From my perspective, United Airlines had two things going for it: membership in Star Alliance, and that lovely arrangement of Rhapsody in Blue that they play as you board. Things got better when they aligned themselves with US Airways (America West, re-branded). I had received consistently good service from America West, and that seems to have carried over through the various mergers and bankruptcies. Plus, it's nice to be able to add a long connection in Vegas, so you can play a few hands on the way out of California.
So when United merged with Continental - another airline that I've had limited, but positive experiences with - I had hoped that the good guys were winning, and that I would finally be able to fly to all fifty states with a crew that had showered in the past 24 hours, on airplanes that had been built after the Reagan administration, and with lounges and cabins that didn't look like a south Florida day care after a Hurricane.
My faint hope began to fade this morning when I saw the new (yes, again!) United Airlines livery.
Armin, in his fun post on Brand New, sums it up this way:
To be fair, there is nothing inherently wrong with the dull extended, bold sans serif that has been introduced but it represents a kind of corporate stubbornness to not admit that a perfectly decent extended, bold sans serif already exists that works perfectly with the word UNITED. Why create a poor man’s version of that is somewhat incomprehensible and then to tout it as “Ooh la la, it’s custom, baby” is gratuitously sans merit.
Yep. Someone at the client got what they paid for. It'll look even worse on a plane.
Oh well, there's always next time.