All right! I am officially STEAMED!!!!
All right! I am officially STEAMED!!!! This is an honest-to God no-punches-held rant.
It began with an email from Southwest airlines in response to my complaint about their prices. Here is the executive nutshell:
- Fuel prices are too high so we have to charge more, but the good news is that we have no frivolous fees.
- Subscribe to our emails for our good deals.
Really? That’s it?
I wanted to reply, really I did. But I didn’t want to get arrested. Soooo…I waited a month. The email was prepared, I was ready to send, and then I noted the “reply” was to no-reply@…”
You have GOT to be kidding me! That’s when I went onto the website, shortened the email and…you have to have a flight number to send it?
Really? You think that’s it. You think that because I can’t reply unless I have a flight number you can stop me that easily? Well, No-reply, ticket-only or we don’t want to hear from you SW airlines—I HAVE A BLOG!!!
Here is the letter to Southwest Airlines in its entirety:
I am reference number 212973966242.
I had to wait over a month until the steam cleared from my ears before writing back. As you will see, there’s still a bit left in them.
Once upon a time there was an irreverent airline called Southwest. We who hated the other airlines attempt at food applauded the common sense no-nonsense, no-frills non-service. People who understood the concept loved the hilarious flight attendants and looked forward to the next surprise. Then came the footsoldiers of doom:
- People who complained about PTSD over stuff like eeeny, meeny, miney, moe, catch a tiger by the toe. That’s like refusing to fly with men because of one that had hurt you somewhere in the past.
- People who wanted peanuts, almost guaranteed seating, snob-class, and other-airline type special treatment.
- People pushed Southwest enough so that your frequent flyer program became a joke just like the rest of the airline industry.
For heaven’s sake! People who flew Southwest knew what we were getting into! We watched as you became the airline version of the Polyester-clad Mork (If you’re old enough to recall Mork and Mindy, you’ll know what I mean). You were once the alien airline, the rebel without a pause, the one that was always on-time and guaranteed to get you there and back. All for 1/2 the price of the other airlines.
As far as the click and save emails for deals. I have been receiving them for quite a while. Unless I have family in Vegas, the deals are meaningless to me. There are no deals from (my area of Florida) to Palm Springs, California because you don’t fly in or out of these airports. The deals I might be able to use if I’m desperate–from Jacksonville to Los Angeles/Ontario–require a 2 hour ride to Jax and a 3 – who-knows-when hour ride to the poorer section of the Palm Springs area for the cost of the great-price plane fare to and from both airports (around $400 RT from LA to Palm Springs and $200 RT from where I live to Jax). The cost of flying to Atlanta is outrageous and the cost of flying into (the midwest) isn’t affordable either. It’s only a matter of time before SW takes the plunge and becomes just another Del-meri-con airline. You’re almost there. All you have to do is charge for luggage.
I don’t expect an answer because there is absolutely nothing that I can do about Southwest’s continued dive into obscurity. I fly once or twice a year, not enough to make any difference at all when it comes to airline policy. All I can do is point out what I see and plan to live a life in the future that will be without flight.
Someone once known by my name and not, “hey you, #212973966242! Here’s your #(%*Q&% answer.”
If my email manages to make it to someone, I will be more than a little surprised if I I’m asked for a solution. Yes, I do have a few suggestions:
- Send a voucher to 1 person each month on your click and save list for a ½ price plane ticket, good for 1 year. That’s 12 tickets a year a t½ price. People like me probably can’t afford a ½ price ticket anyway, but it’s good PR. Try telling me you can’t afford to do that.
- Bring back the humor and stop trying to feed us! I’d rather buy bottled water at the gate for a dollar than wait until the flight is ¾ over before getting something to drink.
- We already have to print our own boarding passes and the additional cost to reserve it is worth the price. Don’t change that.
- Have a yearly drawing to award 2 people with a frequent flyer number who live in remote places with 10 free flights they can take once a year over a 10 year period.
- During the slower times, offer something the other airlines would never think to do through click and save emails. Things like 3 bags free or a free companion fare to the first 50 people who book a flight to non-popular destinations like Oklahoma City during the tornado season.
There–I feel better already.