I haven’t updated the blog for my training in a bit, because it’s been a Shakespearean few weeks and I’m Falstaff. Nevertheless, let’s have a laugh…shall we?
You ever experience something so annoying that you just feel the need to write notes about it on your Iphone, just in case you ever consider buying, going, or doing something that just absolutely sucked? This is a habit of mine. I use the Notes app on my IPrecious (yes, that’s a Lord of the Rings reference, fellow nerds. Tolkien 2020. Wait – he’s dead? So what – Tolkien 2020, it’s still a better choice…)
(Now I’m thinking – JRR Tolkien / Douglas Adams 2020 – now THAT’S a ticket to throw support behind. The Oval Office would be empty – but hey, not the worst idea in the world. And press conferences would be awesome – just have Ian McKellen read a chapter from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy to the press corps, and I bet they all leave smiling and in a good mood….)
Sorry – where was I? Oh yeah – something annoying happened……several months ago. And I just found my notes on it. And I’m definitely sharing this with all 12 of my readers, because I laughed as I read it aloud. In the men’s room. (Yeah – note to self: don’t read aloud in a mens room – it’s just not cricket.)
I had to travel for work a few months ago, so I shopped for the best price on a coach round trip flight from California to Houston. I guess I flew a certain airline that’s been lambasted by the news over the past few months for varying degrees of – well, there’s no better way to put it – stupidity. They’ve done stuff that you just read about and say “God, they are reeeeeeally stupid. Anyway, I purchased the most cost-effective flight since I was flying for work, and within 24 hours, I must have gotten an email from the airline saying basically “hey, I know you just spent $500 on a round-trip ticket to Houston. Well guess what? Since you selected the least expensive priced ticket that we offered you, the following things won’t be available to you…” (the only thing they refrained from doing was flipping me the bird and yelling Bye, Felicia.). I must have been pissed off, because at the bottom of this electronic Go Screw Yourself email was a damn survey. They had the wontons to ask me “So……now that you red my Go Screw Yourself email, could you rate your level of happiness with our company?”
SUUUUUUURE. Hold my cabernet, because it’s on like Donkey Kong….
They asked a few simple yes and no questions, and then they me – yes ME – room to write free form my thoughts. Oh. Bad move. Oh so bad.
The following was my response to this Orwellian nightmare of an airline – let’s just hope they didn’t take my recommendations seriously…..
My Written Survey Response to an Airline That Shant Be Named….
“Hmmmm…..so you really want my honest opinion about your services? OK – strap in.
(Oh, I must have been slghtly buzzed on airport wine while writing this)
Oh it’s easy to book a flight on sites like Expedia. but to get an email like a day or two after I book is like the airline spitting in my face. I just spent $500 on a ticket. That’s not cheap. And to get a message saying “by the way, here’s everything you don’t get with your fare because you happen to select one of nine different versions of coach that are now available” is unprofessional and sleazy. It actually exudes an odor. Seriously – I held my phone up to the email you just sent, and it gave off the aroma of unwashed gym socks left outside in the rain.
(…left out in the rain? Wow that’s descriptive….)
So since you numbnuts are searching for additional ways to maximize profitability whilst utilizing your clientele like lab rats, I hereby offer additional ways to cash in on the unnerving pain you bring us each time we march into one of your winged cylinders:
(Oh dear God I used bullet points in Iphone Notes – I didn’t even know I knew how to do that. I must have been pissed….)
- Charge more for window seats because they have a view. A view of what? Well once you are in the air, really nothing. But so what? It is a window seat, after all.
- Charge more for aisle seats by calling them “Convenience Seats”, since you don’t need to climb over some dude that’s snoring into his plastic cup of ginger ale to use the bathroom.
- Charge more for middle seats by calling them “Friendhip Seats”, since they force you to rub elbows with two strangers. We all don’t communicate like we used to, and Friendship Seats are just what the world needs to elevate our expressive skills. Toss away that Kindle, and yap away with a crying 3 year-old about world events. You have an issue with the ongoing strife in Lichtenstein? Well a one-on-one conversation with a captive stranger is just what the doctor ordered.
- Only serve alcohol to rows 21 and over. That way you can charge more for the rest of the plane too. Like Bob Uecker once said “you turn this thing around and I’d be in the front row.”
- Hey here’s one more, you penny pinching asshats: start fining people. What do I mean? Great question. If someone is flying coach and it’s obvious that deodorant wasn’t used within the past 24 hours, that’s a $50 fine. Did you bring food that will stink up the entire plane? That’ll be $150 please. And if they can’t pay? Then bartering is allowed. Snatch the customer’s Beats right off their head and sell them in that stupid SkyMall magazine. Grab that HP computer and throw that sucker on Ebay.
(Fines? OK – I must have running out of funny by then. But that Friendship Seats thing got my laughing in a mens room stall. Again – don’t do that. Not cool.)
Seriously? you really need to get your damn act together. You make flying feel like the #6 train downtown to City Hall. Morons. Absolute morons. And it’s not the hard-working pilots, attendants and support personnel. It’s the executive management shitbricks that come up with this stupid ass ideas to squeeze a nickel until the buffalo shits in order to juice the stock price by $.50 and score themselves nice bonuses. Douches.
(Boom – this must have been the point where they delayed the connecting flight due to weather. It was really nice out….so let’s hang here a bit until the wind picks up and and our clients get toss around like Jiffy Pop on the stove)
Think. If you need to charge more, FINE. Do it. charge a little bit more, and make the damn experience so nice for everyone that your customers WILL pay a little more just to fly with you. Make the additional cost worth it. If you do, You won’t care as much whether your flight shows up as the cheapest from DC to Seattle on Expedia. Why? Because you have a loyal fucking fan base that prefers to fly with YOU. It is possible. Some brands do generate loyalty. Look it up if you don’t believe me – google is your friend.
What else can you do to help the situation? Glad you asked.
(Oh no – I’m going into Internal Auditor mode…)
⁃ Don’t treat your coach clients like meaningless sheep. You know you do it, and it feels crappy. Don’t ask me for examples of how you do it, because this will turn in to War and Peace (see, War and Peace is a really famous book, and it’s really thick – get it)
(OOOOOHHHHH – as my daughter says, I’m throwing shade here…..Oh yeah, I’m down with the lingo)
⁃ if you have a plane that seats 120 passengers, do not sell 145 seats on it. See, that’s basically selling something to someone that you don’t own. That’s called fraud. However, because some accountant came up with an average cancellation rate, it’s somehow legal for airlines to do this. Now if I sell a brand new Maserati on line, take the payment and say “oh i just sold my last one – sorry there are no more left – but thanks for the cash”, I would be…….arrested? Yeah, that’s it.
Put in a bullet train from NYC to CA and from CA or Orlando and I’ll never fly again.”
(insert mic drop right……about…..HERE.)