experience as EXP vs United 1K at LAX

 
Old Nov 9, 13, 1:05 pm
  #1  
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experience as EXP vs United 1K at LAX

I'm in my 4th year as EXP based in LAX. Love the airline and love the program even more. Today due to my company's lowest ticket price policy I am flying united on a LAX-PVG flight. Bring the smart ..., I called united a week ago for a status match, they gave me 1k with condition of doing 30k in 3 months. Story aside, I want to share my experience as 1K member.
1. Check in process. Walked into T6, premier section. No dedicated lane for 1K, or First passengers. They lump all elites together. AA is way better in providing first class lane as status recognition.
2. Terminal 6 looks more modern and spacious than T4
3. United club. This is where it pisses me off. My first time walking in as 1K I'm expecting again some recognition. Nothing. Club is jammed with people. I asked if there's a first class section. NO. I asked if you serve food since it was noon time. NO. there are maybe 100 seats there and 85 people. All the seats and desks are full. I walked out after strolling one circle. No a pleasant experience. AA flagship lounge is way better.
4. Boarding. United has 5 groups and each group has their own waiting lane. I found that better than AA way of having only 2 lanes.

All in all. I'd say I enjoyed being AA EXP more than united 1K here at LAX.
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Old Nov 9, 13, 1:39 pm
  #2  
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experience as EXP vs United 1K at LAX

Just realize I'm now sitting in a Dreamliner. Big plus for united. Ha
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Old Nov 9, 13, 1:47 pm
  #3  
 
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Just flew Delta in F and can't wait to fly a proper AA F domestic flight
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Old Nov 9, 13, 1:55 pm
  #4  
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If you were flying in UA F or are a GS flying in C, you could have used the IFL. Food would have been served there..

Can't really compare the RCC to the FL, even if it does suck..
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Old Nov 9, 13, 2:14 pm
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by greasy View Post
1. Check in process. Walked into T6, premier section. No dedicated lane for 1K, or First passengers. They lump all elites together. AA is way better in providing first class lane as status recognition.
I was under the impression that hub airports have check-in lines separated as: Global First/GS, Domestic First/C/1K/Plat, and *G/*S
I guess I was wrong.

3. United club. This is where it pisses me off. My first time walking in as 1K I'm expecting again some recognition. Nothing. Club is jammed with people. I asked if there's a first class section. NO. I asked if you serve food since it was noon time. NO. there are maybe 100 seats there and 85 people. All the seats and desks are full. I walked out after strolling one circle. No a pleasant experience. AA flagship lounge is way better.
Unlike AA and OW, where top tier elites have access to First Class/Emerald lounges, *A's highest tier is *G, roughly equivalent to OW Sapphire. So, UA 1Ks don't get access to any F lounges unless they're flying international 3-class F.

LAX's IFL (or GFL or whatever it is called these days) is nowhere near as nice as the FL, but IMHO have the best agents. In any case, as FriendlySkies points out, you can't really compare the UC to FL, but I'd guess that even the Admiral's Club (aside from charging rather high prices for food) is, in general, better.

4. Boarding. United has 5 groups and each group has their own waiting lane. I found that better than AA way of having only 2 lanes.

All in all. I'd say I enjoyed being AA EXP more than united 1K here at LAX.
There's a massive UA thread on the cluster#@*& boarding process that you can browse through if you want.

In any case, I'd probably stick with AA if I were LAX based.
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Old Nov 9, 13, 2:51 pm
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Originally Posted by Tennen View Post
I was under the impression that hub airports have check-in lines separated as: Global First/GS, Domestic First/C/1K/Plat, and *G/*S
I guess I was wrong.
LAX is a free for all.
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Old Nov 10, 13, 10:16 am
  #7  
 
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Originally Posted by greasy View Post
I'm in my 4th year as EXP based in LAX. Love the airline and love the program even more. Today due to my company's lowest ticket price policy I am flying united on a LAX-PVG flight.
I ran into the same problem - lowest price on United to PVG from DFW rather than AA to PVG. But was able to find the same lower fare as United when I did a multi-city search DFW - HKG- PVG on a AA codeshare with Cathay with a 3 hour layover in HKG. So another option if you would like to stick with oneworld.
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Old Nov 10, 13, 12:57 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by greasy View Post
Just realize I'm now sitting in a Dreamliner. Big plus for united. Ha
Not a bad plane...if you're not on one that has a semi-usual 2-3 hour delay

(and heaven forbid you're in Y)
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Old Nov 10, 13, 3:35 pm
  #9  
 
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Sorry a 787 alone would not get me to go back. I was matched to AA EXP and everything is just better. I've been to the IFL at LAX and it is not very exciting other than it being empty with a some food options. The admirals club is vastly superior. The T6 elite line is a joke. They separate by status but as soon as you get past the TSA it's a free for all and if you are unlucky the T7 non-elites will sometimes be asked to go through the same checkpoint.
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Old Nov 10, 13, 8:57 pm
  #10  
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Completely agree with most of your comments, and that's why I made this post and share my experience with United. Now that I've tried it my loyalty will remain with AA. From the check in process, to the flagship lounge, and the helpfulness of agents within the lounge, AA is superior than United at LAX. For as long as I'm base in LAX, AA will have my business.
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Old Nov 11, 13, 4:09 pm
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Originally Posted by UnitedEF View Post
Sorry a 787 alone would not get me to go back. I was matched to AA EXP and everything is just better. I've been to the IFL at LAX and it is not very exciting other than it being empty with a some food options. The admirals club is vastly superior. The T6 elite line is a joke. They separate by status but as soon as you get past the TSA it's a free for all and if you are unlucky the T7 non-elites will sometimes be asked to go through the same checkpoint.
I am thinking of moving.
Do you find that the IFE is better if you are in economy?
WHat is the thing you think made the move worth it for you?
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Old Nov 11, 13, 6:00 pm
  #12  
 
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Originally Posted by greasy View Post
Completely agree with most of your comments, and that's why I made this post and share my experience with United. Now that I've tried it my loyalty will remain with AA. From the check in process, to the flagship lounge, and the helpfulness of agents within the lounge, AA is superior than United at LAX. For as long as I'm base in LAX, AA will have my business.
I like AA as much as the next guy but judging an airline based on 1 flight is a bit short sighted no?
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Old Nov 11, 13, 8:16 pm
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by fieldeng View Post
I like AA as much as the next guy but judging an airline based on 1 flight is a bit short sighted no?
Had to do a quick trip in DEc to NRT. I always UG from a economy fare. UA had it but no go with AA. I'll take the SEA flight as that had availability. Nothing on AA. For me as a kayaker you go with the legacy airlines that can get you there with an UG on international. You never know who that may be. Interesting times.
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Old Nov 11, 13, 10:43 pm
  #14  
 
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THE I-Flagship lounge in JFK is really great, I thought. I had an excellent meal there upon arrival, even through it is not really for arriving people-I had a friend from many years being an Admirals Club member (lifetime) so she let me in. They had a nice peppered fish entre along with a much better bar (I don’t drink alcohol but still I look to see what’s offered...LOL.) Sorry to hear the one at LAX is not that great. I plan to check it out this year. Wish they had an FL in DFW - can’t understand why they don’t. I will be in the FL in LHR in late January.
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Old Nov 11, 13, 11:08 pm
  #15  
 
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Originally Posted by greasy View Post
I'm in my 4th year as EXP based in LAX. Love the airline and love the program even more. Today due to my company's lowest ticket price policy I am flying united on a LAX-PVG flight. Bring the smart ..., I called united a week ago for a status match, they gave me 1k with condition of doing 30k in 3 months. Story aside, I want to share my experience as 1K member.
1. Check in process. Walked into T6, premier section. No dedicated lane for 1K, or First passengers. They lump all elites together. AA is way better in providing first class lane as status recognition.
2. Terminal 6 looks more modern and spacious than T4
3. United club. This is where it pisses me off. My first time walking in as 1K I'm expecting again some recognition. Nothing. Club is jammed with people. I asked if there's a first class section. NO. I asked if you serve food since it was noon time. NO. there are maybe 100 seats there and 85 people. All the seats and desks are full. I walked out after strolling one circle. No a pleasant experience. AA flagship lounge is way better.
4. Boarding. United has 5 groups and each group has their own waiting lane. I found that better than AA way of having only 2 lanes.

All in all. I'd say I enjoyed being AA EXP more than united 1K here at LAX.
Some comments here as fmr 1K and EXP who still flies both.

1. There were always GS/intl F, 1K/F etc stations in LAX (going left to right) - perhaps smth changed recently. GS/intl F even had separate checkpoint lane. Last few months i had online checkin without any bags so not sure. AA checkin is a bit more organized (due to fewer flights IMHO) but elite TSA line is the same for everyone EXP or not.

2. UA terminals 6-8 are beaten up but still much better than always packed T4. American Eagle nest/beehive is an abomination - one of the most unpleasant travel experiences these days.

3. Admirals Club is better and much larger than UA clubs although it gets very crowded as well. There is a relatively nice and peaceful UA IFL but unlike AA flagship lounge status alone will not get you there.

4. I try to be one the last to board so minimize time in aluminum tube so not sure - UA displays are quite useful. Also did I mention the misery of dealing with Eagle remote terminal?

Overall both have pluses and minuses at LAX - UA has far more options so after being 1K/EXP i stayed with UA primarily. Plus there are more choices on UA from BUR, SBA, SNA etc. AA is relatively weak in LA area...
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