Is it normal - no drinks UA Express Newark - DCA?

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by iolaire, Nov 5, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    On Sunday we few back from coach from Montreal to DCA via Newark. On the UA flight from Newark to DCA they didn't serve a drink because the flight was too short. Is that normal for UA express? The flight is not really that short, about an hour.

    As a comparison Air Canada was able to give us each two coffees and a second cracker in that amount of time flying from Montreal to Newark on a slightly smaller plane with one cabin staff member.
     
  2. Garp74

    Garp74 Gold Member

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    I've flown IAD-EWR a few times in 2015 and drinks were served.
     
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  3. Steve GadFly
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    Steve GadFly Gold Member

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    If rough air was predicted, the captain may have told the flight attendants to stay seated. The block time of that flight may be over an hour but the actual wheels-up-to-wheels-down time is usually 40-45-ish minutes so if the ascent or decent will be bumpy, that leaves very little time to complete service.
     
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  4. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    In this case it was not bumpy (but the Air Canada flight was supposed to be).
     
  5. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    I've flown that route many times. More often than not, drinks were served, but there have been times when the FA announced that there wouldn't be any service due to flight length. Most of the time when that has happened, the flight has been half full, very smooth, and the FA's eyes were glued to a magazine or paperback the entire flight. There should be a drink service, weather permitting, but there are some bad FAs out there who invoke the "short flight" excuse.
     
  6. Laptop Nomad

    Laptop Nomad Silver Member

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    BWI -EWR been served drinks everytime I've flown it.
     
  7. Mackieman
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    Mackieman Gold Member

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    This happens on IAH-AUS and AUS-IAH from time to time. It makes sense when it's a 738/739 and the flight is 22 to 28 minutes. Even then, good crews will do a water service at least.
     
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  8. Weatherboy

    Weatherboy Gold Member

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    It's at the FA's discretion. On my last IAD-EWR, I was in F. They announced that due to the short flight, no drinks would be provided...but the F FA did give us all 2 rounds of drinks and two pass of a snack basket.

    Back in the days of EWR-PHL, I remember a flight where it was packed and our flying time was ridiculously short...and even so, the FA served everyone on board a drink of their choice. I sent a compliment letter in for that.
     
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  9. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    I feel like a service is possible and expected so in skipping it the crew short changed me. But had the lounge in Newark offered booze prior to noon on Sunday I probably wouldn't have cared as much.
     
  10. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Just got off a slightly-less-than-60-min Horizon flight and while the seatbelt sign remained turn on the entire time, the crew had no problems serving me a complimentary IPA.
     
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  11. IMRU

    IMRU Silver Member

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    My experience is the same as "ssulivan:" when it is not done, it seems because the f/a doesn't want to do it.

    I'm not sure it's at their discretion. The two times I've reported it, I've received an email back from UA apologizing for failing to do it, letting me know that it is supposed to be part of the service (with caveats about operational issues etc.), and telling me they'll follow up with the f/a.
     
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  12. GodOSpoons

    GodOSpoons Active Member

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    It's 50-50, all depending on how bumpy/long the ride. If you get the shortest route or more turbulent conditions, I've seen no service and "limited" service (i.e. water only). It's a ridiculously short segment (even shorter than my usual BOS-EWR, which suffers from similar service conditions).
     
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  13. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    Do you think its worth emailing united about it? (I have no status.)
     
  14. ella
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    ella Silver Member

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    Back in the day, I had an FA who did a beverage service on EFD-IAH, just to prove that she could. I've also had IAH to DFW, AUS, SAT where they did full beverage - and those same routes where there was no beverage service.

    They got me to where I was going on time and safely so I was fine. It is on the longer flights where I get a little testy if they don't offer water once an hour.
     
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  15. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    I had the same on EFD-IAH several times. It was always easier to do that on the northbound flight to IAH than the southbound flight to EFD, as the approach pattern at IAH frequently added distance and time to the flight. IAH-EFD flights tended to depart heading south most of the time and then get vectored to a straight-in approach at EFD, which meant they were very fast, and sometimes in the air less than 10 minutes. I seemed to always average 20-25 minutes in the air on IAH-EFD.
     
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  16. Budov1

    Budov1 Silver Member

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  17. Budov1

    Budov1 Silver Member

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    I was on a recent flight on United Express from SFO-ONT. The flight attendant announced there would be no drink service on the flight due to turbulence. There was not even a bump from takeoff to landing. Good thing as the flight attendant was doing her nails. Wouldn't want to paint her finger.
     
  18. Budov1

    Budov1 Silver Member

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  19. Budov1

    Budov1 Silver Member

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    Oh and as a footnote, Southwest routinely manages to provide the superior service they tout in spite of challenges. UAL FA's could learn from them.
     
  20. Pizzaman
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    Pizzaman Co-founder

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    UA's FAs could learn from a lot of airlines. Slowly, I think AA is becoming not one of them.
     
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  21. Pizzaman
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    Funny thing is, when I see this thread, my first thought was, "I pretty much gave up expecting any service on short flights."
     
  22. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    At least on United Express flights a full drink service with the cart needs to be offered if the flight is 30 minutes or longer.
     
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  23. 8MiHi

    8MiHi Silver Member

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    A year ago on my last EWR-DCA roundtrip they offered water only. I do not remember if there were any weather issues. I thought then that maybe this was going to be the new standard for short flights as the water only required a tray and not the cart.
     
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  24. satman40

    satman40 Gold Member

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    If I want to bottle water I would ask for it, on a short flight it just encourages bathroom trips.
     
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  25. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    According to block time 1hr 15min and service standards they should be offering a full drink service.
     
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