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Is United quoting wrong reasons for delay? How is the reason determined?

Is United quoting wrong reasons for delay? How is the reason determined?

Old Apr 15, 2014, 12:36 pm
  #31  
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Originally Posted by bmwe92fan
I don't think anyone is suggesting it is a secret reason - but it is a financially driven decision. If you read the UA contract of carriage UA basically says that they owe us nothing for a "Force Majeure Event" - which they loosely define as anything beyond UAs control. And yes, last month I had my flight cancel because the crew was stuck somehere else due to bad weather there - and I was SOL and zero compensation.
And I wouldn't be at all surprised if UA takes the same position with respect to "customer service" delays. Typically this means they held the plane at the gate for late connecting passengers (or something similar), which they can then blame on weather or ATC. Just the same as crew unavailability can be deemed caused by weather or ATC, and the resulting delay will not be compensation-worthy.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 12:42 pm
  #32  
 
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Originally Posted by DaviddesJ
What difference does it make? I understand the concern about 'reasons' that affect compensation, but if it's not going to affect your compensation (or in a positive way---surely "customer service" means the airline is responsible) then who cares what they call it?
not OP here. Rather, see Post #14> I see that this has turned into an ongoing discussion which I find quite interesting.. HOWEVER, in my 1.1+ MM of flying on UA I hadn't run into this particular "official" reason/excuse for a delay, so I wondered what "customer service" meant ... after all, it seems that customer service ought to be a given. Oops, left out the prefix "good" prior to "customer service." And BTW, since the delay in question led to a missed connection, there was an ongoing saga that was eventually resolved (which included an e-cert) , but that's a different story.

Last edited by BH62; Apr 16, 2014 at 1:53 pm Reason: My Bad, should have refeered to my Post #14, not OP
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 12:44 pm
  #33  
 
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Originally Posted by DaviddesJ
So what is unclear in this thread, and no one has given any real answer to, is why an airline would have any incentive at all to use one explanation rather than another within the set of factors under their control. It makes no difference to them because their obligations in those cases are the same. Perhaps there is some buck-passing from one group internally, to another, but that makes no different to customers and wouldn't affect them.
The issue in this thread is that in a scenario that the delay is something that was under UA control (maintenance, late in-bound, missing crew etc) rather than just stating that, UA are listing the delay as being ATC, or weather (even though it wasn't that) in order to avoid being responsible for hotels, misconnect claims etc.

They do it all the time, hence why people complain about them doing it so much. I can't speak for everyone, but I have certainly had it plenty of times.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 12:47 pm
  #34  
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Originally Posted by CO_Nonrev_elite
The issue in this thread is that in a scenario that the delay is something that was under UA control (maintenance, late in-bound, missing crew etc) rather than just stating that, UA are listing the delay as being ATC, or weather (even though it wasn't that) in order to avoid being responsible for hotels, misconnect claims etc.
That's only one issue in this thread, and one that I certainly understand. But a bunch of people have raised other issues in the thread, which don't match this pattern and which I don't understand.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 12:50 pm
  #35  
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Originally Posted by BH62
OP here. I see that this has turned into an ongoing discussion which I find quite interesting.. HOWEVER, in my 1.1+ MM of flying on UA I hadn't run into this particular "official" reason/excuse for a delay, so I wondered what "customer service" meant ... after all, it seems that customer service ought to be a given.
My guesses at some things that could represent "customer service" delays:

- holding plane for passengers from another flight
- interruption to handle ill or disruptive passenger
- late delivery of meals or other service items
- delay in cleaning and preparing plane
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 1:17 pm
  #36  
 
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Actually

" late delivery of meals or other service items" and "delay in cleaning and preparing plane" are called "Aircraft Preparation", not "customer service" delays.

Also, for the poster who referenced "slots". ORD is not slot restricted and has not been for several years.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 2:20 pm
  #37  
 
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Originally Posted by DaviddesJ
My guesses at some things that could represent "customer service" delays:

- holding plane for passengers from another flight
- interruption to handle ill or disruptive passenger
- late delivery of meals or other service items
- delay in cleaning and preparing plane
1&2, not 3&4. It's delays that the CS dept are heals accountable for. Late notification to ramp to pull a bag off an Intl flight, boarding too late, boarding taking too much time, passenger issues while at the gate (onboard or off)... Anything that prevents the door from closing on time that can't be blamed on an airport worker in another dept.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 3:07 pm
  #38  
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Originally Posted by fastair
1&2, not 3&4. It's delays that the CS dept are heals accountable for. Late notification to ramp to pull a bag off an Intl flight, boarding too late, boarding taking too much time, passenger issues while at the gate (onboard or off)... Anything that prevents the door from closing on time that can't be blamed on an airport worker in another dept.
Thanks. I guess from an outsider point of view distinguishing between "customer service" and "aircraft preparation" seems like splitting hairs, but to the people who actually work in these areas it's a big deal.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 3:32 pm
  #39  
 
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I sympathize with the OP, UNITED cant get a flight off on time

I am in Memphis and have been monitoring a flight to EWR that I must take later this week. Just take a look at how over just a few days, flights are delayed 4+ hours or cancelled - often without a reason. I was trying United as an alternative to Delta now that their schedule is greatly reduced, but I doubt that I can possibly make them my alternate airline. I began the test last summer when I had enough J trips to Europe to try all the majors and have plenty of miles to make PM on United, DM on Delta and Platinum on AA. Out of 3 TATLs, I had to spend 2 of the return nights in EWR (UAL did pay for the hotel, but I'd rather be home). The RJ from EWR to MEM was cancelled, no reason given, no comp beyond hotel, not even miles - I would have received a personal email from DL. I had to reroute on one of the outbounds via ORD with a double connect after the RJ to EWR was delayed to the point I would not have made the connection. Folks, there is something seriously wrong with United.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 3:47 pm
  #40  
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Originally Posted by NW.BTR.Than.The.Rest
I am in Memphis and have been monitoring a flight to EWR that I must take later this week. Just take a look at how over just a few days, flights are delayed 4+ hours or cancelled - often without a reason.
Runway construction. FAA is putting a mid-20s AAR on the airport most (every?) days, and nobody thinned out their schedules much.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 3:51 pm
  #41  
 
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Originally Posted by NW.BTR.Than.The.Rest
I am in Memphis and have been monitoring a flight to EWR that I must take later this week. Just take a look at how over just a few days, flights are delayed 4+ hours or cancelled - often without a reason. I was trying United as an alternative to Delta now that their schedule is greatly reduced, but I doubt that I can possibly make them my alternate airline. I began the test last summer when I had enough J trips to Europe to try all the majors and have plenty of miles to make PM on United, DM on Delta and Platinum on AA. Out of 3 TATLs, I had to spend 2 of the return nights in EWR (UAL did pay for the hotel, but I'd rather be home). The RJ from EWR to MEM was cancelled, no reason given, no comp beyond hotel, not even miles - I would have received a personal email from DL. I had to reroute on one of the outbounds via ORD with a double connect after the RJ to EWR was delayed to the point I would not have made the connection. Folks, there is something seriously wrong with United.
UA in Memphis is beyond awful. If I weren't so close to 1MM, I'd switch. My last international trip, the flight to IAH was delayed 4 hours. I woke up in the middle of the night and found out about it. I called and wound up driving to Little Rock in the middle of the night.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 5:32 pm
  #42  
 
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On UA12 from IAH - LGA, after a 1h31 delay due to ATC/weather in NY, the FA's completed boarded and announced that we would taxi away from the gate but not take off for an additional 45 minutes.

UPDATE: Delayed +10. I want to go back to eating UC cookies and taking advantage of the 1/2 price -3 wine.

Last edited by profintraining; Apr 15, 2014 at 5:36 pm Reason: Updated
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 5:34 pm
  #43  
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Originally Posted by profintraining
On UA12 from IAH - LGA, after a 1h31 delay due to ATC/weather in NY, the FA's completed boarded and announced that we would taxi away from the gate but not take off for an additional 45 minutes.
This is not unusual at all. When there's a weather hold at your destination, you often need to leave the gate to take your place in the queue to be approved for departure. If they let flights that aren't actually ready to depart join the queue, everyone would just try to enter the queue long before they are ready to leave, to reduce their waiting time. So they make you actually leave the gate. This is due to the FAA, not the airline.
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Old Apr 15, 2014, 5:53 pm
  #44  
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Originally Posted by DaviddesJ
This is not unusual at all. When there's a weather hold at your destination, you often need to leave the gate to take your place in the queue to be approved for departure. If they let flights that aren't actually ready to depart join the queue, everyone would just try to enter the queue long before they are ready to leave, to reduce their waiting time. So they make you actually leave the gate. This is due to the FAA, not the airline.
Not true; there's no requirement to leave the gate to hold your slot in the GDP. You only have to be ready for takeoff at your EDCT.
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Old Apr 16, 2014, 1:44 pm
  #45  
 
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My all time favorite bs delay excuse? We had a 50 minute delay on the plane, sitting at the gate, so that the plane could be properly serviced and catered. However, once we got up in the air and reach a cruising altitude, the flight attendant made an announcement that there would not be beverage service on the 3 hr flight because the plane hadn't been catered. Obviously, different folks making the announcement.
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