Allen On Travel

A 30 year veteran of world travel (but knows nil about Orlando-area attractions), Will Allen III writes about his weekly odysseys by air on business and how the airlines rob him--and you--of time, the most precious commodity on earth. Time: It's all we have, and the airlines routinely take it from us. This blog challenges the airlines to keep their basic promises.

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Location: Raleigh, North Carolina, United States

Born 1948 in Kinston, NC and raised there in beautiful eastern North Carolina, I now live in Raleigh and commute around the country and the world.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

American Eagle Is Proud To Have No Blankets: None For Free And None For Sale

On six recent AA Eagle flights I suddenly discovered--and I do mean, suddenly, as in overnight--that the professional managers who make such decisions on behalf of their loyal Executive Platinum customers like me have stripped off every last familiar red, warm blankets and, in place of the formerly complimentary flannel, have only a thin blanket and pillow sold in a roll-up tube.

I eschewed the tube option on four flights out of spite and resentment, frankly.

However, on the most recent two flights I decided it would cost just $5 to do a bit of research and see if the new option was worthy of the comfy red blankets of the recent past.

To my surprise, I was told on both recent flights that no blanket cum pillow tubes (presumably blow-up pillows) were available.

On the last flight (last night) I was actually rebuked by yet another surly Eagle FA en route O'Hare to Marquette, Michigan (and this after a four hour delay) who put his face down close to mine--obviously hoping to intimidate me, but sadly disappointed--and barked, "WE HAVE NO BLANKETS OF ANY KIND WHATSOEVER ON THIS FLIGHT, EITHER FREE OR FOR SALE. THAT'S BECAUSE WE RAN OUT SEVERAL DAYS AGO, AND WE HAVE NO BLANKETS ON THIS FLIGHT WHATSOEVER!"

I swear that's a direct quote. Don't know what or who put a bee in his bonnet, but the four hour delay and the swarminess of his o-so-not-customer-focused approach finally caused my rubber band to snap slightly, and I offered the lukewarm response: "Just one more reason not to choose American, I guess."

To which this warm-hearted customer service maven responded, "WELL, SIR, IT'S YOUR CHOICE, OF COURSE, WHICH AIRLINE YOU FLY." Then he stalked away.

Oh, how I love American Eagle! So customer-service focused are they. No blankets now even for sale, and such well-mannered, professional, and good-natured employees to explain the lack thereof.


Blogger alice, uptown said...

No surprise here. All of American's flight attendants have been reprehensibly behaved in the past 10+ years. I think being rude must be included as a course in their training, along with the mandatory display of how to fasten a seat belt (a proud moment -- ha! -- in the demonstration of American [and the FAA's] intelligence).

10/06/2006 8:27 PM  
Blogger flyastrojets said...

Sadly, I've come to expect that kind of response, so I now focus on NOT speaking to any airline employee at all unless absolutely necessary. Unfortunate, because there really are some good ones out there. But the type of response you describe has become far too close to normal.

10/11/2006 10:56 PM  
Blogger William A. Allen III said...

To Alice Uptown and flyastrojets: Yes, and it's a sad day in human relations that we can't just be civil to one another, let alone polite. The trend must right itself sooner or later, right? Things cannot keep getting worse.

10/24/2006 11:13 PM  

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