Wednesday, August 20, 2008

United to Stop Snacks to Economy Passengers and Free Meals to Business Class

The marketing geniuses at United Airlines today announced a new series of travel incentives for the airlines to begin immediately. Aimed at both economy and business class passengers the cuts include:


1. No more free snacks for economy passengers on domestic flights in North America. Yes that's right, wave bye to your peanuts and pretzels, apparently the weight of the snacks is costing too much in fuel.

2. No more free meals for Business Class passengers. Passengers paying extra to fly in Business Class will be offered Buy on Board food, because that $1,000 you paid extra for your ticket doesn't cover the cost of the ham sandwich anymore.

3. Since there is no more food in Business Class, they don't need as many flight attendants anymore so of course they are cutting the number of FA's in Business Class. This will undoubtedly save them more on fuel then the peanuts as most of them are bigger then mini vans and serve little purpose anyhow.

4. No more free food in economy class for international flights. Once again, the food will be Buy on Board for international coach class. There is a good reason to keep flying united to Europe instead of Virgin.

Airline industry experts are already weighing in on United's new policy.


"These moves are flat-out stupid," said Henry Harteveldt, an airline industry analyst at Forrester Research in San Francisco. "The savings they will get doing away with lunch in business class - they will lose more than that when corporations yank business.


"The challenging thing about business is that whether things are good or bad, you have to invest in your product for the sake of keeping customers and to make it harder for competitors to catch up with you. This does nothing to encourage people to pay more because you give more. They really make me question whether the inmates have taken control of the asylum."


I guess now would be a really good time to point out that United's international flights really aren't that great of a deal and cost about the same as Virgin Airlines which treats you much better, although for United that is setting the bar pretty low.


So at a time when United Airlines is trying to increase it's international customer base, the airline industry executives, who are collectively too stupid to roll a rock down a steep hill, have come up with this brilliant plan. Sit back and enjoy your 18 flight and just chew on your air sick bag if you get hungry.

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