So the airline official stands up in front of the camera and gives us the bad news. “For the privilege of flying, the American public is going to have to pay more!” Now I must admit the second he said it, something didn’t sit well with me. “For the Privilege,” of flying I was going to have to pay more. I the same person that wrote his company and all the executives of his company and all the other people associated with his company a very, very big bailout check a few years back with little more that an, “ aw shucks, it will get better,” to get everyone back in the air again.
I, the same guy who foots the bill daily so that he can make sure all of the people getting on his air-buses are safe. I, the same person who with out fail or complaint will stand in long lines on holidays or quietly sit in an airplane for over an hour while his crew catches some sleep, because he has short shifted them.
I who has seen my baggage go from Charlotte to Poughkeepsie while I went from Charlotte to Pittsburgh at least three times. I whose plans could be cancelled in a second if my name appears on a no fly list, that I have no idea how I could possibly been placed on it.
I the paying passenger who when sitting in an airplane of two hundred people am surrounded by others who have all paid either more or less than I for the same ticket. I who with out so much as a phone call can find myself standing in front of an arrival and departure terminal and discover that my flight has been cancelled or that the people I have come to pick up at the airport have been delayed somewhere between here and where they were coming from, but that no one has the exact information right now, call back later!
Oh yes, I will pay extra for the privilege of flying you say. Flying at one time was considered a luxury of travel. Smiling faces greeted you, because you in their eyes were an important part of the program. Now those packages that positively have to be where they need to be over night are more important than the passengers. And the irony of it is, they aren’t screened at all!
As airlines cut service and employees left and right and blame high fuel prices, one can only wonder what the new face of aviation will be in the future. Already all of the big and newer planes are on routes in Europe, where people are use to paying more. While we sit on the old ones, that are in need of constant monitoring. And few realize that many airlines lock in the fuel prices quarterly and are still paying a lot less than any of us think. Bottom line, it’s not a privilege to ever fly. It’s an option.
And as it becomes more and more inconvenient to fly, more and more people will exercise some of those other options that at one time were more expensive than flying; but it seems are not so expensive anymore at all!