Most airlines have a good selection of special meals one can order when traveling internationally. United has many such good options. Unfortunately, they appear to consistently lose my special meal requests. On 4 out of the last 10 international flights I have taken, no special meal. More importantly, in all cases the FAs and Purser insisted that there was not even on oder on their records. Hence, I never requested it. Chicago, we have a problem.
The first time this happened to me, I wrote it off. Mistakes do happen. The 2nd time, I called United and they said that the request was on my reservation and there must have been a mistake. The third time, I was upset. I insisted that I had requested a special meal and the Purser actually accused me of lying – ‘everyone says that’, he said. The last time was on a flight last week. Again, no special meal. The Purser acted like she was looking at a printout and said again – ‘no, you must have forgotten requested it’. I called United the next day and they said that the request was on my reservation. I asked them to file a complaint and they did and gave me a complaint number too. So far, I have not heard from United.
I have had other occasions when my meal was not there, but in those cases, I was upgraded at the gate. All I had to do was let the FA know that my meal was probably still in Economy. Sure enough, it was and they got it and served it to me on a plate.
United obviously has something broken. Is it that the Pursers have been trained to say that there was no request made when the meal doe snot make it on board? I hope not. I think the requests get lost somewhere in the upgrade process. One thing in common in all cases was that I was upgraded – well in advance of the flight. The request is on the reservation but does not always make it to the upgraded seat list. It obviously does sometime, as I have received my special meal in BusinessFirst on most flights.
Mystery? Am I on the only one? Has anyone else had an issue with Special Meals on United? Were you in Economy or Upper Class? Do leave a comment so we can compare notes.