Thursday, May 22, 2008

I may Need To Re-Think My Travel Plans

After yesterday's post, I got an email from some cretin a baggage handler for a major airline who preferred to remain anonymous.  Hopefully he won't be handling my bags anytime soon. That would make the already dicey proposition that they arrive with me laughable.  He stated:

Your blog saying that it took 9 people to handle an inbound flight at PWM was wrong.  Each of those people is essential to the safe landing of the aircraft and the efficient handling of the passengers and their baggage.  You make it seem like we stand around all day doing nothing until the aircraft comes in.  We've each got a different job to do and we do it really well.

Well buddy, you said it.  I just showed the pictures of it actually happening.  And it wasn't 9 people.  It was 15.  There is NO WAY it takes that many people to handle the flight.  And I get your point that each ground crew member has a different job, but jeez, 9 of them?  Gimme a break.  No wonder you are having to charge $15 for the first bag and $25 for each one after that.

There should be someone looking at the contracts at these air carriers and negotiating contracts that function to increase efficiency and ensure good customer service while paying a fair wage.  I know that will mean job cuts, but airlines shutting down is the alternative.  It's time for the CEOs to earn their salaries and make some tough choices.  Apparently the airlines didn't have a handle on fuel costs when they made the labor deals earlier this month.  So now they are passing the costs along to the flying public.  And that will only go so far.   

I'll tell you now that I am thinking about not taking the next 400 mile trip by air.  Between the chaos about to ensue at the security check in lines with people trying to get their lotions and such on board in their carry on and the morons trying to stuff full-sized carry ons into the tiny bins of short haul aircraft, I think I'd rather drive.  even if that means 6 hours in the car with the  kids asking "are we there yet." it's better than waiting two hours to sit on a plane that hasn't  been really cleaned, be 14th in line for take off, get peanuts tossed at me, and then arrive only to find that the bag I paid $15 to fly in addition to my $242 ticket didn't make it.

Unless gas goes to $7.

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