No Excuses

The airline experience has become miserable

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This is just a general rant. Over the past few months I have been traveling quite frequently for work. Flying is just an absolutely horrendous experience at this point.

 

It is remarkable that in a country where a substantial chunk of the population is obese or overweight, seats on aircrafts have gotten exponentially smaller to squeeze more and more people into a single flight. The end result is a miserable experience for everyone involved.

 

Yesterday on a three hour flight, I was squeezed into my already tiny seat because the passenger adjacent to me couldn't fit into her seating space. I had to give up about a quarter of my seating space to her.

 

Most airlines have instituted policies for larger passengers of size, and countries like Canada mandate that such passengers be given a 2nd seat at no additional charge. I know most US airlines have policies in place to accommodate passenger comfort but I don't think this ever gets enforced. 

 

Something needs to change.

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Yes. Lets allow for no gov't oversight on things we care about. Let's corporate America decide, because they always put our needs/wants first. /s 

 

It's funny that while the airline may accommodate larger passengers, they don't really factor in the inconvenience to that person's row mates.

 

it's been going on a while. I remember when United was the best. But over time they've gone down hill. At one point they stopped carrying ball point pens and their flight attendants became salty toward passengers. 

 

Delta and Southwest are the only ones I fly. I heard Emirates and Alaska Air also run good organizations. 

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2 minutes ago, Elessar78 said:

I remember when United was the best

 

United is abysmal at this point. I have another United flight to the West Coast next week and I am already dreading it. 

 

I am a thin framed person and even I barely fit into their seats. I feel genuinely awful for larger passengers. It's not a pleasant situation for anyone.

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I'm fortunate that work picks up my travel tab and they're good about getting us early boarding (helps sometimes) and bumping us up to economy plus. 

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6 minutes ago, Elessar78 said:

I'm fortunate that work picks up my travel tab and they're good about getting us early boarding (helps sometimes) and bumping us up to economy plus. 

 

I have this option too but for some reason I feel compelled to pick the most economic option aside from flying in the absolute pits of air travel (Spirit etc). But I think United has entered that territory now.

 

I'm going to look into Jet Blue or Virgin from here on out.

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I haven't been on a plane since 1998, so no problem for me. The one time I was going to use a plane, found out I was on the no fly list.  Had to fill paperwork or something and never did. I really never had the need to fly anywhere.  

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Being a young(er looking), brown, male has never helped make it more fun. I can't count the number of times I've been "randomly" selected for extra searches or interviews.  

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11 minutes ago, TryTheBeal! said:

I’ve had pretty good experiences of late.  But, I generally try to fly Jet Blue...which helps, I’m sure.

 

I still fly Jet Blue because the experience is better, even though I personally dislike them.  Years ago, my wife and I were flying somewhere and chose to pay a little more money for a later flight, so we wouldn't have to be up before dawn.

 

We got notice after awhile that JetBlue had canceled our flight and moved us to the earlier one we had purposely avoided, probably not enough seats sold between the two to make it worth it to fly both planes.  There was no mention of the price difference.

 

So I called them, explained the situation and asked, if you're moving us to the cheaper flight and inconveniencing us, what about the price difference.

 

"Oh right" they said, not those exact words.  Then they refused to credit the money back to me, they only offered me JetBlue credit to use towards a future flight.  Which of course expired after a year.  We don't fly that often.

 

I raised a bunch of ****, both over the phone and via e-mail, but got the same reply, that this is apparently airline policy and I agreed to it when I bought the tickets. It wasn't enough money to go to court over, so I had to eat it.  If anyone asks me about JetBlue, I tell them I ****ing hate the company and their business practices, but they're still better than almost anyone else.

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I just bought a RT ticket Atlanta to Salt Lake City for $86 on Frontier. Yes, it will likely suck in many ways, but I would rather be a bit uncomfortable than be out another $300.

Personally I wish someone would start an airline that doesn't allow anyone on board under the age of 16.  Every flight to Utah in particular is plagued with screaming children.

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I've flown 4x this year, all on SW (because of points and free flights) and have no problems with the process.  I've flown with my toddler son and wife most of the time, so we get a whole row to ourselves so we don't have to worry about fatties sitting next to us.  I also find that there's really no need to get there 2 hours early either.  We just flew to Grand Cayman from BWI 2 Saturdays ago at 8am so we got to the long term parking lot at like 6:15am.  I was surprised how quick we were through to our gate at that time on a Saturday.  I think we were there by like 6:45 including the shuttle to the airport, full service check in, and security.

 

I really have no problems flying.

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10 minutes ago, PleaseBlitz said:

I make sure to assert dominance over the armrest so that people can't invade my space.  

 

Doesn't work when the person sitting next you can't fit into their seat with the arm rest down.

 

It's completely amazing that in a country with one of the highest rates of obesity, the thought process in mass transit is increasingly a push towards jamming more and more people into tighter spaces.

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4 minutes ago, No Excuses said:

 

Doesn't work when the person sitting next you can't fit into their seat with the arm rest down.

 

It's completely amazing that in a country with one of the highest rates of obesity, the thought process in mass transit is increasingly a push towards jamming more and more people into tighter spaces.

 

It does if you are stubborn enough.  

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Ive been ranting about flying for the past 5 years.  It is awful.  I actually blame travel websites... americans have incentified airlines to 100% focus on up front rates.  Thats how idiots book their travel nowadays

 

What comes with that is outrageous baggage fees, cattle car seating, biases towards passengers who are dumb enough to sign up for airline credit cards, automated customer service, and most of all,  relaxed safety precautions

 

On top of it my company has a travel policy that forbids first class or perks, so even for those of us who fly a lot, it sucks.

 

Clear is nice tho, definitely recommend

 

Federal Gov needs to step in.  The market is broken

46 minutes ago, PleaseBlitz said:

I make sure to assert dominance over the armrest so that people can't invade my space.  

 

I have an international flight coming up.  Thankfully Im sitting next to my wife, i am way stronger and i will dominate the armrest.

 

It is `economy plus` for the 9 hour leg, and business class for the 3 hour leg.  Im curious to see how economy plus is

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Thankfully I don't have a job or lifestyle where flying is constant, otherwise I'd probably be in jail for gnawing on someone's ankle.

 

Wasn't as much a space thing last hr+ long flight (Miami Intl last Thanksgiving) as it was a disturbance thing.... Arguing couple, off and on the entire flight. 

 

Something definitely needs to change before something awful happens that dominates the news cycle for weeks.

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So what's everyone's view of obese passengers and seat encroachment problems?

 

I seriously contemplated approaching cabin crew and requesting something be done. Even got up to go see if I can speak with anyone but the two cabin staff for the economy section were busy at the front doling our refreshments.

 

By the time they finished, the plane was already 90 minutes into a 3 hour flight. I just decided to suck it up.

 

But I think the next time, I'm just going to outright request before the plane takes off.

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2 hours ago, Elessar78 said:

Being a young(er looking), brown, male has never helped make it more fun. I can't count the number of times I've been "randomly" selected for extra searches or interviews.  

 

Terrorist. ?

 

My American Filipina wife gets the same treatment (especially outside of and mainly east of California) even though she is tsa pre-check (because of work). 

 

That said...we fly almost exclusively Alaska Air these days. Since they bought Virgin Air, most of their planes have been updated to Virgin's above average planes. 

 

The one thing that Alaska just dropped (which will blow) is their price guarantee. It used to be until the day of the flight but now it's only 24 hrs after purchase (for Tix bought after Sept 1). I understand the business model for airline ticket prices but the idea that the price fluctuates every few days for the same ticket is still funny to me.

 

 

 

 

Edited by The Evil Genius

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Just now, No Excuses said:

So what's everyone's view of obese passengers and seat encroachment problems?

 

I seriously contemplated approaching cabin crew and requesting something be done. Even got up to go see if I can speak with anyone but the two cabin staff for the economy section were busy at the front doling our refreshments.

 

By the time they finished, the plane was already 90 minutes into a 3 hour flight. I just decided to suck it up.

 

But I think the next time, I'm just going to outright request before the plane takes off.

 

I dont think I dislike them as much as I hate the **** stains who put their seat back.  I like to gouge my knees into their kidneys for the duration of the flight.

 

The problem really is the shrinking room in economy.  The government is proposing regulations, and they need to.  Planes are cramped and unsafe.  Some of us just cannot help being large people.  I am 6 foot 4 so the person next to me is gonna be uncomfortable even if i were 180 lbs.  My kneews and shoulders have to go somewhere

 

But back to my original point.  I actually made a thread about it, its in the es archives.  If you put your seat back on a plane you are a piece of human **** and i hope you contract ebola

True story, i sat next to neil odonnel of steelers/titans fame on a flight from newark to nashville.  We basically played knee demolition derby for the duration of the flight.  Not bragging but I dominated, I have to say

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My pet peeve is that they dont enforce the size of carry on.  They have signs all over the place and little test things if you aren't sure.  But it never gets enforced. 

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42 minutes ago, TheGreatBuzz said:

My pet peeve is that they dont enforce the size of carry on.  They have signs all over the place and little test things if you aren't sure.  But it never gets enforced. 

 

Pro tip:  if you bring your full sized bag all the way to the gate, they’ll make you check it but won’t charge you the checked bag fee. :)

 

Edited by PleaseBlitz
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10 hours ago, Elessar78 said:

I remember when United was the best.

 

If we're doing the "I remember" thing, I remember when airlines supplied actual metal knives, forks and spoons with in flight meals.  I think my father still has some he took home from National and Allegheny (now USAir) airlines.

 

Also, if you've never seen it, watch the movie, The Parallax View.  It is entertaining in that in one scene the guy goes right up to the gate, pays for a ticket in cash and walks on the plane.

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