Budget Travel - Venting: Spirit Airlines crew didn't make it to LGA this AM, so flight delayed
Feb 7, 09, 7:37 am
Maybe this is what I get for flying a discount carrier.
After Spirit Airlines started boarding the 6:40am flight from LGA-FLL this morning, they made passengers disembark; apparently, a flight attendant didn't show up for work, and Spirit needed to find a replacement.
When would the replacement arrive? Nobody knew.
I've experienced all kinds of delays, but this one blew my mind. Am I being naive, or is this a particularly horrible example of airline sloppiness?
Since I'm just venting - I bagged the flight and came home - it would take the edge off if I heard from anyone who's had the same experience.
Feb 7, 09, 8:01 am
Your experience is not unique to discount airlines (although it might be a little more common on Spirit, I don't know). Generally, if you are not flying from a major airline's hub, this could happen to you (though it is very infrequent).
AA/UA/DL etc only keep spare crew on standby ready to go at their hubs. It would be too costly to do this at airports where they have less flights.
As FAs are human, and some humans will inevitably not show up for work occasionally (sometimes for very legit reasons like illness or death of best friend, etc), I'm not sure why this one blew your mind?
Feb 7, 09, 10:16 am
Hey, I have had this happen to me on Alasaka Airlines, so it is not limited to discount airlines.
Feb 7, 09, 10:45 am
similar but different, when leaving phl for bdl, after our 30 or so min wait in line, we turned around and went back to get a pilot and a F/A to deadhead to bdl. sat in line another half hour. they needed the two people at bld.
Feb 7, 09, 11:09 am
I guess that depends on why the crewmembers didn't make it to LGA.
Feb 7, 09, 11:11 am
Please continue to follow this thread in the FT Budget Travel Forum
F/A's are human as someone else said, someone may not show up for work, just like at your job or mine. I'm sure it's frustrating though.
But am I misunderstanding something here? Passengers are not allowed to board any aircraft until the minimum number of required flight attendants are on board for that aircraft. In the USA at least, that's one FA per every 50 seats. Who deplaned? The other crew? Or was it one of the pilots who didn't show? That can often happen, though many airlines like to hold off boarding until pilots are at least known to be on the premesis.
Feb 10, 09, 7:44 pm
The cabin crew for your flight had arrived in LGA the previous afternoon, and for whatever reason, one of the FAs did not make it to the airport that morning.
Your flight particular flight left 1:47 behind schedule. While not on time, it certainly could have been worse had a crewmember needed to be flown in from another city, or the flight could have been canceled.
While NK's lean operation isn't an excuse for sloppiness, NK certainly doesn't have spare crewmembers sitting around, especially in the world of $39 roundtrip flights!
Luckily, LGA was a former crew base for NK and another available crewmember was called in to work flight 705.
It's certainly not in the airline's best interest to have a delay either - in particular, NK has one gate at LGA (B6) - any delays throws the schedule off and results in having to rent extra gates from other airlines to maintain the integrity of the schedule.
While the delay was certainly unfortunate, as dc333 mentioned, F/As are human and do ingest bad food or get sick from time to time. :)