Free drinks on delayed flights

Old Aug 1, 2013, 9:44 pm
  #1  
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Free drinks on delayed flights

How often do your FAs on delayed flights (more than an hour) collect your drink coupons if you order an alcoholic beverage? I'm noticing a trend that the majority of FAs on delayed flights don't collect the coupons, even when offered. Any experience from others?
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Old Aug 1, 2013, 10:13 pm
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Varies, but at that length of delay they rarely, if ever, collect them. No incremental benefit if it's a BS coupon on evening flight though.
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Old Aug 3, 2013, 6:55 pm
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It used to happen to me every time. The last few times (last year) they still took the coupons.
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Old Aug 4, 2013, 11:35 pm
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"First round on us," is a common, though unpublicized, policy in delay situations. Fork over a coupon or credit card after the first round.
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Old Aug 6, 2013, 11:14 pm
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Majority of the FAs would not take your coupons or credit card if it's delayed 1 or more hours.

I guess the ones that still take your coupons or credit cards for delayed flights are the flights that Southwest had no control over, like weather or air traffic controllers delayed. Which are understandable in my book.
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Old Aug 9, 2013, 8:46 pm
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Sitting on a delayed flight for over an hour as southwest continues to hold it for connecting pax with no concern for the hundred plus still waiting. No free drinks. I understand waiting fifteen minutes or so but at some point when should the needs of the many outweigh the few?
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Old Aug 9, 2013, 9:10 pm
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Now over two hours. Tough to be treated this poorly (no updates just sitting) on what used to be my favorite airline. Too much. I have never heard this one before. Pilot says corporate won't let plane go but he is overriding them and going. ..
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Old Aug 9, 2013, 9:11 pm
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Originally Posted by pitflyer
Sitting on a delayed flight for over an hour as southwest continues to hold it for connecting pax with no concern for the hundred plus still waiting. No free drinks. I understand waiting fifteen minutes or so but at some point when should the needs of the many outweigh the few?
Are you in the air as you post or are you still sitting on the plane at the gate waiting for the connecting passengers?
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Old Aug 9, 2013, 9:17 pm
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Originally Posted by pitflyer
Now over two hours. Tough to be treated this poorly (no updates just sitting) on what used to be my favorite airline. Too much. I have never heard this one before. Pilot says corporate won't let plane go but he is overriding them and going. ..
Ok. No free booze on the ground at the gate. Hopefully you will get your delayed free drinks in the air and report back.
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Old Aug 10, 2013, 2:37 pm
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Originally Posted by pitflyer
Pilot says corporate won't let plane go but he is overriding them and going. ..
Really? He/she actually communicated this to the plane? Did you actually go? Please fill us in with the rest of the flight details, this does not sound right!
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Old Aug 12, 2013, 3:17 pm
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Yes, the pilot actually said what I posted. After flying for twenty years it was pretty amazing to hear it, and I guess Southwest is amazed too, because my customer service response was that 'We need more time to respond'.

Summary was my flight was just a few minutes late due to late crew, told us to power down electronics.. and then nothing happened. Fifteen minutes passed and more passengers arrived. I was far enough I don't know if the door never closed or they reopened it. No big deal, last flight of day, etc. Another 15 minutes pass and nothing happens, no updates. People get restless.

Gate agent comes on PA and says we are waiting for some pax from a flight thats nearby and that they are almost there. Now its 30 minutes so a lot of grumbling, but for the next 10-15 minutes more passengers stream on (including a really sick one who sat next to me, though I can hardly blame Southwest for that). So now we're about 45 minutes in and the pax stop boarding.. but nothing, we're not going.

Another 15 minutes later and the pilot then comes on and says "Southwest corporate has told us to wait and I can't tell you why. I'm trying to find out more and will let you know". Of course I paraphrase a bit.

That's the end of it for another HOUR and 2 hours in the pilot comes back on and says "I can't get a hold of anyone to tell me why the flight is being delayed. If we stay longer we'll be illegal to fly so I'm making the decision we have to go. That means some bags may misconnect but I want to get you home." Literally the plane starts pushing back after he finishes the PA (to the extent most people had their phones/devices still on during the long delay). Within minutes we're on the runway and heading out.

I file my complaint to Southwest about what happened on the plane. That's when I got the 'we'll tell you later'

As per the OP, they did not offer free drinks. I think if I asked for a drink maybe they would not have charged, but I was not sure because the flight attendants were still carrying the credit card reader around (?) As far as I could tell they did give others drinks for free. It would have been nice to announce it.

PS On the way back 8/12 kiosks at Austin airport were down so a long line as basically everyone was on line, including people like me who just needed a BP print since the people I was visiting didn't have a printer. Not a good weekend for me and Southwest. No change fees is the only reason I stay semi-loyal to Southwest as they are just as messed up as every other airline now.

Last edited by pitflyer; Aug 12, 2013 at 3:27 pm
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Old Aug 12, 2013, 5:56 pm
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Originally Posted by pitflyer
Yes, the pilot actually said what I posted. After flying for twenty years it was pretty amazing to hear it, and I guess Southwest is amazed too, because my customer service response was that 'We need more time to respond'.

Summary was my flight was just a few minutes late due to late crew, told us to power down electronics.. and then nothing happened. Fifteen minutes passed and more passengers arrived. I was far enough I don't know if the door never closed or they reopened it. No big deal, last flight of day, etc. Another 15 minutes pass and nothing happens, no updates. People get restless.

Gate agent comes on PA and says we are waiting for some pax from a flight thats nearby and that they are almost there. Now its 30 minutes so a lot of grumbling, but for the next 10-15 minutes more passengers stream on (including a really sick one who sat next to me, though I can hardly blame Southwest for that). So now we're about 45 minutes in and the pax stop boarding.. but nothing, we're not going.

Another 15 minutes later and the pilot then comes on and says "Southwest corporate has told us to wait and I can't tell you why. I'm trying to find out more and will let you know". Of course I paraphrase a bit.

That's the end of it for another HOUR and 2 hours in the pilot comes back on and says "I can't get a hold of anyone to tell me why the flight is being delayed. If we stay longer we'll be illegal to fly so I'm making the decision we have to go. That means some bags may misconnect but I want to get you home." Literally the plane starts pushing back after he finishes the PA (to the extent most people had their phones/devices still on during the long delay). Within minutes we're on the runway and heading out.

I file my complaint to Southwest about what happened on the plane. That's when I got the 'we'll tell you later'

As per the OP, they did not offer free drinks. I think if I asked for a drink maybe they would not have charged, but I was not sure because the flight attendants were still carrying the credit card reader around (?) As far as I could tell they did give others drinks for free. It would have been nice to announce it.

PS On the way back 8/12 kiosks at Austin airport were down so a long line as basically everyone was on line, including people like me who just needed a BP print since the people I was visiting didn't have a printer. Not a good weekend for me and Southwest. No change fees is the only reason I stay semi-loyal to Southwest as they are just as messed up as every other airline now.
The FA still carry the CC reader is because they have to log in it was a free drink, not just for coupon or credit card purchase.

Also in other words, yes. You would have gotten a free drink on the flight.

Announcing free drinks on the flight? NOT a good idea.
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Old Aug 13, 2013, 8:29 am
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Originally Posted by SDCA
The FA still carry the CC reader is because they have to log in it was a free drink, not just for coupon or credit card purchase.

Also in other words, yes. You would have gotten a free drink on the flight.

Announcing free drinks on the flight? NOT a good idea.
I guess that makes sense; I felt odd asking for a drink in case they DID charge for it, since I didn't want to PAY for a drink or then say 'never mind' if they asked for a CC. On another flight that I had a delay (a long time ago) which was only like 20 minutes for passengers they did announce "First round free since everyone was so nice to wait"
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Old Aug 13, 2013, 11:33 am
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Originally Posted by pitflyer
I guess that makes sense; I felt odd asking for a drink in case they DID charge for it, since I didn't want to PAY for a drink or then say 'never mind' if they asked for a CC. On another flight that I had a delay (a long time ago) which was only like 20 minutes for passengers they did announce "First round free since everyone was so nice to wait"
I am surprised they announced that.
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Old Aug 13, 2013, 3:56 pm
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Policy is to comp drinks with a 3+ hour delay. However you will find most FA's will comp a drink with any delay.

It's part of our customer service to help everyone be happy when they land. In a lot of instances, the FA's the only person our customers are in contact with due to everything being done online. Our jobs are dependent on customers being happy when they leave the Aircraft.

No, we don't typically announce free drinks- there just may not be enough beer/wine/liquor on the plane for that! (I'm surprised this crew did

In most instances the FA's talk about comp'ing drinks so we are all on the same page - however sometimes that does not happen. I'll apologize in advance if you are on a flight delayed by us (vs. weather) and the FA doesn't comp your drink. We know without our passengers we have no job.
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