US Airways

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Why would anyone fly US Airways if it weren’t the only way to get from A to B?

Maybe it’s their unattractive logo, a stupendously poor representation of an American flag? Or maybe it’s the way they nickel and dime you – more like $25 per bag, $100 to change your reservations, only $50 if you’ll fly standby? But then they have every right to make money, and many of the other airlines charge similar fees.

I know, it must be the clumsiness of their website. How endearing. No, no. It’s the captive advertising, the ads on the surface of every tray and the live USAirways credit card commercials so adroitly delivered by their flight attendants. ..Hm. Hard to choose, isn’t it?

How ‘bout the way they charge you $25 to ask a live customer service – Now there’s a misnomer if there ever was one. – a live customer service rep to help you reserve a flight over the phone? Could it be the thoughtful manner in which they extort “Choice Seat” fees from people who can afford to select their seats early, on-line, rather than gambling on where they might be stuck if they wait until they get to the airport to pick out a free one? (Apparently, the price of ticket in coach includes a seat, in coach, but not any seat.)

Wait, I’ve got it. It’s all of the above. It’s the arrogance with which they treat their customers, the flying public. It’s the, “Hey, do you want to fly or not?!” attitude that comes from knowing they have substantial control if not a virtual monopoly over many of the markets they serve. It’s the “We couldn’t give a crap,” “Screw you buddy” corporate culture that allows an airline to keep the routes it serves year in and year old without regard to value or customer satisfaction.

What’s not to love? Can you find US Airways in the list of airlines shown in this recently published industry survey?

-wf

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