Well, it seems like United’s division of the Association of Flight Attendants isn’t a fan of United’s new unlimited domestic upgrade program. On one hand I’ll be in the minority in understanding where they’re coming from. There’s very little alignment of goals between management and employees at the airlines nowadays, sadly, and it’s largely understandable. At the same time, United needs to make decisions that are in the best interest of the company, which in the long run would hopefully be in the best interest of employees (although this isn’t always the case).
What really makes me laugh (or cringe), though, is this:
United had previously announced their intention to implement this program last month to United’s elite customers, and is just another kick in the teeth to Flight Attendants and other loyal employees.
Another kick in the teeth to flight attendants and other loyal…. employees?!? Aren’t we forgetting about the loyal customers that help keep United in business?
Anyway, it’s very hard to feel bad for them. Flying domestic two cabin first class was very rare for employees as it is, and they still have some of the most liberal non-rev benefits in the industry. They can continue to easily fly international three cabin first class on a space available basis, which isn’t too tough to do. Actually, I’m surprised they didn’t complain when United introduced the new first and business class cabins, since it greatly reduced the number of available premium seats.
The whole non-rev situation was really put into perspective for me when I flew British Airways’ Club World London City product. I was talking to the purser and our conversation eventually shifted to non-rev benefits. You know what British Airways flight attendants (apparently) get? One free coach ticket a year!
(Tip of the hat to Gary)