useless offer?

Old Nov 18, 19, 5:08 am
  #1  
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useless offer?

As a Gold Tier member, we’re always looking for ways to make travelling simpler, and we know that when you travel regularly, it’s even more important.That’s why we thought you’d appreciate the return of our Chauffeur service, available when you book a flight in First or Business using your miles.

You can request your one way Chauffeur service from any location within the UAE to or from Abu Dhabi International Airport.

So all that’s left to do is plan your next trip and our Chauffeurs will make sure you arrive fashionably on time.


Not much use to those who fly through Abu Dhabi like many I wonder if the penny will drop that the chauffeur would be greatly appreciated if it was reintroduced across the board for business and First and not just at Abu Dhabi
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Old Nov 18, 19, 6:52 am
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Agreed
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Old Nov 18, 19, 3:00 pm
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Originally Posted by amnicoll View Post
As a Gold Tier member, we’re always looking for ways to make travelling simpler, and we know that when you travel regularly, it’s even more important.That’s why we thought you’d appreciate the return of our Chauffeur service, available when you book a flight in First or Business using your miles.

You can request your one way Chauffeur service from any location within the UAE to or from Abu Dhabi International Airport.

So all that’s left to do is plan your next trip and our Chauffeurs will make sure you arrive fashionably on time.


Not much use to those who fly through Abu Dhabi like many I wonder if the penny will drop that the chauffeur would be greatly appreciated if it was reintroduced across the board for business and First and not just at Abu Dhabi
But isn't this better than nothing? I feel that plenty of people have been bashing EY so hard, that even when they try to do something positive, the approach is to look at the glass half empty (or 90% empty) ... without really assessing what is being done.
Question is: will people take advantage to the one-way offer when redeeming miles? Answer is: 99% of the time, probably yes. Ergo, doesn't seem like a useless offer.

People have different needs and value different things. I, for one, do note care for chauffeur service, as I travel mostly for business and the cars are a regular business expense. And on the occasions when I travel for pleasure, it is a nice add-on if available, but not what would make me decide for or against it (I have four sectors in an upcoming personal trip with Etihad, by the way). Maybe it will be my first trip report ... lets see how it turns out!

Cheers
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Old Nov 19, 19, 2:40 am
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you forget we used to have a chauffeur service that was excellent across much of the network and then they took it away. Sure if you destination or start is in the UAE then this is a benefit but Etihad targets people in the UK and elsewhere to use Abu Dhabi as a transit point rather than a destination

I can assure you that the offer of a chauffeur at each end (+ excellent service and a superb lounge at Manchester) made me a loyal user of Etihad but I am afraid that since it was withdrawn my business has gone elsewhere
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Old Nov 19, 19, 2:43 am
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Originally Posted by burg_rtw View Post
Question is: will people take advantage to the one-way offer when redeeming miles? Answer is: 99% of the time, probably yes. Ergo, doesn't seem like a useless offer.
I don't know the exact numbers but at a guess over 95% of passengers will be in transit and not set foot in Abu Dhabi, whether redeeming miles or paying cash. For all of these the offer is worth zero, whether it's one way or both.
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Old Nov 19, 19, 2:00 pm
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Originally Posted by ft101 View Post
I don't know the exact numbers but at a guess over 95% of passengers will be in transit and not set foot in Abu Dhabi, whether redeeming miles or paying cash. For all of these the offer is worth zero, whether it's one way or both.
Last I have seen (form SABRE data) was 65%, although from quite few years ago; likely increase from there, but 95% seems a bit too high.
Looking from outside and not being vested either way, it just sounds like a step in the right direction, even if small.
I have not flown EY in the past year, so what I would be most keen in assessing is if service level has deteriorated in premium cabins, as is suggested in many posts.
If I can manage the uploading of photos, which seems to be a hassle, I will report on it and compare to my prior experience.

Cheers
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Old Nov 19, 19, 9:41 pm
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Anecdotally, when I arrive back to AUH off an A380 from London, the baggage carousel normally has no more than 15-20 people waiting to pick up. Let's assume 450 passengers. So that's 5% stopping in Abu Dhabi. Now let's be generous and double that to allow for people with hand-baggage only. That's a max of 10% of all passengers who could theoretically benefit from this, assuming they were all on miles redemption tickets and were Platinum card holders.

Edit: this obviously changes on specific dates, e.g. at the end of school holidays, when all the AUH families return at the same time and so the ratio is much higher.
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Old Nov 20, 19, 3:52 am
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whether it is 5% or 20% is not really the point Etihad markets itself in many cases as an international airline connecting through Abu Dhabi and as such this offer is too little too late and not relevant to most potential users

I do not know if they have sorted the transfer at Abu Dhabi as I used to get really hacked off as there were no separate premium queues for security when transferring (although there were separate scanners which was pointless if you had to wait in the general queue)
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Old Nov 20, 19, 8:30 am
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Maintaining the outstation chauffeur network will no doubt cost exponentially more than the cost in the UAE, precisely because the majority of the people travelling will take advantage of it. They're simply not in a financial position to spend that money.

Plus, QR has no chauffeur service at all (whether at DOH or overseas), so it probably makes it easier for EY to justify not having it at the outstations.
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Old Nov 20, 19, 1:26 pm
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Better I get my 2 cents worth in . ....Correct too little to late , but what I fail to understand is why they cut this service in the first place , it's not as though it was a huge benefit anyway . On my last two upgrades from BKK-LHR stopping in AUH ( using miles from Y to J ) I have mixed feelings about the chauffeur service . On both return journeys to the airport , once from the Sofitel corniche , the other from Crowne Plaza Hamden St ( just around the corner ) the car failed to turn up at the Sofitel and only after a few calls from the Crowne Plaza , the car actually arrived ( feeble excuse ) , and I just made the flight ....Yes it's great when arriving ( can't possibly go wrong , can it ) , but unless Etihad have changed their limo company recently , I'd be very wary of using this enhancement.....I certainly won't rely on it
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Old Nov 21, 19, 5:31 am
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Originally Posted by stargold View Post
Maintaining the outstation chauffeur network will no doubt cost exponentially more than the cost in the UAE, precisely because the majority of the people travelling will take advantage of it. They're simply not in a financial position to spend that money.

Plus, QR has no chauffeur service at all (whether at DOH or overseas), so it probably makes it easier for EY to justify not having it at the outstations.
yes so your are agreeing with me about the real value of the offer which was what I was saying.

Lets not forget that Emirates do still have the chauffeur and surprise surprise I have a booking with them and not Etihad even though I will not be making use of it in Bangkok on this trip but certainly value it to and from Manchester
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Old Nov 21, 19, 6:17 am
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Originally Posted by amnicoll View Post
yes so your are agreeing with me about the real value of the offer which was what I was saying.
Of course - anyone can see that it is a very valuable feature, particularly for the countries where taxi services are very expensive (UK, Japan, etc). But someone needs to pay for it, and Etihad simply isn't in a position to.

Given that EK is now the only major airline with a network-wide chauffeur offering, it's hard to say how much of a role this service plays in people's decision on airline. Given the intense competition in aggressive pricing even in premium classes these days, perhaps EY concluded that lowering J fares works better than offering chauffeur.
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Old Nov 21, 19, 6:30 am
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I have not seen any evidence to suggest that Etihad have lowered their business class fares since they took the service away

There are many like me who have taken their business elsewhere not just because of the withdrawal but a lowering of the service across the board in Business class
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Old Nov 21, 19, 11:42 am
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Etihad is as good as dead for me at this point
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Old Nov 22, 19, 4:13 am
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Originally Posted by EYrevanchist View Post
Etihad is as good as dead for me at this point
sadly me too - it is such a shame as they had offered on the whole an excellent experience even if their marketing and communication was less than perfect
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