Coffee? Water? Travel rewards credit card? According to one travel blog, such midflight pitches from United Airlines flight attendants for carrier-sponsored credit cards are rumored to begin soon — to the chagrin of many frequent flyers.
Skift recently reported that United is mandating the promotion of the airline’s credit cards on every flight, both domestic and international, by flight crews. Citing “leaked internal documents,” the outlet said starting Sept. 1 staffers will receive new training on the offerings, for which United is doubling their bonus — the airline will pay flight attendants $100 stipends, up from the current $50, for successfully signing up new customers, according to Skift.
As noted by SF Gate, United and Chase recently rolled out a new United Explorer Card, hoping to attract consumers with sign-up bonuses of between 40,000 to 60,000 miles after reaching select spending targets.
Though United did not immediately return Fox News’ request for comment on the matter, the airline did offer the Los Angeles Times the following statement:
“We are introducing a new training program for our co-branded credit card that is especially designed for flight attendants, as this work group has the most engagement with our customers,” a representative said. “Our inflight crew are effective ambassadors, who can best communicate to our customers in the moment the benefits of the United Explorer card."
Meanwhile, commentators are taking to Twitter to voice their dissonance with the notion of midflight sales pitches.
“I will not fly on your airline until you reverse this RIDICULOUS notion of flight attendants selling credit cards, @united,” one critic clapped.
“Are United Airline's flight attendants their for my safety or to sell me snacks, drinks, leg room and credit cards? This after paying $25 to check a bag. Whats next BYOS? Bring Your Own Seat?” another snarky commenter replied.
“The latest in @united - forcing flight attendants to sell their credit cards. $100 incentive for each sold. Very sad for these employees,” one agreed.
“All @United passengers should try to sell the flight attendants products from their companies when they try to sell credit cards. Airline greed sucks!” another said.
The L.A. Times reported that American Airlines also has its flight attendants push their credit cards, but the practice is currently optional.