Yesterday afternoon I was flying from Seattle to San Francisco with a friend on
USAirways United. I realize as of late that United flight attendants are paid a commission for all the Mileage Plus Visa applications they accept, so occasionally I’ve seen them add something about the credit card to the post-takeoff announcement, like “ask a flight attendant if you’d like an application and would like to earn 30,000 bonus miles.”
Yesterday, however, one of the flight attendants took this to an extreme. His first announcement, which came about half way through the flight, was at least two to three minutes:
“Ladies and gentlemen, I have great news for you. Your flight has specifically been targeted for this special offer which United is only offering on select flights. If you apply for a Mileage Plus Visa on this flight you’ll earn 30,000 bonus miles, enough for a free roundtrip ticket on United or our partners. We only have a limited number of these applications onboard so I’ll be coming through with them shortly. This is an offer you can’t get elsewhere.” He went on and on.
Then, about five minutes later he gets on the PA again — “ladies and gentlemen, I only have a couple of these applications left, so if you’d like one please ring your call button. The first five people that hand these applications back to me will get a complimentary glass or our house red or white wine. So hurry up and get those applications to me.” Then he made another announcement later saying this was the final opportunity to take advantage of this amazing offer.
I think he collected about 8-10 credit card applications on this flight of 100 people. The other flight attendant told us that this guy makes $400 per trip on credit card applications, which I’m betting is about as much as he makes otherwise. Holy cow!