This week I’m “liveblogging” my trip to Ukraine. Unlike traditional reports, these posts will be shorter and more frequent.
The service was excellent on my United Airlines flight from Chicago to Zurich, but I must give a special shoutout to Shiela, who was so friendly and gracious and whose written note was the sweetest capstone to a very lovely flight. This is how loyalty is won.
My United Airlines Flight To Zurich – Loyalty Is Won One Note At A Time
Sheila and I struck up a conversation early on in the flight when I flummoxed her by asking for a glass of San Pellegrino.
“Is that some sort of wine?”
I pointed to the green bottle of water on her tray and we exchanged a great laugh. With a huge grin on her face, she said:
“Why can’t you just say sparkling water?!”
I’m just happy United offers San Pellegrino versus Seagrams Seltzer water on longhaul flights.
We continued to chat and Sheila has a long storied history with United that spans over four decades. I love veteran flight attendants who continue to come to work 40 years later with care and compassion.
Sheila was attentive, courteous, and kind. As we approached Zurich she thanked me for my business and presented me with a handwritten note with wings pinned on it:
This is how loyalty is won and preserved.
Very shortly I’ll publish the full review, which I have almost completed.
Hopefully you are sending a compliment letter or email with this story link to United for her file.
I do this on most flights I have. I’m no longer a frequent flier, but I think airlines get a lot of complaints but few compliments so I like to send out thank you notes to the airlines most of the time thanking them for the nice flight we had if the service was good. If the service was “meh”, but not bad, I’ll say nothing.
Same and glad to hear! It’s important.
Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants have the same ability to present a “Note of Kindness”. This is NOT a United perk. Frankly, I’m surprised that Mr. Klint even travels aboard United, as their service is greatly lacking.
I’m glad you had a good FA. Notes like that are definitely a kind gesture. However, not knowing what San Pellegrino, a product UA is serving presumably to appear more premium, shows what’s wrong with premium service in the United States. If FAs don’t know the difference between S. Pellegrino and Seagram’s (or sparkling wine and champagne), no US carrier will ever be “best in the world.”
True, should know what San Pellegrino in the service industry. That said it sounds like she made up for it in other ways
Genuine warmth and character from an American flight attendant, in those very rare moments when it is shown, beats even the best foreign airline experiences, in my opinion.
In my 3 years being Ex Plat with AA I got one note like that. I’ve been verbally recognized for status only about 4 times in those 3 years.
I’m not an egomaniac looking for that stuff but I admit it is a nice but rare gesture on the FA’s part.
Great to hear about Sheila and your experience. Regarding loyalty, I’ll go one further: Loyalty isn’t “won,” loyalty is EARNED.
The entire crew wrote us a card for our 35th anniversary on our MEL-SFO flight last October. It was a very nice touch.
I am always served Seagram’s when I request sparkling water on UA Polaris. Didn’t know San Pellegrino was an option!
I detest flying anymore. You feel like you are violated by the airline by the ticket prices, the add on charges, the counter service attitudes. Then crowded like cattle through a government hurry up then wait semi- gulag search and harass exercise. Then squeezed into narrow tube with seats designed for little people. By the time you get to your arrival destination you feel the need for a drink or three , massage or pick your own relaxer. I can recall when flying was something you looked forward to. These days I would rather have a root canal then fly somewhere on a US domestic flight.
More like a united fa demonstrates how she is willing to whore herself for this rag, and I guess that makes you the pimp in this equation.
First time commenter here, I don’t think we read the same article.
Hand written notes are overrated…
Once, I flew with Delta as a lowly Gold one with my son (4yo). The flight was an annoying experience. They f***ed up data of my son’s paperwork in their system, causing us to go back and forth like 3 times just to board (yep, line up 3 times in a row with a 4yo is fun). Their FA’s spent the entire right barking commands at the passengers. Unrelated, but I found it to be extremely annoying, they had no hot food for purchase on a 6h flight.
At the end of the flight, one of them dropped a piece of paper on my lap. Seriously, without a word. The FA dropped it then ran off. I thought it’s immigration paperwork or something (and we had been given special treatments over paperwork so far…). Turned out, it was one of these notes. And I stared at it for 2 minutes, deciding whether I should feel appreciated or lackluster, then junked the note.
I felt like someone somewhere in Delta HQ just have decreed that x number of passengers with highest status on the flight should get the notes. Frankly, I would prefer the FA’s to save their energy and say what they needed to say in a gentler tone.