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-   -   UA 53 (formerly CO 53) - LAX-IAH late, IAH-EZE goes out on time??? (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/1323837-ua-53-formerly-co-53-lax-iah-late-iah-eze-goes-out-time.html)

caseminole Mar 11, 12 9:35 pm

UA 53 (formerly CO 53) - LAX-IAH late, IAH-EZE goes out on time???
 
My cousin is an AA Advantage flyer, and needed to fly newUA from LAX to EZE.

I am always bragging on CO Airlines being much better than AA (I still fully believe that overall)

He flew flight 53, which ended up being 45 minutes late into IAH (into terminal C).

So his 8:11 PM arrival turned into 8:54 PM

The "connecting" flight 53 out of Terminal E left right "on time" at 9 PM.

He is so upset right now!

Now he has to wait almost another 24 hours to get on the same flight tomorrow night

My question is why wouldnt UA hold this flight, if they KNOW they have passengers connecting through to EZE -

he is majorly inconvenienced right now, just called me to tell me this never would happen on AA, blah blah blah, but I dont have any counter argument.

It seems silly. Its the SAME FLIGHT# - surely holding an international flight where the inbound flight # is the same - for 20 minutes or so wouldnt harm arrival time into EZE.

I just dont understand why they wouldnt hold it if they know they have connecting passengers

ANy ideas???

Yoshi212 Mar 11, 12 9:42 pm

I do agree that is doesn't seem logical. I think it is a numbers game. if it was only a few people connecting they'd have to hold the plane a minimum of a 30 minutes lets day. And probably longer for baggage and the like. So if there was a significant amount on that flight they would do so but if it is a small number of passengers it's better for them to get the flight out to free up the gate and not arrive late in EZE. Personally I think the flight should have more of a buffer as LAX flights are often delayed in my experience.

sbm12 Mar 11, 12 9:44 pm


Originally Posted by caseminole (Post 18181497)
I just dont understand why they wouldnt hold it if they know they have connecting passengers

Happens more than the airlines are willing to admit. A "direct" flight with a change of aircraft is just a connection, regardless of how the airlines try to spin it. And your cousin had a misconnect.

As for why, maybe it was oversold and the misconnects helped them avoid bump issues. Maybe getting out on time means something farther down the line with the crew or the return flight. Or maybe the company just hates its customers and wants to piss them off as much as possible. ;)

mduell Mar 11, 12 10:23 pm

They have passengers connecting from many other flights; it generally doesn't make sense to hold the plane for connecting passengers regardless of flight number.

cova Mar 11, 12 10:29 pm

This happens all the time. Most Flyertalker's would plan to take an earlier flight not the direct flight number. But it the is the way it is.

I think the FAA should make a rule, that for direct flights - if the originating flight is late, then the change of aircraft flight must be held. Otherwise the airline would be heavily fined.

Bottom line - airlines should not be allowed to have marketed - direct flights.


Originally Posted by mduell (Post 18181708)
They have passengers connecting from many other flights; it generally doesn't make sense to hold the plane for connecting passengers regardless of flight number.

But if the same aircraft were used for the first segment - then it would be delayed and all the other passengers would be delayed anyway.

hobo13 Mar 11, 12 11:34 pm

I recall flying PMUA SFO-SYD a few years ago (CNZ deal!). The GA explained that the flight was going to be delayed because the ORD-SFO flight with the same flight number was arriving late, and they market it as a direct flight and do everything they can to make sure connecting pax don't misconnect.

Of course, that was PMUA.....

PDXPremier Mar 11, 12 11:47 pm

Keep in mind UA lets it's planes sit all day in EZE so it definately didn't need to get there on-time for a "quick turn"...

hobo13 Mar 11, 12 11:51 pm


Originally Posted by PDXPremier (Post 18182001)
Keep in mind UA lets it's planes sit all day in EZE so it definately didn't need to get there on-time for a "quick turn"...

very true. The parking lot at EZE is pretty crowded during the day!

mduell Mar 11, 12 11:51 pm


Originally Posted by cova (Post 18181726)
I think the FAA should make a rule, that for direct flights - if the originating flight is late, then the change of aircraft flight must be held. Otherwise the airline would be heavily fined.

I think that's absurd. The flight number is a technical detail, not a contract.


Originally Posted by cova (Post 18181726)
Bottom line - airlines should not be allowed to have marketed - direct flights.

For an airline as large as United it becomes a matter of conserving flight numbers due to ranges used for codeshares/etc. Thus some of the goofy post-merger "direct" flights that are well out of the way, like SFO-ORD-SNA or EWR-PHX-ORD.


Originally Posted by cova (Post 18181726)
But if the same aircraft were used for the first segment - then it would be delayed and all the other passengers would be delayed anyway.

Most direct flights aren't the same aircraft or even aircraft type.

belfordrocks Mar 11, 12 11:51 pm


Originally Posted by cova (Post 18181726)
This happens all the time. Most Flyertalker's would plan to take an earlier flight not the direct flight number. But it the is the way it is.

I think the FAA should make a rule, that for direct flights - if the originating flight is late, then the change of aircraft flight must be held. Otherwise the airline would be heavily fined.

Bottom line - airlines should not be allowed to have marketed - direct flights.



But if the same aircraft were used for the first segment - then it would be delayed and all the other passengers would be delayed anyway.

I have a better rule... make "direct flights" all non-stop by definition. US seems to be the worst offender out of the majors- DCA to Rome (via PHL)...

tarheelnj Mar 12, 12 7:55 am


Originally Posted by cova (Post 18181726)
...I think the FAA should make a rule, that for direct flights - if the originating flight is late, then the change of aircraft flight must be held. Otherwise the airline would be heavily fined.

Agree - the airline gets value (higher position on flight listings) from a direct flight (even with equipment change) than a true connection, so in return they should have to choose between holding the second flight or paying a fine.

Is UA really running out of flight numbers? If so, then go to 5 digit flight numbers for the EX flights. No one pays attention to their flight number on EX flights anyway, until they actually need the number to check the status.

halls120 Mar 12, 12 8:04 am


Originally Posted by PDXPremier (Post 18182001)
Keep in mind UA lets it's planes sit all day in EZE so it definately didn't need to get there on-time for a "quick turn"...

True, but remember there are crew rest issues, so maybe the dispatcher didn't have any flexibility in holding the departure.

One thing I've noticed about flying on CO metal is that connecting times are tight at IAH for many flights. I was on a DCA-IAH-ELP flight last year, and I almost missed the ELP flight because we were late getting into IAH. I generally won't schedule a flight with a short connecting time - I don't want to find myself in the position the OP's cousin found himself in.


Originally Posted by sbm12 (Post 18181537)
Or maybe the company just hates its customers and wants to piss them off as much as possible. ;)

I don't think they hate their customers. I think they simply regard us as $$ filling their seats, and they act accordingly. ;)

sbm12 Mar 12, 12 8:56 am


Originally Posted by mduell (Post 18182018)
For an airline as large as United it becomes a matter of conserving flight numbers due to ranges used for codeshares/etc. Thus some of the goofy post-merger "direct" flights that are well out of the way, like SFO-ORD-SNA or EWR-PHX-ORD.

The long-haul "direct" flights have virtually nothing to do with conserving flight numbers and nearly everything to do with making the flights appear more desirable to the various booking engines that display "direct" flights higher than connecting flights.


Originally Posted by halls120 (Post 18183363)
One thing I've noticed about flying on CO metal is that connecting times are tight at IAH for many flights. I was on a DCA-IAH-ELP flight last year, and I almost missed the ELP flight because we were late getting into IAH. I generally won't schedule a flight with a short connecting time - I don't want to find myself in the position the OP's cousin found himself in.

For an onward flight to ELP where there are multiple flights daily I'm more inclined to take the tight connection as they usually work and when they do the overall travel time really is much better. With a once daily flight to EZE departing at the end of the day I'd be less inclined, though it would depend on my overall schedule.

belfordrocks Mar 12, 12 8:58 am

But are SFO-ORD-SNA for example even valid routings? If not, that would be pretty strange for a "direct" flight...

Bonehead Mar 12, 12 9:12 am

As mentioned, the more savvy among us examine international connections with a microscope and make sure to schedule a (in my case) 2.5-hour connection or greater, especially if there is only one flight/day to the international destination. The problem with many of these direct flights is a much shorter connection time coupled with the appearance/assumption that the flight is nonstop (or at least uses the same equipment), which trips up less-experienced travelers. Airlines need to schedule longer connection times on such direct flights, in my opinion.


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