Every once in a while, I’ll go back through some posts we wrote a long time ago. This one really took me back…it happened in the early days of COVID, when the world didn’t know much about the virus, and COVID precautions were to the absolute max. Most people were doing their best to accept “it is what it is,” but apparently few still thought things should be how they always were, even when most people were worried about catching and perhaps dying from the virus. And, of course, I guess those people felt the need to be loud and proud about that. So if you’re going to complain about something on the internet (and on Facebook, no less!), you should expect the whole world to chime in. Welp, that’s exactly what happened to a passenger on a well-known airline.
The passenger was complaining about his flight between Asia and The Netherlands, and how fewer services were offered to him, a business class passenger, due to coronavirus precautions. I won’t mention the airline, but it was Asia-based. Here are some excerpts (with a little editing on my part for brevity, privacy and spelling/grammar issues):
This airline should be ashamed of itself for charging so much for a flight that was worth very little.
– Just like all restaurants which were forced to do take out service at a discount during Phase 1, they should be charging 30% less for its business flights.
– No champagne in business class.
How then is my cabin different from economy? You have one red wine, one white wine, tiger beer onboard for business flights. I suppose this is what is also available for economy flights. Shouldn’t you make a difference for business to at least have one champagne? I don’t understand how having champagne would endanger safe distancing in the cabin.
– No drink service before the meal.
I understand the airline is trying to reduce contact between cabin staff and passengers. Then why charge regular prices?
I understand they want to do a one tray service, so reduce your prices for business class.
– Why can’t there be a graciousness in the new normal?
You mean that business ticket prices do not justify an additional drink? Your cabin staff did not even offer an extra drink. I had to ask for it. I don’t think this is worth a regular business flight price.
– Worse still, despite not serving us, I noticed whenever i went to the toilet, that there was no safe distancing among cabin crew.
They were chatting, having personal fun. Then there is a double standard that they are afraid to serve. What is the meaning of this?
– I did not appreciate that I was treated like a potential infectious customer by your staff.
If cabin staff are so afraid to serve, the airline should not start their flights until there is a vaccine. [Note from Sharon: apparently he didn’t see all the airlines that did shut down all of their flights for months on end]
– No offer of coffee or tea after the one tray service.
How can you charge me $7000 for my seat?
– The only friendly cabin staff was the senior stewardess from Japan. She was warm and personable despite safe distancing and wearing a mask, a visor, etc.
The other staff were sullen as they served, but enjoyed themselves in the kitchen.
– I don’t want to quibble about the inflight entertainment being from March. Or no towel service etc. I understand that the airline is only restarting. But this does not excuse any of the above points that i have elucidated.
– Worst of all, no special goodbye by the chief steward for loyal customers. Whats happened to basic manners on a business flight?
– P.S.: this is tolerable but no champagne again in the business lounge. This is ridiculous. Its inequitable cost cutting and fleecing of your loyal customers. Charging the same price for a much reduced service from check in (no first class check in available), to lounge, to onboard.
His complaint letter was on the airline’s fan page, so anyone could see it. That was probably a mistake.
Some of the replies he received were quite pleasant. The first response was actually from the airline itself:
Hi, we are sorry to hear about your experience. Please be assured that we have conveyed your concerns to the relevant department for their review and follow-up with you. Please bear with us in the interim. Thank you.
Some other fan of the airline chimed in and was also rather nice in their explanation (the person was also, not surprisingly, not from the United States. You KNOW Americans would have ripped him a new one from the get-go).
During these unprecedented times, for $7K, you get a good lie flat seat for better rest and comfort and better quality food, than Economy, though presentation and delivery SOPs have changed. You are also enjoying personal space, and distanced from the higher density Economy Class cabin (in normal times).
To be fair, the airline has made these service level changes known to its customers via communications, and you as a PPS tiered member would have had personalized communications of this, monthly, via your email. Being informed of these changes pre-flight, had you not been pleased with the changes in service offerings, and were of the opinion that this is not commensurate to the $7000 air fare, you could have opted for either a full refund or flight credits to be used later, when services are normalized to what you’re used to.
Aaron, I understand your disappointment, but do note that it is not only this airline that has been making tweaks to services both on the ground and in the air. In fact all airlines are doing so, and this is an all in effort, where some of the inconveniences you are experiencing an IATA driven recommendation.
But, of course, there were other explanations and comments that were not quite so pleasant:
How did you achieve status, pledge loyalty to the airline’s brand, and yet have an inability to comprehend the current state of affairs? I say this to you, as a fellow equal (but only as a brand loyalist). The airline has made its stand to ALL statused members of product and service changes in these current unprecedented times. This, in itself, explains why you experienced less than what you are accustomed to in normal times. These service curtailments will be accordingly reviewed, in the interest of staff and passenger safety.
The airline has also, since the closure of international borders, permitted passengers to select either a full refund or flight credits.
The airline has delivered what it is contractually bound to, in consideration that it has made its position clear, of the changes to products and services.
…as mentioned earlier, the airline has kept all its statused members, including you, appraised of the tweaks to the product and service offerings, to address concerns related to Covid. They have also provided you air passage as per your itinerary booking.
In summary, the “rant” you’ve made is noted but carries zero value purpose.
By the way, it’s NOT a Kitchen but a Galley. Also, NOT a toilet but the Lavatory.
By the way, what does a special goodbye involve? Just wanted to know, as a reference point, in case I’ve been shortchanged all these years.
Thought of you when I saw this during lunch time online shopping – Aviationtag
I nearly cried…..world’s smallest violin 🎻 Also, learn how airline prices work. (Based on supply and demand, not based on flight costs)
Privilege much? Geez.
^^^ This person was from the U.S. Can ya tell? LOL!
You want to fly a premium carrier, but do not wish to pay premium price. That airline is a 6th freedom carrier so unfortunately, my dear entitled sir… You are not the airline’s target. Where you are based means nada.
These are unprecedented times for the aviation industry. Cut backs are inevitable to keep things moving and Passengers like you flying. That includes cut back on expensive champagne and paying licenses to get current IFE. Heck, some airlines have even turned off their PTV to save money!
I’m sorry you had to ask for an extra drink. Perhaps next time, remove the gold ingots from your mouth before you speak so they won’t fall out? Reduction in contact was mentioned in your thread, that’s what it is. If by that you want a reduction in air fares, then you’ve really done a covidiot here.
The crew is there to serve, risking an infection (their lives) to see that you get to your location in one piece. So forgive them for having a little chat during their down time.
The airline shouldn’t start their fights until a vaccine is found? Perhaps YOU shouldn’t travel until a vaccine is found.
I’m glad to hear you won’t be paying for another flight with them. The airline certainly doesn’t need another entitled brat.
Remember, unprecedented times. Empathy goes a long way.
OK, to summarize, you want your champagne and special goodbye. And your estimated value of them is $2100.
OMG this is terrible, and I suppose you did not get to see Mt Everest either. What a ripoff and y’know you probably should have driven to your destination instead of flying. Then you can have a choice of food and drink that suit your tender palate
Obvious case of delusions of grandure… can imagine him throwing his rattle and a tantrum..expects red carpet rolled out and his feet kissed.
He didn’t have a happy ending!
Do you want to speak to the manager?
This isn’t the first time we’ve written about people who seem to have a sense of entitlement. There was the woman who wanted way too much when Walt Disney World closed due to COVID-19. And, of course, there was the battle between the entitled woman and the United 1K member (spoiler! No one was right). A long while back, Joe even wrote about why we think we deserve special treatment.
Y’all, I still just don’t understand people with these vast senses of entitlement. Sometimes things don’t go according to your life’s plan and you don’t get an extra glass of champagne. But it still doesn’t mean you deserve any sort of payback or discount. Get real, complainer dude. Sheesh…
*** Feature Image: USAF/Master Sgt. Jim Varhegyi
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The male version of Karen is Ken.
I have to agree, though, that the airline ticket prices can be notoriously expensive these days. Why? Because only people who HAVE to travel are traveling now, like going home etc and the airlines know that these passengers have no other options. It is like Insulin, which is necessity for patients, and that is why the governments regulate insulin prices so that private companies do not take advantage of this kinda situation.
Why did the author of this article write a headline that started with the word “WELP”? BAD, TERRIBLE USE OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE!
Hi Paula! we tend to use the term “colloquial,” in lower case, rather than “BAD, TERRIBLE USE OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE,” in all caps.
I don’t get the part about pointing out the person commenting was or was not an American (btw, I am). Explain.
We have a certain style of snark 😉
He’s paying four times the price of a coach seat, and makes valid points. Airline is charging the same fee for significantly reduced services. I doubt any of the people here chiding him here would feel the same if it happened to them in this or other circumstances.
He’s right. For 7k a glass or two of champers is not a big ask…
Reduced service should always mean reduced price. I like when companies referring to our safety save tons of money for themselves. You cannot bring water with you, but you are welcome to buy same water at insane price inside, of course for my safety sake.
I agree with the passenger. He expressed his understanding certain changes duenti the covid 19 situation but if you are still going to be charged a premium ticket price you should feet all the perks that go along with that ticket price.
I agree completely with Aaron. I have not seen any discounted prices for any of the reduced services we receive everywhere in our new normal. Paying customers are herded and ordered to stand here and there like intruders and not treated with any real appreciation for patronizing these businesses. There are definitely more sullen service workers, and fewer smiles or thank yous. Many times I have to wait while employees finish their conversations about their personal issues. I think most people who work with the public would rather be on unemployment benefits. Just because we are all experiencing fewer niceties, at the same or higher prices does not mean it’s right. Lastly I think that people who throw stones at Karen’s, Ken’s, and Aaron’s are jealous because most people are too accustomed to settling and getting hosed, which is normal in economy class where the bulk of us live.
I’m not American, but a very “friendly European”. The guys is an idiot for even complaining. Champagne, seriously?!? Sounds like an alcoholic to me. You don’t want tipsy passengers because they are harder to keep in line. I do t want an impaired person who feels entitled on my flight it’s not safe, with lowered inhibition I wouldn’t be surprised people standing up and yelling around because of restrictions, or they start to feel that they don’t need to follow the new rules and for example refuse to take a mask. Let’s face it impaired people are exactly this, impaired in the rational thinking.
Overall, that guy was a total arrogant assclown. Yes, I’m an American. 🤣
While it would be nice to have that extra glass of bubbly, airlines are operating on reduced budgets because of the virus situation around the world now. The fact that he cried on and on about his flight shows just how much of an entitlement mentality he has and that’s something nobody anywhere in the world is going to tolerate.
I agree with other’s, maybe A-aron should just stay home until there is a cure for the virus, that way he can enjoy all the champagne he wants. But he’ll have to get it for himself and that will probably be another reason to cry about the injustice of not being waited on.
Sounds like he wanted to quibble to me
I agree with the passenger. The price for business class should be discounted.
I don’t understand why people think 7000 dollars is justified for those reduced services. The airline is better off parked at the airport than to rip it’s loyal customers like that. Most of the ppl commenting here would never pay that much but still have the guts to be critical of a person who complains because the service is bad. This is evil. It’s like going to McDonald’s and pay $40 for a burger that has been cut into half because they are trying to reduce costs ( at whose expense , these damn parasites)
I don’t know but 7k is a lot of money. Few people have that kind of money lying around esp during these times. What the airline is doing is proportionate to wickedness. They only think about their own finances , what about the finances of the ones who are supporting them? Surely, u need to be satisfied and appreciated if u have supported a business that much , whether coronavirus is here or not. The airline’s arrogance is blinding it from seeing reality.
This kind of arrogance by the airline industry would eventually lead to their downfall. More and more people won’t stand this kind of greediness. And guess who would go bankrupt in the end?
If one reads one’s contract with an airline when one buys a ticket for passage… the contract states that the airline will get the buyer from point A to point B… THAT is what is stated on said ticket… EVERYTHING else is extra and fancy schmancy stuff is different on each airline. ALL airlines are cutting costs EVERYWHERE… so not one single person is denied anything without being advised beforehand, especially frequently travellers… ALL frequent travellers have been advised by ALL airlines IATA’s rulings so when one is not happy with a cutting of service during a worldwide pandemic then perhaps one should take a yacht!
Tiger Beer? Its obviously Singapore Airlines.
Gotta love Singapore airlines!!
Kinda agree with Aaron. Singapore should not be charging full price, especially since there are not normal loads flying even now. One would think that the airlines would be trying to stimulate travel by discounting. But, there is this “inflation” that really is only another word for companies to price gouge!
If the ticket price pre-pandemic was $7k and included extra amenities and attention and the airline chose to charge the same premium during the pandemic AND offer reduced services then I have to agree with his complaint. Reducing operating expenses doesn’t mean increasing margins. His complaint wasn’t so much about the reduced services as it was about not proportionally reducing the price of the fare.
I flew on more than 200 flights since the pandemic began. The service changes that I experienced didn’t really limit the staff exposure so much as it simplified operations and reduced cost. In most cases ticket prices reflected the reduced services so my mileage varied significantly from this gentleman. Had I experienced the same level of corporate greed that he did I might share in his frustration.