Inflight Service Committee
- Our AFA Inflight Service Committee Chairpersons met on Wednesday, September 21 to discuss their ongoing program of work to represent Flight Attendants interests related to catering and onboard service/sales.
- The Committee also met with management to receive updates and discuss issues and problems that Flight Attendants are facing onboard the aircraft.
- Management continues to experience challenges in many locations that are affecting the correct loading on onboard catering supplies and retail products. Please continue to report catering issues through Block2Block and safety-related issues through ReportIt!
On Wednesday, September 21, our AFA Local Inflight Service Committee Chairpersons met to discuss their ongoing work to represent our Flight Attendants and push for improvements in our workplace. Representing you at the meeting were Naomi Parcell (ANC), Ross DeJong (SEA), Todd Horn (PDX), Raymond Ramirez (SFO), Johanna Thomas (LAX), and Chase Vandergrift (SAN). Also present was MEC Inflight Committee Chairperson Stephanie Garnett. The committee met with Inflight Experience Program Manager Matthew Coder, Managing Director of Guest Products Todd Traynor-Corey, and other management representatives from the food & beverage, catering operations, and inflight mobile teams.
Topics of Discussion
The committee reviewed a number of items both during internal AFA-only conversation and when meeting with management. Some items discussed include:
- The main topic of discussion was the ice issue. It is now currently being addressed by management with an in-depth focus to determine the root cause. Failure of ice provisioning, quantity, and quality has contributed to a lack of confidence by Flight Attendants in the catering operation.
- Management is considering upgrading first class product, specifically food and service, to allow Alaska to be more competitive. Attention to providing Flight Attendants the opportunity to be successful needs to be taken into account when changes are being contemplated.
- Plastic food toppers should be returning, first class menus are scheduled to return also, and upgrades in the snack basket number and quality of products are expected. A new Bloody Mary Mix is being researched. Again, we are dependent upon the supply chain. The committee recommends a soft launch for new products.
- At this time management has confirmed the small cans of soda are here to stay.
- Revision of the layout of the seatback card has been requested and would include alaskareceipts.com and not include pictures of non-available fresh products interspersed with what is actually offered onboard without pre-order.
- Refreshed interior enhancements of the 737-800 were presented by management. The first aircraft will probably be on-line in mid 2023 or sooner.
- Satellite Wi-Fi will be coming to most of the fleet in several months (depending upon supply issues) with the exclusion of the 737-700.
- The Hawaii arrival announcement has been changed and there are some minimal changes to the service announcements as well. The service announcements will advise passengers that certain retail items are available for purchase.
- The State of Hawaii is interested in a digital arrival agriculture form and the company is working with them to bring this to fruition. At the inception, paper forms would be available onboard as well.
What The Committee Is Working On
- Addressing ice issues. Continuing issues reported through Block2Block and other reporting channels, voicing Flight Attendant frustration with the quality and quantity of ice are continually brought forward. We are focusing on holding management accountable for not providing a basic component for required service.
- Providing input on tools necessary for optimum service is currently pinpointed. The committee is requesting new trays that are sturdier and more suited for delivering service items. In addition, a request to management has been made to research and replace the carafes as soon as possible. The committee’s focus is to remind management to recognize that the Flight Attendant needs for appropriate tools should be prioritized in management budgets. We will continue to make management aware that tools are a necessary part of doing business.
- Advocating for realistic service levels. The committee continues to advocate against the addition of a third beverage cart on premium long-haul flights based on operational and logistical factors.
We Want to Hear from You!
Please continue to report any catering issues or problems with onboard service using the catering feedback function in Block2Block. If you’ve experienced a safety-related issue, please submit a report through ReportIt! Your reports provide the Committee with the data needed to continue pushing management for meaningful improvements in our workplace.
Do you have other feedback for the committee or items that you’d like brought up with management? Please let us know! Your Local Inflight Service Committee is your voice to management. You can find our contact information on the Inflight Service Committee page of the AFA Alaska website.