Speaking about Our Customers for a Change...


Sep 2, 2002
Don''t know about you, but this is the worst customer complaint I have ever read:
December 4, 2002
Here''s the text of a complaint sent by a premier passenger to United''s CEO Glenn Tilton, in advance of a FedEx box of trash he collected from his seat in first class. Interestingly, this letter generated a telephone call from Mr. Tilton in response to the complaint.
I hope that your Holiday was better than mine. Certainly it MUST have been if you managed to avoid flying on United Air Lines. What started out the day before thanksgiving at 630 am at DCA was bad enough, but yesterday was the final slap in the face from an airline that really DOES need to consider suspending operations, if only long enough to fire several of your employees who are so unhappy with their jobs that they manage to transfer it to your C U S T O M E R S (get that? US ....you remember? The ones who P A Y to fly your airline?)
I''ll dispense with the day before nightmares. Yesterday was the straw that broke the camels back. You will be recieving a federal express tomorrow with some of the TRASH that was IN MY FIRST CLASS SEAT. The one that by the way, I paid a full FUA fare for, Not an upgrade.
I am a Lufthansa Senator which is the equivalent of your 1K. And a whole HELL of a lot of that flying is on United. I left Atlanta yesterday on flight 1787 at 4:19 PM on a B737300. ZILCH on the service. A drink during predeparture and then the flight attendant, once up in the air would anyone like anything else to drink before we land? EXCUSE ME! BUT the last time I heard , a flight in duration of 1:45 minutes was at the very least a full beverage service, NOT a you''ve had one on the ground don''t bother me now HOWEVER, the jumpseater who was seated up front with the working flight attendant (a true embarrassment to United, by the way) probably interfered with the working flight attendant. Certainly all the rest of us in first class had to listen to her whine and complain about the woes of being on reserve and not getting my hours in and being based in Chicago and living in Atlanta being a real #### on the sleeptime (her words, not mine) And really. A skin tight white tshirt under a short grey halter top that reminded me more of Brittany Spears? And at Least Brittany wears a bra! Skin tight leotard that passed for pants and heels high enough to make any working girl envious. What really IRKED me about her performance was the fact that she wouldnt shut up . AND the fact that she talked loud enough for the entire cabin to hear. Also your crew in the economy cabin were busy in the aisle. SO when the curtain was left opened for security reasons, SIR! passengers naturally had to use the forward lavatory since the cart was not getting out of the aisle anytime soon. And the jumpseater of course managed to THROW herself across the aisle (in the process spilling my drink!) while practically shreiking at he or she who dared brave the line into the first class cabin that THIS IS FIRST CLASS !!! GO BACK!!! SIT DOWN!!! YOU CANT COME UP HERE!!!! Don''t give me the crap about a jumpseater being a crew member on duty at all times. She wasn''t in Uniform but boy did she flash that ID all the while whining about how United is treating her. Do her a favor. Get RID OF HER! A loose cannon like that is all you need right now!
OK. SO. Now we get to Chicago. Arrive C4. I proceed down to the Red Carpet Club at C 18...Its a dump. As in FILTHY. Dishes and cups on EVERY TABLE....5 empty trays that I assume at one time held crackers and various munchies. I enquire of the bartender on duty as to the availability of other snacks. DERSA RETORANT OW-SIDE (I ascertained this to mean, There is a restaurant outside) well you can''t bring food into the club and no big deal, my flight to DCA is a DINNER FLIGHT . I order my drink and upon entering the smoking area am verbally castigated by a man who says rather impudently I might add, that youshouldaordereddatfromadawaitress who was sitting on the phone in the smoking area. I didnt even know she was an employee until she saw that I had need of a refill.I called Executive Reservations and got Ms. Pat McGreagor in Denver. (the only good part of this trip on United) I informed her of the deplorable conditions in the club. She put me on hold and made some phone calls. She came back, again apologized and referred me to a Service Director, Ms. Jackson. Thank you Ms. Mac Gregor, but next time I think I will pass. This woman barely looked up at me and more or less snapped do you wanna fila complaint or what? NO , I just wanted to point out the serious discrepency by reading that United has the best airport clubs in the world. Given that I am a member of several and have never seen a dump like this. Pointing out that the waitress was on the phone she responded they are allowed to do that on break Hmmmmmmmmmmm. Last I checked I have to pay 475.00 per year to be a member of the club. And I don''t recall any of my friends at United who are employees being allowed to duck into the Red Carpet Club when on break. Frankly I am amazed. But nothing United does these days surprises me. Time to head to gate B11 for the flight to DCA. As usual its a circle jerk during boarding. Must be minimum staffing since there are 3 cabin attendants. The purser was too slammed to even acknowledge that we were boarding much less off coffee or even water. (your other crews manage) So off we go. Up in the air rather quickly. Im looking forward to dinner, since I have pre-ordered a lo-fat option.
I am sitting in 1B... your purser manages to take meal orders from everyone in the cabin in an order I have come to term selective discrimination (yes I know she was taking orders in the order of Premier Status) Sorry, but I hate to tell you that Star Alliance Gold gets me NOTHING on United. Including Upgrades. I ***** P A I D ****** 966.00 for a one way ticket from Atlanta to Washington. FULL FARE. She comes to me and says, will you be having barbecued ribs for dinner I said, no I will be having my lo fat meal. hmmm....well I dont see your name on the list ...you have to order this in advance you know (duh! I think I have flown a few million miles and know this being that I booked it 2 weeks ago) ... you know your travel agent probably forgot to do it.
Funny. But the man across the aisle was eating a salmon filet. The meal choices were ravioli or beef. There was a card on his meal tray that said MR. J. DOUGLAS/THIS MEAL HAS BEEN ESPECIALLY PREPARED FOR YOU So IXNAY to the fact that I wasn''t on the list.. He was very into the meal and commented as we were chatting across the aisle. He and his wife had managed to upgrade from W fares AND he got MY meal. Of course it wasn''t his fault. I find it apalling that someone who actually PAID for first class (something you people might want to recognize come Chapter 11 time) doesn''t get the service. So needless to say I passed on the meal. And my travel agent that screwed it up just happened to be United Air Lines. You see, I don''t use a travel agent any more because since the airlines dumped commissions, they want to charge me an extra 50.00 to screw it up and its obvious that as usual , I can get the same fouled up service by just calling United directly!
An airplane is a means of transportation . NOT a restaurant. But when I PAY for first class I certainly am entitled to EXPECT to recieve what I PAID for!
And in my business, (the legal profession) we call that BREACH OF CONTRACT
When will you people shape up and realize that if you keep screwing the customer, that you aren''t going to have to worry about flying since you will be out of business?
Mr. Tilton, you may expect FEDEX AIRBILL: 8372 0652 9359 to arrive at WHQ tomorrow. In it you will find the nuts and pretzels and cocktail straws and napkins that were removed (by ME) from my seat on UA 628 PRIOR TO BEING ABLE TO OCCUPY SAID SEAT on 12/1/2002.
Best of luck in the future. With employees and service like this you haven''t got a chance!