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No Inflight Full Beverage Service - UA 390 on 10/19

No Inflight Full Beverage Service - UA 390 on 10/19

Old Oct 20, 18, 8:12 am
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No Inflight Full Beverage Service - UA 390 on 10/19

Is an abbreviated inflight beverage service on 1.5hr flights using a mainline aircraft (738) now the norm or did we just have a rogue crew?

Was on UA 390 from SAN-SFO yesterday and crew members in E only came down the aisle with a tray of water and orange juice once inflight instead of the full cart. There was no turbulence and the seatbelt light was off for most of the flight as usual.

Ended up going to the galley where the crew was hanging out for a beverage. Hopefully these abbreviated beverage service is not the new norm and some cost-savings effort on all short mainline flights.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 9:14 am
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Try ringing the bell and asking for a soda of your preferred choice. That should trigger requests from your seatmates, and getting the cart out, etc...
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Old Oct 20, 18, 9:58 am
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Pure laziness.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 10:13 am
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I had a full beverage service--bag of pretzels included!--on an EWR-IAD A320 flight last month. That was impressive, and I feel kinda bad for not e-mailing in a compliment right afterwards.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 10:34 am
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Originally Posted by SF_DUKE View Post
Is an abbreviated inflight beverage service on 1.5hr flights using a mainline aircraft (738) now the norm or did we just have a rogue crew?

Was on UA 390 from SAN-SFO yesterday and crew members in E only came down the aisle with a tray of water and orange juice once inflight instead of the full cart. There was no turbulence and the seatbelt light was off for most of the flight as usual.

Ended up going to the galley where the crew was hanging out for a beverage. Hopefully these abbreviated beverage service is not the new norm and some cost-savings effort on all short mainline flights.
Not even coffee offered!
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Old Oct 20, 18, 10:46 am
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Doing a lot of short-haul, intra-California flights, I've had this "limited" service now-and-then, when there were no obvious service constraints (choppy air, faster flight time than expected, etc). I suspect that some of these limited flights might be motivated by the crew's desire to ensure that every customer gets a beverage, as opposed to running out of time to do the full cart service 5 rows from the last row to be served. I've never been refused my choice of something else and have also noticed some other pax requesting and getting their individual choices.

OTOH, WN, which I've started to use for greater schedule reliability in intra-Calif. flights, has shorter flight times and does more of an order-anything you want and we'll fill it from the nearer galley a few rows at a time, did run out of time on yesterday's 56-min. flying time nearly-full ONT-OAK, "700" type. Crew apologized several times for any rows which did not get a beverage.

I think that the challenge with both carriers is that bev. service often does not begin until flight is at "final/cruise" altitude; and the time between arrival at cruise and being well into the descent is not that great on these flights - maybe 15-20 mins. or so. That may not be a problem for an E175 or a lightly-booked 319, but wlll be for a 738/739 or a full 737-700.

Last edited by Ocn Vw 1K; Oct 20, 18 at 10:58 am
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Old Oct 20, 18, 2:54 pm
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Originally Posted by Ocn Vw 1K View Post
Doing a lot of short-haul, intra-California flights, I've had this "limited" service now-and-then, when there were no obvious service constraints (choppy air, faster flight time than expected, etc). I suspect that some of these limited flights might be motivated by the crew's desire to ensure that every customer gets a beverage, as opposed to running out of time to do the full cart service 5 rows from the last row to be served. I've never been refused my choice of something else and have also noticed some other pax requesting and getting their individual choices.

OTOH, WN, which I've started to use for greater schedule reliability in intra-Calif. flights, has shorter flight times and does more of an order-anything you want and we'll fill it from the nearer galley a few rows at a time, did run out of time on yesterday's 56-min. flying time nearly-full ONT-OAK, "700" type. Crew apologized several times for any rows which did not get a beverage.

I think that the challenge with both carriers is that bev. service often does not begin until flight is at "final/cruise" altitude; and the time between arrival at cruise and being well into the descent is not that great on these flights - maybe 15-20 mins. or so. That may not be a problem for an E175 or a lightly-booked 319, but wlll be for a 738/739 or a full 737-700.
Sounds like my experience happens sometime on other flights. Thanks for sharing. It was such an unusual beverage service, almost thought it was a prank.

Almost wonder if the crew was doing some type of silent protest about the Union merger.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 3:36 pm
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Originally Posted by SF_DUKE View Post



Almost wonder if the crew was doing some type of silent protest about the Union merger.
I have been very hesitant to post anything re: merged FA lists. Normally (and happily) I don't often see the terrible FA's others on FT refer to routinely. That said, as the merged list date got closer and closer, the attitude of certain FA's was inexplicably horrible. Open curtness and outright meanness on a few flights. When mentioned to other FA's on the flight, I would get a shrug along with a "what can we do, she's pi$$ed" right now". Hopefully things will normalize and this will stop.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 3:49 pm
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EWR to BOS flight this past week - Pilot announcements included statement that it would be a 40 minute bumpy flight. The FA's then announced no beverage service. The flight was extremely smooth - not a single bump.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 4:24 pm
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Originally Posted by nigos View Post
EWR to BOS flight this past week - Pilot announcements included statement that it would be a 40 minute bumpy flight. The FA's then announced no beverage service. The flight was extremely smooth - not a single bump.
That is the Captain's decision.

I would prefer to prove the Captain wrong with a smooth flight than have a cup of coffee go flying and scald me.

Safety first.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 4:35 pm
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Originally Posted by nigos View Post
EWR to BOS flight this past week - Pilot announcements included statement that it would be a 40 minute bumpy flight. The FA's then announced no beverage service. The flight was extremely smooth - not a single bump.
Unfortunately this occurs far too often on UA, in my experience.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 4:48 pm
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I was on a full fare first class ticket on a shorter flight a couple years ago and they finished drinks/snack quickly and then sat down and loudly complained about their job and United for the rest of the flight instead of offering a refill. On the flip side, my last two first class flights, I was received a refill...so, there's improvement there.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 5:41 pm
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Iíve seen this on YYZ-ORD a couple of times as well. Itís odd, too. Do they not realize that many of us have flown this same route before, even on this same plane type, sometimes with more pax, and weíve receved full service? I do get when itís bumpy, and they truly donít have the time.

oddly enough, there were some ORD-CVG flights where we get the Ďdue to the short duration of the flightí spiel. Itís particularly obvious youíve got a lazy crew if youíre on the late flight that leaves at ~9:00pm, on a ERJ that seats 50 (though itís actually been a while since itís not at least a CR7), with half the pax sleeping. Given Iíve seen full daytime flights where they do a proper full service, yeah, youíre lazy. And I send a note to feedback every time thag happens. Yes,,itís short, I get it, but not that short.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 6:30 pm
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1. They don't care. No one is getting fired for not providing the required service. It is the same on AA. Not sure about DL.
2. It is hard if you are going to stay seated until cruise altitude. The flight deck crew usually releases BA, LX, LH, etc. at least by 10,000 feet and they manage food and drinks on LHR-AMS, ZRH-CDG, FRA-MUC. Those minutes make a difference.
3. I don't hear about flight crew injuries on European airlines any more often than US airlines. Correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old Oct 21, 18, 4:07 am
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Originally Posted by chuck1 View Post
1. They don't care. No one is getting fired for not providing the required service. It is the same on AA. Not sure about DL.
2. It is hard if you are going to stay seated until cruise altitude. The flight deck crew usually releases BA, LX, LH, etc. at least by 10,000 feet and they manage food and drinks on LHR-AMS, ZRH-CDG, FRA-MUC. Those minutes make a difference.
3. I don't hear about flight crew injuries on European airlines any more often than US airlines. Correct me if I'm wrong.
It is a quite a difference on foreign airlines. Seat belt sign goes off early and stays off late...and has to be some pretty serious bumps to get it back on in-flight.

It really has made a "cry wolf" influence on me with US based airlines.
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