[Rant] AS First Class Is a Bad Joke

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Old Apr 19, 19, 8:37 pm
  #1  
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[Rant] AS First Class Is a Bad Joke

Well, I and most Virgin America customers weren't too thrilled when Alaska purchased VX, and I'm afraid it's worse than we ever anticipated. On a recent trip from Puerto Vallarta to Los Angeles where they fly the old VX Airbus with 2 rows of white seats, the flight was delayed almost an hour for 'lots of maintenance'. Only the maintenance to get us airborne was performed. First class seats were stuck in the upright position. No entertainment system. The food was inedible, and to top it off the First Class FA invited a parade of main cabin passengers to use the FC toilet, resulting in a foul smell as there are only 2 rows. In addition, there is no maintenance being performed on these once sparkling aircraft, paint peeling off partitions, carpets were filthy, this was once honored with best domestic airline every single year when operated by VX. When I protested to Alaska on my return that this was not the first class experience we paid for at $1000, they gave us '3000' award miles, yes you read that right, not enough to get you anywhere, not even in main cabin ... so goodbye AS, I gave you the benefit of proving you would uphold the standards of VX and you failed miserably.

Last edited by Progrowth; Apr 20, 19 at 10:00 am
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Old Apr 19, 19, 8:43 pm
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I'm going to grab some popcorn on this one. But just be happy that it was an old VX plane with extra recline and legroom vs. a crappy old AS configuration and a parade of Y pax to the F lav.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 8:45 pm
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Bye
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Old Apr 19, 19, 8:51 pm
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Darn, I was hoping there was an actual joke to hear...
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Old Apr 19, 19, 8:57 pm
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Yes, I agree fully.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 9:33 pm
  #6  
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Originally Posted by Progrowth View Post
the flight was delayed almost an hour for 'lots of maintenance'. Only the maintenance to get us airborne was performed.
Would you have accepted a 2-3 hour delay to address the other issues? I've probably had a good 25 Airbus flights just this year and the electric F seats seem to be an issue every couple flights and at least one of them has to be manually placed in an upright position. I'm glad to see the new F cabins coming, though it sounds like it's going to be at a glacial pace that will take us into 2020. Maybe come back and give Alaska a try next year.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 10:26 pm
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Originally Posted by tom911 View Post
Would you have accepted a 2-3 hour delay to address the other issues? I've probably had a good 25 Airbus flights just this year and the electric F seats seem to be an issue every couple flights and at least one of them has to be manually placed in an upright position. I'm glad to see the new F cabins coming, though it sounds like it's going to be at a glacial pace that will take us into 2020. Maybe come back and give Alaska a try next year.
No, but I find it hard to believe all of these maintenance issues all happened while on the ground in PVR; maybe Alaska paid too much for VA and have no funds left for proper maintenance; but to simply ignore we never received what we paid for with 3000 miles was the last straw. If the airline can't provide what we paid for, they owe us adequate compensation ... but maybe they can't afford that either.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 10:52 pm
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Good luck in your future travels. It’s clear that some VX fans are never going to be happy with AS, and I hope you all find alternatives that you’re happy with. But we probably don’t need another “VX rules, AS drools” thread.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 10:52 pm
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Well, there's a whole host of issues at play with your experience, but I'll happily discuss a few of them.

1. For starters, it's VX, not VA, and yes, we all knew what you meant.

2. There have been several other threads discussing the state of the Airbii since the merger, and you summed it up pretty well. They're in terrible shape cosmetically, no doubt about that. As much as I loved those gloriously comfy white recliners for many years, they need to be put out to pasture.

3. AS compensation structure is notoriously weak, whether it's for delayed/cancelled flights, service failures, or any number of other reasons. When you consider that they'll give you 2500 miles if a bag is over 20 minutes late (I've collected a # of these, for anywhere from 21 to 28 minutes), giving you just 500 more miles for a flight that had multiple issues (delay, broken seat, broken IFE, etc.) is pretty bad. It's also completely par for the course.

4. Their balance sheet is actually in pretty good shape, so it's not a question of whether they can afford to properly compensate, they simply choose not to.

5. For me in SFO, they're a good alternative to UA in many cases, and for that I'm grateful. Depending upon your home airport, one would assume you have other options as well. However, the grass certainly isn't always greener.
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Old Apr 19, 19, 11:09 pm
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As someone who flew exclusively in F on VX, I understand where you are coming from. If you are anything like me, you are willing to pay for a premium product, but you are not willing to pay premium prices for a non-premium product. I took one paid F trip on AS, and after that, never again.

My advice is to simply not pay for F on AS. They are a fine economy class airline but they just don't get the concept of first class.

I was fortunate because for the longer routes that I fly often (SFO-NYC and SFO-Hawaii) UA offers a premium (lie-flat) product. I also find the service and food to be much better on UA F than AS F. So I just pay for F on UA for those flights.

I stick with AS for shorter routes because, as I said, they are a fine economy class airline and you really do earn a lot of valuable miles (when it comes to the FFP, I find that AS is far better than any other domestic carrier, and it's not close)

If you can maintain status (even just MVP) on AS they are great for shorter flights. You will generally get premium seats, and tons of miles. For longer flights, find another airline that offers a true premium product along with premium service, and pay for that. Status isn't worth that much when you are in paid F anyway. If you do enough longer flights, you may even be able to maintain status on both airlines.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 2:23 am
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
As someone who flew exclusively in F on VX, I understand where you are coming from. If you are anything like me, you are willing to pay for a premium product, but you are not willing to pay premium prices for a non-premium product. I took one paid F trip on AS, and after that, never again.

My advice is to simply not pay for F on AS. They are a fine economy class airline but they just don't get the concept of first class.

I was fortunate because for the longer routes that I fly often (SFO-NYC and SFO-Hawaii) UA offers a premium (lie-flat) product. I also find the service and food to be much better on UA F than AS F. So I just pay for F on UA for those flights.

I stick with AS for shorter routes because, as I said, they are a fine economy class airline and you really do earn a lot of valuable miles (when it comes to the FFP, I find that AS is far better than any other domestic carrier, and it's not close)

If you can maintain status (even just MVP) on AS they are great for shorter flights. You will generally get premium seats, and tons of miles. For longer flights, find another airline that offers a true premium product along with premium service, and pay for that. Status isn't worth that much when you are in paid F anyway. If you do enough longer flights, you may even be able to maintain status on both airlines.

i echo this 100%
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Old Apr 20, 19, 7:26 am
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I dont understand the joke.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 7:51 am
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The VX model was not financially viable. That is why it was sold off.

AS is a hybrid between legacy and LCC and that shows through, even in F. As to maintenance, it actually makes sense to defer things that can be deferred to a time and place where there is scheduled downtime and your own (contracted) people to perform the rest.

VX is gone. Gone. Gone. Not worth comparing yesterday's apples to today's oranges. Air tickets are, relatively speaking, cheaper over time. This is one of the reasons.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 8:10 am
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I think the OP has a point in regard to the maintenance of the old VX cabins. I understand that Alaska doesn’t want to keep the VX seating but they should be investing in maintaining the status quo until replaced.

I think they will see less complaints once the airbus fleet has been refurbished. Sure - the new FC seats won’t be as nice, but they will probably be better maintained and customers won’t have as high of an expectation of the product.

OP - what you’re saying is unfortunate, but I’m not sure which airline FC product is going to be much better on LAX-PVR. I wouldn’t have high expectations for first class on this route from any carrier.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 8:52 am
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Originally Posted by hotelboy View Post
I dont understand the joke.
A man walked into first class on pmVX plane and was not offered a pre departure beverage.....”oh, he exclaimed,
I thought I was on a VX flight , but-forgot it is actually`2019.”
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