United Airlines … News You Can Use

By Robert Mark on June 26th, 2007

A few months back, I mentioned that things were about to turn ugly for the summer travel season. Scott McCartney at the Wall Street Journal seems to agree.

Now you all know how much delight I take at poking fun at Chicago’s hometown airline United whenever they give me the ammunition … which is pretty often. 

Scott McCartney’s column this morning was way funnier than anything I could ever write about the UAL behemoth, especially since he focused on expatriate Chicagoan and radio host Scott Simon.

I had to share a few lines from McCartney’s story. They’d be even funnier if they didn’t paint such a sad picture of the airline …

United lost National Public Radio host Scott Simon’s luggage on a flight from San Francisco to Las Vegas last week. After filling out paperwork in Las Vegas, Mr. Simon was given a phone number and email address to contact the San Francisco baggage office — with the caution that San Francisco never answers the phone or responds to email.

More than 30 calls later, Mr. Simon, an elite-level frequent flier on United, has yet to reach a United baggage official in San Francisco, or learn anything about the fate of his baggage, which includes irreplaceable items after adopting his second child in China. Calls to the airline’s main toll-free line haven’t yielded any information, either. American Express Co. is also trying to track down information, a service for its platinum customers, but hasn’t gotten through to United, either.

“It’s incredibly frustrating,” Mr. Simon said. “I know they are overworked, and it seems they have decided the best way to avoid more work is to not answer the phone or respond to email.” He likened the baggage office to someone deeply in debt who simply stops opening bills that arrive in the mail.

A spokeswoman for United says the airline is trying to find Mr. Simon’s lost bag.

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2 Responses to “United Airlines … News You Can Use”

  1. MissJA Says:

    Sounds like he could have benefited from Global Bag Tags lol. I love them!!

  2. GeraldZ Says:

    “More than 30 calls later, Mr. Simon, an elite-level frequent flier on United, has yet to reach a United baggage official in San Francisco, or learn anything about the fate of his baggage, which includes irreplaceable items after adopting his second child in China. Calls to the airlines main toll-free line havent yielded any information, either. American Express Co. is also trying to track down information, a service for its platinum customers, but hasnt gotten through to United, either.”

    Sounds like the CEO deserves a $40 million bonus!

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