Appendix B: What I learned about USAirways

First of all, don't fly USAirways. We flew on them for 5 legs of the trip, and there has been one screw up on every flight. On the flight from San Francisco to Philadelphia, we were one hour late because of a "seat problem." The flight from Philadelphia to Frankfurt was delayed because the delay from gate departure was so late that they lost their departure window. On the flight from Frankfurt to Zurich they lost our lugguage.

On the return, the flight from Zurich was delayed because somebody did not file the weight of the aircraft. That delayed us by an hour. What takes the cake is that during the flight, we were told that if the cabin smelled like burning oil, not to worry because this was normal! Then the flight out of Philadelphia takes the cake. We were at the gate, waiting to board with boarding passes in hand, but they did not call our zones. Instead, the plane left the gate without us, after being delayed by well over an hour. We had to dash to the customer service agent and get a second flight out, which was also, you guessed it, delayed to get the weight balancing done!

To add insult to injury, they charged us $80 each way for bike handling. This fee is illegal for overseas flights, but because each flight had one domestic leg they could charge us this fee and not be in violation of IATA regulations.

I can understand one delay per trip. 5 delays per trip and the lost lugguage experience makes me question the competence of the folks running the airline.

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