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How many are REALLY leaving UA? [2014 edition]

How many are REALLY leaving UA? [2014 edition]

Old Dec 13, 14, 11:18 pm
  #1501  
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Portland, OR, USA
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Originally Posted by LaserSailor View Post
I think this is missed by a lot of people here. There are a lot more HVF who never frequent these pages, for whom this is the whole thing.

UA (and the others) are being run for these flyers, not for FT.

Im not going to lose a half business day connecting through some city for a better glass of champagne or even a better price, for that matter.
If you are not at a hub it is quite likely that you will lose no time one way or the other. Once you need to connect it is surprising how little difference there is schedule-wise across the airline and their alliances. For me personally, I respond to service levels and reliability as my top priorities. For long haul I buy premium cabin - gave away most of my RPUs/GPUs this year to my brother (and still have 2 GPUs that I can get to clear for him on any of his trips - so much for their value even domestically). On a service level and reliability basis UA generally loses to its competitors for me. I used UA this year only for trips where they were clearly the best/only option for my schedule. That got them some pretty low value business from me. Most of my premium domestic travel went to Alaska. Until I feel I get value and reliable transport for my dollar from UA that equals that I get from AS that pattern will continue.
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Old Dec 13, 14, 11:32 pm
  #1502  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
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Originally Posted by jpsj View Post
Tomorrow is my last UA flight--heading to AA for 2015---1.1 million miles and making the change. I figure that if AA becomes like UA then I haven't lost much and certainly with where UA is heading in 2015, might as well get a little bit more with AA!

But it is bittersweet---I enjoy the UC folks in PHL--they are a good lot and I certainly have my favorite places to pass a layover in ORD, DEN, SFO and IAH.

I really want the upgrades and UA just isn't cutting it for me--later 2014 was poor and then the whole wifi situation is a disaster. I had 4 cross country planes with either no wifi or inop wifi. That is a lot of time and that is something that I value!

Anyhow, you all have heard it before, I am just a bit sentimental as UA is alike an old shoe. I guess I need to break in a new pair now with AA!
Sorry that you are leaving UA.

But I must agree if you are a domestic flyer, UA CPU rate is horrible even for 1K.

UA's handling of irregular op. is also bad compared to AA/DL.
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Old Dec 14, 14, 1:18 am
  #1503  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Independent! But mostly BKK, BCN, SFO, PDX, SEA...
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Thumbs up

More tales from the other side of the fence where the grass is greener...

Flew to Bangkok last week in Premium Economy. Or not.

The morning of, I tweaked my back really bad. By that afternoon, I was hurtin'. Finally get some ibus but I'm still hobbling badly when we go to check in. That's okay...I have a bag full of aspirin and some sleeping pills and I at least know I can get a good nights sleep in the PE seat.

We do the bag drop, the girl's a kilo over but our guy Alan doesn't say a word. At the end as he is printing our boarding passes, she says "Hey, any chance we could get a free upgrade to business class?" Only joking, of course, we know how stingy Cathay is.

Without batting an eye, Alan hands us our passports back and says, "Oh, I already did." Tucked in both our passports are boarding cards for the whole ride in J. He looked at me and said "we needed your seats, and it looks like you needed this." Talk about one sweet 12-hour block of sleep.

A couple days ago I'm checking email and I get a message about my return flight. It says "Sorry, but due to an operational change the Bangkok to Hong Kong flight you are scheduled to fly no longer has premium economy. Please accept our apologies for the inconvenience. As a courtesy, please accept a complimentary upgrade to business class for this leg. Or, you can call us or visit our website to change your booking free of charge."

Seriously? Airlines still do this kind of s&$#? Who knew? LOVE me some Cathay. I'm sure it won't always be rainbows and unicorns, but man, the relationship is getting off to a good start. I already want to start giving them obscene amounts of money to guarantee myself a lie-flat seat.

In the homeland, Alaska is treating me wonderfully for West Coast ops. I have only missed 1 upgrade and when I did, I got to catch the vapors of the F pax from Row 6 anyway. It also seems like American isn't ready to poop on fliers out of the gate post-merger...haven't flown them since the changeover but might give them a shot this summer if I don't hear too much howling.

I'm almost a year United-free. Why, why, why in the world did I wait this long to quit Air Smisek? I guess it's no matter...better late than never. To those who take any little crumb United dishes out these days for the privilege of flying in Hades...please, keep at it. I used to say that people should abandon them in droves but now I feel the reverse is true...please, stay! It keeps them around, and keeps you out of my PE or J seat. Besides, everybody should fly with who makes them happy. I know I am!
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Old Dec 14, 14, 3:29 am
  #1504  
RNE
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Originally Posted by luckypierre View Post
Is there hidden meaning in this suggestion? One of the hallmarks of the current United management is NOT listening to their customers...
This is getting a bit hackneyed after umpteen years, isn't'? United has done nothing but change under His Excellency Little Lord Jeffleroy. Management doesn't listen to the customers it used to. But it still does.

Originally Posted by Bear4Asian View Post
I moving to Delta. I fly to SEA-Shanghai 4-5 times a year. Delta gives me nonstop.
Route structure is an important consideration—especially internationally. Bravo to you. As for me, based in CAK/CLE I don't enjoy a lot of nonstops anymore.

Originally Posted by pdx1M View Post
If you are not at a hub it is quite likely that you will lose no time one way or the other. Once you need to connect it is surprising how little difference there is schedule-wise across the airline and their alliances.
That's a fair argument. Connecting is connecting is connecting. Of course, that makes reliability particularly important. It's risky enough depending on UA to make one flight leave and arrive on-time. Multiple flights doing that is a will-o'-the-wisp!

Originally Posted by FiveMileFinal View Post
More tales from the other side of the fence where the grass is greener...
But who wants to eat grass?

RNE, grading UA on what matters to me:

Route Structure B-
Reliability D+
Economy Seating A-
Redemptions B+
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Old Dec 15, 14, 10:12 am
  #1505  
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Originally Posted by RNE View Post
But who wants to eat grass?
It's better the grass SMI/J's been smoking.
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Old Dec 15, 14, 4:49 pm
  #1506  
 
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Originally Posted by RNE View Post

RNE, grading UA on what matters to me:

Route Structure B-
Reliability D+
Economy Seating A-
Redemptions B+
For me, grading UA

Route Structure A-
Reliability C
GPU Upgrade A
Redemptions B+
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Old Dec 15, 14, 6:37 pm
  #1507  
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Still trying to figure out what to do in 2015. I am a 1K on UA with 205k PQMs this year.

Most of my travel is to NYC with some trips to Asia and Europe. My NYC travel may change next year and really the only options out of PDX are DL, UA, or AS. I have thought about status matching to AS MVPG75K but their options to the east coast are expensive and not that frequent. AS is also relatively expensive along the west coast.

DL has a decent network on the west coast and they price pretty competitively with UA, with some F fares cheaper than UA Y fares.

I would definitely miss the GPUs that I earn on UA but I wonder if that is a price worth paying.

My year has just been abysmal with UA when it comes to irrops and customer service.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 11:27 am
  #1508  
RNE
 
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Originally Posted by Hartmann View Post
Still trying to figure out what to do in 2015...My year has just been abysmal with UA when it comes to irrops and customer service.
When a lifelong CO/UA flyer like you is contemplating leaving, that gets my attention. And I know the tune you are whistling. This year, I've had all kinds of cancellations and delays and poor customer service to boot! But I'm pretty much stuck with the airline, given my investment in FPQMs. Anyway, let us know what you decide to do.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 12:36 pm
  #1509  
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
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The grass IS greener on the other side, at least based on my experience.

I was loyal to UA (to the tune of 1.6M lifetime miles), but I had enough / moved over to AA at the beginning of 2014. Frankly, I expected them to be a little better, but not much. Boy what a nice surprise - my experience with AA this year has been vastly better than with UA. AA matched my 1k status (EXP) right off the bat. Most of my flying is domestic with LAX/JFK once or twice each month. What has been better:
1) Reliability - I've only had 1 flight delayed all year due to MX.
2) Upgrades - only missed 2 upgrades (free) all year. Vastly improved upgrade experience over UA.
3) Admirals Club - their clubs are much nicer: showers, significantly less crowded that UA clubs, food ($).
4) Their ground, flight, and phone staff are much more customer focused / generally seem happy. Seems like they actually give a hoot about customer service.

Based on my experience this year, I'm going to continue with AA / abandon UA completely. It really is a shame to be honest, but it is what it is. What I find a bit odd is that I've been 1k for close to 12 years, annual spend of $30-40k and not even an e-mail from UA asking about the drop-off in my business this year...
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Old Dec 16, 14, 3:56 pm
  #1510  
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Originally Posted by Hartmann View Post
Most of my travel is to NYC with some trips to Asia and Europe. My NYC travel may change next year and really the only options out of PDX are DL, UA, or AS. I have thought about status matching to AS MVPG75K but their options to the east coast are expensive and not that frequent. AS is also relatively expensive along the west coast.

My year has just been abysmal with UA when it comes to irrops and customer service.
Re: AS, really? I've been getting smokin' deals on West Coast ops on Alaska...sure, they pop you close in (3 days), but even up till then, I've been getting pretty good fares - as low as $40 SFO-PDX and $90 SFO-SEA one way. Maybe they're making their money on the transcons? You're right in that they don't have a lot of lift that way, but there's not much you can do with a 739...

Maybe pledge to DL? You'd get the benefits of AS locally and the frequencies of DL that you need. But then you're stuck with SkyTeam if alliances matter to you. I'm loosely married to OneWorld now, but I mostly buy on price and schedule these days.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 4:02 pm
  #1511  
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Originally Posted by Hartmann View Post
Still trying to figure out what to do in 2015. I am a 1K on UA with 205k PQMs this year.

Most of my travel is to NYC with some trips to Asia and Europe. My NYC travel may change next year and really the only options out of PDX are DL, UA, or AS. I have thought about status matching to AS MVPG75K but their options to the east coast are expensive and not that frequent. AS is also relatively expensive along the west coast.

DL has a decent network on the west coast and they price pretty competitively with UA, with some F fares cheaper than UA Y fares.

I would definitely miss the GPUs that I earn on UA but I wonder if that is a price worth paying.

My year has just been abysmal with UA when it comes to irrops and customer service.
Can you give a bit more detail about your travel patterns?
If you're doing PDX-NYC and a nonstop is primary objective, DL seems like the obvious choice if your final destination Manhattan. EWR is awful.

Not sure your exact locations in Europe and Asia, but SEA has great DL options these days. You could fly there on AS to connect to your DL flights.

Just my two cents.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 4:18 pm
  #1512  
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Originally Posted by aisleorwindow View Post
Can you give a bit more detail about your travel patterns?
If you're doing PDX-NYC and a nonstop is primary objective, DL seems like the obvious choice if your final destination Manhattan. EWR is awful.

Not sure your exact locations in Europe and Asia, but SEA has great DL options these days. You could fly there on AS to connect to your DL flights.

Just my two cents.
My destinations in NY vary on which office I am having to work out of that week. Sometimes I need to be in the Bronx/Westchester County, sometimes Manhattan, and sometimes Brooklyn. I think that travel (to NY) is going to dwindle a bit in 2015 and I don't know where my next client will be. A lot of our clients are in UA hub cities (Maryland/D.C., Chicago, Denver, L.A., etc.) so flying UA is usually the best available non-stop.

As for Europe, we spend a good amount of time in Berlin each year but I am hoping to do some travel further east and south (Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, etc.)

For Asia, it's mostly for pleasure and I am drawn to Vietnam, Cambodia, etc.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 4:27 pm
  #1513  
RNE
 
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Originally Posted by kranabargar View Post
The grass IS greener on the other side, at least based on my experience...Based on my experience this year, I'm going to continue with AA / abandon UA completely.
Enjoy your year gnawing on that greener grass. Post next year, after AA asphalts over that lawn you love. AA and DL and UA will be all but indistinguishable in due time.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 4:47 pm
  #1514  
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Originally Posted by RNE View Post
Enjoy your year gnawing on that greener grass. Post next year, after AA asphalts over that lawn you love. AA and DL and UA will be all but indistinguishable in due time.
Maybe in terms of their FFP, but in terms of actual hard and soft product, Delta is far ahead of United in lots of ways. If I'm going to earn increasingly useless miles, I'd rather do it on an airline I actually enjoy flying.
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Old Dec 16, 14, 4:58 pm
  #1515  
RNE
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
Maybe in terms of their FFP, but in terms of actual hard and soft product, Delta is far ahead of United in lots of ways. If I'm going to earn increasingly useless miles, I'd rather do it on an airline I actually enjoy flying.
All the legacy carriers will be essentially the same with differences too insubstantial to matter—equally mundane. I'm surprised you can use the verb "enjoy" in regard to any airline. If so, more power to you, my friend.

RNE, scrying the airlines' future is all too easy.
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