As we approach the 1st of the year I am still kicking around the idea of flying AA either to a small or large degree next year. But this really is a hard choice to make for a number of reasons and as I said before thinking about this makes my brain hurt.
Then there are reports of what a Diamond might expect from contributors to the blog like John who was, shall we say, less than “overly impressed” with his experiAAnce with AA.
Beyond that we have, what should be, one of the simple things in life, that is, a pre-flight beverage service from the cabin crew. Folks, this is not hard. We Delta elites have come to expect it like a great many other things like Gogo wifi on every flight (SloGo, but working), a snack basket full of goodies that change now and then, Woodford Reserve, on time flights and much more when it comes to the elite medallion and domestic 1st class travel experience.
But when folks like Gary from BoardingArea and MJ from InsideFlyer (OK, still sorta-ish BA) are writing posts and getting comments from AA FA’s that we elites and buyers of 1st class travel are over entitled and spoiled for expecting good service in 1st class it makes me say “WHOA HAWSE, WHOA!” Maybe I need to do some thinkin’! Maybe AA FA’s need to go fly Delta a bit to learn how to impress those loyal flyers who, after all, largely contribute to their paychecks.
Then there are the other choices. I mean take a look at one of the new red blends Delta is flying around with this month (see the opening image) from Pareto’s Estate. It is called Eighty20
“Fruit is sourced from the southern region of Monterey County, just north of Paso Robles. This area is known for long, warm days, ideal for sun-loving reds. The result is a balanced, full-bodied wine of intensity and structure.
Juicy black currant and red jammy fruit flavors are balanced with rich and silky tannins. Pair with barbecue ribs, slow roasted meats, hamburgers.”
Well Delta does offer on dinner flights a very tasty “braised short rib dinner” as well as the nice “Delta burger” so this wine pairs well with these choices (I know, good food in the air). Then after the meal or on shorter flights in place of the meal you have the snack basket that includes things like Brookside Chocolate:
“Crispy Multigrains and soft Fruit flavored pieces tumbled in smooth dark chocolate”
Now I think these goodies are nowhere as good as Sanders Dark Chocolate caramels that are SOOOO good I bring them home to my wife (well a few of them anyway). My point again here is that Delta is offering a variety of goodness and is, on a mostly consistent basis, providing great service that we have all but come to simply expect as Delta flyers.
Could I even think about giving all of this up for sometimes nice AA folks or, shudder, United surly people on the ground and in the air? I am just not so sure.
Before you jump all over me about my AA & UA comments yes, I know, AA is working on fixing things but AA & UA is not Delta. United, well, I just feel sorry for UA flyers and what you have to put up with. Either way it is going to take a LONG time to fix those two airlines and they are both gleefully decimating their frequent flyer programs that were the ONE BIG PLUS they had and was a huge AAdvantage over Delta and could have saved them and been an offset their failures in service, product and people but that is now gone!
And that I guess sums up today’s post. Other than Alaska, most domestic frequent flyer programs are now all junk. But Delta is truly “banking” on Delta people, product and reliability. With limited choices, maybe it is enough. 2016 is going to be an interesting year! – René
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