Hawaii routes

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by T5campbell, Jun 9, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. T5campbell

    T5campbell Silver Member

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    As I take off on a flight with United. I find it humorous that United is promoting their routes to Hawaii as the biggest mainland carrier to Hawaii, and they have the oldest and worse planes in their fleet to Hawaii. You would think they would upgrade the planes that they fly to Hawaii when they are promoting it in their commercials.
     
  2. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Oldest and worst? Which ones? The 737s are mostly newer than the 777s or 767s IIRC. And I think the 753s are in the middle.
     
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  3. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Why would I think that?
     
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  4. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    It would be useful for the OP to mention which routes/planes are being referred to. Unless it's just an observation on the overall age of the fleet being used by UA to transport from the CONUS to Hawaii. But considering that UA uses everything from 767's (with near lie-flat seating in business/first) to 757s, 737s, and 753s for this routing is quite a range of available metal. And it's all composed of the "oldest and worse planes in their fleet"? That would be quite an accomplishment for any air carrier!
     
  5. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The 767s are full flat. The 772s are not.
     
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  6. avflyer
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    avflyer Silver Member

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    As a resident of Hawaii and one who makes the crossing at least once a month, I can tell you that the 737s are poorly equipped in terms of IFE. Most have nothing at all. Zip zero.

    I realize that this is being cured over time, however given the imminent arrival of Virgin America, it seems that United is almost tone deaf to this competition.

    On another note, United used to really own their Hawaii routes. Back not so long ago, from the moment you got on board an aircraft you would feel like you were in the islands. They played Hawaiian music over the sound system, the flight attendants wore special island themed uniforms and served very good Mai Tais. Nowadays, the experience is no longer special. You may as well be flying from New York to Los Angeles.
     
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  7. konoyaro

    konoyaro Silver Member

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    Two years ago I flew from SFO - HNL on UA300 an older 777 and despite the older hard product, the mood was festive, the crew were handing out mai tais left and right, the crew was playing the guess the half way point game and as we approached HNL, we got a quick rundown of the island and some of the sites. The overall mood was festive and the crew was setting a positive tone.
    Last week I flew on SFO - HNL on UA73 and while it was OK, as avflyer mentions above, while the service was OK it was uninspired. No mai tais on offer, no half way point game - just getting through the service and getting folks there.
     
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  8. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Which makes them some of the newest planes. Not the oldest.
     
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  9. Dublin_rfk

    Dublin_rfk Gold Member

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    Ah yes! There is nothing like a 772 V4 to make you want to fly someone else.
    Don't take my word on it. take it straight from my horses mouth. 10+ Seatguru reviews of this beast. I didn't find one positive review.
     
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  10. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    I'd observe that is industry-wide malaise, and taking the customer for granted. We've flown on AA first class award seating from the east coast to Hawaii on and off for ~20 years. What was once a much-anticipated experience in the air, just isn't quite the same. The long flight from DFW or ORD was pure enjoyment, with the air crew dressed Hawaiian style, and doing everything to ensure that the passengers were comfortable and satisfied. We once annually looked forward to seeing "our" purser, who provided updates on island goings-on with his kind service. It's just not the same. If the airlines were smart, they would ensure a first-class experience for all their passengers travelling to Hawaii (and many use their miles awards for these flights) to demonstrate how much they value their customers.
     
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  11. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Why is Hawaii special? Why should it be treated to a different level of service? And, more importantly, are any passengers willing to pay for that level of differentiation.

    Those routes are, on average, far lower yielding than comparable stage length international or premium transcon trips (the ones with service similar to the "special" being sought here). And so they are treated as what they really are: Just another flight.
     
  12. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    That is precisely the difference I've experienced on so many US carriers versus on foreign carriers. On a US carrier, it's always just another flight. It wasn't always that way.
     
  13. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    It is always "just another flight" on every international carrier I've been on, too. Maybe their version of that differs slightly, but I have rarely seen different service/behavior because of the destination.

    And, indeed, it wasn't always that way. We also used to pay a lot more to fly. Expecting more service for less money is unlikely to result in a happy outcome.
     
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  14. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    We have certainly have had different flight experiences. I'll fly business class on LH over UA TATL any time!
     
  15. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I'd take the UA flat bed over the LH angle, though LH is finally retrofitting. And LH certainly doesn't do anything "special" for its TATL flights. You get the normal LH experience every time.

    It is "just another flight" for LH just like it is for LH or BA or AF or AA or DL. There are definitely differences in the service offerings, but that's what the airlines do. It is part of how they compete.
     
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  16. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    YMMV! I'll take that "normal LH experience" versus that of UA any day of the week! :) And the only times I've encountered "toxic air crew", they were wearing the United Airlines uniform. :eek:
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015
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  17. Dublin_rfk

    Dublin_rfk Gold Member

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    Hawaii is / was special, as a looked forward to vacation spot. United used the allure of the islands and a better onboard service to showcase themselves as a premium carrier. Recently my experiences have been memorable and mostly negative. I remember FA's with island themed accents to their uniforms and were always smiling, little travel games to keep your mind off the trip and yes clean aircraft. My last few flights to and from the mainland as well as from GUM and NRT the aircraft feel look and worn. United has changed travel to Hawaii from a memorable trip to just another flight.
     
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  18. T5campbell

    T5campbell Silver Member

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    I normal fly the direct flight from IAH, and it is usually the 777 that is outdated. When I connect at LAX or SFO it ususaly the 737 that is poorly equipped. I have flown to Hawaii 7 times since Jan of 2014. My question stems from their commercial on flights about how great they are in their service to Hawaii, and they use middle or bottom of the rung planes.
     
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  19. Wandering Aramean
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    Outdated how? Poorly equipped how? Does this all come down to the fact that you want in-seat IFE and aren't getting it??

    Beyond that, UA does have a bunch of flight from multiple gateways at both ends. That's the service it is bragging about more than not.
     
  20. Photonerd71

    Photonerd71 Silver Member

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    I just wish they had more than 1 (that I could find) flight with lie flat seats. Most everything coming back is a red eye and getting some sleep would make the return flight a bit better.
     
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  21. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    There are lots of other popular vacation spots without special service.

    Now, I didn't mind the Hawaii themed service when it was available (primarily the Mai Tais), but would I pay extra for Hawaiian themed uniforms? Nope. Just like I wouldn't pay extra for the Lai around Chester's neck on the tails of the AS Hawaiian themed planes :) (and I believe AS is getting rid of those now)
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015
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  22. T5campbell

    T5campbell Silver Member

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    Wandering Aramean with my status the seat location is not the problem. The actual plane being outdated, poorly equipped is the problem. Take a look at airfare from IAH the least expensive ticket is a grand 21 days out. With that cost the people on the flights should have a decent plane. It is a crap shoot whether they have wifi or not, but either way they don't have a plug in for your devices. An 8 hour flight and your device is only good for 4 hours is not good customer service. Before you say not all planes have been upgraded yet are they really going to upgrade a 777? I don't think so. This all stems from their wonderful marketing department promoting Hawaii and how much they do, but will not upgrade the planes for those flights. I have already taken 3 flights this year on AA, due to that fact. 3K of business has gone to another airline. I will still make Premier 1K with my continental flights this year, and this is a way along with my flights on Alaska Airlines I can take away from United. You seem to be the one always sticking up for United. If you know someone who works in customer retention have them reach out to me.
     
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  23. Rob
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    Rob Gold Member

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    Yes, they really are going to add power to all the Islands-config 772s. I don't see him sticking up for UA, but asking clarifying questions regarding incorrect or vague assertions in your posts.
     
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  24. T5campbell

    T5campbell Silver Member

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    What was incorrect? United promotes their service to the islands. Every flight I have been on to the islands the planes are older and not upgraded. No electrical plugs, no inflight entertainment. If a company promotes something I would think you would put your best foot forward to make it the best.
     
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  25. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    I believe Seth's point is that a lot of the planes that service the destination and don't have IFE yet aren't "older and not upgraded"...they're actually very new and haven't had it installed yet. The chances of encountering one of those "dark" planes isn't high but it's the same on LAX-HNL as it is on DEN-EWR. A look at United's 'inflight services' page will show you that the entire 737-700 -800 -900 and 757-300 fleet except for 5 planes has DirecTV installed so on that type, the chances are very slim. On top of that, every Airbus has Personal Device Entertainment installed and it's being gradually installed on the rest of the fleet, WiFi is available on a good portion of the fleet with most installations set to be complete by next month, and at-seat power is installed in a large portion of the fleet with the gaps (notably the Airbus fleet) starting installs next month.
     
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