Since I switched to TK and Star Alliance from DL 2 years ago I have been flying UA domestically in the US. I wanted to share a flight experience with DL from last week. This was a day after the snow storm in the NorthEast and 3500 flight were cancelled, DL cancelled around 300 at JFK. My flight was 8am the next day JFK-FLL. I was offered a $1000 to take a later flight since the flight was overbooked, I declined. We pushed back a bit late. From what I can see, they loaded and offloaded the front cargo hold with pax bags and moved to another section which I could not see. The weather was below freezing outside and the icy work areas making everything difficult. But it was a breezy, beautiful sunny day and tons of overbooked flights at JFK. Finally we got pushed back. 1/2 hour later the captain says, we have to be pushed back further, since the Korean 380 can not make its turn, another 1/2 hour passed.
From what I can see, no urgency, no planning, laziness....By the time we started our engines, #1 engine had a problem and we had to go back to another gate, it took another 1/2 hour going back to the gate, taking the total wrong way back. By the time we got to the gate it was 3 hrs later and pax were given the choice to exit the plane and roam around the gate area. Full flight/lot of elderly folks, some kids, all hungry now took the option, almost the whole plane. But they were told to leave the plane with personal belongings. A total de-planement. And some folks just left the plane and did not come back and standby pax took their place. Finally engine parts replaced, pax reboarded and we left 5 hour late for Florida. I was planning on arriving and sitting by the pool but ended up late pretty much going to dinner. For the most part, pax were pretty civil and no complaints.
Two days later I got an email from DL saying they are sorry about the flight delay, and wanted me to answer a SINGLE survey question:
"How likely are you to recommend Delta Air Lines to others?" (Options from 1-5; 1 being Definitely Will Not-5 Definitely Will)
Pretty Lame if you ask me, 5 hours of my day spent on the tarmac, NOT due to weather, but due to bad management of the situation by DL.
My return flight was awesome by the way. 100%full, on time. Great service on board, everything worked flawlessly on this 25.2 year old MD-88.