that does not stop anyone, including you, from pontificating on this board, whose purpose is precisely to allow anyone to pontificate...

    Shakespeare, William: "...what is in name? A rose by any other name... etc..."

    BTW, were you a CO/OnePass adherent? If so, it would explain your beef with the retention of the United name...I suppose you also do not like "Rhapsody in Blue"...
     
  23. radonc1951

    radonc1951 Gold Member

    Messages:
    5,114
    Likes Received:
    11,606
    Status Points:
    11,070
    I think that some of the ORD staff still are having issues with Shares. I was in ORD 3 weeks ago and did a plane change where I had an UG on an L ticket. The GA became somewhat flustered with the computer and finally just said "bag it" and booked my fare as F to get me another seat in the front of the plane. I certainly didn't object.
     
  24. Sedosi

    Sedosi Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,546
    Likes Received:
    9,504
    Status Points:
    7,425
    I realize this wasn't directed at me but one of my fav (unimportant) parts of the merger is that they DID keep Rhapsody in Blue.

    Besides the guy who looks at the oxygen mask with amusement (who's sadly been replaced) that's the best part of the safety video IMO. YMMV
     
    chrislacey likes this.
  25. Captain Oveur
    Original Member

    Captain Oveur Gold Member

    Messages:
    7,243
    Likes Received:
    14,058
    Status Points:
    12,520
    That's fine, but you said there was an "increase." That word, nor a synonym was used. dhammer53 not say the amount was increasing or decreasing, only to say, as you pointed out in the highlighted text, that there are a lot at this time.


    Completely agree about the pontificating, but the value of it goes down the drain when false assumptions or accusations are made.


    Re-read my line earlier making false assumptions. Then click on my posting history and find out my background.
     

Share This Page