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-   -   Polaris In-flight Experiences (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/1806112-polaris-flight-experiences.html)

porciuscato Jan 17, 17 2:20 pm


Originally Posted by RandomBaritone (Post 27771617)
I saw that too, and I can't help thinking that something's been lost in the retelling. Of course I wasn't there, but the comment as related is at once so dismissive yet condescending that it doesn't seem like something an FA would toss off in passing. If I had to guess, I'd assume it was embedded in a more detailed comment by the FA, but OP didn't provide the full context.

Given that we don't have an exact quotation, it's probably best not to read too much into it.


The original account is entirely believable to me. I have had similar experiences dozens of times over the years (see my sig line for example).

cricketer Jan 17, 17 4:01 pm

Another excellent experience, this time from FRA-ORD. Service was friendly, attentive, and genuine - i.e. superb. Ate well, and then slept beautifully for six hours. The pmUA seats, even on the narrower 777, are really comfortable - and with the mattress pad and gel cooling pillow they're even better.

Two for two - top crews, solid meals, good sleep. That's exactly what I want out of long-haul business class.

Again, storage is the only concern - I had a bulkhead window (row 7 on the 777) so could stuff everything around and behind the TV screen, but you'd be in trouble away from a bulkhead.

username Jan 17, 17 5:57 pm

I had my first Polaris flight and I will write my observations later.

My biggest concern is that there was so much bedding stuff left all over the cabin floor (since overhead was full with passengers' stuff) on landing. It can be a huge safety hazard if an evacuation is needed.

It is not as bad during takeoff since they have not been unpacked yet.

It was a 744 so the bins are not as big. Maybe it is better on the 777s?

Benebene Jan 17, 17 7:13 pm


Originally Posted by A4K (Post 27771540)
Did I read this all right? When you said your seat was broken the FA actually said to you "There are a lot of people who would be lucky to have your seat" Or something like that?

If so that is a complete joke, and hearing stories like this just make me never want to give United another dime. It is one thing to be uninterested, lazy, make mistakes, whatever, but to make a comment like that to a passenger that is paying to fly your airline in a premium cabin is just inexcusable.

Well, I think it has to do with work rules and entitlement, and I suspect that it is hard to dismiss someone and they know it. One thing I do like is that UA attendants are real people and don't put on the air of being like employees at Disneyland. So sometimes I think that leads the occasional flight attendant to take license and say what they think.

Also, because of MileagePlus and status, there is never an empty seat in GF or BF I think that is why the crew would say something like this. I think they sometimes realize and act upon the fact that many of us in GF or BF were upgraded into these seats.

I have a friend who has like 7MM and is GS out of Boston. He is sincere but always puts on the air of being doe eyed and super gushing to the flight attendants when he is in GF so that they treat him well. Asking to have your coat hung up and saying something like "If you don't mind, sorry to bother you, would it be possible to hang this up?".

robbeck1 Jan 17, 17 8:26 pm

Den>nrt 11.11, 2e, nrt>den 11.16, 3e, 787-8
 
Full houses outbound and return. Excellent EWR-based experienced crews both directions. Lots of Dreamliner overhead storage available so no issue slinging the bedding up there until wanted. Odd plastic glass/tray outbound but not on return. Guy next to me did the wine flight, I just went straight to a red. Outbound turbot was very good; katsu was really a large portion of sliced roast pork loin, also good. Inbound chicken just wasn't to my taste; omlette better than the usual folded floppy disk. Overall definitely an improved experience vs. some previous DEN>NRT>DEN flights, but it was the crews' attitudes that really impressed.

Explorer789 Jan 17, 17 9:07 pm


Originally Posted by cricketer (Post 27777679)
Another excellent experience, this time from FRA-ORD. Service was friendly, attentive, and genuine - i.e. superb. Ate well, and then slept beautifully for six hours. The pmUA seats, even on the narrower 777, are really comfortable - and with the mattress pad and gel cooling pillow they're even better.

Two for two - top crews, solid meals, good sleep. That's exactly what I want out of long-haul business class.

Again, storage is the only concern - I had a bulkhead window (row 7 on the 777) so could stuff everything around and behind the TV screen, but you'd be in trouble away from a bulkhead.

I will be flying ORD-BRU in May in row 7, basically same rear-facing bulkhead window seats you had. Glad to hear of a good experience in a 772. Hopefully by then, the Polaris service will be more consistent across all the routes and the bad FAs get weeded out.

narvik Jan 17, 17 9:23 pm


Originally Posted by Explorer789 (Post 27778884)
....and the bad FAs get weeded out.

I hope you have a GREAT flight, but I doubt there will be any weeding done. There are some well established weeds that are even immune to Roundup®.

iluv2fly Jan 17, 17 9:47 pm

Had a great flight in Polaris First from HKG to ORD on Monday.

The two F FAs (ORD-based) were your typical "older" ones you would find on a TransPac, but they were both terrific. (I only put this here to let readers know that not all the older ones - as some here believe - just go through the motions on these flights.) The purser - HKG-based gentleman - meh. Glad he was not working in F.
Without even asking they offered me the gel pillow and PJs and asked if I wanted the turndown service with the mattress pad. Constantly went through the cabin to make sure anyone got what was needed.

What was interesting - and I don't believe I have read it here yet - was the soup portion. No longer a thimbleful - it was a decent-sized bowl. And it was very tasty.

I had the salmon and it was delicious. And the portion size was huge with great sides. Will definitely order that again.

Dessert bites were very good too. And of course the sundae. ^

I had the frittata for breakfast and it was very good too.

Being in F, the seat was great. Hope the Polaris C seat is nearly as good.

That's it in a nutshell.

ual1234 Jan 17, 17 9:48 pm

I flew ICN to SFO a couple weeks ago on a 747 in business and definitely liked the improvements in the food. Presentation was nicer, food was excellent, and the portions were generous. Before the change, the food was hit or miss. The cheese course was about the same and the ice cream sundae was about the same but this time the trolley had little chocolates on a 3-tier tray that they were passing out. Amenity kit was a little larger, and the blankets were definitely nicer than before. All in all, a pleasant trip. Looking forward to trying out Polaris in the new 777.

username Jan 17, 17 10:00 pm

My first Polaris flight. SFO-TPE on 747-400 Lower Deck in C, flying time 13h5m

Summary:

P is for Poorly trained/informed flight attendants on new service
O is for Old seats with new bedding is still a big improvement
L is for Looking all over the cabin for service items
A is for Added workload stresses flight attendants and slows down service
R is for Reduced stowage space due to all the added bedding items
I is for Insufficient quantity of entree loaded - need to specify 1st, 2nd, 3rd and maybe 4th choice
S is for Safety concern for bedding scattered all over the floor during landing

It is definitely a step up but it feels a little chaotic due to the lack of stowage and flight attendants struggling to get things done.

******

Bedding
+ I think it is a big improvement for sleep quality - even with the old seats.
+ I put the duvet on the seat and it made the seats feel more comfortable and helped control temperature. Did not ask for the mattress pad
+ The gel pillow was wonderful

- I think there is too much bedding. The back pillows were not wrapped and really did not seem to help a lot compared with the amount of space they take
- I saw multiple on-break FAs take the gel pillows with them to use. I think I was the only passenger in my zone of 24 seats who had it
- The day blanket can be slightly thicker and need to be maybe a foot longer
- At landing, a lot of that stuff was all over the cabin floor. If we have to evacuate, it will be a problem

Food
+ Like the dessert cart service

- Strange choice of tuna for appetizer - not good for people who don't eat fish and not good for people who don't eat raw stuff
- Quantity, especially the side salad, is not sufficient- FA showed up and asked for 1st, 2nd and 3rd choice. She said "depending on how many Global Services are onboard, I might have to ask for the 4th choice". This should really not be the case for premium cabins
- Garlic bread was poorly done - not toasted and soggy inside
- Asian fusion soup served without spoon or chopstick. FA could not find them and said "the pre-landing congee will have spoon"
- Both of my meals served lukewarm - and I was in the 2nd row in C
- It seems a lot of the stuff is not setup efficiently for the FAs. I saw them sitting on the steps and folding the napkins. She also said that there was not enough space in the upper deck for them to do the service. All this slows down service
- It seems they were moving a lot of food (in those aluminum containers) between the F and J galleys?
- The ice cream bowl looked really nice but it is really heavy. I thought keeping weight of the plane would be important?
- Still get half cashew

Service
- FAs did their jobs but there was no elegance / grace in the service. For example, FA just showed up and said "First, Second and Third Choice" - not addressing us by name or any greeting. I think the added workload, unfamiliarity and full cabin/staffing level contributed to it

Hartmann Jan 17, 17 10:22 pm

Flew Polaris First ORD-MUC.

Bedding
There is too much stuff. Get rid of the tiny pillow (who uses that?) and maybe give folks an option for blankets, thick or thin, depending on personal preference. I did use the gel pillow and liked it, though it seems to absorb body heat and found myself turning it over to find a cool spot.

Food
The starter was the salmon with wasabi and quinoa. It was a strange combination and the salmon tasted like nothing. I ended up not eating it.

I skipped the soup.

Salad was decent. Bread choices were pretzel roll or garlic bread.

Main course was the beef with beans and mushrooms and a side of polenta. Beef was way over done and there wasn't a whole lot of flavor in anything.

The cheese plate has really become an afterthought and is hugely disappointing. On this flight there were three cheese pieces on the plate, but two were of the same type. I got a good number of grapes but most weren't actually ripe yet.

I didn't have any wine but it was nice that they had San Pellegrino on offer.


Service
The crew was friendly but the service dragged on for close to 3 hours. ORD-MUC is 9 hours if you're lucky so it really cuts into sleep.

The new cutlery and plates is nice but I couldn't see much of a quality improvement in the food.

I'll write-up my return EWR-TXL in Polaris Business next.

Ari Jan 18, 17 5:53 am


Originally Posted by iluv2fly (Post 27779038)
Without even asking they offered me the gel pillow and PJs and asked if I wanted the turndown service with the mattress pad. Constantly went through the cabin to make sure anyone got what was needed.

That just goes to show that those interested can learn the new product quickly and deliver it well and those not so service oriented . . . . not so much.

Did you find the new Pf mattress pad smaller or about the same as the old GF mattress pad?

goodeats21 Jan 18, 17 6:18 am


Originally Posted by iluv2fly (Post 27779038)
...
What was interesting - and I don't believe I have read it here yet - was the soup portion. No longer a thimbleful - it was a decent-sized bowl. And it was very tasty.

Cool. I haven't been in Polaris First yet, so good to hear.

The soups have always been very good - wondered why they only served a thimble of it before.

big V Jan 18, 17 7:14 am

Flew SFO-HKG in the upper deck 1/16.

The FAs were neither outstanding nor dreadful, perfectly solid but not terribly warm. I concur with a PP about them rolling through asking if you want a wine flight -- I wanted a cocktail but felt like I'd be putting them out for asking so just got the wine. (It's totally on me for not asking.)

Got the PDB, champers (Perrier Jouet Brut IIRC) with a chocolate.

App was seared tuna, it was pretty tasteless. The wasabi wasn't quite strong enough and even with salt, not terribly flavorful. I'd characterize this a miss.

Unlike others, I managed to open the balsamic salad dressing on the first try (but was prepared to do battle based on what I read). The salad wasn't worth finishing, both without and with dressing.

My garlic bread was cold and only half buttered. (cue whomp whomp sound).

I got the turbot with risotto and fava beans. The fish was delicate and perfectly cooked. Well done on this.

Skipped the cheese course and sundae. Had the salted caramel square, didn't expect pretzels in it but enjoyed it.

I had the flight of red wines and found the Cote d'Rhones awful.

I went to the galley to ask the gel pillow and PJs. The gel pillow rocks! And the PJs are soft and snuggly. Later in the galley when asking for some sparkling water, the FA asked me about the pajamas. She was worried they might be scratchy and asked how I found them. I assured her they were soft. I think I was the only one on the upper deck with PJs.

Part of me thinks the Asian FAs on the flight may not have been comfortable in English, thus their somewhat detached demeanor. I've had way better crews pre-Polaris.

Also had issues with the IFE. Toward the end of the flight the purser came to ask if I was able to watch movies and immediately came back with a voucher to report my issues online without my asking when I told her about the problems.

Overall, not wow, not awful, but somewhere in-between.

Soundman76 Jan 18, 17 8:14 am

he touched the cake but never took it, FA tossed his butt back in eco.. very funny.


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