United Airlines has made some drastic changes to its customer policies after a passenger was violently dragged off Flight 3411 two weeks ago.
In a news release this morning, United promised “10 substantial changes to how it flies, serves and respects its customers,” including bumping up the offers for volunteers to give up their seats from the $800 mark – what passengers were offered to give up their seats on Flight 3411 – to $10,000.
United CEO Oscar Munoz said the new policies show a “culture shift toward becoming a better, more customer-focused” airline.
“Today, we are taking concrete, meaningful action to make things right and ensure nothing like this ever happens again.”
United promised to “limit use of law enforcement to safety and security issues only,” to “not require customers seated on a plane to give up their seat involuntarily unless safety or security is at risk,” and to reduce the amount of overbooking overall.
United also plans to build a customer solutions team to assist customers in finding another way to reach their final destination when flights are overbooked.
United said it also wants to empower its employees to resolve customer service issues “in the moment” and will provide employees with more training.
The airline also pledged to automate the process of seeking volunteers to surrender seats, rather than making gate staff responsible.
And lastly, United will adopt a “no questions asked” policy on lost luggage, scrapping the current arduous process when it loses a passenger’s bag and just paying $1,500.
“Our policies got in the way of our values and procedures interfered in doing what’s right. This is a turning point for all of us at United,” Munoz said.