News and notes from around the interweb:
- Amazing value New York City hotel redemption (I didn’t know about this one.)
- As a follow up to the 71 year old man attacked by a United customer service agent I had the opportunity to make two points to the New York Times, the first with significant understatement.
“I don’t think this is United specifically,” said Gary Leff, the author of the travel blog Viewfromthewing.com. “But U.S. airlines generally have not been good at screening for the best talent and screening out people who are not good at customer service.”
…Many of these encounters have been caught on cellphone video, prompting the airlines to apologize and in some cases to make financial amends. “Otherwise it’s treated as something that didn’t happen or it’s someone’s word against someone else’s,” Mr. Leff said. “If you don’t have that viral media potential, you don’t have impact.”
- US airline employment jumped 12% in April. United, Delta, and American had claimed that the US airline industry would be losing jobs if the US government didn’t introduce legal limits on flights by Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar. The US government didn’t… (And note that the increase in employment came before Emirates started cutting back flights on their own.)
- The benefits of crediting Delta flights to Gol Smiles. You can earn one mile per mile flown on Delta, still, crediting to Czech OK Plus.
- American Airlines has finally made it possible for non-elites to pay for preferred and Main Cabin Extra seats when booking saver awards. This is an indication that they’re finally past much of the IT focus on merger integration, so they’re working through fixing some of the stupid things that have festered which they’ve considered lower priority.
- Al Jazeera has a long interview with Qatar Airways CEO Akbar al Baker
- Nordic Choice will match Hilton Honors status (HT: Milenerd)