It’s been a week since United Airlines made headlines for having a ticketed passenger bodily hauled off his flight so airline crew could have his seat, and the company is still in full damage control mode. United’s latest promise is that it has changed its policy so that last-minute staff travel arrangements won’t bump paying customers anymore. [More]
Two of the consumer news themes of this week have been terrible things happening to United Airlines passengers and live scorpions lurking where they shouldn’t. Why not bring these themes together? A man on a flight from Houston to Calgary over the weekend says that he was stung by a scorpion that fell out of an overhead bin onto his head. [More]
You might remember Denise, who left her iPad behind on a United plane, getting it back after Consumerist intervened and a wonderful United employee helped her. Then she received an interesting e-mail, presumably reading it on her iPad. The airline wanted to send an update about the status of her lost item claim: they were “still searching” for it. [More]
Denise made a very understandable and common mistake: she stashed her iPad in the seat-back pouch in front of her during a United flight, and didn’t realize it until later. She ran the always handy “Find my iPad” app, and found that the iPad was in the hands of United staff at George Bush airport in Houston. The problem: she lives in Ohio, and no one at United was interested in helping her. [More]
When looking to book a flight, many consumers find it easier to peruse third-party comparison sites such as Kayak, Orbitz or Expedia where airfare can be easily compared among different airlines. While airlines have had their share of issues with sites that often lead to some fares disappearing, one legislator is calling for a federal investigation over allegations that some carriers completely withhold information from such travel sites in an attempt to block passengers from finding the best price possible. [More]
Travelers trying to fly to anywhere from anywhere on United this morning are being met with delays, confusion, and misinformation as a massive computer system outage has struck the airline.
So you’ve racked up a bunch of frequent flier miles or loyalty points or whatever your preferred airline calls them, but can you actually use those rewards to book free travel when you want? For some U.S.-based carriers, the answer ranges from “almost definitely” to “good luck.” [More]
Airlines merge because it makes them more efficient: at least, that’s what they say. Does all of that cost-cutting behind the scenes translate to efficiencies on the runways and in getting planes in the air in a timely fashion? Well…no, not really. Sometimes two airlines merging has meant that they end up with a lower percentage of on-time flights than each of the two airlines originally did together. [More]
There was something unusual about a United Airlines 747 waiting at the San Francisco airport. Someone had drawn a picture in an oil slick on the back of the plane, and the flight attendants scheduled to work the next flight, to Hong Kong, found it threatening. They refused to fly, fearing an explosive or some other kind of attack. The flight was ultimately canceled, and the flight attendants were fired for insubordination. [More]
The bad news: While the price of jet fuel is dropping, planes are still packed full of people and airfares are still on the rise. But is there a silver lining of good news for travelers, or are airline bosses just rolling around on beds made of money and laughing at us as we grumble about a ticket home for the holidays?
The FAA has just issued an order prohibiting U.S. air carriers from flying into Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport for the next 24 hours.
In a scene reminiscent of two embarrassing 2012 incidents, United Airlines is doing a lot of apologizing today after a problem with its reservation system has resulted in long lines at airports around the country. [More]
Okay so just… think about the thing that might be one of your scariest things you think about. Does it involve being locked in a not terribly large space and it’s dark and no one else is there and oh my goodness gracious I’m scared? Take that nightmare and turn it into the reality for a passenger on a recent flight. He fell asleep during a layover and woke up locked inside a dark plane, all by himself.*
Once upon a time, travelers with frequent flyer status outside of the the airline’s own Mileage Plus program had wonderful bag-checking privileges on United Air Lines. Star Alliance Gold members could check up to three seventy-pound bags for free, and silver members could check one. Now, Gold members can check only one fifty pound bag, and silver members can’t check anything without paying. [More]
There are some people out there who are just so freaking smart it’s almost shocking when even they can’t begin to understand the most frustrating things in life. Like the process of herding passengers onto an airplane, an operation that at its most basic includes putting one foot in front of the other and stowing bags. But it’s so dang complicated, even an astrophysicist says he can’t figure out how to make the boarding line a less awful experience. [More]
United Airlines hasn’t just changed its logo in the wake of its merger with Continental; it’s also moved to a new office. And since the huge UNITED logo sitting on the former office building is now out-of-date, why not auction it off for a good cause? [More]
United Says It’s Reviewed Its In-Flight Entertainment After Kicking Family Off Flight For Complaining
We told you yesterday about the parents who claim their complaints about the appropriateness of the movie shown on a United flight resulted in their plane being re-routed and them being questioned by authorities. Today, the airline gives a very brief statement of its side of the story. [More]