PDA

View Full Version : US Airways Express Vs. US Airways Express



tipek
06-07-2007, 11:04 PM
Last Sunday I had to fly to NC. Of course my airline of choice is US Airways so it was no brainer on which airline I will fly there.
I arrived at DCA at 10am for my noon departure to RDU. It took me few minutes to go thru security and at 10:30 I was at my gate.
I did some spotting while killing the time. Finally at 11:50pm USX Embraer EMB-170 N823MD was towed to my gate. That would be fine except there were no CSA's at the gate. At exactly noon, two US agents came to the gate and started arguing with each other about who supposed to work this departure. Few minutes after our planned departure, one of the agents came over PA and anounced that our flight is delayed 30 minutes due to lack of crew. Fine, I can live with that. No word or update until 1pm when agent came over PA again and announced that our departure time was moved until 1:30pm. At 1:30pm they announced that we have gate change, so people have moved from gate 30 to gate 37. The gate was empty, no aircraft in it. That time another USX agent announced that our aircraft will arrive at the gate at 2pm.
That gave me some time to walk outside and smoke one more cigarette. When I was walking past by my previous gate I saw that our aircraft was on push back for departure to MCI. That pissed me off.
I was back at the gate around 2pm, still no sign of the aircraft. But the good sign was that the crew was waiting with us.
Shortly after Embraer EMB-170 N801MA operated by Republic arrived at my gate. Pushback was at 2:30pm and few minutes later we departed from runway 1.
Two flight attendants, 30 people onboard, and 40 minutes flight.
Both FAs were seated during the flight. Right after departure one FA announced that there will be no beverage service because of short duration of the flight. LAZY LAZY LAZY bitch. I'm not complaining that I didn't get cup of soda or pretzels, but 40 minutes flight is long enough to feed entire Boeing 737-500 twice! At the end of the flight, one of the flight attendant came thru the cabin twice to collect trash. How ironic.

After arrival I rented a car and drove to ISO airport which is located 90 miles south east of RDU.
ISO airport has ATR conversion facility. I expected to collect some ex-Continental ATRs. Instead I've got two ex-American Eagle ATR-72s, and I saw line of 7 FedEx Fokker F-27s which were parked in unshootable location.
http://home.comcast.net/~tipek/ae1iso.JPG
http://home.comcast.net/~tipek/ae2iso.JPG
http://home.comcast.net/~tipek/isofedex.JPG


From there I drove to my destination which was Goldsboro.

I was done with my work Wednesday before noon so I hit the road and drove to RDU airport to catch earlier flight. My original itenarary was RDU-PHL-DCA departing from RDU at 8:50pm. I was at the airport before 1pm. When I proceded to self check-in kiosk I've got error message "You are too early for your flight. You can't check in more then 6 hours before your flight". I was kind of puzzled. At United, Delta and Continental when you check in early at the airport it gives you option to take earlier flight. I wasn't able to do it with US Airways. So I was waiting for CSA for good 20 minutes to come to my kiosk. When she finally came she directed me to another line. I wasted another 20 minutes there waiting my turn.
When I was about to approach the desk, she left! I was f#%#en pissed at that point. I went straight to the next agent that I saw, and I didn't gave a damn that he was working another person. I've told him that I want to change my flight and those kiosks wont let me do it.
He said that he doesn't know how to do it, but he can check me for my original flight and I can go to US gate and they will be able to help me. So thats exactly what I did.
One observation from that check-in counter - People were actually walking behind the desks to get bag lables, they would put them on their own bags and then they would throw them on the belt (all this on the CSA side). The service at RDU's US Airways check in area was unaceptable. I went thru security and saw huge lines at all US Airways gates. Three earlier flights to LGA, CLT and PHL have been canceled, but next flight airplanes were A319s and B737-400 so they said that all people will be on those flights.
I was waiting in line to talk to US agent for over an hour. When I got my turn I asked him if I can get on the next direct flight to DCA which was departing at 4:30pm. He told me that this flight is full so I asked him if he can put me to DCA via LGA, ORF, CLT, PIT or PHL.
Then he said that for $25 he will put me on direct flight to DCA at 6:50pm. Well, that was better than waiting until my 8:50 departure to PHL.
I've got my new boarding pass and I went to eat something. On the way back I watched 4:30 DCA flight boarding. I approached US agent and asked her if they have empty seats. She said "Yes". After explaining to her my situation she said that she can't put me on this flight right now because it takes 40 minutes for Ramp Agents to find my bag and transfer it to this flight. I left speachless.
At that point I sat next to the windows and I was taking pictures of ERJs and CRJs that were arriving every 10 minutes.

http://home.comcast.net/~tipek/comncrdu.JPG
http://home.comcast.net/~tipek/mesabeech19.JPG

Time fly when you are spotting :) At gate 24 my shiny CRJ-200 N244PS arrived and we boarded it shortly after.
Flight to DCA was FULL. All seats were taken. One flight attendant and 40 minutes flight. Guess what? One flight attendant was able to serve 50 people with snack and beverage, and then she collected the trash. Pilots kept us updated on our location etc. Very pleasant flight.

I won't have problem taking PSA again, but I wont take flights on Republic anymore.

Thanks for reading,
Rafal

hiss srq
06-07-2007, 11:31 PM
Republic has some in house issues currently. I have had a pair of issues with them but do not let that become an issue for flying US. I was also at GSo actually a day ago btw.

Not to be a dick but coming from a former US ticket/gate agent you are the type of passenger in terms of rudeness and demading service when with another passenger that I would probably consider being a prick to. I am generally pretty easy going and was with passengers and gladly would move people up and wave the fee 90% of the time but I would have probalby charged you the fee if you stepped up to me and demaded serivce like so. There is a system for a reason ang agents are human. I go out of my way for passengers all the time. Heck I even go down to gates at US LGA now and ocassonally feild questions, assist and address issues to help the team but to be honest, this is an airline and we have many many passengers. Though I beleive the job of a CSA is to bust their ass to ensure pleasent travel on us and to be as accomidating as possible there are time when many issues are going on or a supervisor may be breathing down their neck etc etc etc......... Paitence is a virtue in this business young humming bird. Also, in regards to you requesting to go to your destination via another city pair, the answer is going to be no 90% of the time at USAirways because the way or res system is lined up you will have to pay the diffreence of the air fare that you bought for the new segments and if it has to be booked in a seperate class of service defineately you will be paying and sometimes that is hundreds of dollars. Direct flights would mean you would pay 25 bucks but diffrent segments mean otherwise. The only chance you have to change segments is if your flight cancells or management forcasts major issues related to weather or mx and than this can be done at the ost of the agents sanity due to the fact that in the new system one must go through 50 steps, change class of service, Invol reroute, change and refund things weithin the system and than reconnect the entire reservation. That is to put it lightly. This goes at any airline btw. I am not going to defend the agent that just walked away because I do not support the actions but this is the way it happens sometimes in the business. As far as open seats and transfers. PPBM is the rule at USAirways and I think all airlines. That means positive person to bag match. If your not on the same plane as your bag you and the bag do not go and that late in the game as boarding is going on the agents are trying to seat, unseat, reseat, clear lists, and close the flight which is a task in and of itself not to mention the interline and bag runners have already come and gone 20 prior to sched departure. This could mean a possible delay of the flight.

I personally have delayed a flight one or two minutes for passenger serivce reasons but it is rare we can do this or will do this. Station managers look at every flight and look for delay codes. Getting called on the floor for even a 1 minute delay that a manager has not authorized is a big thing in this business.

I am glad you enjoyed your spotting though and I do like the pictures on a better note. I love the ATR's even though they suck in ice and are a pain in tharse to balance from what I know about them.




Cheers

Ryan

Alex T
06-07-2007, 11:49 PM
Ryan,

We dont do positive bag match.

We have tons of folks who come up last minute to change flights, usually business folks, we put them and they have to get their bag on the next flight or whenever it came in.

Same for stand bys, they check the bag and it goes regardless if the stand by person went on or not.

So it doesn't happen at our airline, and I was told AA does the same thing as we do, no positive bag match.

Alex

nwafan20
06-08-2007, 12:33 AM
Sorry to hear of your problem, but looks like its effecting the whole US Airways network since they were dead last in a list of 15 majors on customer service done by Consumer Report.

I thought your title was catchy though :)

RDU-JFK
06-08-2007, 06:45 AM
Ah, good ol' RDU. They are understaffed there. I can remember many-a-time when the line in Terminal A for US passengers skirted all the way back to Delta baggage claim!

What do you do down in Goldsboro? I'm actually heading to Fayetteville next week to see the girlfriend.

AirtrafficController
06-08-2007, 08:52 AM
wow it looked like US airways was a pain in the ass for you, at least it ended well and nice photos.

tipek
06-08-2007, 10:19 AM
Ryan,


>>>Not to be a dick but coming from a former US ticket/gate agent you are the type of passenger in terms of rudeness and demading service when with another passenger that I would probably consider being a prick to.

Actually I am very patient and polite customer. I have worked for US Airways and I know how painfull customers can be. I've lost it after waiting for 40 minutes and then she walked on me. The CSA that was helping me was pretty cool and proffesional, so was I to him. The thing was that he've told me that he doesn't know how to change my flight. So he checked me for my original flight and said that people upstairs will be able to assist me.

On the side note, how many people give Starbucks gift cards to the crew after the flight and to agents at the gate? I know how to appriciate good service.



>>>Also, in regards to you requesting to go to your destination via another city pair, the answer is going to be no 90% of the time at USAirways because the way or res system is lined up you will have to pay the diffreence of the air fare that you bought for the new segments and if it has to be booked in a seperate class of service defineately you will be paying and sometimes that is hundreds of dollars.

My original routing was RDU-PHL-DCA. I've paid for this ticket over $600. I wouldn't mind paying extra $100 to get me back to DC earlier.


I will keep flying US Airways because this year I'm going gold with them. Too bad that most of the time they lose my bags, even on direct flights.

RDU-JFK
>>>What do you do down in Goldsboro? I'm actually heading to Fayetteville next week to see the girlfriend.

I was working at SJAFB.


Rafal

RDU-JFK
06-08-2007, 10:47 AM
I was working at SJAFB.


Rafal

Cool. I drove by there while on my way to Kinston once.