Closure of SYD Elite Res Ctr

Discussion in 'United Mileage Plus' started by stryker, Aug 12, 2007.

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  1. stryker

    stryker Member

    Sep 28, 2006
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    I'm a little surprised that no one has mentioned this.

    I guess it indicates there are few UA elites on this board.

    However, this does seem to be a one airline board (no surprises there).
     

  2. Mal

    Mal Enthusiast

    Dec 25, 2004
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    Actually 2 - Qantas and Virgin :) (some people also admit to loving Jetstar, but they are far and few between )

    Agree that not many UA elites post here - presume it is a lot to do with this being an Australian site, and UA having limited presence here.

    So are the Elite calls now being routed to India? Or back to the U.S?
     
  3. wallacej

    wallacej Active Member

    Dec 3, 2006
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    I am prem exec with UA, and have only had to call on the centre once. I do have a bucket load of points I want to use, so where does my call go now..I think I would prefer to call the US direct if I want to book travel on Air NZ...
     
  4. #4 NYCguy, Aug 13, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2007
    Calling the USA direct is probably the best option. If I need something when I am in AU, I call the UGS number in the USA, so the closure of the SYD office doesn't effect me much. Having said that, I will still be calling the US 1K line direct if/when I get bumped off the UGS list.
     
  5. cssaus

    cssaus Active Member

    Dec 13, 2004
    917
    63
    Sydney
    I'm a 1K member and didn't know. When did this happen?
     
  6. stryker

    stryker Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    449
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    Happened at cob last Wednesday, when all SYD Reservations staff were terminated.

    All calls to UA Reservations from Australia as from Thurs 9 August are routed to the Manila call centre, which is slightly better than India, but light years behind the old Sydney centre.

    Very sad, and it may even push me slightly more in the direction of OW (I guess I might have to have a closer look at AA).
     
  7. cssaus

    cssaus Active Member

    Dec 13, 2004
    917
    63
    Sydney
    What a bummer!!

    That was one of the last remaining local perks of being a 1K member. You're right about the Manila call centre, they do seem to try hard but at times they have to constantly refer back to a supervisor and thereby drag out the call duration.

    Whilst I'm still a 1K member I might try calling the US number and hope that I don't get switched through to one of the international call centres.

    If it hadn't been for the local 1K call centre, a rather complication award redemption I booked last year would have been nearly impossible to arrange if I'd been speaking to someone offshore.
     
  8. maunder

    maunder Newbie

    Aug 2, 2006
    9
    0
    Hi Guys,

    I too found out that SYD Res was closing when I called 2 weeks ago. Both calls were diverted to Manilla.

    I sent an email to the Supervisor of SYD Res & she confirmed that it had closed. Some of the staff got jobs in sales & the remainder were out of a job. The Supervisor too was out of a job!

    The SYD guys were good. They knew their stuff & actually helped me, often suggesting better ways to achieve what I wanted to do.

    The Manilla staff are not good at all. They often have to check with their supervisor. They are hard to understand. They dont seem to know the rules. They are infinitely polite but ineffectual.

    I too think I will use Skype & ring the Elite Desk in the US. Does anyone know whether they have been off shored to Asia or are they still operating??

    Bit by bit we are being cut back. No res staff, no UA folks at the checkin desks or lounges in Oz, no mags on the planes, less J class seats with the new flat beds (meams less upgrades from B/H to J), less connections from LAX/SFO to other US cities, less food on US domestics.....

    Not much left is there.

    John:rolleyes:
     
  9. wallacej

    wallacej Active Member

    Dec 3, 2006
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    UA are (becoming) the default LCC bus in the sky for travel between East Aust and west US... and still not that much cheaper
     
  10. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
    1,761
    243
    Canberra / London
    Not cheaper at all, actually. That's probably why they are flying out of Oz considerably less than full (and their 747's are quite unreliable as well).

    Maybe they'll withdraw competely from Oz, as they did with NZ. Wouldn't be any great loss IMHO.
     
  11. #11 NYCguy, Aug 17, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2007
    I think UA are doing pretty well out of their US-AU routes. Last time I saw the loadings for the LAX-SYD routes, UA were well over 80%.
     
  12. Tiki

    Tiki Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    449
    32
    BNE
    I was happy with the Manila call centre. A few months ago, I booked our award tickets to RAR. I had done some homework on the ANA site which gives a reasonable idea of award seats and I knew what dates to ask for. They booked it pretty easily, charged me for the taxes (I posted the exact taxes on another thread, wasn't too bad) and they emailed my e-ticket. The only downside is I can't view the booking on UA.com.
     
  13. Amerrican

    Amerrican Junior Member

    Jun 16, 2006
    28
    3
    Cairns
    I am an American living in Cairns.

    Whenever doing any UA reservations I either use the web or call the Premier 800 number in the US. I've got a US-based VoIP phone line with a US number, so the call from that phone is free.

    This is especially useful when booking award travel (I fly 'em and my wife uses the free tickets). We rarely have any problem redeeming miles; usually two trips to the US per year for free.
     
  14. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
    1,761
    243
    Canberra / London
    I do have to wonder why UA didn't automatically route calls to the Aussie elite number to the USA. This would be miles ahead of MNL. Maybe they feel that as we are all in the same geographical area we would relate better to the Philippines. Not true!

    What they've done is p*ss off many elite flyers and no doubt lose business as well. Doesn't give you much confidence in UA's senior management.
     
  15. serfty

    Moderator

    Nov 16, 2004
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    Probably not a parameter in their cost/benefit analysis.

    The number of elite Oz members is almost certainly dwarfed by those in the US.

    ipso facto - "Little Loss".
     
  16. ozstamps

    ozstamps Member

    Aug 30, 2003
    467
    65
    Sunny Sydney
    A dumb decision.

    I hate calling Manila. They are so SLOW. :evil:
     
  17. straitman

    Moderator

    Apr 27, 2003
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    I hope you don't mean 'terminated as per 'The Governator' :shock:
     
  18. baldman

    baldman Junior Member

    Mar 19, 2006
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    Melbourne
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    FWIW, my recent experience of making mileage plus award bookings has been a fairly happy one. Notwithstanding varying degrees of language difficulties with the different accents, I've found most of the staff fairly competent.

    I'm happy to persist with them as using the miles to fly business on air nz beats the hell out of qantas, both interms of seat and flt availability, hence I'm keen to find out how I get more of my amex points into mileage plus, without being ripped on the "exchange rate".

    baldman ;)
     
  19. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
    1,761
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    Canberra / London
    Glad you're happy with Manila.

    Let me know how you go next time you have a complex problem.

    :cool:
     
  20. maxs

    maxs Junior Member

    Nov 23, 2007
    19
    0
    act
    Business class availability to europe

    The shift of the call centre to manila may explain my problem in communicating. The lass (I think I had the same person 5 weeks apart) was helpful but I am afraid I did not always understand her.

    I am interested in getting business class tickets to Europe using united points for a trip sept/oct 2008.

    When I contacted united by phone I was told there were no Singapore or thai business class available around the time I want to. They tried a number of combinations of desitination and dates.

    When I tried to book through the united website to go via the us, I could not get any saver award although I could find standard award which were double the number of points.

    It surprises me that so far out (my return date has only just become available for booking) that there is a lack of availability.

    Is it that the airlines don’t release business class until later? Is there any trick I should be aware of

    regards
     
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