Interesting news. Just as I also read that airline prices are at an all time high.
Well not all of them, just most of them. DFW/ORD and ORD/NYC are still serving meals. I see it more from a consolidation effort on their part across both brands. While the snack basket isn't a meal, if you know that's the deal prior to boarding, you can get something at the airport or plan your trip accordingly. The snack basket, in my travels anyway, is a fairly "open bar" so if you continue to be hungry they will allow you to continue to snack. I'll admit its not the healthiest of things but should suffice to tide someone over on a short flight.
The one shining bit we can take away from this announcement by them.... they've at least set a standard for travelers to know what to expect. Prior to this it was very different between a US Air equipment flight and a AA equipment flight. For me, I can now plan my day better and as a result have been the guy sitting there eating the hot fresh McDonald's fries while you walk past thinking "dang it I wish I had fries I'm hungry now"
I totally know that feeling, zukracer, when you walk by someone with a delicious meal on the plane! That has happened to me more than once going from MCO -> LGA or PBI -> BDL. Publix subs make me jealous.
Then again, when I am the one with a delicious meal I feel guilty. Maybe the answer is eating in the airport before boarding and then snacking only on the plane (for shorter flights).
Thoughts on the best snacks for traveling? I'm going with apples, bananas, chex mix, goldfish, trail mix, Luna bars and granola bars.
I used to feel guilty, now I just smile when people walk by and I hear "oh dang now I'm hungry" I'm usually sitting right in first class so everyone gets hit by the smell LOL
As for best snacks...hmm. I go with anything packaged and not messy. I tend to go more with lighter fare stuff, bananas are good, grapes are good too. My favorite breakfast snack when doing the TPA-MIA runs was a fruit and cheese tray. Small cubes of cheese, apples and grapes. Made for a fairly healthy snack and almost no clean up/mess.
Eating at the airport ahead of time is definitely best if you have time though I always keep some bar type thing in my bag just in case.
In my opinion it is a bad strategy for the airlines. I have my own business and pay my own travel costs. I fly out of Miami or Orlando 40 times a year. If I am flying to LAX, I spend the extra money on a business class seat, since it is a long flight and the new 777's are worth the difference. However, if I am flying MIA to JFK and I can get a free "comfort" coach seat or pay hundreds more for a first class seat that now doesn't even provide a meal, I will not spend the extra money. My airline costs have gone out of control the past year, and the service and product provided is not any better.
UA stopped service meals on flights of 899 miles or less except in certain markets. Unlike AA and in true UA fashion they did not announce it prior to it becoming effective. We discovered the no meal in First Class on a 2+40 flight at dinner time a year ago, nice surprise when we were actually hungry. To top it off UA catering didn't load any of the "refreshments" as they call it so we went completely without food and even better the Flight Attendants did NOT even know of the change taking place. Awesome corporate communication I say, explains quite a lot about this new airline.
So welcome to air travel 2014, highest quarterly profits, highest add on fees, smallest number of legacy airlines (three) and this is what we get.
rbmia, Thanks for the posting. I received this in an email directly from AA. As it does seem to be a "downgrade" for all but the specifically outlined routes that keep it, it is really a big deal? In principle, yes everyone thinks meals on flights that are 2.5 hours should have a meal, but in reality has anyone, FF or not, really had a FC meal they were really looking forward to? Yes, a FC fare, or an upgrade to FC should get you food especially during meal times but really ask yourself...have you ever said...oh goodie I can't wait for my bland, dried out chicken breast or mediocre enchilada, or tough piece of teriyaki beef? I suspect the answer is no.
I guess I'm one of the few road warriors and true Seinfeld fans here.
I like getting to the airport 20 minutes before boarding, using my Clear card or Pre Check to get through security and then having a dried out meal on the plane before I pass out for an hour or two.
Seinfeld "The Airport" episode.
Elaine: Why should you get the first class?
Jerry: Elaine, have you ever flown first class?
Jerry: All right then. See? You won't know what you're missing.
Well, now Elaine isn't missing anything!
I'm with you. When flying around meal times, I do want to eat on the plane. It's no worse than airport food. I don't fly a lot of long domestic flights (most of my domestic flights are regional), so for me there isn't the concern about getting tired of airline food. It's perfectly fine on occasion. My BNA flights however (from left coast via DFW), usually depart at 6:30am-7:00am. Too early to eat brekkie at home. By the time we land at DFW, sans brekkie, I'd be hungry. Being served a meal an hour or so into the flight is just perfect. Thanks for posting. This is good information, I'll be less likely to spend for the upgrade now, if there is no meal served.
Now United is going to start serving meals and try and win some customers. Nice that they understand providing benefits will win them customers.
rbmia You are right, it is a good first step, but truthfully it would make a much larger impact if they could simply get their act together regarding leadership and long term strategy of the airline. They have been successfully sending their elites to other airlines due to their terrible customer service, inflexible policies, lackluster on board experience, and delays. No one cares about a hot meal when you have a maintenance problem on one aircraft, get bumped to another gate, get delayed an hour, then finally take off only to land and arrive at a gate that has no ground crew and have to wait again for them to show up. Those are the reasons why UA is not my preferred airline.
Hey, they've got to start somewhere and the best place to start would be to remove Slimesek from the CEO seat. However; I will say that having food put back into FC on a flight from Houston to south Floriday (TPA, RSW, FLL, MIA, PBI) is a great addition that was removed a year back only to trigger huge customer complaints. It is a start.