I have to wonder exactly what a person's breaking point is when it comes to being screwed over.
Today they're called "flight attendants," but if you take a ride on the Wayback Machine, they were called "stewardesses." A while ago, I read an interesting interview with one of the first stewardesses who was asked about flying now vs. flying back then. She lamented that flying back when she was working was so much more special. People dressed up in their finest clothes and were on their best behavior instead of showing up in sweatpants and being rude and demanding. People considered the flight an adventure instead of an annoyance. People thought of the flight as part of their vacation, not just a means to get to their vacation. She thought that flying had become so commonplace that people were apathetic towards it and that it has ruined the experience.
She is, of course, completely full of shit.
What's ruined the experience of flying is how the airlines started treating their customers like cattle and abusing them at every turn. What she is bitching about is, in reality, how people have reacted to how they're treated.
As for me, I'm ready to start showing up at the airport drunk and in my underwear.
My flight out of Rome yesterday was delayed 35 minutes because the inbound flight was late. They ended up "making up the time in the air"* and landed as scheduled at 1:00. So far so good.
But here's the problem... MY CONNECTING FLIGHT OUT OF AMSTERDAM HAD ALREADY BEEN BOARDING FOR 25 F#@%ING MINUTES! On my way over I had a FIVE HOUR layover, on the way back I had NEGATIVE 25 MINUTES layover. Who is the idiot who schedules this crap?
And that's just the beginning. My Northwest Airlines flight over the Atlantic went like this...
And we won't even get into the stupid crap on the connection flight to Seattle once I connected in Minneapolis. I am beginning to wonder if I would have been smarter to PAY for my flight on a competing airline rather than use frequent flier milage to get a FREE flight on Northwest. Seriously, just how much worse can it get?
Since they're in bankruptcy now, I'm guessing the answer would be "a lot worse."
I think I am past my breaking point right now, and this was on a flight I didn't even pay for.
* When airlines say that they are going to "make time up in the air" I think we all know that this is a load of horse shit. Airlines heavily... HEAVILY pad their schedules so that they can still claim a high "on-time arrival rate" despite their constant late departures. For example, the flight I took (#45 out of Amsterdam to Minneapolis) which leaves at 2:05pm and arrives at 4:05pm is being discontinued at the end up the month. It is being replaced with a NEW flight #45 which takes off at 2:05pm but is now arriving at 4:25pm. Twenty minutes of additional slop time to make up for even later departures, I guess. I'm sure they'll claim it's some kind of annual change in weather patterns, but it's all crap no matter how you try to sell it. The simple fact is that planes DO NOT take off on time with any regularity, yet somehow end up LANDING on time?? I wish the FAA would get off their asses and start requiring honesty in airline schedules. But that would mean that they actually have to do some work, and what government agency is interested in actually working for the people they are paid to be serving? Dumbasses.