CHICAGO, IL - In what can only be construed as a bid to top Delta Airlines' recent offer to pay flight attendants during the boarding process, Chicago-based United Airlines is announcing a new program that will pay flight attendants while they get ready for work.
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CHICAGO, IL – In what can only be construed as a bid to top Delta Airlines’ recent offer to pay flight attendants during the boarding process, Chicago-based United Airlines is announcing a new program that will pay flight attendants while they get ready for work.

When Delta Airlines recently announced its plans to start paying Flight Attendants during the boarding process the company sent shockwaves rippling through the notoriously stingy airline industry. The ritual of not compensating flight attendants during the boarding process was a longstanding tradition meant to remind the flight attendants that they weren’t pilots and weren’t really valued by the airline.

However, in what is certainly the most difficult labor market in recent history airlines have struggled to find staff willing to work for free while also getting yelled at and even assaulted by passengers. In a bid to fill desperately needed positions on a decimated workforce, Delta Airlines – which has no FA union – announced its intent to start paying flight attendants during the boarding process.

After initially gaslighting Delta, representatives from the United Airlines flight attendants union realized this was their golden opportunity and began virtually storming the United Airlines headquarters in Chicago with their own demands for fair compensation.

United Airlines – ever the creative company – quickly got to work and unveiled its own flight attendant compensation program. The new pay package will start compensating flight crew while they are getting ready for work whether that be at a hotel or their crash pad. Under the new model, flight attendants will receive minimum wage for the time period (not to exceed 1 hour) it takes to shower, dress and prepare for work.

Then during the shuttle ride to the airport (or other transportation means) the crew will be paid minimum wage times 1.5. United Airlines will also pay its flight attendants during the boarding process, however, instead of paying them financially, they will be paid in free United Airlines swag such as hats, t-shirts, bag tags, and model airplanes.

This final requirement of the company was said to be a sticking point for company management who refused to pay flight attendants any sort of monetary compensation during the boarding process as a matter of principle.

The United Airlines union, for its part, quickly accepted the proposal having long given up on even attempting to get its flight attendants paid during the boarding process. Insiders familiar with the process remarked that they were surprised they got anything at all.

No official response from other airlines, however, employees at the notoriously cheap Spirit Airlines were said that a rumor is circulating in the airline that seeks to reduce flight attendants’ compensation during the flight – notably during the times the flight attendants are seated during takeoff and landing. Reportedly, should the flight attendants actually be called on during an emergency in this phase of the flight (e.g. a plane crash), they would be compensated at the current minimum wage for the portion of the country they are flying over during the accident.

Lee is the brains (but definitely not the looks) of The Takeoff Nap. When he's not complaining about upgrades he runs a few travel blogs, but this one is his favorite.

20 replies on “United Airlines tops Delta with new offer to pay flight attendants while they get ready for work”

  1. Are you a Union Buster? If not then I hope you realize your bashing AFA during the campaign to organize Delta is hurtful. People often don’t read beyond what supports their narrative and then share that info. So your spoof like so much other conspiracy and misinformation is passed along as fact. Not funny.

    1. I’m very pro union – at least in cases involving large companies and I found this to be really funny. Sure, there were jabs at all sides but that’s why I liked it. Different strokes I suppose.

      1. Exactly, we hoped folks would see us poking fun at “mgt” too. And while we are personally anti-union, we acknowledge they have a useful place in our society. We also find them an easy target (same goes for the mgt too, lol).

        1. In some industries., such as the airline industry, Unions serve as protection for the employees with in the airline industry,It takes years and years of sacrifice (12 at my airline) to reach top pay scale, decent working trips, days off and vacation selection. If something happens and you are fired or leave, you are back at the very bottoms of the benefits and pay scale with your next airline. Unions help to keep the exploitation of workers down as well as protect the health and safety of the airline workers. These days, the CEOs of the commercial airlines care much more about shareholders and stock prices than they do the welfare of their employees. The Unions are the advocates of the flight attendant, pilot and mechanic groups. The are very necessary- believe me a day 25 year flight attendant- I know!

    2. Freedom of speech. Just because it isn’t AFA favorable doesn’t mean it can’t be said.
      Not everyone at Delta (or anywhere for that matter) wants a union. And besides, AFA does more than their fair share of public bashing and spreading false information.

      1. Freedom to call Delta Gaslighting. They would NOT be Offer Boarding Pay etc. if A Union was not Knocking on their Door. The same reason they have to make Pay Competitive . Remember, NorthWest was Union when they were bought/merged w/Delta –

  2. As a proud union supporter I know we’re gonna get a better deal in negotiations for boarding pay. It’s why I chose UAL over DL when my choices came down to it.

  3. AFA blows. We at United still don’t have piggybacking. It’s in our contract, yet it’s been 5 years and still not implemented?? Always Fucking Around…that’s what AFA stands for.

    1. Exactly. AFA is terrible. 8+ years to make a contract for Spirit? “Fly now and greave it later” only to never hear of it again. The president of AFA can’t even secure things at the airline she works at? Always blaming someone else for her shortcomings. Couldn’t negotiate boarding pay because of 9/11? Pitiful to use 9/11 as an excuse 21 years later. She should know better. Always a step below the gutter….but that was a new low. Even for her.

  4. What about the wishes of those airline employees that don’t want representation , especially the AFA. Some industries need unions to take care of workers, but how many times does someone have to say no before unions actually listen. No means NO!

  5. I wish AFA would get the picture and leave DAL alone… the ones who want a union need to go to a union company….. see ya!!!

  6. I paid over $10,000 in Union dues in my years at a unionized airline only to be tied up in stagnant contract negotiations for years and being forced to work with sub-par flight attendants that the company was forced to keep employed due to frivolous lawsuits. I’d rather keep my money than to take the pay decrease called “Union Dues”.

  7. Oh look more blatant anti-union propaganda. Fuck you and fuck your anti-union lies.

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