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View Full Version : who is to blame for misery in cattle class...greedy airlines? :)


deptrai
16th Jan 2015, 13:15
the economist and bloomberg stating the obvious:

Ultimately, the reason airlines cram us into tiny seats and upcharge for everything is that we're out there on Expedia and Kayak, shopping on exactly one dimension: the price of the flight. To win business, airlines have to deliver the absolute lowest fare. And the way to do that is . . . to cram us into tiny seats and upcharge for everything. If American consumers were willing to pay more for a better experience, they'd deliver it. We're not, and they don't.

Airlines' worsening customer service: The blame game | The Economist (http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2015/01/airlines-worsening-customer-service?fsrc=scn/fb/wl/bl/theblamegame)

Hate to Fly These Days? It's Consumers' Fault, Too - Bloomberg View (http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-01-06/hate-to-fly-these-days-its-consumers-fault-too)

consumers want cheap flights, and that's what they get.

Blacksheep
16th Jan 2015, 13:39
Blame Ronald Reagan.

He invented "de-regulation" and allowed the peasant classes to abandon their Greyhound Coaches and flock to the airports. With less revenue per peasant, the airlines have to cram more in. :rolleyes:

OFSO
16th Jan 2015, 13:43
No, cheapskate passengers who want the lowest of fares and then are dimwitted enough to complain about the way they get treated.

Sallyann1234
16th Jan 2015, 13:45
"You get what you pay for"

Lon More
16th Jan 2015, 13:56
pay peanuts, expect monkeys

oldchina
16th Jan 2015, 14:16
Do you really want to pay a high fare to get a dry sandwich served by superannuated cabin crew on a tired and tatty plane.
If so choose a legacy flag carrier.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
16th Jan 2015, 14:22
I want a safe (not necessarily new) aircraft flown by skilled (US 1549,not AF447) aviators, with enough leg room not to require a physiotherapist afterwards; backed up by ground staff who are efficient, have common sense, and the authority to use it. And nothing else. I am willing to pay extra for this. It seems I am alone, as the market does not supply this.

Choxolate
16th Jan 2015, 14:26
Basic rule I use = short haul (<3 hours) cheapest I can get, long haul use money saved from short haul to go economy plus or business with a good carrier (I personally like Virgin Atlantic for pond crossing).

For a couple of hours I can put up with no food and less than comfortable seats. No worse than than the back of a small car.

evansb
16th Jan 2015, 14:28
Reagan "invented deregulation"? Oh now that is rich! Presidents and Prime Ministers seldom, if ever, "invent" anything.

Corporations have never been more powerful and influential in society, ever!

Lobbyists influence Congressmen, Senators, and Parliamentary representatives, who in turn influence the leaders.

Airline profits are up. Service levels and choices for the average income traveller are way, way down from even one decade ago. It echoes the rise of elitism and the disappearance of the middle class.


Why Airlines Want to Make You Suffer (http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/airlines-want-you-to-suffer)


Why I Left United Airlines - The New Yorker (http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/leaving-united-airlines-after-merger)

rgbrock1
16th Jan 2015, 14:29
HI Choxolate, nice to see you ma'am. :)

radeng
16th Jan 2015, 14:30
Fox,

You are not alone. I am prepared to pay for the comfort and service, and as I don't have any kids to leave my money to, I will spend it rather than have it go in death duties. But now I find that my proposed F class trip to Phoenix in September isn't possible on BA, as they have stopped F class on that route!

All offers from Ppruners to help by relieving me of the money will receive a suggestion to do various difficult rude things to themselves!

rgbrock1
16th Jan 2015, 14:32
radeng wrote:

All offers from Ppruners to help by relieving me of the money will receive a suggestion to do various difficult rude things to themselves!

Such as? Sticking ones head in the gas oven without lighting the pilot light and inhaling deeply, perhaps? :}:E

Choxolate
16th Jan 2015, 14:34
HI Choxolate, nice to see you ma'am.
.. and you too.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
16th Jan 2015, 14:37
From the 'suffer' link, this is the jist of it.

But the fee model comes with systematic costs that are not immediately obvious. Here’s the thing: in order for fees to work, there needs be something worth paying to avoid. That necessitates, at some level, a strategy that can be described as “calculated misery.” Basic service, without fees, must be sufficiently degraded in order to make people want to pay to escape it. And that’s where the suffering begins.

In essence, the fees model is inhuman. No airline executive is prepared to travel on their most basic service.

Do unto others, etc.?

I am going to build my own aeroplane. Not kidding.

603DX
16th Jan 2015, 14:49
If I'm paying for my flights, which applies to all since I'm retired, then it's minimum-fare every time. During a long working life, it was frequently business class paid for by clients, with the occasional unsolicited upgrade to first. So I have a reasonable basis for value-for-money comparisons, and would never consider that the extra seat widths and spacings, and more fussy menu choices, could possibly be worth the exorbitant extra costs over "cattle class". I recall business being at least twice the fare, and first over three times, so am happy enough with what I get for what I pay.

And fortunately I am not physically over-sized, which helps make the comfort factor bearable, while within reason will eat almost anything if hungry enough, so I have never had a memorably bad flight experience in economy class. :)

deptrai
16th Jan 2015, 14:49
I recently "splurged", 800usd for one way 13hour intercontinental in Norwegian "premium class". Very affordable. Seats aren't full lie flat, and they're 2-3-2, not 2-2-2 as usual in 787 business, but they are very comfortable compared to any economy seat. Fare included 60 kilo luggage allowance, meals (no luxury, but perfectly edible), fast-track, lounge. the "premium" cabin was half empty, service was excellent.

So from a fare-paying-traveller point of view, not all change in the industry is necessarily bad, I was surprised how affordable this was (I know, the guys at the pointy end work on "offshore", not expat contracts, but hey, they get to fly a big shiny jet...), but I was also surprised how the majority of travellers preferred to save a few hundred usd, and chose no-frills, nothing included, discount economy.

Exascot
16th Jan 2015, 15:05
Short haul cattle class is just about bearable. But long haul, no way. I like to be able to stand up in front of my seat. Wander around without having to ask people to move and get food and drinks when I want them not when they are thrown at you. I want a seat that goes horizontal and proper sheets and pillows. And, I am prepared to pay for this. In fact 1st and business class significantly subsidise the poor people down the back. They should thank us, touch the peak of their flat caps and grovel when we get on board :E

finfly1
16th Jan 2015, 15:15
I remain curious about where the huge infusion of extra money for the airlines is going due to oil dropping to under fifty dollars a barrel.

Home heating oil and certainly automobile gasoline prices have definitely reflected the drop in price of crude, but personally I have not seen a single air fare reduction.

Cruises, otoh, are currently advertising rates as low as $40 per person per night now.

Capetonian
16th Jan 2015, 15:18
I've been looking at fares between ZA and EU/GB on LX, BA, and KL, for travel over the next few weeks, and they are lower than I have seen them for a long time. This is not due to a reduction in the so-called fuel surcharge, but to more seats being available at lower base fares.

Andy_S
16th Jan 2015, 15:53
Why is this even an issue?

No one forces airlines to pack us in like sardines. If people refused to buy Cattle Class seats with less than 32 seat pitch or greater than 9 across in a 777 then they would quickly reconfigure their cabins. Its only because were prepared to put up with it rather than pay more that economy is cramped. Its all about market forces.

I suppose the other way to look at it is that low fares have brought air travel, long haul at least, within the reach of most of us. OK, economy may not be the most comfortable way to travel, but we can now fly halfway round the world for a few hundred pounds. Do we want to give that up simply because we have to endure a few hours discomfort?

oldchina
16th Jan 2015, 15:59
"1st and business class significantly subsidise the poor people down the back"

Speaking on behalf of the tired and huddled masses, I'd like to remind you that many airlines have come to a different conclusion. In fact the revenue per square foot of floor space is higher in the back. Modern 1st and business class cabins are very "wasteful" of space. Plus they operate at lower target load factors and have higher service costs. Not everyone in economy can buy the cheapest ticket, so maybe it's you who is being subsidised.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
16th Jan 2015, 16:00
One of the big problems is that it's not a free market, due to slot limitations at major airports.

UniFoxOs
16th Jan 2015, 16:05
No one forces airlines to pack us in like sardines. If people refused to buy Cattle Class seats with less than 32 seat pitch or greater than 9 across in a 777 then they would quickly reconfigure their cabins. Its only because were prepared to put up with it rather than pay more that economy is cramped.

Chicken and egg. Try to book a better seat on lots of routes and they are all gone. If you have to go then you either go cattle class or first, which very few working men can afford.

Cattle class varies a lot between carriers. EK the best I have experienced in recent years, BA prety good, Luftwaffe - comments not suitable for an open forum.

rgbrock1
16th Jan 2015, 16:23
I personally have always found "cattle class" on US Airways pretty decent DEPENDING on the aircraft of course.

RJM
16th Jan 2015, 17:10
From the Sydney Morning Herald, 4 hours ago:

Consumer groups want the competition regulator to apply the same pressure on airlines such as Qantas, Emirates and Virgin Australia to slash fuel surcharges as it has on petrol retailers in the bush gouging motorists.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has set up a team to investigate passenger surcharges, which are as high as $680 for a return economy ticket to the United States.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said the regulator was trying to determine whether the airlines had engaged in deceptive and misleading conduct, and expected the results to be known within several months.

"We are looking at what has been said and done at various times in relation to the fuel surcharges," he said. "It is not against the law to introduce a surcharge - what is against the law is to mislead customers."

Oil prices have slumped almost 60 per cent since June this week hitting their lowest level in almost six years but the fuel fees Qantas, Emirates and Virgin slap on international tickets have not budged.

Geoff Trotter, from monitoring group FuelTrac, said oil prices were now near levels in 2014 when Qantas first introduced a surcharge of $15 a sector for international flights.


Read more: ACCC investigates airlines for fuel surcharges amid slump in oil prices (http://www.smh.com.au/business/accc-investigates-airlines-for-fuel-surcharges-amid-slump-in-oil-prices-20150116-12ru6u.html#ixzz3P0Nxjsyv)

seacue
16th Jan 2015, 17:21
I have flown Southwest Airlines (and no other) for the past few years. Unlike most airlines. there are essentially no extra fees. While I use carry-on - I could check up to two bags at no extra cost. There is no food, but soft drinks, peanuts, pretzels are included in the fare. Leg/knee room is among the largest of any castle class in the USA - lots more than some European cheap airlines.

There are no assigned seats, but one can get at the head of the boarding line by paying a small fee ... or practically as good a boarding position by checking in at the first possible time.

All of that being said, I live near one of their "focus" cities (Baltimore), so there are non-stops to dozens of destinations. My choice might be different if I had to use Manchester, New Hampshire.

It's like the old Delta joke "To get to Heaven, one has to change in Atlanta." Substitute Baltimore, Chicago, etc. for the Southwest case.

rgbrock1
16th Jan 2015, 18:00
seacue wrote:

My choice might be different if I had to use Manchester, New Hampshire.

Or, God forbid, Hartford CT. BDL. Where no flight is direct to anywhere. (And no international flights dare to trod.)

charliegolf
16th Jan 2015, 18:05
For a couple of hours I can put up with no food and less than comfortable seats. No worse than than the back of a small car.

Chox, me too, but last week I flew short haul with Monarch. I don't know what the seat pitch was, but passengers in Pumas had a better deal comfort wise! Worst for comfort I have ever flown. Much worse than my car.

CG

Edit: It crossed my mind that in an emergency, we'd be stuffed due to the cram.

charliegolf
16th Jan 2015, 18:11
They should thank us, touch the peak of their flat caps and grovel when we get on board

Act like a Loadie you mean.:E

CG

wings folded
16th Jan 2015, 18:47
(And no international flights dare to trod.)

Not so, rgbrock1. I once spent a tedious three hour wait at Bradley on a KLM 747 because the girlies at JFK couldn't clear 4 feet of snow off the runway, and we had diverted there to wait.

While waiting, it is true to say, we had visits from almost every airport worker all of whom seemed to relish the novelty.

I think that the only one who did not pop up to the cockpit was the lady who restocks the soft drink machine, but I understand that she has a problem with stairs.

rgbrock1
16th Jan 2015, 19:45
wings:

So BDL to JFK was about as international as it gets at BDL. There are no SCHEDULED international flights from BDL. Unless, of course, one considers Toronto, Canada an international flight as that's the only scheduled direct flight out of BDL which arrives at a non-US destination.

Andu
16th Jan 2015, 21:49
Blame Ronald Reagan.Wasn't it Jimmy Carter?

Flying Lawyer
16th Jan 2015, 22:47
Yes. Jimmy Carter. (In America)

There were various initiatives during the Nixon and Ford administrations and the Airline Deregulation Act was eventually signed by Jimmy Carter in 1978.
I can't remember who introduced the bill but Senator Ted Kennedy certainly played a significant role in the campaign that eventually resulted in deregulation.

Interesting article here: Bloomberg Businessweek, Jan 2011 (http://www.businessweek.com/stories/2011-01-20/airline-deregulation-revisitedbusinessweek-business-news-stock-market-and-financial-advice)

Airline revenue per passenger mile has declined from an inflation-adjusted 33.3 cents in 1974, to 13 cents in the first half of 2010.

In 1974 the cheapest round-trip New York-Los Angeles flight (in inflation-adjusted dollars) that regulators would allow: $1,442. Today one can fly that same route for $268. That is why the number of travelers has gone way up.

So we sit in crowded planes, munch potato chips, flare up when the loudspeaker announces yet another flight delay. But how many now will vote to go back to the "good old days" of paying high, regulated prices for better service?

Seldomfitforpurpose
16th Jan 2015, 23:06
If flying short haul then any of the LoCo's works perfectly fine for us, never the most pleasurable experience but if you grin and bear it then it's tolerable and because it's cheap it's cost effective.

Long haul is another matter and we always choose BA or Virgin, in that order, as they offer Video on Demand, free booze and fairly reasonable food. A few movies, some beers and red wine and the long haul is actually enjoyable.

Contrast that with a US carrier I inadvertantly booked for a flight back from the states where apart from water and your dinner everything needed paying for or a neck like a giraffe to see the match box size TV screen.

When I book I always always check that there is no code sharing rubbish going on :ok:

Private jet
16th Jan 2015, 23:23
The more 's , $'s , dirham's , whatever, will always buy what the customer wants. Pay more, get more, that's the way the world works. Don't be a hypocrite by saying if you were a multi millionaire or billionaire you'd think any differently.......:ugh:

galaxy flyer
16th Jan 2015, 23:49
Just to clarify history in the US; Jimmah Carter sought and signed the Airline Deregulation Act. The liberal icon, drunk and killer of Mary Jo Kopechne also, was the sponsoring Senator. Many who worked for Teddy, Phil Bakes for one, would later become the ruthless implementers of Degulation at Frank Lorenzo's trio of disasters.

GF

racedo
17th Jan 2015, 00:07
Love the lets get back to the old days fliers................

In 1980-84 there were roughly 25 million individual flights per year in 2014 it was 118 million for UK registered carriers

In US in same period it went from 295 million to 743 million.

In Ireland it went from 1.8 Million to 95 million.

Air transport, passengers carried | Data | Table (http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/IS.AIR.PSGR?page=6)

Now of course going back to old days would mean that pretty much 90% of airline posters on PPRuNe would not be needed.

Metro man
17th Jan 2015, 00:16
Up to three hours a low cost is fine, bring something to eat and an iPad.

Up to eight hours of daytime flying, economy on a good full service airline is OK.

More than eight hours, especially if night time is involved, warrants business class. It needen't been top notch like Singapore Airlines or Cathay as long as there is extra space to stretch out in a comfortable recliner.

Passenger demographics would play a part in deciding whether to pay extra for business class or full service on other occasions, i.e. do I want to be crammed in for an extended period with these kind of people ?

An hour with council estate inhabitants on their way to Benidorm would be too much. The behaviour of migrant workers from the Indian sub continent and mainland Chinese is not something I would wish to experience either. Drunken louts returning from a weekend stag do in Eastern Europe would have me booking BA over Ryanair on a Sunday evening.

Unfortunately, whilst people want more comfortable flights, they will usually pick the cheapest and complain rather than pay a bit more.

racedo
17th Jan 2015, 00:20
An hour with council estate inhabitants on their way to Benidorm would be too much. The behaviour of migrant workers from the Indian sub continent and mainland Chinese is not something I would wish to experience either. Drunken louts returning from a weekend stag do in Eastern Europe would have me booking BA over Ryanair on a Sunday evening.

Having travelled more than my fair share of flights from Eastern European cities on Sunday nights I generally find that the flights outside of holiday season are filled with people coming back to UK to their jobs rather that Stag do's.

Booking BA over a LCC is no guarantee of behaviour of passengers.

Private jet
17th Jan 2015, 00:21
Now of course going back to old days would mean that pretty much 90% of airline posters on PPRuNe would not be needed.

Bring it on.

racedo
17th Jan 2015, 00:24
Bring it on.

Ok saying that until you realise you are one of the 90% that airline industry doesn't need.

mad_jock
17th Jan 2015, 00:25
its the pax pure and simple.

They will always go for the cheapest option pure and simple.

You can try and up your product and do nice things but if there is any completion on the route they will just use the other supplier even if its penny's/cents of difference.

cattletruck
17th Jan 2015, 12:22
Tis also the electronic system which is designed to only search for the lowest price and no other details other than the departure dates.

That's because the people that run/design these systems often work on a flat commission fee so it becomes quantity over quality. Joe average who doesn't fly that often doesn't know any better, in fact it has the opposite affect in that it is lowering their expectations.

I've found you can get quite reasonably priced airfares with SQ and EK if you book early. But even going for a higher tier doesn't always produce the expected benefits. Had these 3 freakingly annoying snot nosed yoof in EK business a few years ago :yuk::yuk::yuk:

david1300
18th Jan 2015, 10:06
In my experience there are far more satisfied customers in cattle class than unsatisfied. Of course the few noisy, complaining wingers get airtime and media coverage - bad news sells more than good news does :} They probably complain about lots of other stuff in their lives too :{

I happily fly cheapest acceptable airline available, which means there are some I wont fly on, and there are some that I know any in-flight entertainment must by BYO. So what if I have to go 8, or even 12 hours with ordinary food. I've also learned how to be reasonably comfortable in the limited space.

The bottom line for me is that I would rather fly long-haul 2 or 3 times a year than any more expensive class less often.

Capetonian
18th Jan 2015, 10:21
Apart from the airport experience, which is unavoidable, the worst part of flying MiserY class is trying to eat the horrid meals out of the little foil bakkies with a plastic forking knife, and getting most of it down your shirt. So now when flying longhaul, which for me is usually between Europe and CPT, I get to the airport early, enjoy a decent meal there, and then don't need to eat on board. I don't eat breakfast on board, I have it at the arrival airport. Even the most expensive dinner and breakfast costs far less than an upgrade and I reckon it's money better spent.

Once I'm on board, I curl up into my seat next to the window, which means I can lean against the side panel, and I'm reasonably content.

I also find the dayflights southbound into ZA which a couple of carriers offer to be vastly preferable to the overnight misery. I wish there were more, and in both directions.

RJM
18th Jan 2015, 14:07
The designers of the Bristol Brabazon worked on a space allowance of 6 - 8 cubic metres per passenger. Of course, that aircraft had other problems.

ExXB
18th Jan 2015, 14:22
trying to eat the horrid meals out of the little foil bakkies with a plastic forking knife, and getting most of it down your shirt.

Horrid meals out of a foil bakes ... LUXURY! When I was young they forced you to eat out on the wing with those horrid non-bypass turbofans roaring in your ears and errand bird feathers contaminating your tiny foil bullies ...

foresight
18th Jan 2015, 15:59
I have just paid an extra 420 for 'premium economy' on a long haul return flight. I am very tall with very big feet. I cannot squeeze myself into an economy seat for 11 hours without risk to my health. I used to when I was younger but I don't bend like I used to. Not to mention the possible unpleasantness if the person in front gets stroppy about their right to recline their seat.
Looking at the price breakdown, if you remove the exorbitant UK departure tax, that 420 represents more than the basic economy fare. Oh sure, they throw in one or two 'luxuries' like an eye mask and toothpaste, but the food and the service is the same.
Before someone suggests an emergency exit seat, they are all taken.

funfly
18th Jan 2015, 17:28
I won a 'free' flight for two to Portugal as part of a Classic Radio charity auction a couple of years ago.
I won't say who the carrier was but luggage, airport taxes fuel surcharge food etc, wasn't included, so in all I forked out around an additional 460 for the flight! The carrier's contribution came to just the seat so most likely cost him nothing.
(Mind you the other part of the deal. a week in a luxury flat in a golf resort with golf etc, was fantastic.)

Interested Passenger
18th Jan 2015, 17:56
I usually fly with a popular Irish airline, on a 738.

lets say my flight cost 300

Being a full size bloke, I find the seats a bit tight for width, and leg room of course is an issue.

with 3 + 3 seating, there isn't much that can be done to give me a few more inches, unless they ditch one seat, making it a 3 + 2 (maybe making two fat blokes sit together, to balance the three thin people the other side.


If ticket price went to 360 then the flight would generate same income.

I know it varies depending on the seat, but seat pitch is 'about' 31"

I'd like another 3" for my knees, so say 10% more. which must mean 10% less rows, and a increase in ticket price by 36

So to upgrade a 737-Cattle to 737-Horse would cost me 400 instead of 300.
I guess it depends who's paying.


(a horsebox being so much nicer than a cattle truck)

I've just looks and apparently BA have 6x21" wide seats in club class - with no bulge on the plane, compared to the 17" everyone else has. TARDIS technology?

flying lid
18th Jan 2015, 18:09
Few months ago self & family had a holiday in sunny Thailand. Flew Emirates Manchester (UK) - Dubai - Bangkok, Outbound 777 & 380, home 2 x 380.

All flights on time, comfortable seats, decent food & service, fantastic IFE on 380 - really enjoyed these flights - cattle class - no way - yes though we were in economy.

Sat in bulkhead seats (legroom) Dubai -Manchester next to a very nice and chatty Aussie couple with 4 month old twins, one in basinet in front of me. Now having grown up twins myself I fully understood his needs, and helped as far as I could, as did the flight attendants, and my wife. The twins were as good as gold, great little flyers. A happy flight.

My point is this, flying at over 500mph in a modern state of the art airliner, wined, dined, entertained, safe, warm and comfortable, (whatever class) we have no right to complain - I always think about my parents / grandparents who when they were young a journey to a distant land meant days / weeks / months on board a ship, and was way out of reach of most.

Oh the cost. 580 return. That's 145 per 3000 mile or so sector. Bargain.

Manchester to London on the train is nearly 300 walk on fare this for a 180 or so mile journey. Rip off.

The good old days of flying, for me, are right now.

Lid

oldchina
18th Jan 2015, 20:46
"BA have 6x21" wide seats in club class - with no bulge on the plane, compared to the 17" everyone else has. TARDIS technology?"

I'm not sure about the exact dimensions but if you fly Irish you are condemned to a 737 and the narrowest seats on the market. The A320 gives everyone a bit more space.

OFSO
18th Jan 2015, 21:17
I curl up into my seat next to the window

I believe you have a photograph of the sort of passenger you prefer to occupy the next seat, n'est-ce pas ? Perhaps you could refresh our memories with it and enliven this thread.......

Capetonian
19th Jan 2015, 09:30
http://i.imgur.com/Emuemvr.jpg

Ah, you mean this delectable young lass. Being the gentleman I am, I gave her my window seat,and I am ashamed to say I didn't stand up as we switched seats, I let her climb over me ............ as one does.

ukc_mike
19th Jan 2015, 12:09
its the pax pure and simple.

They will always go for the cheapest option pure and simple.

No, it's our employer's travel departments.

One company told me it was a privilege to be allowed to fly for the company. They wouldn't even make seat reservations because it didn't matter where you sat (as long as it was cheap).

Another employer told me I wasn't allowed to use upgrade vouchers from AMEX. You work for ******, so you must fly economy.

Capetonian
19th Jan 2015, 12:32
Agree about employer's travel departments, I could write a book about this one.

Just one example : They expected me to travel to SYD (from the UK) on standby in Y class, and go to a meeting the day I arrived. When I complained that this was against the company's travel policy (J class on >5 hours) I was told that the airline was providing the ticket and I was subject to their travel conditions and not our own. I argued, and won, this. Then, when I got back to London, I needed another EU sector so I bought a ticket on EZY for 40 and was told I should have used BA ......... for which the same sector would have cost 300. Travel policy was to save money, but EZY was 'out of policy'.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
19th Jan 2015, 12:33
The Deadly Sins

......
8. Policy

Blacksheep
19th Jan 2015, 13:57
Oh, I remember the good old days. Five abreast on the VC10 with 36 inch seat pitch. Hot meals served on a proper food tray with metal implements, by charming cabin crew. Baggage allowance of 66 pounds. Full board with a hot buffet at every transit stop - and the whole trip was absolutely for free!

Fly Royal Air Force Air Support Command (http://www.vc10.net/History/RAFVC10s.html)! :ok:


[Its not so grand these days, in a C17, where Ryanair might look quite an attractive option. :suspect: ]

Krystal n chips
19th Jan 2015, 18:35
" Ah, you mean this delectable young lass. Being the gentleman I am, I gave her my window seat,and I am ashamed to say I didn't stand up as we switched seats, I let her climb over me ............ as one does

And of course, being a gentleman, you duly took a photograph of a complete stranger to broadcast across the internet thereafter.....

That said, and not for the first time, it would appear the young lady was so enraptured with you, she preferred to use her mobile rather than engage in conversation.....

As for cattle class, nothing compares to a certain, now defunct, 767 operator flogging back and to Florida....2-4-2 config, IFE screen something like those pull down screens from school ( and the RAF for that matter ) and the seats?......Albert Airlines were First Class in comparison. Thankfully, I never had to fly in this luxuriant tube.

Rwy in Sight
19th Jan 2015, 20:29
Capetonian,

I am very concerned about your statement: " I didn't stand up ". I hope it is nothing serious... I am equally worried about the young lass using a mobile on board.

Rwy in Sight

John Hill
19th Jan 2015, 21:18
The worst flight ever, WLG to PRG with the company paying and making the arrangements. It was a rush job and it was not until near checkin that the company courier handed me the tickets which I found to be cattle class!

WLG to AKL, AKL to LAX, LAX to somewhere in fly over country, diverted by weather, aircraft problems at somewhere else to reach JFK hours late, arrived in FRA hours before next flight to PRG.

I arrived in PRG at about 15:00 local time, 46 hours after boarding at WLG with no stop overs. The greeting was "Ah Honza, you have arrived, come with us to the pub!" and so I did and we stayed there all hours.

I refused to return without the company booking FRA, SIN with stop over, AKL business class or better. The LH check in remarked I was going a long way and upgraded me to the front cabin for the two long haul legs.

The travel clerk was instructed that from then on I would never board cattle class on a company ticket.

AnAussieNut
25th Jan 2015, 08:45
I hope this isn't too off topic for the thread, I doubt these two pax were miserable.

Delta flight delay causes plane to take off with only two passengers..

After hours of delays, one New York-bound passenger thought that he was getting the private plane treatment when he boarded his flight and realized he was the only passenger.
The passenger, a Brooklyn-based man named Chris O'Leary, started tweeting about his amazement before the plane took off, saying how he got a personalized safety briefing and a one-on-one run down from the captain about the flight.
"It was definitely the most memorable flight I've been on in recent memory if only for the sheer lack of passengers to become bothersome," O'Leary told ABC News. "There were no screaming babies, no one listening to loud lyrics or reclining their seats or taking their shoes."
Although it seemed like he was getting to fly home solo, the plane ended up going back to the gate one last time to pick up a second passenger.
.
Delta Flight Delay Causes Plane to Take Off With Just 2 Passengers - ABC News (http://abcnews.go.com/US/delta-flight-delays-plane-off-passengers/story?id=28178103)

Cheers
Paul

BlankBox
13th Sep 2017, 16:10
Flying Coach Is So Cramped It Could Be a Death Trap (http://www.thedailybeast.com/flying-coach-is-so-cramped-it-could-be-a-death-trap)

...more kindling for the fire..:E

lomapaseo
13th Sep 2017, 17:13
...more kindling for the fire..

only is you want to believe it's factual rather than an opinion piece extrapolated on beliefs

Gertrude the Wombat
13th Sep 2017, 18:06
Delta flight delay causes plane to take off with only two passengers..
I was once on a normal on time scheduled BA 737 from Newcastle to Heathrow. The passengers were me and three schoolgirls.

Sallyann1234
13th Sep 2017, 18:46
Beat you!
I was once the only pax on the last Air France flight of the day from Paris to Heathrow. Had the champagne bottle all to myself. :ok:

Rossian
13th Sep 2017, 19:18
.....I was the sole passeger on an Air Inter Orly to Nimes-Garons. FA gave me the individual brief and mentioned the captain's name. I asked her to ask him if he had been born in Madagascar knowing that would tweak an interest.
I was invited to the FD where it became apparent that he was the son of a chap I had flown with in that country.. Jumpseat all the way and food and drink served too. (it was a loooong time ago).

The Ancient Mariner

VP959
13th Sep 2017, 19:29
Fiddling the escape times has been done for years, hasn't it? I seem to remember watching films of the certification escape time tests, and all the participants were college students, selected for being reasonably fit and able. IIRC, they were all wearing sports kit and trainers, too, just to be sure that they could exit as quickly as possible. Realistic it was not, as far as tests go.

One of the reasons I know longer fly anywhere is because it's so damned cramped, but the main one is that flying has just got to be so much hassle, mainly at the airports at either end. Once upon a time it used to be a really enjoyable experience, but not now, and especially not if flying in economy.

Last time I flew anywhere (to Dublin, so not far), it was bloody awful. The conditions for the passengers were only slightly better than those for the FAs. Frankly I don't know how FAs put up with the job; there have to be better ways of earning a living, without having to deal with the sort of crap they seem to have to cope with every day.

Hussar 54
13th Sep 2017, 20:43
When I was young, my parents would take me to the circus to see that Fat Lady and the Man With a Hundred Tatoos in the Freak Show.

Nowadays, you get the same people on more or less any LCC flight to the mediterranean resorts.

Hotel Tango
13th Sep 2017, 20:45
I understand that people want to fly cheap. As long as we (the consumer) still have a choice (in terms of type of service) that's fine. My worry is that the choice option (on short/medium haul) is gradually diminishing. It's coming down to cheap and dirty or cheap and dirty no matter who you fly with. As I've mentioned before in these forums, I'm willing to pay extra (but within reason of course) for a better economy experience on medium haul. Like others here, I only fly long haul in Business and I'm a pensioner! The day I can no longer afford it I will quit long haul.

Jet II
14th Sep 2017, 01:44
I'm willing to pay extra (but within reason of course) for a better economy experience on medium haul.

Trouble is you are in the minority - when the average SLF books a ticket their first stop is a comparison website to find out what the cheapest flight is.

Their second stop is a forum to complain that they didn't get a luxury service for their cheap ticket. :rolleyes:

Piper.Classique
14th Sep 2017, 04:27
So now let's compare what it costs to fly Paris Bangkok and train for the same journey. So far, by train, I have bought tickets as far as Hanoi. At a cost of 80 euros Paris Berlin, then Berlin Kiev Moscow 300, Moscow Beijing 600, Beijing Hanoi 200. There will be more to pay for Hanoi to Bangkok routing around the coast of Vietnam, and a trip by bus or boat, depending on the weather and water levels, through Cambodia. Probably another 200. That's travelling second class, sleepers on the overnight trains. Hotels in Berlin, Warsaw, Moscow, Beijing, Hanoi, Phnom Penh, and somewhere in Cambodia. Just transit hotels, not counting stopovers. 7 nights hotels at a minimum.
Booking ahead for cheaper fares in Europe and using all available discounts. Don't get me started on the cost of the Visas. Total journey time not counting stopovers three weeks. So, just the train fares, which I have converted to EUR and rounded off, 1380 euros. About 600 for the Visas, using an agency as that's cheaper than repeated visits to embassies. I buy my own food for three weeks.

I'm flying back. 260 euros cattle class, one checked bag, one change in Oslo. No visas needed. I buy my own food for one day.

Once, the bicycle and the train opened up the world for the working class. Now it's low cost long haul.
If you don't like that, too bad. I'm taking the cheapest option home, because that's what I can afford after a two month holiday. Yes, it will be cramped. It's a daytime flight and I have something to read. You get just exactly what you pay for and I'm glad to have the choice.

VP959
14th Sep 2017, 08:33
The problem is that people flying short haul to many destinations don't have a choice other than to fly in bloody awful conditions. Everyone is competing on price, so, for example, I cannot pay a bit extra to get a bearable seat on a flight to Dublin from Southampton - it's get treated like shit or not fly at all.

The alternative is to drive for many hours to get a ferry, which is what I have done the last couple of times, as although it costs more and takes a lot longer, it's altogether a more bearable experience.

bnt
14th Sep 2017, 09:08
I'm kind-of ambivalent about this question. I'm just shy of 6' tall and not a rake, yet I do OK in "cattle class". The other passengers are the main factor in determining whether or not I hate the flight. The worst times I've had are on overnight flights where I've tried to sleep, and my solution is to just not bother: music and an e-book on the phone, I'm happy. Food? It's calories, it won't kill me.

BA has "Premium Economy" which is a little better but costs a lot more- a quick check now has it at over 40% more. (I've done it before - it wasn't that great, the seat actually hurt me.) Other airlines are the same. Aer Lingus wants to charge me up to €100 more just to choose my own seat position - the same kind of seat, just in a different part of the plane.

So - why is everyone blaming the passengers? I would pay a bit more for service that was a bit better, but airlines don't offer that.

VP959
14th Sep 2017, 09:14
I would pay a bit more for service that was a bit better, but airlines don't offer that.

Me too. I'd gladly pay the extra I have to pay to drive a long way and use the ferry across to Dn Laoghaire to be able to get a comfortable seat in an aircraft flying from Southampton (or Bournemouth) to Dublin (at a guess, that's maybe double the current air fare).

Sadly, none of the operators offer anything approaching a comfortable seat, and combined with the hassle at the airports I just find it more comfortable to drive and get the ferry.

Krystal n chips
14th Sep 2017, 09:25
The problem is that people flying short haul to many destinations don't have a choice other than to fly in bloody awful conditions. Everyone is competing on price, so, for example, I cannot pay a bit extra to get a bearable seat on a flight to Dublin from Southampton - it's get treated like shit or not fly at all.

The alternative is to drive for many hours to get a ferry, which is what I have done the last couple of times, as although it costs more and takes a lot longer, it's altogether a more bearable experience.

Hmmm ?....lets see....1.15mins SOU -DUB is hardly unendurable.

However, as the car is seemingly not needed, why take the car as an alternative when there is something called the Rail / Sail deal....from any station in the UK to any station in the RoI.....takes a bit longer, but, the cost of 78 rtn inc ferry seems to be a pretty good deal. But the lament sounds good on JB.

Never had the pleasure of being on an empty scheduled flight, and probably never will. The train / ferry to Europe is a much better option for short haul as is the train within the UK.

RAT 5
14th Sep 2017, 09:34
The conundrum is even more highlighted when it is the whole family. A group of 4 with 2 kids for 3 hours in an airport as the foreplay; no thanks: + 4 tickets at summer rates. 1 hour drive to the airport, 1 hour from longterm carpark to terminal, 3 hours in advance and 2 of them in various queues, 1.5hr cramped flight to the Alps(e.g.) 1 hour to collect baggage(solitary 20kg suitcase each) scrum for the hire car and pay a fortune to include my wife as an extra driver: finally escape the hell that is air travel and hit the open road with a fixed return date to repeat the whole story saga on what is euphemistically called an energy recovering holiday.
OR. Pack all your stuff in your car, relaxed and in our own time, drift off en-route (ferry or to depending on where you live), wander left & right as the whim takes you, stop in mid-lux hotel-restaurant en-route, perhaps visit important site en-route and arrive at accommodation in excited mode with more than solitary suitcase having enjoyed the sights and sounds of the journey. Return via another route being flexible with timing and no panic rush to catch the flight. All with 4 pax for the price of one.
Ah. no brainer. OK, it doesn't quite work for south of Spain/Portugal, central Italy, Greece etc., but then again, why not choose a holiday that will achieve what you want/need, i.e. a battery charge in a nice place?

VP959
14th Sep 2017, 09:53
A few times we've been down to stay at a friends place near Carcassonne by train and then hire car. It's been a great journey every time, in the main. The worst bits are Eurostar and getting across Paris from Gare du Nord to Gare de Lyon. The journey on the TGV down through France is great, comfortable, relaxing, cheap and fast. Picking up a hire car at Montpelier is quick and easy, too, and lot less hassle than at many airports.

Hotel Tango
14th Sep 2017, 10:07
Of course all above examples relate to vacation travel, where arguably you may have the time. There are many people, like me, who travel short haul for personal reasons (i.e. not business) on 3 and 4 day trips. Door to door it's basically 3.5 hrs versus 12 hrs each way by road (and the M25)! To be honest, I am lucky in as much as I travel with a fairly good airline (apart from their time keeping of late) and on relatively off-peak flights. I'm just thankful that I have the choice of using this particular airline. and not be subjected to some of the less favourable carriers.

sitigeltfel
14th Sep 2017, 18:01
The worst bits are Eurostar and getting across Paris from Gare du Nord to Gare de Lyon.


:confused::confused: It is less than 10mins on the Metro, no changes. You can walk it in 25mins if you have no luggage and want to stretch your legs!

Krystal n chips
14th Sep 2017, 18:14
:confused::confused: It is less than 10mins on the Metro, no changes. You can walk it in 25mins if you have no luggage and want to stretch your legs!

Siti ! at times, thou art indeed priceless !......albeit unintentionally I know, but, thou hast cast doubts on the, ahem, factuality of one of JB's foremost experts. Although this is not the first time the eloquent expertise has been, well, not entirely correct.

There's also a slight CV maths anomaly as well, quite recently in fact, but hey, let us not be churlish in respect of our travel correspondent.

But, the real beauty is......both of you are so vain, I'm on your "Ignore" lists ! so neither will get to read these words of fulsome praise .

VP959
14th Sep 2017, 18:53
:confused::confused: It is less than 10mins on the Metro, no changes. You can walk it in 25mins if you have no luggage and want to stretch your legs!

I agree, but you have to get a book of tickets, when you only need to use a couple of them (or did last time we went down there a few years ago), and it's not that easy to get on and off the metro with big suitcases, especially when it's crowded, as it often seems to be.

In reality, the Eurostar is more hassle than any other part of the trip, in my view. There seems to be a large contrast between the way that Eurostar is run and the way that the TGV is run, with the latter being very good indeed, IMHO.

NRU74
14th Sep 2017, 19:24
I'm going outbound to the S of France from LIverpool in October and it's 19-24p
I can manage c 2 hours with a mewling brat in the next seat and a toddler behind kicking my seat for most of the journey because it's less than 20 quid.
If I want anything better I 'm going to have to put my hand in my pocket and pay.
I'm satisfied with LoCos and I won't moan !
It'll cost me three or four times that to park.

rogerg
14th Sep 2017, 19:25
I agree, but you have to get a book of tickets, when you only need to use a couple of them
Last couple of times I did it I used a cab. Not to expensive, convenient, especially if more than one.

ZFT
15th Sep 2017, 01:48
Hmmm ?....lets see....1.15mins SOU -DUB is hardly unendurable.

However, as the car is seemingly not needed, why take the car as an alternative when there is something called the Rail / Sail deal....from any station in the UK to any station in the RoI.....takes a bit longer, but, the cost of 78 rtn inc ferry seems to be a pretty good deal. But the lament sounds good on JB.

Never had the pleasure of being on an empty scheduled flight, and probably never will. The train / ferry to Europe is a much better option for short haul as is the train within the UK.

Having just spent the past week utilising trains in the UK, the vast majority were no better than cattle class flights except with flights, I at least had a seat!