United Customer Service… hmmm

So as I mentioned earlier my flight from SAN to SFO on Saturday was about two hours late, which was totally outside of United’s control given that it was an ATC delay. So last night I got this email from Pamela Coslet’s department:

Dear Mr. [Lucky]:

You have the right to expect great service from us, and we know we were not at our best during your flight with us on February 23, 2008.  Please accept my personal apology for  the delay from San Diego to San Francisco. 

We know how important a relaxed and hassle-free experience is to you when you choose United for your travel needs.  We are working hard to ensure your next trip is better, from the moment you make your reservation to the time you retrieve your luggage.

We appreciate the opportunity to serve you better soon.

    Pamela A. Coslet
    Senior Manager
    Customer Relations

Let me first say that I have a lot of respect for Mrs. Coslet and think she’s awesome. While these are form letters I think they’re great in general, showing that at least someone at United is monitoring flight delays, and often they include some form of compensation. What I’m a little confused about, and what almost seems wrong to me in this case is that United actually was at it’s best in my case- the pilots kept us updated, the purser was excellent and provided nonstop service, and there was an all around great attitude despite the delay.

 I think United should be a little bit more careful in what circumstances they send these out, since at least in some cases they seem to send the wrong message. Only a minor quibble, but figured I would share (since I’m just now catching up on the news in the industry after an almost computer-less long weekend).


  1. Curiously, I never got an email yet had 8000 Customer Service Bonus Miles deposited in my account after similar delays Saturday and Sunday.

    So on a $107 ticket, I got 10,000 RDMs… Not bad, eh?

  2. I too have gotten these in the past – although never with a “goodwill gesture” attached.

    The two things that have always confused me:

    1) Why there never seems to be any correlation between how bad of a screw up it was and if I get one

    2) IIRC they are sent out as a pdf, or Word file or something else I have to wait for my mail reader to spawn off in order to read. While I appreciate the gesture, I’m not going to print it out and frame it. Just make it a plain text email and save me the hassle and delay.

  3. Yep, totally agree. It seems like they do it so they can scan in their signature, but I’d rather have the “unpersonalized” email without an attachment too.

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