United could restore its miles based ff program if the ceo truly wants to repair the copmany

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by ahappyelite, Oct 3, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    two ideas for United if they are serious about a ceasefire in the industry's war on customers:
    1. Restore a miles based ff program. (Can still give high spenders goodies.). This would be with a view towards making ual a solid choice for biz travelers AND the best quality economy domestic airline.
    2. Expand last minute specials for cash starved Americans-so they almost sell out each route each weekend. Only a tiny number of current specials are priced desirably.
     
  2. Gtitan
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    Gtitan Gold Member

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    As much as many (including me) would appreciate a miles based FF, that ship has sailed and don't think that you'll see UA return to that anytime soon. If UA really wishes to make its customer base happy, it will improve its operations and efficiency. At the end of the day, most flyers just want to get where they are going safely, on-time and with the least amount of hassle possible. YMMV
     
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  3. Weatherboy

    Weatherboy Gold Member

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    While some flights I do get ripped off on, overall when I look at all of my travel, I did come out well ahead this year with the new program versus if I had the old mileage earning program.
     
  4. Flying Machine

    Flying Machine Silver Member

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    Another possibility: eliminate the PQD requirement for 1K and Platinumn Members. Just a thought..
     
  5. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    What has sailed is me and no doubt tens of thousands of customers including many each day as they discover the ual ff program is worthless-90% mileage reductions- for most. Did a million miles with cal and have no reason to do any with ual-a loss of about $30k for them over the past five or six years. I don't have any clients or other victims I can pass along artificially high fares to so I can earn miles at the rip off levels required. No reason to believe ual is serious in the least about fixing itself in the current no competition environmet-but floating this anyway. The new ceo was on the board when algorithms became king and his solicitation of new ideas is belied by his decision to be unreachable to those proposing them.
     
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  6. tom911
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    tom911 Gold Member

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    Sure, UA could bring back 100% flight miles and 100% bonus miles for those at the 50K level or higher, or even for premerger Million Milers, a benefit I enjoyed at that level. That would take them far away from the DL model that they've been following, though, and send them in the direction of the AA program, and I don't see them breaking with that after a commitment to it for three years now. Have you seen anything from UA indicating they're not satisfied with Mileage Plus? All the public statements I've seen have been about unhappy employees and providing better customer service. Not a single thing about unhappiness with Mileage Plus or rewriting their elite program.

    I left the airline over those Million Miler changes. They're just too heavily invested in their program that matches DL that I can't see them reversing course. Now that some flyers are bringing in 75,000 miles on a paid ticket, how do you break the news to them that they, your most valuable flyers, would bring in considerably less miles with the 2012 Mileage Plus program being restored? A bonus here or there isn't going to make much of a dent in 75,000 miles they accumulate now.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2015
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  7. Mackieman
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    Mackieman Gold Member

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    Seems to me that you guys are having trouble differentiating between, "repairing the company" and, "making my frequent flier mileage balance higher." Given where the company is operationally, almost none of the immediate fixes have anything to do with loyalty programs and it's obtuse to assume otherwise. Customers will come back to the airline when the airline gets its operations in order and fixes the deep cultural issues in its workforce. According to the new CEO, both of those things are his top priority; time will tell if he can deliver on it.
     
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  8. Dublin_rfk

    Dublin_rfk Gold Member

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    Absolutely correct! First become operationally reliable. Once the flying public see that then and only then can UA will rebuild its brand loyalty. As I see it some of us have a choice but still stick with UA due to our own reasons, mine is Mileage Plus program. I endure the IRROPS and the spotty amenities because I have to fly and really don't like my alternative. So I'll give Oscar a chance to reverse the course and I will attempt to hold the gripes down as this is a large organization and there is a lot of inertia to overcome.
     
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  9. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    This exemplifies why American business is so despised. Mr. Munoz and his board colleagues engineered this crapiness. They chose to elevate monetizing everything above anything else. They perfected travel as ordeal and with everyone copying worst practices we have the abomination of no-competion US air travel. In meeting after meeting the board pondered how awful they could make the UAL experience and still fill the seats. Well as long as the airlines combine to keep available seats to a minimum-you can basically Antagonize people you once wooed. Airlines are COLLUDING to make air travel worse... Now they take out an ad to say sorry.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2015
  10. Weatherboy

    Weatherboy Gold Member

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    More than a third of my UA flights either didn't fly or were so operationally $#$% that I couldn't fly them this year. If UA wants to make this passenger happy, it's all about operational performance over frequent flier bonuses. What good is elite status or extra miles if they can't even get you from point A to point B reliably?
     
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  11. Flying Machine

    Flying Machine Silver Member

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    DEQM (a change I would like) ..
     
  12. tom911
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    tom911 Gold Member

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    UA offered me triple miles for a few months at the end of last year (don't think they were EQM). That wasn't good enough to bring me back. It just sent the message that they could take away the benefits I enjoyed for years and then throw a bone out there to get me back. I refused to take them up on it. I don't expect them to bring back the old program and I'm not going to jump on short term promotions that might lead them to think that's all they need to bring me back.
     
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  13. Flying Machine

    Flying Machine Silver Member

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    I guess I am in a Camp of very few. I have been loyal to UA even thought I have not had the best of service and culture. I am LAX based, fly about 75-100K most years, shy of MM status and have the desire to see this airline succeed. Rather than wait for things to be perfect, I have stayed the storm, seeing things get better and have allot of confidence in Mr. Munoz. I typically purchase lower cost fares and UA has been extermely nice to me when things go wrong. So for me its home. Im just hoping that due to the change of RDM's and PQM thresholds they may soften the blow to some who are on the cusp. Lets see what Q4 Brings and I surley will be with UA for 2016. Thanks and Safe Travels
     
  14. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    It Mr. Munoz/the board are truly sorry (which is more incredible the more objectively one looks at the financial fine tuning which took United to the bottom, except in Wall Streets eyes where they are on the top of the pile), they would order the universally despised Mr. Smisek to turn the $5 million dollar cash pile he disembarked with for running a company Mr. Munoz says is in a sorry state and contribute it to defray the employee pensions stolen in the not so distant past. Or give it to military families whose sacrifices protect the skies we allow the airlines to fly in. Of he can take out another ad in a year or two called "we are still sorry" as they butcher their passengers and staff for billions of profits. There is no reason to believe that ual is not coming for you next no matter how much you spend - it is a pathology.
     
  15. tom911
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    tom911 Gold Member

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    Are you aware of how many miles you're giving up under this scenario? At UA, at the 1K level, a $330 transcon fare brings in 3,300 miles ($300 after taxes X 11 miles per dollar). At AA, the same ticket brings in over 10,000 miles for those that fly over 50K a year. There are AA fares for $304 today SMF-DFW-DCA that bring in just over 10,000 miles at the 50K and higher level while UA awards 3,000 miles at the 1K level (and less at the 50K and 75K levels).

    I'm all for UA succeeding, but I'd much rather have the 7,000 extra miles per domestic trip over at AA (and on my Munich trip last week the AA $800 ticket brought in 18.000 miles more than a UA ticket would). I have flown over a million miles on UA metal, but just can't do that today with so few miles on the table. It's just not the place for a leisure traveler looking to accrue miles.

    I can't really comment about AA treatment this year when things go wrong as they've been pretty reliable. Might have some 15-30 min delays here or there, but my connections have been long enough to not have any impact from that. 91% domestic upgrade on AA metal doesn't hurt, either.
     
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  16. Garp74

    Garp74 Gold Member

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    In the end, for the VAST majority of travelers, it comes down to two things:

    Lines
    Times

    If United flies the lines you want, at the times you desire, and gets you through that line in a reasonable time, it's a good airline. If they don't, it's not a good airline.

    The rest is mostly all bullshit.
     
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  17. mht_flyer
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    mht_flyer Gold Member

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    Agree. This summer was awful for me especially having issues two times on EWR-FRA and other flight difficulties.

    I love the miles I truly do but I'm tired of the delay upon delay upon delay that I've experienced. Having to reroute domestic is one thing but rerouting intl is awful.

    Less miles I must say I appreciate them more.

    For the most part I'm able to get the awards I want (though UA biz savers on the routes I want have been non existent lately but I'm sure flying TK in biz will be better than UA biz :) )
     
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  18. Dublin_rfk

    Dublin_rfk Gold Member

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    Well said. I'll be a little more generous Q1 maybe Q2 or even Q3 or 4 before I jump.
    After all I don't hear anyone singing high praise to other carriers.
     
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  19. Flyer1976
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    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Well stated and as a rather frequent traveler you would know what works best for you.

    Route Network + Schedule + Operational Reliability = My Business. :-:
     
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  20. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Hope we can feel the pain of others and not reduce this to I'm ok at the moment and I don't care about miles which is an odd take on a frequent flyer mileage site. One of the many horrible things about allowing an air cartel to capture our skyways in a continental country is that ordinary young people are basically not going to be able to travel the nation as and the world with absurd fares and the ending of reward programs for most. This should be a golden era of air travel. A time when trips to the airport bring fresh new surprises (the experience now is like going to the county jail.). Doubly true with $40 oil: instead air travel is worse than any time in U.S. History and the cartel is at work to make it worse. We have some news for how Mr. Munoz is going to transform the organization he helped position at the bottom (southworst is the actual bottom FYI): he wants to change the coffee- probably something they will also monetize.
     
  21. bdlord

    bdlord Member

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    I would love if the awards reset back to what they were. On ANA I can fly JFK-NRT in Business for 80K miles, not on UA.
     
  22. Garp74

    Garp74 Gold Member

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    Milepoint, er, uh, Inside Flyer is a friendly community. We generally don't attack each other here. So with that preface, let me say I think you are very wrong.

    Facts, published by the US DoT in August:

    • "Enplanements of 64.4 million in January 2015 were the highest since the recession ended in June 2009 and the fourth highest of alltime."
    • "Passengers traveled 72.8 billion revenue passenger-miles in January 2015, the second highest of all-time"
    • "Network airlines, which operate a significant portion of their flights using at least one hub where connections are made for flights to down-line destinations or spoke cities, carry the largest portion of U.S. airline passengers. In 2013 the top three network airlines—United, Delta, and American—together carried 39.7 percent of total passengers traveling on U.S. airlines. The share of network airline passengers, however, has declined over the last decade, from 62.0 percent in 2003 to 50.0 percent in 2013. Meanwhile, low-cost airlines have carried an increasing number of passengers. In 2003 these airlines—Southwest, AirTran, JetBlue, Spirit, Frontier, Virgin America, and Allegiant—carried 16.1 percent of U.S. airline passengers. By 2013 these same low-cost airlines carried 26.9 percent of passengers"
    • The average airfare has fluctuated over time. Although prices appear to have increased slightly since 2000 in terms of what comes out of one’s wallet, accounting for inflation, airfare has actually decreased. At the end of 2014, the average airfare of a domestic flight was about $393. In current dollars, this is up $52 from the beginning of 2000 but down approximately $74 when accounting for inflation.
    tl;dr - more people are travelling by air than ever before. Low cost carriers are providing more competition to the big 3 than ever before. If you don't like United, that's cool - no one blames you. But you have more options than ever, and more people than ever are taking those options, and more people than anytime in US history are flying.
     
  23. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    I took contracts from probably the best prof I have ever had. Now I never really cared for the subject, and the class material met my low expectations. Howeve, he brought the subject to life. One, anecdote he told related to the buy/sale of an apartment complex where he was representing 1/2 of the buying group.

    I can't tell the story with any justice, but it something like this. "The first option I presented was spliting ownership right down the middle. However, that was rejected by both sides. We ended up with a deal where one partner got the rents and one partner ended up with the proceeds from the eventual sale of the complex."

    My prof went on to tell us, that a fair deal is one where one party is ahead of the other party and that's doubtful that people will agree to a truly fair deal.

    You can see it here. People supporting options that benefit themselves, without regards as to whether or not it is good for anyone else.
     
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  24. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    There are no low cost airlines. Certainly not southworst or JetBlue. And spirit is not a real airline-no one would fly them who needed to be anywhere. Many of America's youth are on extremely meager wages or living out of tip jars and a tremendous number of Americans haven't had a pay increase for 5 years or more. Air travel would be affordable and good (with the billions of costs the airlines stripped out, cheap oil and government subsidies everywhere you look) if it was competitive. With winter airfares to Europe routinely near 1k and points programs worthless for economy passengers, no question a sizable number of Americans are grounded. Wealthy passengers also are self grounding or heading for general aviation. There are also a historic number of non Americans flying eg Chinese and Brazilian and of course the population has increased a good bit.
     
  25. radonc1951

    radonc1951 Gold Member

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    Both of the above posts fully describe what I need in an airline. I need to be able to get there as easily as possible and at a reasonable price. I do not need to be sweating whether the flight is going to be on time or cancelled. In the early part of this year, that was just about all I was doing with UAEx.
    Now that CLE is no longer a hub, I have had the chance to use other airlines, primarily because UA lacked the lines, or times or had prices that were well beyond reasonable.

    I love FF programs and points, but they cannot rule me or my business travel.
     
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