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Old Jul 30, 12, 7:18 pm   #1
 
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DineFresh (Int'l Premium Meals)

Apparently US is launching premium meals for international flights. I know UA has tried this on certain routes, and ANA offers one as well for around $100. US's is much more affordable at $19.99 with a glass of wine included. I consider US's BOB meals the best in the USA so this might not be too bad of a value.

The standard two free meals will still be provided.

http://www.usairways.com/en-US/trave...maincabin.html
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Old Jul 30, 12, 7:27 pm   #2
 
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Originally Posted by airb330 View Post
Apparently US is launching premium meals for international flights. I know UA has tried this on certain routes, and ANA offers one as well for around $100. US's is much more affordable at $19.99 with a glass of wine included. I consider US's BOB meals the best in the USA so this might not be too bad of a value.

The standard two free meals will still be provided.

http://www.usairways.com/en-US/trave...maincabin.html
I'm interested to see how this turns out... too bad this isn't being offered on longer domestic flights.
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Old Jul 31, 12, 8:00 am   #3
 
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Not to be Debbie Downer here but something tells me this may mean the further degradation of the already awful "complimentary" Y transatlantic meals. I could be wrong...
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Old Jul 31, 12, 8:09 am   #4
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It would be nice to have an option to get it without wine for those that don't drink. Maybe knock off $5 off the price if you don't want the wine or something.
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Old Jul 31, 12, 8:58 am   #5
 
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It would be nice to have an option to get it without wine for those that don't drink. Maybe knock off $5 off the price if you don't want the wine or something.
While I do drink, I agree completely.

I doubt this means the complimentary meals will get worse.
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Old Jul 31, 12, 9:26 am   #6
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While I do drink, I agree completely.

I doubt this means the complimentary meals will get worse.
Yeah, everyone's happy this way. Those that want a better meal have the option, and it's available with or without wine depending on what the person wants.

If the wine option is forced (i.e. with/without wine are the same price), I'm pretty much paying for something I don't want or need. If it's easier to keep the price as it is, perhaps a substitution could be made of some sort ... like add a soup or something that normally wouldn't come with the meal if wine was chosen.

Comp meals seemed to be cheap ... the article indicated they spent around $6 on average for a meal. I think the $20 premium + the $6 budgeted already would more than cover the better meal, wine, and still leave a nice profit that they wouldn't have to degrade current meal service.

I understand the cynicism based on how this industry works though. Doug seems to be focusing on improving things at US and not cutting them a la Smisek, so I don't expect a degradation.
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Old Jul 31, 12, 11:41 pm   #7
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I just hope US isn't using this as a trial to see if pax will be willing to pay for meals on long haul.

And I've never bought the "you'll still be able to choose between two complimentary entrees" garbage the airlines have thrown out when they announced BOB. US said they would continue to provide complementary meals on Latin American and Caribbean flights when they first introduced the In flight Case concept...they sure kept their promise.
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Old Aug 1, 12, 8:08 am   #8
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As best I can tell, the new BOB transatlantic meal is cold. $20 strikes me as a lot to pay for a cold meal. If they were offering something more similar to a domestic FC meal, $20 would be more reasonable (remember, they're saving the cost of providing you a int'l coach meal, so they could be a little generous for $20).

My guess is this experiment fails for lack of consumer interest, but we'll see.

And it still annoys me that US, along with other USA airlines, charge for alcoholic drinks in coach on transatlantic flights when many of their competitors, particularly the foreign airlines, don't charge. So including a glass of wine with the $20 meal doesn't "impress me."
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Old Aug 1, 12, 12:06 pm   #9
 
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PR went out today - http://www.prnewswire.com/news-relea...164545616.html
And looks like ordering is available immediately - https://dinefresh.usairways.com/

Couple observations:
- it seems this is being offered/managed by Air Meals LLC, do they do all the Buy-On-Board too? - here's their revenue benefit analysis - http://www.air-meals.com/Resources/LongHaul.pdf
- from the faq, if you upgrade to envoy the meal follows you
- from the faq, it seems you can choose another adult beverage (except sparkling wine), but you can't get a discount for not taking it
- there seems to be a refund available if the meal isn't to your liking
- they look like self-contained bento-boxes
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Old Aug 1, 12, 12:38 pm   #10
 
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So what does this mean, if you pay you get a better quality meal, if you don't pay you get left overs, or lower quality type of meat, like that which is served by burger joints?
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Old Aug 1, 12, 1:03 pm   #11
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So what does this mean, if you pay you get a better quality meal, if you don't pay you get left overs, or lower quality type of meat, like that which is served by burger joints?
It means you get the same crap you would normally get. It just gives you an option for something better if you want better. I don't think this a trial balloon for doing BOB vs. an included meal on TATL. UA already tried that and it wasn't well received at all. They went back to offering a meal.

I can't say I'd take this mean over an Envoy offering.

No discount for not wanting the wine or other adult beverage is a nonstarter for me.
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Old Aug 1, 12, 8:10 pm   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peetahvw View Post
PR went out today - http://www.prnewswire.com/news-relea...164545616.html
And looks like ordering is available immediately - https://dinefresh.usairways.com/

Couple observations:
- it seems this is being offered/managed by Air Meals LLC, do they do all the Buy-On-Board too? - here's their revenue benefit analysis - http://www.air-meals.com/Resources/LongHaul.pdf
- from the faq, if you upgrade to envoy the meal follows you
- from the faq, it seems you can choose another adult beverage (except sparkling wine), but you can't get a discount for not taking it
- there seems to be a refund available if the meal isn't to your liking
- they look like self-contained bento-boxes
It does seem to be a cold "bento box" type-thing.

I don't know. If I wanted a "fancier" cold meal, why wouldn't I just buy something at the airport for $20 and then also get whatever was on the free hot meal? Less trouble, and more food than arranging in advance for this.

Now if they were going to serve me a nice hot meal, like I was in domestic FC (decent, but not fantastic), $20 would seem more plausible. I wonder if they've done any market research on this. It seems a bit odd, although I'm guessing it's a cost-free program for US.
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Old Aug 1, 12, 8:27 pm   #13
 
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Originally Posted by iahphx View Post
It does seem to be a cold "bento box" type-thing.

I don't know. If I wanted a "fancier" cold meal, why wouldn't I just buy something at the airport for $20 and then also get whatever was on the free hot meal? Less trouble, and more food than arranging in advance for this.

Now if they were going to serve me a nice hot meal, like I was in domestic FC (decent, but not fantastic), $20 would seem more plausible. I wonder if they've done any market research on this. It seems a bit odd, although I'm guessing it's a cost-free program for US.
While the meals don't sound bad, a cold meal substituting a warm free meal doesn't make sense to me. I'd rather have bland rice and chicken with some salty sauce that is hot over cold chicken, shrimp and crackers. I was thinking a an app, small decent salad (more like the BOB domestically), chicken/beef, and a nicer dessert. Nothing crazy, but this is a disappointment.

I'll pass.
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Old Aug 1, 12, 8:32 pm   #14
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While the meals don't sound bad, a cold meal substituting a warm free meal doesn't make sense to me. I'd rather have bland rice and chicken with some salty sauce that is hot over cold chicken, shrimp and crackers. I was thinking a an app, small decent salad (more like the BOB domestically), chicken/beef, and a nicer dessert. Nothing crazy, but this is a disappointment.

I'll pass.
Right -- that's the meal that would make "sense" to sell. But I'm guessing the logistics of this are seen as too-complicated.
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Old Aug 1, 12, 11:54 pm   #15
 
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No discount for not wanting the wine or other adult beverage is a nonstarter for me.
The prices that US charges for alcoholic beverages contain a huge markup. If you say "no thanks" to the included wine, it's not like US saves $6 - they probably save about $1.

I HATE cheesecake. They should give me a discount for not wanting the cheesecake. It probably costs US about the same as the wine.
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