Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

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rvflyer
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Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by rvflyer » Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:36 am

Allegiant Airlines earned a full 30 minutes on 60 Minutes last night. If you travel in the low cost carrier world you might want to watch this episode. Both the FAA and this airline get taken to task. Allegiant is on the "do not fly" list of many safety conscious consumers including retired FAA/NTSB folks interviewed for this program. I would expect the reliability numbers for flights to improve as the MD-80 jets they fly get retired but the entire maintenance program at Allegiant seems to be begging for a comprehensive review and some fixes. Even their pilots complain about management pressure to not write up maintenance issues with their assigned aircraft. Not good! 60 Minutes points out that the CEO of Allegiant is the former CEO of.......Value Jet.

Watch the 60 Minutes program then decide for you and your family what LCC you will fly on in the future. Be an educated consumer.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by neilpilot » Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:57 am

Value Jet = ValuJet. Flight 592 was downed by the way it's oxygen canisters were loaded on board by SaberTech, a contractor. Not in any way defending Allegiant or ValuJet, just pointing out that aircraft maintenance wasn't behind the 592 crash.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by lazydavid » Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:58 am

I recently had to make two trips out to our St. Petersburg office, which is practically on the grounds of the PIA airport. But as far as I can tell, the only way to get there is by flying Allegiant. So I took a real airline to Tampa and drove across the bay.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by AerialP » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:05 am

I think this is sensationalistic selective squeamishness. The most dangerous aspect of flying ANY airline is the drive to the airport, seconded by preparing and eating breakfast before leaving the house.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by LarryAllen » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:15 am

If the pilot is willing to fly on the plane so am I.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by neilpilot » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:17 am

LarryAllen wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:15 am
If the pilot is willing to fly on the plane so am I.
Well I know some pilots that I certainly wouldn't want to fly with. :mrgreen:

mw1739
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by mw1739 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:01 am

I didn't see 60 minutes, but have read several news articles on Allegiant's poor safety record in comparison to the other airlines. I'm frugal and the airfares are tempting, but flying is one thing I'm ok with paying a little extra for. Anecdotally, I've had friends and family fly Allegiant with both positive and negative experiences, but it's not for me.

TravelGeek
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by TravelGeek » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:27 am

For reference, this appears to be the original story:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/allegiant- ... the-radar/

And here is a follow-up with company responses:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/allegiant- ... 018-04-16/

clutchied
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by clutchied » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:28 am

that was a pretty rough article on them.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by jminv » Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:59 am

I looked into investing in them awhile back and didn't because of their maintenance issues (and because I avoid the airline sector). Allegiant, along with Hawaiian and Alaska looked interesting at the time from profitability and growth standpoint. Allegient flew an old fleet to save on aquisition costs at the partial expense of higher operating and maintenance costs. They had a lot of maintenance related flight delays/cancellations leading to a large number of unhappy customers. They also had an unhappy workforce. Perhaps they've changed since I looked at them, seems like they're moving to newer planes and have become more reliable but one crash would probably be the end of the company.

Their response to the story doesn't seem so helpful (in their internal memo about the story they blamed it on disgruntled employee suing them and experts who haven't been in a plane for decades isn't a great tone while saying everything is fantastic at the airline). Seems like the story is also likely to invite more scrutiny by their regulators.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by TravelGeek » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:34 am

The Tampa Bay Times had an investigative story about Allegiant's maintenance problems a couple of years ago.

http://www.tampabay.com/projects/2016/i ... reakdowns/

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by neilpilot » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:41 am

Allegiant has been upgrading their fleet, and now MD8s are less than 1/3 of their fleet. The vast majority of their maintenance issues, as outlined by the Tampa Bay Times in 2016, were the older MD8s that have been retired. They had no A320s in their fleet back then.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by CULater » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:59 am

Sounds like the problem is particularly bad with the old MD-80 jets and Allegiant has a bunch of them. Allegiant bought these geezers cheap from foreign airlines that were retiring them. I think I'd avoid flights on these for sure. I flew Allegiant once and one leg was on a new Airbus. I think the return leg was on an MD-80 but I wasn't paying attention back then. Now I would. I didn't like the theme of the 60 Minutes piece, which suggested that Allegiant does not have a great maintenance staff and they farm out a lot to contractors. Several ex-officials all said they wouldn't fly the airline and tell their family and friends not to fly it either. Too many in-flight emergencies, such as engine failures. A 30-year pilot on the show said that he had never experienced an engine failure in all his years of flying. You know what they say - often the first sign that you might be at risk of a heart attack is a heart attack. Sounds like Allegiant might be at risk.
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:01 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:57 am
Value Jet = ValuJet. Flight 592 was downed by the way it's oxygen canisters were loaded on board by SaberTech, a contractor. Not in any way defending Allegiant or ValuJet, just pointing out that aircraft maintenance wasn't behind the 592 crash.
You probably read William Langeswische 's article in the Atlantic about this crash?

I found it very illuminating, and it led me to study (a bit) Normal Accident Theory.

I did get a sense of a company (Valu Jet) that had over outsourced and over cost engineered its operations.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 92/306534/

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:04 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:17 am
LarryAllen wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:15 am
If the pilot is willing to fly on the plane so am I.
Well I know some pilots that I certainly wouldn't want to fly with. :mrgreen:
My understanding is that it is quite competitive to become a pilot at a major airline. Most pilots nowadays have paid for their own educations and have worked for small commuter airlines, etc. - working long hours on low pay.

I would not rely on a pilot knowing enough, and being in a personal financial and career position to, refuse to fly a plane.

Like most of us, they do what their employer tells them to do. Mostly it does not go wrong.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:06 pm

CULater wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:59 am
Sounds like the problem is particularly bad with the old MD-80 jets and Allegiant has a bunch of them. Allegiant bought these geezers cheap from foreign airlines that were retiring them. I think I'd avoid flights on these for sure. I flew Allegiant once and one leg was on a new Airbus. I think the return leg was on an MD-80 but I wasn't paying attention back then. Now I would. I didn't like the theme of the 60 Minutes piece, which suggested that Allegiant does not have a great maintenance staff and they farm out a lot to contractors. Several ex-officials all said they wouldn't fly the airline and tell their family and friends not to fly it either. Too many in-flight emergencies, such as engine failures. A 30-year pilot on the show said that he had never experienced an engine failure in all his years of flying. You know what they say - often the first sign that you might be at risk of a heart attack is a heart attack. Sounds like Allegiant might be at risk.
I am not that frequent a flyer but it's usually trans Atlantic with major carriers.

I think I have experienced 2 engine outs - Air Canada and one other. Also 2 emergency landing aborts (previous plane not clear of the runway, landing in a thunderstorm).

So it's something that does happen.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Pajamas » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:13 pm

AerialP wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:05 am
I think this is sensationalistic selective squeamishness. The most dangerous aspect of flying ANY airline is the drive to the airport, seconded by preparing and eating breakfast before leaving the house.
Plus the extra radiation exposure, risk of blood clots, and increased chance of getting sick from the crowded and unsanitary conditions on the flight. The stress caused by the all-around miserable experience of flying shortens lives, too.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Runner01 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:20 pm

I have looked at Allegiant in the past but found Southwest to be cheaper if I bring a carry on and 1 checked bag. However, my local airport is a fortress hub for Southwest so that may play a big part in them being cheaper.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:46 pm

Pajamas wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:13 pm
AerialP wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:05 am
I think this is sensationalistic selective squeamishness. The most dangerous aspect of flying ANY airline is the drive to the airport, seconded by preparing and eating breakfast before leaving the house.
Plus the extra radiation exposure, risk of blood clots, and increased chance of getting sick from the crowded and unsanitary conditions on the flight. The stress caused by the all-around miserable experience of flying shortens lives, too.
There are some emerging market airlines in places like Pakistan that I, or close ones, have flown.

Wouldn't want to do that again.

Maybe statistically the risk is still small-- but it's got to be 10x the risk of your average North American airline.

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Pajamas
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Pajamas » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:04 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:46 pm

There are some emerging market airlines in places like Pakistan that I, or close ones, have flown.

Wouldn't want to do that again.

Maybe statistically the risk is still small-- but it's got to be 10x the risk of your average North American airline.
Objectively still safer than driving, subjectively maybe not.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by TravelGeek » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:06 pm

CULater wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:59 am
Sounds like the problem is particularly bad with the old MD-80 jets and Allegiant has a bunch of them. Allegiant bought these geezers cheap from foreign airlines that were retiring them. I think I'd avoid flights on these for sure. I flew Allegiant once and one leg was on a new Airbus.
New-to-them Airbus, not actually a newly built aircraft, I would think.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... er-443788/

As of Nov 2017: avg age of MD-80s: 27.8 years, avg age of A3xx aircraft: 12.3 years

If you ask Delta (or look at their incident stats), I suspect you will find that that older aircraft aren't necessarily unsafe or prone to accidents/incidents. Delta's been buying older aircraft because of the lower capital expense, but I suspect their maintenance program has been better. United has recently started buying used Airbus and 767 aircraft as well.

Personally, I have never had a desire to fly Allegiant (or really other ULCC; here's a recent example why), for reasons unrelated to safety. But the Tampa Bay Times article put Allegiant specifically on my personal no-fly list back in 2016. Fortunately I would really have to go out of my way to actually get on an Allegiant flight, so my decision doesn't impose a big burden on me :)
Last edited by TravelGeek on Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by neilpilot » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:10 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:06 pm

New-to-them Airbus, not actually a newly built aircraft, I would think.
Their last dozen or so A320s were acquired new.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by TravelGeek » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:12 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:10 pm
Their last dozen or so A320s were acquired new.
Right you are... thanks for the info / correction.

https://airwaysmag.com/airlines/allegia ... rbus-a320/

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:57 pm

LarryAllen wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:15 am
If the pilot is willing to fly on the plane so am I.
Even if it's GermanWings Flight 9525? That's the co-pilot who deliberately flew the A-320 into the French Alps while the chief pilot was using the bathroom.
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by gailcox » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:14 pm

I saw that last night. The main issue to me, is the corporate culture within that company. That culture of saving money no matter what, will put pressure on everyone that works for that airline to skimp on things, even if they are safety related. They outsource their mechanics and maintenance!!! I've worked for a major US carrier for 35 years as a flight attendant. I'm proud of the safety related culture we have within our company. Also, flight attendants have equal responsibility and ability to start an evacuation as the cockpit crew does at my airline. I do not have to wait for permission from the cockpit to start an evacuation if I feel it's warranted. It didn't seem that way at Allegiant. I would never fly on them!!

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:31 pm

Pajamas wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:04 pm
Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:46 pm

There are some emerging market airlines in places like Pakistan that I, or close ones, have flown.

Wouldn't want to do that again.

Maybe statistically the risk is still small-- but it's got to be 10x the risk of your average North American airline.
Objectively still safer than driving, subjectively maybe not.
Probably still safer than driving in those countries. "Rules of the road" so to speak ;-).

I was thinking of one Pakistani airline which had a big crash shortly after my family member flew in it ;-).

But, then, later, the Taliban also blew up the hotel they stayed in in Islamabad ;-).
Last edited by Valuethinker on Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:34 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:57 pm
LarryAllen wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:15 am
If the pilot is willing to fly on the plane so am I.
Even if it's GermanWings Flight 9525? That's the co-pilot who deliberately flew the A-320 into the French Alps while the chief pilot was using the bathroom.
There was that one and the Air Egypt one, where it's pretty clear the pilot was trying to kill himself, and the co pilot fought with him for the stick. Again William Langewische in The Atlantic had a great piece on it.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ar ... 90/302332/

Fortunately, such acts by pilots are rare.

The Black Box recordings from those flights are apparently just harrowing- -as the copilot/ pilot tries to save the thing (locked outside of the cabin/ fighting for the stick).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tenerife_ ... y_response

As was this one.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by jwvanhoven » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:44 pm

No one is addressing the attitude of the FAA which was just as bad.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by whodidntante » Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:54 pm

I have flown Allegiant once and was met with a five hour flight delay due to mechanical issues. They offered me a voucher for food, $10 I think.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Beach » Mon Apr 16, 2018 4:01 pm

Flown them several times, never had an issue. I was aware of the maintenance issues but they passed an FAA audit recently and that eased my fears. Upgrading those old aircraft should be a major help.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 4:02 pm

Allegiant is great if you don't care if you get there remotely on time (or even the same day), don't have any luggage (not even carry-on), don't care where you sit on the plane, don't care if the only flight of the day means you have to wake up at 4am to get to the airport, don't care if flights are only available on 3 days per week, etc. etc.

None of that criteria above works for me so I don't fly Allegiant.

Also, I avoid selecting flights on the major airlines departing my local small airport at the same time as Allegiant flights, because the one TSA line in the whole airport gets completely clogged up with Allegiant tourist flyers who have no idea what they are doing or what's allowed. The one checkpoint line that used to be quick for 50 mostly business travelers on a regional jet can't efficiently handle one or two Allegiant flights worth of tourists trying to get through at the same time.

The fact that it's run by the ValuJet guy is a red flag right off the bat.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by iamlucky13 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 4:26 pm

rvflyer wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:36 am
but the entire maintenance program at Allegiant seems to be begging for a comprehensive review and some fixes. Even their pilots complain about management pressure to not write up maintenance issues with their assigned aircraft. Not good! 60 Minutes points out that the CEO of Allegiant is the former CEO of.......Value Jet.

Watch the 60 Minutes program then decide for you and your family what LCC you will fly on in the future. Be an educated consumer.
The review was completed 2 years ago. I don't know why 60 Minutes chose to produce this segment now.

As one should guess given their position as an ultra-low cost carrier, Allegiant has numerous disgruntled customers due to the way they typically use old aircraft and tight seating to keep cost per passenger low, and lots of add-on fees to make up for extremely low ticket pricing. They also have numerous disgruntled employees and have had contentious contract negotiations.

It's easy to find individuals to complain about the airline, but that tells you nothing about safety. The same complaints get made about every other airline, too.

The FAA review is far more important, because it was systematic and fairly comprehensive, not anecdotal and isolated.

In the end, they FAA levied a fine for certain failures on their part, and required some changes to various maintenance and operating practices, but there really was nothing of significant note found. I don't think any of the issues found was even as serious as the most recent United fine, for flying aircraft without a mandated inspection. Separately, I think it is American that holds the record for largest fine levied by the FAA for safety violations, after delaying fixes to an electrical issue that was known to have potential to cause cockpit fires.

Allegiant for their part, brags regularly about the fact that they've never had a fatal accident. That also is not very useful information, because over their entire history, Allegiant has flown about as many flights as a larger airline like United or Delta flies in a year or two.

Other past reporting, instead of reporting on service difficulty reports in isolation to make the issues sound unusual, has compared their results to those of other airlines. It seemed evident that Allegiant had higher rates of issues than other airlines, but the results were still just what we know - delays, rejected takeoffs, diversions, etc, which are also regular occurrences for every airline, and accounted for in the multiple layers of safety in the aircraft designs and operational practices of the US airline industry.

I would rate Allegiant at the bottom of the list of airlines I would fly in this country, but if they had a low enough price, I'd consider it, because the real hesitation for me is the poor passenger experience, not major safety concerns.

The main takeaway I got from the story is that 60 Minutes can't be trusted to report on concerns like Allegiant's operational issues in a balanced manner, such as even bothering to mention that although one of their main interviewees does have a long history of expertise in airline safety with the NTSB, he also is reportedly consulting for fired pilot Jason Kinzer in his lawsuit against Allegiant.

So my actionable recommendation based on the 60 Minutes segment is to stop watching 60 Minutes.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Looking4Answers » Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:02 pm

USA Today has an article that reports: Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., asked the Transportation Department’s inspector general to investigate FAA’s handling of safety issues at Allegiant. The CBS program 60 Minutes reported Sunday that Allegiant had more than 100 mechanical issues from January 2016 to October 2017.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Bacchus01 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:43 pm

I actually have a clause in my employment contract that prohibits my employer from requiring me to fly discount airlines, domestic or abroad.

No way am I getting on an Allegiant, Spirit, et al flight.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by whodidntante » Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:50 pm

For those who like to fly Allegiant, I predict a wicked fare sale to be coming.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by lazydavid » Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:28 pm

Bacchus01 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:43 pm
I actually have a clause in my employment contract that prohibits my employer from requiring me to fly discount airlines, domestic or abroad.

No way am I getting on an Allegiant, Spirit, et al flight.
I don't have a clause, but I still flat out refuse. If a flight on a real airline is "out of policy" because of a spoiler fare from Spirit or Frontier, either they'll approve the exception, I'll stay an extra night to take a morning flight that's in policy (ultimately costing the company more money), or not go at all.

As recently as two years ago, the discount airlines showed up in our itinerary builder, but the fares were ignored for the purposes of determining the "not more than $XXX more expensive than the cheapest fare" policy requirement. But now they're officially in the mix.

Humorously enough, one of our VPs was all proud of himself for getting a Frontier flight from ORD-TPA for $15 each way, excited about saving the company money. But once he added the legroom fee, the checked bag fee, carryon bag fee, boarding fee, etc etc. it wound up being just over $400 anyway. My two roundtrips on American cost a total of $828.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by jabberwockOG » Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:32 pm

Bacchus01 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:43 pm
I actually have a clause in my employment contract that prohibits my employer from requiring me to fly discount airlines, domestic or abroad.

No way am I getting on an Allegiant, Spirit, et al flight.
100% agree. Years ago I worked for an employer for a short time that required all employees fly the super discount airlines and fares - meaning multiple hops on junk airlines to reach most destinations. I met with CEO (who weirdly did not travel much) and got agreement that if they wanted me to travel on a regular basis the policy would not apply to me. Fortunately I moved on shortly thereafter to a significantly better gig.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by jeffh19 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:43 pm

Ya I'm a cheap....er frugal guy always looking to save a buck and I live in a city that only has Allegiant flying out, a very small city/airport. But the horror stories I've heard from people that fly it and stuff I've read online, hard pass for me. Some I know have flown multiple times with no issues, but flying is not something I want to risk at all. It seems every time I read a story online about something scary happening mid flight etc, it's always this company. I'll drive a couple hours to the big airport and fly Southwest or whoever else.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Hillview » Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:53 pm

I don't fly Allegiant or Air India or several other tier 2 minus carriers. Life it too short as it is, not looking to make it shorter

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by haban01 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:55 pm

I did see this segement last night. Very scary with piss poor management that discourages pilots from recording maintenance repairs and issues. I do not plan to every fly them. :greedy
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by CRC301 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:49 pm

Air travel as a whole in the western world is mind blowingly safe...even the discount airlines. Don't know if this is true or not but I read somewhere that the FAA allows small children to sit in parents lap on flight because if they required parents to buy them a seat, enough families would opt to travel by ground vehicle instead which would actually cause more child deaths than just letting them sit in the lap of the parent in the plane!

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by obgraham » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:47 am

I'm not surprised by anything in the 60 minutes story, despite my loathing of that program in general.

I've flown Allegiant perhaps 20 times, because they have a direct flight from where I live to Phoenix-Mesa, and the 2 airports are close to my house. My travel time is half as long if I go with Allegiant over Delta. And unlike many, I really like the old MD80's they used to fly.

However, in those trips Allegiant has stranded me three times. They kept me hanging around for several hours with "we're going, we're going" when clearly they were planning to cancel the flight. By the time they canceled, it was late night on one occasion, and difficult to find accommodation or transport. Then they give you a slip with a phone number to call "to find out when your flight will leave tomorrow". That number, of course is automated. They have zero customer service, though there is a secret number which reaches a live person, sometimes.

For all of this, lately their fares, when you add their fees up, are higher than Delta.

The aircrews, both cabin and flightdeck, have been always excellent and professional. Their gate and ground crews are appallingly bad. I can only imagine the difficulty the flight crews have in dealing with their employer.

Fly this airline at your own risk, IMHO.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by rustymutt » Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:00 am

I'm a pilot, and wouldn't board any MD plane in service, and certainly not Allegiant. That manufacture isn't around anymore to take care of the planes. Rode on MD to St Louis a decade or longer ago, and the noise, metal pops, and gear noise was the loudest I've ever heard. Decided then that I wouldn't want to ride on MD again. I enjoy a comfortable, safe flight.
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surveyor
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by surveyor » Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:01 am

obgraham wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:47 am
For all of this, lately their fares, when you add their fees up, are higher than Delta
This has really surprised me lately. I used to be able grab a 2 hour flight to a favorite Florida destination for under $100 roundtrip. Skip paying for extras and spend $10 on the drink/nut combo to keep the flight tolerable. Now it seems their base fares are $200+ unless you fly mid week.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by Bacchus01 » Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:16 am

surveyor wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:01 am
obgraham wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:47 am
For all of this, lately their fares, when you add their fees up, are higher than Delta
This has really surprised me lately. I used to be able grab a 2 hour flight to a favorite Florida destination for under $100 roundtrip. Skip paying for extras and spend $10 on the drink/nut combo to keep the flight tolerable. Now it seems their base fares are $200+ unless you fly mid week.
It’s amazing what happens when you need to turn a profit

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by mdroz888 » Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:46 am

I live in the Tampa-St. Pete area and Allegiant is by far the largest airline flying from the St. Pete–Clearwater International Airport, which is on the other side of Tampa Bay from Tampa International airport (TPA). I've watched over the last several years as Allegiant has had very frequent issues like aborted takeoffs, forced unplanned landings, smoke in the cabin, etc. In that same time period, I've only seen infrequent similar issues from the major carriers flying out of TPA. Even though Allegiant flies directly to several cities that I travel to, I determined long ago that I'd NEVER fly Allegiant, even though it requires paying more on a major carrier, a longer trip to TPA and connection flights to get where I want to go.

surveyor
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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by surveyor » Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:44 am

https://www.indystar.com/story/travel/f ... 521587002/

Not Allegiant. Sun Country. A similar type of outfit. Weather canceled flights from Mexico to Minneapolis, which coincidently were Sun Country's last flights of the season. They refunded their customer's fares and basically said good luck, we're not doing anything else. That type of scenario is something I do worry about when flying Allegiant, much more than any serious mechanical issue.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by neilpilot » Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:52 am

surveyor wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:44 am
https://www.indystar.com/story/travel/f ... 521587002/

Not Allegiant. Sun Country. A similar type of outfit. Weather canceled flights from Mexico to Minneapolis, which coincidently were Sun Country's last flights of the season. They refunded their customer's fares and basically said good luck, we're not doing anything else. That type of scenario is something I do worry about when flying Allegiant, much more than any serious mechanical issue.
Except, of course, if that serious mechanical issue happens in the air and prevents a successful outcome.

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by TravelGeek » Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:02 am

rustymutt wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:00 am
I'm a pilot, and wouldn't board any MD plane in service, and certainly not Allegiant. That manufacture isn't around anymore to take care of the planes. Rode on MD to St Louis a decade or longer ago, and the noise, metal pops, and gear noise was the loudest I've ever heard. Decided then that I wouldn't want to ride on MD again. I enjoy a comfortable, safe flight.
Please clarify - are you a commercial airline pilot?

McDonnell-Douglas was acquired by Boeing. There are plenty of aircraft made originally by MD still operating safely today (the Blue Angels fly one type, for example, the F/A 18). Ongoing maintenance is generally not performed by the manufacturer.

I would have zero concerns flying on an AA or DL MD-80. They are being phased out, but not because they are unsafe. And many people consider them to be more comfortable than modern replacements (B737, A320).

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Re: Allegiant Airlines...Anyone watch CBS 60 Minutes?

Post by nedsaid » Tue Apr 17, 2018 9:26 am

I no longer trust 60 minutes, I haven't watched them in years and refuse to in the future. After the fiasco of "fake but accurate" memos and all the hubbub around Dan Rather, I do not trust them or anything they say. I also won't watch NBC news magazines (Dateline NBC) after the GMC Pick-Up fiasco where they used incendiary devices to create gas tank explosions they could not replicate in crash tests. These programs violated my trust and thus I refuse to watch them. There is such a thing as journalistic integrity and it seems to be in short supply. Before I would believe anything in the story, I would need corroboration from other sources.
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