Missed my United flight cause of long lines

Old Oct 10th, 2001, 12:17 PM
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Missed my United flight cause of long lines

Turned up 2 hours early for my Oakland-Chicago flight Monday on United, only to stand in line for a total of 4 hours. The plane took off for Chicago half empty, because the passengers were all waiting in line. I had to take a plane Tuesday morning at 6:45 a.m., and was advised to show up at 3 a.m., which I did.

United guy told me that they were now doing FBI checks on every passenger, as opposed to the 10%-15% of passengers that they used to do.

It was a big huge mess. United was so completely disorganized. They never even made an attempt to pull people out of line when their flights were coming up. I flew to Brussels from Dulles on Sabena's first international flight out of Dulles after the attacks, and had no trouble at all.

Why can't United handle this?
Old Oct 10th, 2001, 12:30 PM
uh oh
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I'm flying United from Philly to Hawaii for my honeymoon in November. Me no like what I'm hearing.

Is this the norm or an isolated incident? Is it a United problem or is it possibly specific to the airport? 3AM for a 6AM flight?!!!! That basically kills the entire night before, might as well not even pay for the hotel room.
Old Oct 10th, 2001, 12:32 PM
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If United really told you they are doing FBI checks on every single passenger, then they are lying. They laid off too many ticket agents, you see.

It is nice to know things are back to normal in the airline industry and they are lying to passengers, just like the good old days.
Old Oct 10th, 2001, 02:24 PM
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This seems VERY strange because I've seen UA agents calling people out of the line one hour before the actual flight time to ensure that they make their flights.
Old Oct 10th, 2001, 03:03 PM
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I took 6 flights between last Thursday and Monday. The lines on Monday (in Portland and Seattle) were far longer then the lines last week. All airlines had really long (several hour, I'd guess) lines. New security standards went into effect on Monday, which I think partially accounts for the longer lines. At least from what I saw, gate agents and ticket agents were making an effort to pull people out of line, direct them to self check-in when possible, etc. Certainly having a paper ticket or an e-ticket printout and only one carry on (as is now the regulation) will allow you to by-pass the lines at check-in. At all airports you must have evidence (e.g. ticket, boarding pass, or e-ticket reciept) of a flight that day to pass through security into the gate area. I experienced no signficant delays with security - the bottleneck seemed to be at the ticket counters. i think things will become more oganized once the airlines have a chance to figure out how best to accomodate the new security requirements.
Old Oct 11th, 2001, 11:50 AM
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I couldn't understand it either. I had been told all along that airlines were pulling people out of line as their flight times approached, but United did nothing. Any attempts any of us who were booked on that flight made to talk to a ticket agent were rebuffed. They actually called security because one man was getting so upset. I almost joined him.

And the ticket agent told me directly about doing the checks on every passenger.

I don't understand when their industry is so troubled, why airlines wouldn't hire more ticket agents to cut down on the wait time. This would lure more people back. I know I'm no longer flying routes that would take me 6 hours or less to drive (DC-NY, for example) because of the long waits at the airport. I'm not afraid to fly, having taking an international flight 5 days after the attack and having just gotten back from California. I just don't want to waste 6 hours at the airport when it will take me less time to drive.
Old Oct 11th, 2001, 12:32 PM
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the reason the lines are so long, and the hold time is so long (i've waited as much as an hour on hold) is because the airlines have laid off so many people. they blame the 'increased security' which i feel is a complete lie.

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