April 27, 2017 – United Airlines has today announced 10 substantial changes to how it “flies, serves and respects” its customers. According to the airline, the changes are the result of an examination of its policies and procedures, and commitment to take action, in the wake of the forced removal of a customer aboard United Express Flight 3411 on April 9.
Here are United’s 10 commitments being implemented:
1) Limit use of law enforcement to safety and security issues only
2) Not require customers seated on the aircraft to give up their seat involuntarily unless safety or security is at risk
3) Increase customer compensation incentives for voluntary denied boarding up to US$10,000
4) Establish a customer solutions team to provide agents with creative solutions such as using nearby airports, other airlines or ground transportations to get customers to their final destination
5) Ensure crews are booked onto a flight at least 60 minutes prior to departure
6) Provide employees with additional annual training
7) Create an automated system for soliciting volunteers to change travel plans
8) Reduce the amount of overbooking
9) Empower employees to resolve customer service issues in the moment
10) Eliminate the red tape on permanently lost bags by adopting a “no questions asked” policy on lost luggage
While several of these policies are effective immediately, others will be rolled out through the remainder of the year.
Oscar Munoz, CEO of United Airlines (pictured left), said, “Every customer deserves to be treated with the highest levels of service and the deepest sense of dignity and respect. Two weeks ago, we failed to meet that standard and we profoundly apologize. However, actions speak louder than words. Today, we are taking concrete, meaningful action to make things right and ensure nothing like this ever happens again.”
“Our review shows that many things went wrong that day, but the headline is clear: our policies got in the way of our values and procedures interfered in doing what’s right. This is a turning point for all of us at United and it signals a culture shift toward becoming a better, more customer-focused airline. Our customers should be at the center of everything we do and these changes are just the beginning of how we will earn back their trust,” he added.
You can hear the words from Munoz himself HERE.