Well, I guess my trip of shockingly good service had to take a turn for the worse eventually. After great flights on Saudia and Jet Airways, I just flew Tunisair from London to Tunis. The flight was just 2hr30min and was operated by an A320 with a typical European regional business class product, where you just get an economy seat with a blocked middle and better service… well, at least that’s how it’s supposed to work.
There were originally just five passengers in business class, but as soon as the door closed the captain moved a guy up from economy to business class.
Less than five minutes after takeoff — while we were climbing steeply and the seatbelt sign was turned on — two more people self upgraded from economy to business class, clearly with the permission of the crew, as they saw it happen.
Let me be clear about something — I’m all for airlines giving perks to employees and their families, as they deserve it. But I also think the published rules need to be followed, whatever they may be. If family of crew get unlimited business class upgrades on a space available basis, I say great for them. However, clearly this was outside the rules, since it was only done after the door closed.
But here’s the thing — if that were the end of the story I’d mind my own business. The problem is that the two guys who self upgraded right after takeoff have been talking really loudly the entire flight. That’s not to say you can’t talk loudly on a plane, but if you’re going to upgrade people outside of the rules, at least make sure they’re well behaved, in my opinion.
But much worse is the guy who was upgraded right after the door closed. I’m drafting this post “live” from the flight, and for the first 60 minutes of the flight the purser was sitting “on” the aisle seat in my row with her back to me, chatting with this guy. The only interaction with her I’ve had so far is seeing the back of her for an extended period of time.
He got served his meal 15 minutes after takeoff. An hour into the flight I hadn’t received any service or acknowledgment.
At that point I went to the lavatory, and saw the other flight attendant sitting in the galley playing with her phone. We made eye contact, and based on her reaction it was clear she didn’t realize I was even in the cabin. Then before I could even return to my seat, my meal was on my tray table.
She didn’t even let me finish the appetizer before she brought out the hot main course and put it on the tray next to me, probably a minute after I returned to my seat.
Of course in the meantime my tray has been sitting next to me empty for about 30 minutes, and we’ll soon be descending. Now the guy who was chatting with the purser the entire flight from his seat is in the galley talking to her.
I’ve pushed my call button twice to ask for some more water and a cup of coffee, but that has gone ignored.
It sure is a shame that Tunisair makes their crews fly with paying passengers. It seems really inconvenient. Maybe they should only accept friends & family as passengers going forward…
By the time this post publishes I’ll be flying them from Tunis to Montreal. I can’t wait to see what an eight hour flight on them is like.