Delta looks to serve ritzier food

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ATLANTA, Georgia -- Delta Air Lines, along with many of its rivals, curtailed food service in 2001 to reduce costs as air travel plummeted.

Now, the airline is offering a new menu -- from Mediterranean chicken to New York cheesecake -- and hoping customers will pay for it.

Delta's new meals will cost up to $10 and will be tested on 400 flights over the next month. First-class customers and members of some frequent flier plans will eat free. The food could be offered on all flights if the test goes well.

The food probably won't turn much profit, if any, but will help placate customers who want to eat on their flight, Delta spokeswoman Catherine Stengel said. It also may help lure new business, as part of a wider effort to reverse losses.

Northwest Airlines, based in Eagan, Minn., has had a meals-for-sale program since January, and has now expanded the service to 64 flights, spokeswoman Mary Stanik said. The meals, ranging from $5 to $10, include breakfast breads and fruit, cold sandwiches and salads.

Fort Worth, Texas-based American Airlines, the world's largest carrier, is in preliminary talks with vendors about selling food at airport gates, spokesman Tim Wagner said.

"There's complexity that goes along with selling food on board flights," Wagner said. "We can have people purchase it, bring it on-board themselves. That gives them more choice."

US Airways and America West Airlines also sell food on some flights, while Continental has sought to tout the fact that it has not reduced food service as much as its competitors.

Still, analysts are skeptical food will do much for airline finances.

"People really aren't interested in food," said Ray Neidl, an analyst with Blaylock and Partners in New York. "It's just something that they're using to save money on meal service but still providing the customers who want it with a meal that's upgraded."

Delta's new menu options include a Mediterranean chicken sandwich for $8, a smoked turkey and pesto sandwich for $8 and a horseradish roast beef sub for $8.

The food will be offered on flights from Delta hubs at Atlanta, Dallas and Cincinnati to select markets from Saturday to Aug. 10.

One airline that won't sell food is discount carrier Southwest, one of the few airlines to remain profitable since the Sept. 11 attacks.

"The customers have never said to us, 'We want to pay more for food,'" spokeswoman Linda Rutherford said. "Our philosophy has always been, `Have a low fare and then go have a $50 steak dinner when you get where you're going.'"

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The food probably won't turn much profit, if any, but will help placate customers who want to eat on their flight, Delta spokeswoman Catherine Stengel said.

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Leave it to airline management to come up with a decision that "probalby won't turn much profit, if any" at a time when they are screaming about losses and wanting their pilots to take a 22% paycut.

This world is beyond F-up'd.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
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Why not serve a good hamburger or chicken strips? Whats with this mediteranian chicken??

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I don't know. Ask Doug. Doug, you had the Med chicken yet? Is it worth the price?
 

Jason

Well-Known Member
Give me a freakin' break! Delta serving ritzier food?!?! Delta serving ANY food would be a step in the right direction! ATL to TUS - just a bit under 4 hours if I remember correctly - I had to do ALOT of talking just to get a third bag of peanuts! That night they were rationing the snacks like they were the last peanuts on earth. Who cares about fancy Med. Chicken - just a simple decent size box lunch would be fine and I wouldn't even have a problem paying for it as long as the price wasn't outrageous.

Jason
 

H46Bubba

Well-Known Member
Pilots will probably have to pay double for those!!!! Anthing to line the pockets of Delta's dubious management.
 

vipermcg

New Member
I was ona Delta flight that left at 640pm, and we didn't get into ATL untill like 830. I was starving the entire flight. I would have definetly payed for a chicken sandwich and some cheescake!
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
I was ona Delta flight that left at 640pm, and we didn't get into ATL untill like 830. I was starving the entire flight. I would have definetly payed for a chicken sandwich and some cheescake!

[/ QUOTE ]

Blasphemy!!! It's not a "chicken sandwitch" as you put it, it's Mediterranian Chicken!


Probably came from government surplus MRE military meals that are out of date.
 

Kristie

Mama Bear....
Staff member
BAH!

I'll bring my own food (my own picks are usually better anyway depending on what i feel like eating!!) - delta needs to drop the concession idea!

that's all i've got to say!
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
It just goes to show you how •ed up this world is. When people got served meals, they bitched and moaned about how bad they were. Now they're not getting meals, so they bitch and moan about that.

So how stupid are people? They'll pay $10 for a sandwich that they can get at the Starbucks in the terminal for $6.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
So how stupid are people? They'll pay $10 for a sandwich that they can get at the Starbucks in the terminal for $6.

[/ QUOTE ]

you know, the airline could make a killing if they charged the $10 for the sandwitch if you pre-buy it. Buy it inflight, and it's $15. Sorta like buying concert tickets with the price difference if pre-bought or bought at the door.
 

Captain_Bob

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
They'll pay $10 for a sandwich that they can get at the Starbucks in the terminal for $6.

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...for a sandwich that you could have picked up at the local Deli on the way to the airport for $3.00... for a sandwich that you could have made before you left home for under about $1.00!


Bob
 

Jason

Well-Known Member
A sandwich at Starbucks?? Yeah right - 40 minute layover in ATL during a push gives you barely enough time to transit the 34 miles to your next gate - try and stand in line at the food court and you're missing the flight for sure!

Jason
 

jdflight

Well-Known Member
Am I the only one disheartened by the fact that this business is merely trying to "placate" it's clientele? Isn't a service oriented business built around the fundamental idea of making clients comfortable and happy, not simply placating them? This marketing person should be fired for her choice of words to a national audience.
 

Jason

Well-Known Member
Unfortunatley it's not limited to Delta. All of the airlines are like that for the most part. The airline industry used to be a service industry but has steadily declined over the past several decades.

Jason
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Am I the only one disheartened by the fact that this business is merely trying to "placate" it's clientele?

[/ QUOTE ]

You caught that too, huh?

I saw that and went "REALLY?"


Poor choice of wording to be sure.
 

Derg

Cap, Roci
Staff member
This is unchecked editorializing but people demanded cheap air travel a few years ago, but they wanted 1970's-style service for advance-fare "Southwest-style" pricing.

The airlines cut amenities and prices, now people are starting to realize that you're not going to get a transcontinental flight for $100, have champange, strawberries and an elegant meal.

The internet made tickets into more of a commodity, and the dumb marketers at the airlines alienated travel agents and now folks are starting to realize that you "get what you pay for" in terms of service.

People are mad because McD's and BK are selling their cheeseburgers for $.89, but In-N-Out is $2.19 and provides a much better product.

None of the above made sense after I typed it. Ack! I need an editor.
 
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