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In Flight Entertainment

Old 30th Aug 2007, 15:10
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In Flight Entertainment

Just flown my 5th consecutive transatlantic sector in a BA Triple 7 with faulty IFE, and I wasn't alone.

As a passenger and forgetting the fact that i'm in the business anyway, I couldn't give a flying rats ar5e if the plane has low hyd system pressure, or a faulty oil px gauge, all I care about is having a few drinks, a bit of dinner and watching a movie.. is it so much to ask for the ridiculous fares business travellers pay anyway?? No is the short answer.

And before anyone else suggests it.. Virgin Atlantic here I come!!
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 15:14
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".... and I wasn't alone"

Good to know that BA are operating flights with more than one passenger, oppo!

Jack
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 15:23
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Flew with BA to/from HKG three times this year so far. Last two returns were on a/c with the new IFE....which wasn't working as advertised. Indeed on one flight it wasn't working at all.

CSD full of apologies and told me crew were fed up with it.

Will it ever work, or is it one of these technical marvel concepts which work on paper but fall apart when confronted with 400 or so pax?
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 15:27
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Exactly, I wasn't about to take it out on the CSD after all its hardly her fault, but all the same, I think the airline should think a little more about pax comfort.. no pax no profit.. that simple, therefore our comfort, and primarily the IFE, by default is the most important system on the aircraft.
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 17:11
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Having worked in IT for 27 years, I concluded some years ago that the new IFE systems have become way too complicated for the environment in which they operate.

They are sold by enthusiastic salesmen to the enthusiastic marketing people of the carrier. Each marketing team think that they will steal a lead on the competition by having more stuff, more easily available and more sexy. When nothing works, it isn't very sexy.

I can see the attraction (to the marketing kiddies) of having 'something for everyone' with games and all the rest but the technology is just not yet ready to deliver with 99% reliability. Another five years maybe. So, I still take my own music and reading material with me.
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 18:20
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Pan Pan, are you perhaps suggesting you want value for money?
A drink, a meal. a movie or two. consistantly, every time you travel?
Steady my boy...you're in dangerous territory here.
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 20:09
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I usually pack a handheld games console with a few movies on UMD, just in case the IFE falls over. Won't mention the manufacturer in case I'm accused of plugging, but it rhymes with crony. One to consider?
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Old 30th Aug 2007, 22:21
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BA's IFE

As cabin crew I would like to say that we honestly have every sympathy for passengers whose IFE doesn't work on a longhaul flight.... the crew are sick to the back teeth of this ridiculous new system breaking down mid-flight. I would have gone to another carrier too, if it had happened to me as a passenger. PARTICULARLY as a premium passenger. It is not good enough and the crew completely agree with you. We are sick of apologising, apologising, apologising for a cheap product which clearly just isn't good enough. I think it is very understanding of you to say you realise it is not the CSD's fault - it's not, but we are the people there representing the company on the day. This is a company making a healthy profit now, and it's not good enough that they are scrimping on important aspects like this. I am embarrassed to be their employee now. I used to be proud.
PS: please please complain - they don't believe the crew when we tell them how p*ssed off the passengers really are...
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Old 31st Aug 2007, 09:09
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MuttleyJ

I am sure none of us would ever blame the cabin crew as you must be as frustrated as we are.
The first time it happened I wrote to Virgin and they sent back a standard letter basically saying "...we were very sorry to hear our service standard slipped etc Here is 10000 miles..."
The fourth time, this on a twelve hour flight to Narita, I wrote starting my note saying "I do not want air miles, I really just want you to understand how annoying it is for everyone concerned and what are you going to do for the long term etc..."
The response? "..we were very sorry to hear our service standard has slipped..here is 10,000 miles..."
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Old 31st Aug 2007, 10:52
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Your icon sums it up really doesn't it

It's sad that they're not listening to the people who keep the airline going
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Old 31st Aug 2007, 15:01
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I recently came back and went out with one of the Uk biggest tour operators on a 4.5 hours sector, The inflight entertainment was not working on either outbound or return.

I was not that bothered as I find reading or other engaging in conversation with those around me much more stimulating and to be honest, the movies are usually always ones I have seen on the big screen anyway. The IFS has more important things to do and so do their cabin crew than listen to winging pax who make their lives miseries sometimes anyway, and to be honest, most pax I travelled with did not complain and entertained themselves without watching a movie. in other ways.

TnT
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Old 31st Aug 2007, 15:47
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tall and tasty, with all due respect I think you're comparing apples with pears. A 4.5 hour sector on a charter is something different to a 9-12 hour long haul flight in a premium cabin which one has paid a heck of a lot of dosh for.

For health reasons I always fly long haul in Business Class which I pay for out of my own pocket. I enjoy reading too. In fact I don't need or use all the IFE game features on offer with some carriers. However, the very least I'd expect on a 9 to 12 hour flight is to listen to some music or be able to watch a movie or two. By the way, when flying on scheduled intercontinental flights you get a choice of more recent movies.

If top carriers such as BA and VS have as many problems with their IFE equipment as it appears they have, that's simply not good enough.
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Old 31st Aug 2007, 16:49
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TnT - Its a matter of personal taste I guess, but personally I find the thought of someone I don't know wanting to make meaningless conversation with me acutely irritating. Reading books is fine, but on a long haul trip, I'd prefer to just sit back, relax and be entertained in keeping with the service offered, and for which I have paid handsomely.

As for other methods of entertainment, I'm sure I have no idea what you are talking about

As for thinking that crews have better things to do than listen to "Whingeing pax", I have yet to meet a member of cabin crew who ever displayed such arrogance, the cabin crew are there to serve the passenger and look after their comfort, a job for which the BA staff at least, carry out very well, which is why I was reluctant to make a nuisance of myself with the CSD, as previously stated, she re-booted the system several times, this was the limit of her expertise.. she did her best with something that was not her personal fault.

You must fly with some lousy airlines, populated by the most appalling individuals, you have my sympathy.

MuttleyJ Thanks for your advice, I have indeed complained to the airline, and I can report that my call was dealt with swiftly, with a very kind and friendly lady, who spoke perfect English, sympathised with my point, and generally made me feel like it was worth the call..

My original gripe still stands, but all the same, the treatment from the real people at the lower levels of BA has been excellent.
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Old 1st Sep 2007, 01:12
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Pan Pan Splash: Agree with you completely, the last thing I want on a long haul flight is a conversation with a stranger. I too just want to sit back enjoy some excellent wines and some movies (preferably on demand).
Tall and Tasty: A 4.5 hour flight is totally different to a 12 or 14 hour flight. (though I'm sure you are aware of this)

QF are facing the same difficulties with their IFE. The crew are fed up with having to continually apologise for the breakdown of the IFE service.
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Old 1st Sep 2007, 04:12
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First generation IFE (audio channels) worked ok. When we got to video the problems began. At one time we had (rhymes with Nitsobishi) techs almost permanently crawling over our aircraft trying to get things sorted.

I can live with u/s IFE. Lavs u/s is outrageous.

Floor track lighting was also a problem for the longest time.
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Old 1st Sep 2007, 09:24
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I'm facing a flight from Sydney to Lax at christmas with Qantas and have been reading about regular problems with their IFE...grrrr
Maybe the pop up monitor offered to my sister lap to sit in her lap as she flew Air Canada from Sydney to Lax, in business class at that , a few weeks ago might be preferable.
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Old 1st Sep 2007, 09:34
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Take your own laptop, DVDs, MP3s etc… and sit back and enjoy the G & Ts.

Works for me.

I fly TG long haul very frequently. My biggest gripe with TG is the IFE selections - it's seriously bad. However they do have power outlets and a quick visit to the local market sets me up with enough DVDs to keep me content for 2 X 11 hour trips.
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Old 1st Sep 2007, 15:15
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Get rid of IFE I say and let me have more room under the seat in front for my feet. Fat chance of that happening! However if it is there then yes it should work. Complain a lot and free vouchers etc will turn up, or a better seat where one does work, or frequent flyer points or even duty free booze on one occasion I recall. The airlines have created a rod for their own backs on this one. This is something they do have control over and passengers should rightly say they are not getting what was advertised. I can see eventually someone will report an airline to trading standards departments on this one.
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Old 2nd Sep 2007, 22:48
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Please...

Please do not talk to me.

Flying is the only time of peace that I can get - I just want to read my book/paper/magazine.

Yes, a polite excuse me whilst I get past you to go to the loo etc is fine, or a mutual smile at the antics of another SLF being a pillox is fine, but i really really really don't want to hear about your baby grandchild, your daughter's college grades, your funny tummy when you fly etc. You can talk to me and hold my hand if you are nervous of take off or landing but please shut up whilst in the air.

If i want to see a film, personally I would much rather go to the cinema or rent a dvd and watch it in the peace of my own home rather than a tiddly little screen 7 rows away that constantly have other pax standing up and blocking it. The exceptions to this rule is of course when you have your own designated screen (flip up screen, screen in the seat back in front of you, your own laptop, etc) and you can choose your entertainment of choice.

I've sorted out my entertainment for the long flight - why can't you do the same?

If you are not travelling alone and wish to chat to your companion, please try to understand that the whole airplane is most likely not really that interested in your conversation and keep your voice at a reasonable level?! Especially if you have a particularly nasal or high pitched voice/accent...

Am I a grumpy pax? not at all, just a peaceful one! I just like the chance to relax and be waited on hand and foot by pleasant people!
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Old 3rd Sep 2007, 08:36
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Radar66

Aren't you so glad that you have never flown "Air Butlins"..




Am going transatlantic again next week.. and yes I could carry my laptop / dvd etc but... why should I have to? Isn't that sending out the message that I don't care if the service is sub standard whilst I am having my genitals ripped out through my wallet for the mere pleasure of being on the plane in the first place? I prefer to walk on a plane in jeans and a t shirt, mp3 in pocket, book in hand and all else in the hold out of my way
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