Bloomberg Business run rather long story this past Thursday about United Airlines and issues the airline has had since its merger (or rather Continentals take over of United) with Continental.
Anyone who has been forced to frequently fly with United Airlines since the merger knows what the mess the airline has become and how little they have cared about their customers.
You can access the Bloomberg Business article here of which below is a short excerpt:
Every airline has its horror stories, of course—air travel is full of opportunities for customer disenchantment. But United has proved an industry leader: On all major performance metrics—delays, cancellations, mishandled bags, and bumped passengers—United has, since 2012, been reliably the worst or near worst among its competitors. In 2012, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, United was responsible for 43 percent of all consumer complaints filed against U.S. airlines. It finished last among North American nondiscount airlines in the 2015 J.D. Power & Associates customer satisfaction survey. Recently the carrier agreed to pay $2.8 million in fines for tarmac delays and the poor treatment of disabled passengers. “United is off-the-charts worse than anything I’ve ever seen,” says Lenny Mendonca, a retired senior partner at McKinsey. Despite having flown more than 3 million miles with the airline, he says, “If I have any other alternative, I will fly someone else.”
It’s been five years since United Airlines and Continental Airlines combined to form what was at the time the world’s largest carrier, and the merger hasn’t gone well. In 2012 and early 2014, when American Airlines Group, Delta Air Lines, and Southwest Airlines reported large, and in some cases, record profits, “the new United” lost money. Earnings calls became an opportunity for then-Chief Executive Officer Jeffery Smisek to apologize. “I know we created some customer disservice because of all the changes we made so quickly, and I apologize for that,” Smisek said in July 2012. “We know we can do better and are taking actions to do just that,” he promised in April 2014.
This is a good story what has went wrong with the airline since the merger with Continental. It is prime example what happen when smaller entity takes over (Continental) and tries to force everything through making employees and customers unhappy in the process.
I truly hope that United Airlines can fix the issues now that the CEO has had heart transplant and is planning to come back later in the year.