Sunday, 6 November 2011

I'm not mentioning names (US Air)

Endless plane delays and re-scheduling of flights.

Finally board.

Sitting on tarmac.

Flight attendant: "We are waiting for another crew.  They are the ones who originally bid on this flight.  But then they were late.  So they called us in.  We all had to show up, and get the plane ready.  Now the other crew is here.  They have the right to this flight if they want it.  Unfortunately, they want it. So we all are stuck here waiting till they get on the plane, at which point we'll have to leave.  They will come on, and be your crew today."

Too much information.

Your union problems are none of my business.

I want to board your plane, have a diet coke, fall asleep, wipe the drool from my chin, and get jostled by IT consultants as they whiz past me.

I don't care who bid on what flight and who has what right to which hours.  Just tell me there has been a delay of twelve minutes and after that we will be scheduled for take-off.

Let us now fast forward to the return flight.  Same airline.

Flight cancelled.

Re-booked onto connecting flight through Washington, D.C.

Get off plane and eat airport Chinese food.

Go back to gate to board plane for Montreal.

One problem.  Plane is headed for Philadelphia.

Gate agent says: Oh, didn't anyone tell you?  This plane will stop in Philadelphia, you will have to de-plane for an hour, and then re-board for Montreal.

That is relevant information that I would have liked to know prior to taking off.  I like to know what city I am in, where plane will be stopping, and what time we will be arriving at our final destination.

I am grateful that ultimately the plane brought us where we needed to go - safely.

I am also compelled to point out the opportunities for improvement in airline-passenger communication.

We don't care about your digestive problems, your mother-in-law, or your union issues.

We care deeply about the plane we are on and where it is headed.

Please keep the relevant information flowing.


  1. they didn't let you get our for a Cheesesteak in Philly?

  2. hilarious -- very similar thing happened to me a couple of years ago. Union rules, FAA rules, finger-pointing, security, passenger mutiny, and an ultimate arrival at Baltimore, where our paid destination was supposed to be Reagan National. Airline promised taxi vouchers, but I knew better and called for a pickup -- naturally, no personnel were available upon arrival and no vouchers to be had. jet set fun.

    Anyway, your story gave me a chuckle.