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United Breaks Guitars (Song One)

In the spring of 2008, the band Sons of Maxwell were traveling to Nebraska for a one-week tour. A Taylor guitar was witnessed being thrown by United Airlines baggage handlers in Chicago and it was discovered later that the $3500 guitar was severely damaged. United didnt deny the experience occurred but after nine months finally determined that they would do nothing to compensate for my loss. The band did the only thing they knew to do -- write and produce three songs about the experience.… ( Plus d'info...

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Captain777 0
Unfortunately, we seem to have a plethora of common-sense starved CEO's and managers leading major corporations. They do not appear to understand a long held statistic that every happy customer tells an average of four (4) people . . . every unhappy customer tells their experience to an average of thirteen (13) people. I suspect this incident will cost United millions in revenue losses and will lead to further job losses.
Chiefenderkats 0
In todays airlines with employees having no pay raises (ever), massive pay cuts (20-30%), loss of pension benefits, massive layoffs (leaving those left to shoulder greater job responsibilities), and usually contract labor doing everything from maintaining the aircraft to baggage handlers the only people left still having job satisfaction are the Flight Deck crews. The flying public has not caught on that in this environment it is not a good thing to check in a $3500 guitar for stowage in a baggage hole. Most likely the baggage handlers were contract anyway and didn't even work for the airline. Common sense reality check: dont check a valuable instrument, piece of equipment, or fragile irreplaceable item into checked luggage. As I said the only people left at airlines still with a palatable professional are the flight crews. Next time ship that vital guitar overnight by FedEx insured. Right now with Ticket prices so low all the airlines are doing is wearing out equipment with no ability to replace it. As for this song, it only makes the situation worse, but he should have been thinking about carry aboard or ship overnight. Carry aboard guitar lovers will knock three roll-a-boards out of the overheads.
EvLake 0
The story and link was forwarded to at least 15 people. Perhaps there will be a few less customers for United.

Cessna 177B pilot
navypilot51 0
Really Chiefenderkats? And we wonder why our some of our workforce seem to have the "no care" attitude.
I would think that espically in today's economy, the fact of actually having a "decent" job would be something to work for rather than expecting a raise for "time served". What happened to doing the best job you can and being recognized for performance. Customers who observe and are made aware of this type of job performance will seek other airlines who seem to do above and beyond rather than your "you owe me" mind set.
Should we expect that the lower ticketed priced flights should treat their customers with less courtesy? If you pay me more I won't throw your guitar? Come on- is that how companies are supposed to act now?
JudyBee 0
I've flown many miles and on many different airlines and the only bad experience I've ever had was when United lost my luggage. And, true to form, it couldn't have happened at a worse time. This was in 1976 and guess who has never flown with United since that time?

Captain777 is correct. Those bad experiences are indelibly etched in our brains and especially in this day and age, airlines would be prudent to remember to treat customers and their luggage with care and consideration.
Edwardjb 0
navypilot51, are you kidding?The best job? And be recognized? All it got us at United was SCREWED. So they (and the customer) get it in return. Don't expect your employees to treat the customer any better that management treats the employee. We've been shown that the only thing long hours gets you is home late and nothing more.
JudyBee 0
Oh yeah, definitely better to do shoddy work, lose customers and your job as a result. "Don't expect your employees to treat the customer any better that management treats the employee" is a foolproof recipe for disaster. I'm a registered nurse and if I treated my patients the same way administration treats nursing staff, I'd be up on charges.
navypilot51 0
What's scarey here is that Edwardjb is probably not an isolated case with United.
Even if I agreed with his animosity toward his employer- why such hostility to the customer?
Let's just hope that safety isn't comprimised.
michael Schrader 0
I would be willing to be that if an investigation was to be started against this person, you would find some things that would send shivers down your spine.
Chiefenderkats 0
Navypilot51 - I can tell you would make a great baggage handler; pay and all.
navypilot51 0
Gosh Chiefenkerkats- and I didn't think you cared.
maddog48 0
navypilot51: You were much too kind to Chiefenderkats.
A much better response would be - thanks but you wouldn't want to take a position away from him that could later help his climb up his ladder of success.
Navypilot-- he is probably just now mastering microsoft Flight Simulatr X.

TGDarling 0
Tom Paxton also has a song about an airline breaking the NECK of his guitar--forget which airline.

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