When I tell people that I travel about 20% of the time, both in the US and other countries, the typical response is, “Wow, you’re lucky.” I don’t think so.
But maybe I’ve been spoiled by Delta Air Lines, in which I’m a 2 Million Miler and, as a result, get a lot of benefits that I don’t get on other airlines. A good example happened last week, when I was in San Diego and needed to go to San Francisco. Delta didn’t have any nonstop flights, so I flew on another airline (the name isn’t important). And my experience began at the self check-in kiosk. The system immediately recognized my name and itinerary, but then the 20 questions began (okay, maybe it wasn’t 20, but it sure seemed like it):
- Do you want to upgrade to first class? (It’s only an hour flight. No.)
- Do you want to purchase an economy plus seat, with up to 5 more inches of legroom? (Up to? Does that mean it could be only 1 inch? No.)
- Do you want to purchase an economy plus seat and waive your baggage fee? (Even though I never pay baggage fees – No.)
- And once again, are you sure you don’t want to upgrade to first class? (I’m still sure.)
- How many bags are you checking? (One.)
- Please insert your credit card to pay the $25 fee.
After I paid the fee, the machine went blank without giving me the receipt for that payment. I had to call a counter agent for help.
This process took about 15 minutes. And then security! The line looked to be about 100 people long, and took a full 30 minutes to get through, including being patted down because I had left my wallet in my pocket when I was screened by their new “magic glasses” machine.
As I said, perhaps I’ve been spoiled by Delta. Or perhaps next time I’ll just drive the 500 miles up the coast…
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RandolphMase, Fiction Writer
Death on Broadway
Death Beneath the Streets
Death in Central Park
Death in The Cloisters (under construction)