[ LETTERS TO THE BUSINESS EDITOR ]
More letters address fare war
JetBlue comparisons are way off the mark
After reading some reader comments about the fare wars in Hawaii that referenced JetBlue, I felt compelled to correct some ignorant comments that were made about the airline I am employed by. Reader Sue Ferandin makes some quips about reducing competitors to the "lowest common denominator" by the likes of JetBlue. Ms. Ferandin, JetBlue's pay is on par (first-year pay is much MORE) with competitor airlines.
JetBlue isn't even really a typical low-fare airline ... Delta (in and out of bankruptcy) and Continental have fares lower than JetBlue very often. People pay EXTRA to fly JetBlue for the SERVICE! What a novel concept!
You have the ignorance to take a political shot at President Bush, backhandedly holding him responsible for the furloughed pilots in the airline industry. You should realize that a president in office for EIGHT years before Mr. Bush had a lot more responsibility for the attack on Sept 11 than an individual in office for eight months.
If you want to really hold people responsible for lowering pay and reducing working conditions, hold responsible the bankruptcy judges, laws and the airline CEOs.
Reader Toshi Kawai compares go! to JetBlue. Please don't do that! JetBlue pays fair wages, treats their crewmembers well and provides great customer service. Mr. Ornstein of go! has a very long and poor history of labor relations that anyone can research about him. People desert his Mesa Airlines for better workplaces every day.
JetBlue is NOTHING like go!
Go! execs treat you like a person, not a number
This letter is intended for all those interisland fliers that are on pins and needles waiting for the airfare to drop so that they can either go see their loved ones, family, conduct business or just for leisure
Or if you're something like I am, you are waiting for that one company that treats you like a real person and not just a number, even if it means that they are not meeting the bottom line. That one company that bends over backward to provide you the best service they can even in the middle of a stressful unplanned crisis in which they have no control over.
This is a company that has had nothing but bad news, hard times, lawsuits and whatever else the news has reported about them
Well, for all my fellow fliers, I've discovered a diamond in the rough, go! airlines!
I am a mother of four and I travel to Oahu many times throughout the year for all types of reasons and, of course, I have my parents and family living there and I love to see them often. If you can be sympathetic with me, try imagining traveling your whole family, renting the car, paying the airfare, food and many other unforeseen costs -- and it becomes a costly trip.
Well you all remember the $1 deal, and I was one of those that got up first thing in the morning and started at 7:30 a.m. trying to get a great deal. As it was well reported, go! airlines' Internet service was not working as the influx of people was so great that it crashed their program. For those who don't know this, they have an Internet provider that created and maintains their Internet Web site for them, as most airlines do. This information I would find out later.
It all started with my nasty e-mail, which I e-mailed from their Web site. I was accusing them of false advertising and, in so many words or less, I was telling them how dare they treat all of us like this. This e-mail came after about four hours of trying. I wasn't going to give up. I needed to go to Oahu and it wasn't just for leisure. This trip required that my whole family go and I thought what a great deal if I could actually get just one leg of the trip at the $1 fare.
Fifteen minutes after that initial e-mail, I was e-mailed back from the vice president of Mesa Air Group Inc. (go!). I was astounded that I would even receive an e-mail in the first place and to be from the vice president in the middle of their own crisis, I was in awe!
He apologized for everything going on and we started to e-mail back and forth. He talked to me, a total stranger, like I was someone that worked for him. Hey, let me tell you I have never ever received this type of treatment from any airline.
Because of our e-mails back and forth, I did mention that I believed that they were going to win me over as a loyal flier with the rest of my family. Mr. Among, the vice president of go!, asked if he could forward my e-mails to the president of go! and, of course, I said no problem. I immediately got a text message on my cell phone with the president's apologies, and he was updating me with the status through text messaging, just as Mr. Among was through e-mail. What an awesome feeling to know that they truly cared how I felt and understood my need to obtain the best fares possible.
After almost seven hours of trying to get onto the Internet Web site, and about 10 text messages and 10 e-mails back and forth, I get an e-mail from Mr. Among, the vice president of go!, that the president of go! has authorized another 1,000 seats to be added to the initial 1,000 and that don't worry, I would be taken care of no matter what.
I was like, 'You have to be kidding me. Who am I to receive such awesome treatment.' And, of course, I tried when the site came up and couldn't find a $1 fare anywhere. That's what happens when you have dial-up! Well, truth be told, I have been taken cared of and much more.
Go! is now my choice of air carriers. If they continue to treat me as part of their ohana as they still are, a total stranger who they know nothing about, what else could I ask for?
I don't work for go! airlines, but if you want great customer service, which means a lot to me, give it a try and fly go! I don't think you will be disappointed!
No one 'ripped off' by Hawaiian and Aloha
In Sunday's paper (June 17, "Air travelers address fare war
"), a couple of letter writers accused Aloha Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines of being "disloyal" (Chris Papero, "Former Era of 'Loyalty' Didn't Bring Low Prices") and "ripping off" people (Kasey Chock, "Aloha and Hawaiian Overcharged for Years"). They are wrong.
For many years, before go! arrived, both local airlines struggled to cut costs. To keep their airlines alive, loyal employees made huge salary concessions and gave up pension and other benefits. Loyal vendors, including small local businesses providing goods and services for the airlines, accepted way less than full compensation. Their sacrifices have brought the "cost per seat" down to $50, where it is today.
If Papero and Chock checked bankruptcy records in the last two decades, they would see that the higher ticket prices were being charged BEFORE those cost cuts, when the "cost per seat" was much, much higher. They would see that local airlines have never "made money" and no one has been ripped off.
Blane T. Fujiwara