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Beyond "unwanted behavior"--Southwest announcements

Beyond "unwanted behavior"--Southwest announcements

Old Feb 19, 20, 8:31 am
  #1  
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Beyond "unwanted behavior"--Southwest announcements

I recently started flying Southwest a lot more. I just had six flights in the past couple of weeks. The past four, in particular, were not easy. One of the staff at the check-in counter was downright aggressive. I didn't personally interact much with the flight attendants, but they seemed angry, unwelcoming, and not at all the folksy, charming, jokey types one expects from Southwest.

I tried to figure out if this was just me, or if something else was afoot.

I noticed that the announcements had such a shaming and harsh tone on each fo the last four flights. Since the happens at the beginning of the flight, it sets the tone in a negative way.

The lavatory rules, in particular, were over-the-top. These were stated in the regular safety speech then again after takeoff. The rules were long and complex about how many people can stand where, and how it's a federal law, blah blah blah. The crew then snapped at an elderly man in a cane when he was standing in the aisle at about row three or four, waiting for permission to use the forward lavatory. That sort of combative approach isn't endearing. It seemed like a lot of rules, and it also seemed like nobody would listen. It was like a lousy primary school teacher with no sense of classroom management.

On domestic flights, I've found that many US carriers have fairly loose lavatory rules. On flights TO the US from international points of origin, they insist upon using the lavatory in one's "ticketed cabin." Occasionally a crew member will make some absurd security-related speech, but most just keep it to a mandated sentence or two about "congregating." Polite crews would also try to navigate the rules so as to accommodate an elderly or disabled passenger.

The PA admonishments continued. There were additional speeches about water bottles in seat-back pockets, about passengers "trying to hide" purses beneath their feet, and--of course--"obey all commands." Doesn't that sound defensive? "Nobody listens to us, so we're going to make our speech sound like we're battle-axes."

I thought about this compared with safety videos on other carriers, or the written speeches in recent memory. There was something so belligerent and long-winded about Southwest. It was as if they expected passengers to misbehave, so they were launching a pre-emptive strike. Sure, passengers can be awful, but I can't imagine that this helps. Sure, some of the language in the safety speech is regulated by law, but can they tone down their delivery? Are there times when the crew could address a problem face-to-face rather than hiding behind a PA? Does this seem like a power trip?

I'm curious if anyone else has noticed this, or if it was just a "bad run."
Mats is offline  
Old Feb 19, 20, 9:04 am
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I've never had a hostile and belligerent crew on 4 consecutive flights - on any airline - in my life.

So, it's possibly you.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 9:11 am
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This seems to be a fantasy world dreamed up by OP. I average around a hundred WN flights a year. Big nope on the claims made above.
smmrfld is offline  
Old Feb 19, 20, 9:27 am
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Nothing like you describe on any of my WN flights.

But this does sound like AA.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 9:44 am
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Originally Posted by Tanic View Post
Nothing like you describe on any of my WN flights.

But this does sound like AA.

LOL. so sad but true.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 10:35 am
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FYI, OP was the original poster in the other thread focused on unwelcome behavior. He misquoted it there (“unwanted” vs. "unwelcome”), so I’d look at his posts with some skepticism.
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Last edited by smmrfld; Feb 19, 20 at 11:17 am
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:02 am
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Around 30 flights last year... only ran into 1 crew not so happy, and a couple of random FA that were grumps. Overall, we find them pretty good.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:36 am
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My crews are typically very pleasant. Occasionally some seem a little more gruff, but that I have not had an unpleasant experience. For the forward lav - WN does appear to be pretty strict on this and they do make the announcement multiple times - I do not find it too complicated but they are pretty explicit that waiting in the aisle, even at row 3-4 is not acceptable.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:38 am
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I wish they would have a rule that people aren't allowed to fly in flip flops. Actually, THAT should be a federal law.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:46 am
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Originally Posted by smmrfld View Post
This seems to be a fantasy world dreamed up by OP. I average around a hundred WN flights a year. Big nope on the claims made above.
I agree; the story has a made-up feel to it.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 12:12 pm
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Originally Posted by LondonElite View Post
I wish they would have a rule that people aren't allowed to fly in flip flops. Actually, THAT should be a federal law.
Just one evacuation running through burning kerosene usually fixes that.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 1:07 pm
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You have time traveled and landed on USAir.
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dlaue is offline  
Old Feb 19, 20, 1:21 pm
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perhaps people should listen to, and follow, the rules.

and use the lav in your own cabin!
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Old Feb 19, 20, 1:38 pm
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Originally Posted by Tanic View Post
Nothing like you describe on any of my WN flights.

But this does sound like AA.
Fake news. I fly AA 2x per week almost every week (48 travel weeks last year; same pace this year; same general pace last 8 years) and have had zero issues with AA crews. Got some surliness here and there with gate agents when I tried to convince them to break the rules (flight changes, fee waivers, that sort of thing) but otherwise been a near perfect track record for the past 400k miles.

I always assumed almost all of these posts were the Pygmalion effect.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 1:44 pm
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OP - one of the reality you have to face is, even WN is one of the largest airlines in the world based on passenger carried, the majority of WN passengers are leisure travelers. Leisure travelers do not usually travel as much as business travelers or elite members. So FWIW - by comparison, it is easier for the WN cabin to become a zoo instead of any US3 airline cabins.

I would not say WN expects passengers to misbehave. But the chance of experiencing a misbehaved WN passenger is definitely higher.

Originally Posted by Mats View Post
On domestic flights, I've found that many US carriers have fairly loose lavatory rules.
Not true at all. In fact, many have tighter lavatory rules, due to the existence of a premium cabin.

Generally, front lavatory is reserved for front cabin (and crews) only when a premium cabin exists. On the other hand, because WN does not have a premium cabin, I would believe that WN will allow anyone in the front of the plane to use the lavatory. So it would appear that someone from the back of the plane can also use the lavatory.
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