United Airlines is making 10 changes to ensure they they “always put the customer first”. Josh King has the story (@abridgetoland). Buzz60
United Airlines on Thursday revealed its "Review and Action Report" recapping the April 9 incident aboard United Express Flight 3411. The report, which was promised by United CEO Oscar Munoz in the days following the incident, includes both a review of what led up to the incident and recommendations "to prevent a terrible event like this from happening again."
Included in the report are 10 new or updated customer service policies meant to prevent episodes like the one that occurred on Flight 3411. Here are those changes, in United's words, as spelled out in the company's Flight 3411 "Review and Action Report."
1. United will limit use of law enforcement to safety and security issues only.
United will not ask law enforcement officers to remove customers from flights unless it is a matter of safety and security. United implemented this policy on April 12.
2. United will not require customers seated on the plane to give up their seat involuntarily unless safety or security is at risk.
United implemented this policy on April 27.
3. United will increase customer compensation incentives for voluntary denied boarding up to $10,000.
United policy will be revised to increase the compensation levels up to $10,000 per customers willing to volunteer to take a later flight. This will go into effect on April 28.
4. United will establish a customer solutions team to provide agents with creative solutions
United will create a team to proactively identify and provide gate agents with creative solutions such as using nearby airports, other airlines or ground transportation to get customers and crews to their final destinations. United expects the team to be operational by June. Examples include:
- Suggest flights to close-by airports and then provide transportation to the customer's preferred destination.
- If a customer's travel includes a connecting flight, provide options that would eliminate the connection and still get the customer to the destination.
- Offer ground transportation where practical.
5. United will ensure crews are booked onto a flight at least 60 minutes prior to departure
Unless there are open seats, all crew members traveling for work on our aircraft must be booked at least 60 minutes before departure. This policy was implemented on April 14.
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6. United will provide employees with additional annual training.
United will provide annual training for frontline employees to enhance their skills on an ongoing basis that will equip them to handle the most difficult of situations. This training will begin in August.
7. United will create an automated system for soliciting volunteers to change travel plans.
Later this year, United will introduce a new automated check-in process, both at the airport and via United app, that will gauge a customer's interest in giving up his or her seat on overbooked flights in exchange for compensation. If selected, that customer will receive the requested compensation and be booked on a later United flight.
8. United will reduce the amount of overbooking.
United has evaluated its overbooking policy. As a result, adjustments have been made to reduce overbookings on flights that historically have experienced lower volunteer rates, particularly flights on smaller aircraft and the last flight of the day to a particular destination.
9. United will empower employees to resolve customer service issues in the moment.
Rolling out later this year, United will launch a new "in the moment" app for our employees to handle customer issues. This will enable flight attendants (by July) and gate agents (later this year) to compensate customers proactively (with mileage, credit for future flights or other forms of compensation) when a disservice occurs.
10. United will eliminate the red tape on permanently lost bags.
United will adopt a new no-questions-asked policy on permanently lost bags. In these instances, United will pay a customer $1,500 for the value of the bag and its contents. For claims or reimbursement over $1,500, additional documentation may be required. This process is expected to be in place in June.