How Airlines' In-Flight Amenities Stack Up for Business Travelers

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by sobore, May 25, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/219610

    I've flown 1.5 million miles on United Airlines in my working life. (Before you start tweeting congratulations, understand that it's the equivalent of spending six months, day and night, belted into creased leatherette.) For my devotion, and the annoyance of having United's "Rhapsody in Blue" theme permanently stuck in my head, I've been rewarded with annual Premier Executive status in the Mileage Plus program. So I'd have had a decent chance for a first-class upgrade whenI flew from Seattle to Denver recently. Yet I didn't even consider booking the trip on United.
    The reason? This was during the recent NCAA tournament, and I wanted to catch a game. United doesn't have live television on board. Same for Alaska, which also flies nonstop between the cities. But Frontier, which doesn't even offer a first-class cabin to be upgraded into, features 24 channels on its $6 DirecTV package. The two hours of my flight sped by as I watched Virginia Commonwealth upset Kansas.
    Air travel has been a commodity for years. Gone are the days when one carrier would boast about the quality of its meals, another about the plushness of its cabin. Responding to research that showed most consumers make ticket-buying decisions solely by price, airlines pared amenities until the experience of flying became indistinguishable from one brand to the next.

    Name

    Wi-Fi?

    TV

    Entertainment

    Extras
     
  2. I don't have nearly the same milage you do, I'm only an occasional travel, but I have the same experience. Most of the major airlines have been in a race to the bottom.
     
  3. ctporter
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    ctporter Silver Member

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    It is not just people choosing the "cheapest" flight, it is also our companies that send out us out on the road. They too want us to select the flights with the lowest fares (as a rule). That makes it harder to select one airline vs another for business purposes when the selection criteria is so limited. :( I often hear people say they "would pay more for good service, or a good experience" but I have to wonder, just how much more they really would pay? I thought I was one of those, but on a multi-city trip to China on an airline where I had no status, the cost to upgrade from my economy seat to business class was almost five times the cost of the ticket (from $1200 to $5575) so, obviously I made my self as comfy as I could in the back. However, when I have had to fly on UA, I do opt to upgrade (on my own dime) to economy plus for the extra leg room every time.
     
  4. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    I am very fortunate I have a little negotiating room with my employer. They take into account when I save them $$$ on baggage fees and it is a competitive fare! :) They don't have to reimburse me and I get to use the benefits of elite status....of course, they do think I'm crazy when I say that I'm willing to fly a connecting flight (AF/KL) versus direct.
     
  5. stimpy
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    stimpy Silver Member

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    This is exactly why I prefer EK F for my flights. The amenity of a shower spa on board, plus they allow cell phone use, and the mini-bar in each seat, and the free pour Dom Vintage 2000, and the big screen TV, fabulous food, etc. etc.,, is why I prefer EK over UA. Hah!
     
  6. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    I read somewhere that all these perks would soon be added to UA economy plus, Oh yeah and little fairies are altering our thoughts with voodoo. :p
     
    bakedpatato and santafefran like this.
  7. stimpy
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    stimpy Silver Member

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    Yeah, I'm just waiting til EK picks up the LAX-ORD route with an A380. Til then I'm a million-plus miler on UA too.
     
  8. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Welcome to MP.
     
  9. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    I definitely believe there's a bit of voodoo going on. It's sure felt like I had needles stuck into me during some flights where my upgrade didn't come through...
     
  10. milchap
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    milchap Gold Member

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    I wish that they had broadened the scope of the survey to include other than USA airlines.
     

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