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Proactive Customer Service Recovery - The New United?

Proactive Customer Service Recovery - The New United?

Old Mar 7, 16, 6:00 pm
  #1  
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Proactive Customer Service Recovery - The New United?

Flying United 621 RSW-ORD today. Arrive at the gate 10 minutes after boarding was to commence to see a plane parked and the baggage carts lined up but no bags moving onto the plane. Turns out most of the restrooms were inoperable and they weren't sure if the plane would be able to go.

Great communication from the staff and we ultimately departed with a mere 31 minute delay and will arrive a mere 14 minutes late. Gate agents were proactively protecting tight connections at the first sign of delay, calling people up as the expected delay made their connections risky.

Boarded 3rd to last, GA asks my name as they're out of room for carry-ons, but before she can get back with a bag tag one of the FA's has come out to say he made room in the bins and it won't be necessary.

Was #2 on the list with first booked out, so sat 21D (with spot for my bag right above me), and then a GA comes all the way back to clear me into 4A last minute.


Fire up the laptop mid-flight, I have an email from United apologizing for the inconvenience I experienced, and sending me off to a customer service recovery website. Once I enter my name and FF number, the page apologizes for the delay, even specifically mentioning the cause, and offers a token of United's appreciation.

5,000 miles or $100 Ecert for a 14 minute delay. This is technically an on-time arrival. Flabbergasted! As I'm completing the process on my laptop, the FA gets on the PA and tells everyone on the flight to save their boarding pass if they don't have a frequent flyer number and to make sure to visit united.com/appreciation for a token of appreciation from United. So proactive on both ends - email in my email box before landing and announcements on the flight.

Frankly I wouldn't have even registered this as a real delay in the first place, and $100/5,000 miles for 14 minutes is borderline unreasonably generous.


Is this the new United? Has this been happening for a while and I just didn't notice? Or am I just having a good day?


I took the ECV, incidentally.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 6:19 pm
  #2  
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It's been happening for a while, sporadically and unpredictably.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 6:24 pm
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by mduell View Post
It's been happening for a while, sporadically and unpredictably.
Is this what they mean by surprise and delight?

Last edited by goalie; Mar 7, 16 at 7:51 pm Reason: Off topic comment removed
transportprof is offline  
Old Mar 7, 16, 6:25 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by transportprof View Post
Is this what they mean by surprise and delight?
No - this is more shock and awe - as evidenced by OP's reaction...

Last edited by goalie; Mar 7, 16 at 7:52 pm Reason: Edited quoted post to match edited original post
bmwe92fan is offline  
Old Mar 7, 16, 6:41 pm
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan View Post
No - this is more shock and awe - as evidenced by OP's reaction...
This is an exception, not a rule. I had three Irregular operations for one trip to China. United did not offer me anything before I wrote a nice letter to Customer Care. There were a cancellation at the beginning of the trip, delays over 1-4 hours and misconnection for forced stay at Newark (one extra day leaves), as well as lousy customer services in between. So, OP was shocked and awed. I bet that this will not happen to OP again. Happy travels.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 6:44 pm
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At the risk of offending the cross posting gods, I just posted in the newbie thread about a full refund of outbound legs that were delayed by weather 15 hours (refund paid for a 1 way rental car) while keeping the return intact. I have no status w/UA.

If that's the new United, two thumbs up!
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Old Mar 7, 16, 6:55 pm
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Definitely an exception. Two weeks ago, my flight from EWR to IAD was delayed (in 30 minute increments) by close to 9 hours. No offer of any compensation -- but UA sure knew about it because when a day later I received an emailed request for comments, it started with the bland statement something like, "we know there were service difficulties with your flight ...."

So the OP won the lottery.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 7:40 pm
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Originally Posted by mduell View Post
It's been happening for a while, sporadically and unpredictably.
Exactly, flew to MCO a week ago in paid first, 1 1/2 hours late and not a word at gate or on board from GA/FA's or from customer service.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 7:53 pm
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Hit or miss. Have had several delays ranging from 1-4 hours in past few months and got zip. Not even an apology email.
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Old Mar 7, 16, 7:58 pm
  #10  
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
5,000 miles or $100 Ecert for a 14 minute delay. This is technically an on-time arrival. Flabbergasted! As I'm completing the process on my laptop, the FA gets on the PA and tells everyone on the flight to save their boarding pass if they don't have a frequent flyer number and to make sure to visit united.com/appreciation for a token of appreciation from United. So proactive on both ends - email in my email box before landing and announcements on the flight.

Frankly I wouldn't have even registered this as a real delay in the first place, and $100/5,000 miles for 14 minutes is borderline unreasonably generous.
Gee, I got an offer for same $100 for a FOUR hour delay, poor communication, and 3 a.m. arrival

Chose the cert, but still waiting for it to arrive.

Oh, and after 3 a.m. had to take a taxi to the tune of $50
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Old Mar 7, 16, 8:05 pm
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I have had nothing but good experiences with United, especially as of late. Glad to see this turned out well for you!
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Old Mar 7, 16, 8:40 pm
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Originally Posted by InHouseCounsel View Post
Hit or miss. Have had several delays ranging from 1-4 hours in past few months and got zip. Not even an apology email.
Same here but one was 9 hour delay....and nada....
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Old Mar 7, 16, 10:51 pm
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Had 2 UA delays recently. 40 minutes and 2 hours. Nothing offered.
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Old Mar 8, 16, 12:05 am
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Service has been getting better no question to that but this was an bit odd and unheard of.
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Old Mar 8, 16, 1:17 am
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I believe this is the principle on which slot machines work. Usually they just drain you steadily, but occasionally there are some flashing lights and out comes big payout or an upgrade or a yellow luggage handle wrap or drink chits or whatever... Just enough to keep us all coming back for more.

So congratulations on your payout and play again soon!

Last edited by ftweb; Mar 8, 16 at 1:28 am
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