Earlier this year the United/Continental merger went through and pretty well everything customer-facing stopped working. Back in April, Duncan Davidson posted this horror story. I’ve been off the road for a couple months, and now I discover that United still can’t do advance checkin if you’re on a code-share, nor can the airport machines recognize you. So you step up the counter and back into 1982.
I pick that year because last time I checked into SFO I bitched and the poor haggard-looking staffer said “We moved back in time 30 years.” Anyhow, United must be spending a ton more on airport staff, to do the work that used to be automated. Also, given a chance, I’m picking flights on an airline that lives in the twenty-first century.
I’ve been through a few mergers, and I’m imagining the high-level political battle that ended up in them deciding to use the broken Continental stuff, all the decisions made by people eight levels of management away from the real problems.