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A3 begins charging for advance seat reservations - limited discount for A3*G

A3 begins charging for advance seat reservations - limited discount for A3*G

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Old Feb 21, 18, 11:54 am
  #151  
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
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Originally Posted by johnirvine View Post
Aegean are rapidly pricing themselves out of certain markets .
Not according to their financial results and advance bookings for Summer 2018 !
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Old Feb 21, 18, 12:03 pm
  #152  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Programs: THY Elite Plus, Aegean Gold, LH FTL. Former BA Gold, Air France Platinum, Czech Gold, United PE.
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Originally Posted by Xandrios View Post
Keep in mind that being the cheapest is not always the appropriate tactic.

There are routes (and I can imagine LCA is one of them) where pax strongly prefer Aegean over LH. As such the majority of seats on the Aegean flight may have already been booked, while the LH flights may be less busy. In such case they can easily afford (and would be stupid not to) price themselves over LH.

As long as they can fill the flights while using higher fares, they are doing exactly the right thing. Perhaps not what we as pax would like, but for Aegean the company its the way to make money.
I agree in principle with your market-oriented logic. However, there has clearly been a change in A3 pricing structures over recent months. This began with a widening of the gap between GoLight and Flex fares and has evolved into other changes like seat charges. I normally book flights at least 8 months in advance, when there are very few bookings indeed, and over the last two to three years found that A3 offered better fares around 60% of the time. However, for the last 10 bookings that I made from LCA, LH Group offered far more competitive fares. Aegean are currently being hammered by the LCCs from LCA and will hardly compete against LH Group by upping their prices at the same time as rebranding their flights as Olympic. I suspect that some green-behind-the-ears management recruits may be behind Aegean's recent decisions.
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Old Feb 21, 18, 12:51 pm
  #153  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
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Originally Posted by irishguy28 View Post
I guess it was just a passing fancy, then!

Why I'm falling in love with Aegean
No, not really. I still love the quality of service on Aegean flights, it's just the stupid short-sighted management decisions that I find distasteful. Let's just say I'm putting our relationship on hold for a while!
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Old Feb 22, 18, 6:28 am
  #154  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
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Originally Posted by fransknorge View Post
Except no carrier in Europe set up a Y+ with free food on the first row of economic and BOB back. Only SK did it but they do not have a business class.
There is one airline in Europe called LOT.
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Old Feb 22, 18, 7:53 am
  #155  
 
Join Date: May 2011
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Originally Posted by johnirvine View Post
Aegean are rapidly pricing themselves out of certain markets due to what appear to be amateurish revenue management decisions. Alienating A3*G cardholders with cheapskate seating charges is not the only mistake they are making at present: even worse is their recent uncompetitive fare structure relative to competitors. Today, I needed to book a return from TXL to LCA with baggage for fixed dates 31 August - 3 September. Booking with LH Group proved a no-brainer as they wanted 299 for a Classic Economy ticket (including free seat assignment) while Aegean demanded 100 more!. Like Nick David, I will in future be booking only 4 sectors a year with Aegean, instead of 40, and trying to upgrade all of them. Aegean are shooting themselves in the foot.
Why didn't you use TK for 280.00 and get far better service than either A3 or LH offer and about five choices of service in each direction?
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Old Feb 22, 18, 8:23 am
  #156  
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
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Originally Posted by Dover2Golf View Post
Why didn't you use TK for 280.00 and get far better service than either A3 or LH offer and about five choices of service in each direction?
Maybe because TK doesn't fly to LCA?
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Old Feb 22, 18, 1:43 pm
  #157  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
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Originally Posted by Dover2Golf View Post
Why didn't you use TK for 280.00 and get far better service than either A3 or LH offer and about five choices of service in each direction?
Because it takes me far more time to drive to ECN than LCA, the total flight time is somewhat longer on TK, transiting IST is more stressful than either ATH or MUC/FRA, there is a 'border' to cross, there are customs formalities and possible duty to pay, and I have had my ROC-registered car vandalised twice at ECN.,
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Old Feb 23, 18, 2:34 am
  #158  
 
Join Date: May 2011
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Originally Posted by johnirvine View Post
Because it takes me far more time to drive to ECN than LCA, the total flight time is somewhat longer on TK, transiting IST is more stressful than either ATH or MUC/FRA, there is a 'border' to cross, there are customs formalities and possible duty to pay, and I have had my ROC-registered car vandalised twice at ECN.,
Oh well, each to their own. I wouldn't dream of using Larnaca (unless I was destined for ATH) when better and more frequent services are available from ECN to almost anywhere and the ECN experience is far less stressful than anything to do with LCA and package tour holiday flights. Surprised you've had your car vandalised twice, you must be very unlucky, living in TRNC I don't know anyone who has had a car vandalised once.

Last edited by Dover2Golf; Feb 23, 18 at 2:35 am Reason: Spelling
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Old Feb 24, 18, 11:18 am
  #159  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
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I am a big fine of Aegean!! I always donate 2 euros for the SOS Children's Villages, but I refuse to pay to select a seat in Y as a Gold; it's not the money, it's the principle!!

I have already booked a few intra-Europe tickets with other carriers that offer seat pre-selection, as a result of this policy change!! Already qualified for Gold next year; will just wait and see how this plays out!! Hope Aegean see's the light..
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Old Feb 25, 18, 1:03 am
  #160  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
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Today, I took my first flight on A3 since the new seating policy change. This flight, from LCA-ATH, was nearly fully booked so I took the opportunity of having a discussion with the duty manager on how the booking situation affected A3*G cardholders. Very few upfront seats had actually been sold in the period up to three hours before take-off.

The manager informed me that staff had experienced a high level of dissatisfaction among gold cardholders after the changes. Agents felt very uncomfortable telling frequent flyers that the only seats available were middle seats at the back of the plane. Indeed, most agents strongly disagreed with the new policy but regrettably had to do their job.

Aegean has, as a result of the negative reaction, now refined their seating allocation decisions after airport check-in begins. A manager in Athens now looks at the estimated load in economy and, where there are not enough standard seats to accommodate passengers, an allocation of 'upfront seats' is released to the duty manager. Priority is given to gold cardholders for these seats. Without authorisation from Athens, check-in staff have absolutely no discretion to allocate upfront seats unless the relevant payment has been made.

It will be interesting to see which upfront seats are actually released in heavily booked flights - for example, do they fill the seats from row 10 first or are all rows open. And are the extra space seats left until last?

On the A320, business class frequently extends to row 4. This means that there are 36 upfront seats to be sold. Unless flight are reasonably well booked, there will be little option other than to pay for upfront seats. However, the chance of having a free middle seat may well increase for the first few rows.
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Old Feb 25, 18, 2:45 am
  #161  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
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On the one hand good to hear that they are adjusting, on the other hand the mechanism that you describe does not sound good enough. Top tier members should be allowed free access of up front seats, at time of booking. That is how all airlines do it, why not Aegean?

Being able to get a random up front seat is not what I want. I prefer an isle in row 15 to a middle in row 8. And I like to have control over the seat that I select, and not leave that choice to some duty manager at a remote station.

Why would they even have to do this by hand? The system knows perfectly well how many seats have been booked and how many 'upgrades' are needed to accomodate everyone. Why don't they just allow that number of Gold members to select a free seat up front - through online check in or at the airport? It has exactly the same effect but it guarantees that the gold members get the upgrade - and get the best choice of seats (assuming more upgrades take place than that there are Gold members on board).
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Old Feb 25, 18, 4:40 am
  #162  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Programs: THY Elite Plus, Aegean Gold, LH FTL. Former BA Gold, Air France Platinum, Czech Gold, United PE.
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I was extremely surprised on entering the cabin of A321 SX-DGP today on the LCA-ATH route. All the seats in rows 1-8 now have uniform business class legroom, while all the seats from row 11 onward have had the legroom reduced to a measly LCC standard pitch. All standard seats were filled (many with status customers) and the first rows of economy had a free middle seat. There were 6 free seats in total in economy.

It seems that SX-DGP has possibly been converted for use as an Olympic Airways plane on the ATH-LCA route. If this is a taste of what is to come more generally on A3, the €4 we have to pay for upfront seats will rapidly come to be seen as a bargain. I was in 5A and had an excellent relaxed flight!
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Old Feb 25, 18, 4:53 am
  #163  
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Originally Posted by johnirvine View Post
I was extremely surprised on entering the cabin of A321 SX-DGP today on the LCA-ATH route. All the seats in rows 1-8 now have uniform business class legroom, while all the seats from row 11 onward have had the legroom reduced to a measly LCC standard pitch. All standard seats were filled (many with status customers) and the first rows of economy had a free middle seat. There were 6 free seats in total in economy.

It seems that SX-DGP has possibly been converted for use as an Olympic Airways plane on the ATH-LCA route. If this is a taste of what is to come more generally on A3, the €4 we have to pay for upfront seats will rapidly come to be seen as a bargain. I was in 5A and had an excellent relaxed flight!
Can you be more specific about how much legroom exactly? The first 8 rows on the A321 (right back to the last row before the exits) always had more than the others. I've been on a few LHR flights where there were 7 rows of C class (although that isn't the norm). Have they actually reduced the legroom in the standard seats or did it just seem that way from where you were sat? I must admit, last week, I took my first A3 flight for ages in a row greater than 6, and the legroom did feel very cramped but I don't believe it's actually changed - rather I just got so used to my regular seat - 3A or 4A. The thing is, because row 8 is just in front of the exits on the A321, they can't really have increased the legroom in any of those front seats without losing a row. We know how much you love to travel Lufthansa and they do manage to cram in 9 rows before the first set of exits, so perhaps this is just down to your perception. In the last couple of days, SX-DGP has operated to London and Paris and it went on to Amsterdam after you arrived at Athens today, so I doubt it's configured differently to any of A3's other A321s.

Last edited by Knobbgb; Feb 25, 18 at 5:10 am
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Old Feb 25, 18, 8:25 am
  #164  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
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I can't wait to fly A3 to/from TLV and see how my brethren cope with not being allowed to allocate their own seats at will... especially given the national obsession with being first off the plane, to the extent that some are already standing when the wheels are lowered for landing. It's now a hobby of mine to count how many clicks of seatbelts being undone I can count before the aircraft has even left the runway. It's always too many to even keep track of. I've yet to be on a TLV flight with any carrier where the cabin crew didn't have to admonish passengers for standing up, self-upgrading or moving seats as they saw fit.
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Old Feb 25, 18, 10:04 am
  #165  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
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Originally Posted by Knobbgb View Post
Can you be more specific about how much legroom exactly? The first 8 rows on the A321 (right back to the last row before the exits) always had more than the others. I've been on a few LHR flights where there were 7 rows of C class (although that isn't the norm). Have they actually reduced the legroom in the standard seats or did it just seem that way from where you were sat? I must admit, last week, I took my first A3 flight for ages in a row greater than 6, and the legroom did feel very cramped but I don't believe it's actually changed - rather I just got so used to my regular seat - 3A or 4A. The thing is, because row 8 is just in front of the exits on the A321, they can't really have increased the legroom in any of those front seats without losing a row. We know how much you love to travel Lufthansa and they do manage to cram in 9 rows before the first set of exits, so perhaps this is just down to your perception. In the last couple of days, SX-DGP has operated to London and Paris and it went on to Amsterdam after you arrived at Athens today, so I doubt it's configured differently to any of A3's other A321s.
I fly on Aegean 321s quite often and have sat in row 6 and 7 many times. The space in rows 6-8 today was more than in my previous flights. Also, the space after row 11 really was unacceptable. I actually walked the length of the plane and checked. Maybe someone else who flies on SX-DGP can comment.

If prices are the same for LH and A3 intra-European flights, I am very happy to fly A3 if the service was as today. This is despite the fact that I sometimes get upgraded on LH (on A3 never) and almost always get either a FREE emergency exit window seat or FREE seat in the preferred Senator section (on Classic Economy fares).
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