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Flying The Friendly Skies Friday: No Tears Over Spilled Oil; Kindness Rears Its Lovely Head

In an attempt to make Fridays even more of a delightful day, we’ve been asking you, our dear readers, for stories that made you smile while soaring through the air. Flying The Friendly Skies Friday celebrates all that is right and good in the world of customer service, and this week’s edition is no different. Keep those stories coming, and we’ll keep spreading the happy vibes. [More]

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United Airlines Now Responsible For One-In-Three Consumer Complaints

When United and Continental decided to become a couple, they weren’t just combining their bank accounts and airplane collections, they also had to combine all the complaints people file against them. But even that doesn’t account for the huge increase in consumer complaints filed against the united United. [More]

Why One Traveler Says He’ll Never Fly United Airlines Again

Why One Traveler Says He’ll Never Fly United Airlines Again

After many years as a satisfied Continental customer, Consumerist reader Billy says he’s been less than pleased with his experiences since that airline merged with United. But it wasn’t until his family’s most recent ordeal on United that he reached the “never again” point. [More]

Million-Miler Sues United For Being Downgraded To Second-Tier Status

Million-Miler Sues United For Being Downgraded To Second-Tier Status

If you’ve spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the same airline over the years with the understanding that you will reap lifelong benefits for doing so, you’d probably be a bit peeved when that airline decides that you’re just a regular old business traveler. That’s why one million-miler on United Airlines has filed suit. [More]

United/Continental Pilots Get Authority To Call Strike Vote

United/Continental Pilots Get Authority To Call Strike Vote

Even though United Airlines and Continental have merged just about everything else, the pilots remain represented by two different groups at the Air Line Pilots Association. Even so, all pilots for the merged carriers received union approval to ask members to vote on a strike if negotiations with management break down. [More]

Survey Finds Best & Worst Airlines For Redeeming Rewards Miles

Survey Finds Best & Worst Airlines For Redeeming Rewards Miles

It’s incredibly easy to pile up airline miles. I think I just earned 400 miles for merely mentioning this fact. But as you may have already discovered, it’s not always so simple to actually redeem those miles. A new survey looked at dozens of domestic and international carriers to find which ones were more likely to have seats available for rewards travel. [More]

United Airlines' Phone System Is Just Being Nostalgic About Refunds

United Airlines' Phone System Is Just Being Nostalgic About Refunds

The honeymoon may be over for recently wed United and Continental, and the merged company’s phone system is already daydreaming about its days as a swinging single, when customers could just call it up and ask for a refund on 30,000 unused miles. [More]

Why Has United Airlines Taken A Month To Not Process My Ticket Vouchers?

Why Has United Airlines Taken A Month To Not Process My Ticket Vouchers?

Back in July 2011, Consumerist reader Mary and her husband were awarded a total of $800 worth of ticket vouchers from United after they were bumped from a flight. Problem is, now that she’s trying to actually use those vouchers, no one at United seems to have any idea what to do with them. [More]

United/Continental Systems Merger Makes Flight Reservations Magically Disappear

United/Continental Systems Merger Makes Flight Reservations Magically Disappear

To be honest, I have to start this post by blaming Ryan and his wife. I don’t know what they were thinking. They assumed that just because they booked their round-trip tickets to and from Cancun two months ahead of their vacation and had an itinerary and confirmation numbers, they had an actual reservation. Maybe they did at one point. But between February and April, Continental and United combined their computer systems as part of their Air Voltron merger. Reservations mysteriously disappeared from the system, including theirs. And that’s how Ryan and the pregnant Mrs. Ryan ended flying coach from Cancun and stuck in Houston instead of flying first-class all the way home to Detroit. [More]

United/Continental Merger Has Mysteriously Moved Cities Closer Together

United/Continental Merger Has Mysteriously Moved Cities Closer Together

There are a lot of things that happen when airlines merge — planes get repainted, airport gates get redecorated, frequent flier programs get combined. But there’s an interesting phenomenon occurring in the wake of the union between United and Continental — cities are suddenly no longer as far apart as they used to be. [More]

Frequent Flier Mile Auctions Look Like A Sucker Bet

Frequent Flier Mile Auctions Look Like A Sucker Bet

If you’re a member of any of the major airlines’ frequent flier programs, you’ve probably received e-mails trying to get you to use those miles to bid on auctions for anything from resort getaways to Kentucky Derby passes. But the people who win these auctions may just be tossing away good miles. [More]

Prepare For The Worst: Continental & United Merging Computer Systems

Are you flying United or Continental this weekend? Betcha didn’t know that the now merged companies are planning on shifting all of their computer systems over on Saturday, with the potential to affect thousands of passengers in a very unfun way. Including yours truly, who happens to be flying Continental on Sunday. [More]

Airlines Hike Up Fares Yet Again, Blaming Higher Fuel Costs

Airlines aren’t just good at lifting planes into the air, but with yet another hike on round-trip fares, they’re showing how great they are at sending prices skyward as well. Zing! This latest increase is the third already this year. [More]

Study: Virgin America Keeps Customers On Hold Longer Than Any Other Airline

Study: Virgin America Keeps Customers On Hold Longer Than Any Other Airline

Holiday travel plans change all the time, meaning lots of people will be spending lots of time on the phone trying to speak to a human being. And according to a new report, passengers on Virgin America should have something to occupy themselves with while waiting on hold, as the average wait time for the carrier is longer than 20 minutes. [More]

United CEO: Airfares Are Only Going To Get More Complicated

United CEO: Airfares Are Only Going To Get More Complicated

While regulators continue to push through rules intended to make airfares more transparent, airlines continue to pare base ticket prices down while charging fees for everything else that used to be included in the listed cost. Given all the potential permutations, it’s not surprising that Jeff Smisek, CEO of United Airlines, doesn’t see things getting simpler anytime soon. [More]

All United, Continental Flights Will Have WiFi By 2015

All United, Continental Flights Will Have WiFi By 2015

WiFi access in airplanes is becoming more and more common, and the United-Continental monolith is out to make the feature ubiquitous in its aircraft fleet within the next three years. The airlines, which are owned by United Continental Holdings, are pumping up 300 more planes with WiFi in the middle of 2012, thanks to a partnership with Panasonic Avionics Corporation. [More]

Passenger Sues Continental, Others Over Turbulent Flight

Passenger Sues Continental, Others Over Turbulent Flight

When what was supposed to be a 20-minute flight turns into two-plus hours of turbulence, it’s easy to understand why a passenger would be peeved. But is worthy of a lawsuit against four airlines? [More]

Continental Frequent Flier Miles Will Soon Have Expiration Date

Continental Frequent Flier Miles Will Soon Have Expiration Date

People with stockpiles of Continental Airlines frequent flier miles who haven’t flown in a while may want to pay attention to this. When that airline finally weds its frequent flier program to that of United Airlines in 2012, the clock could be ticking before those miles disappear. [More]