Culture

Pet peeve: I don’t want basic economy fares

Let’s get real. We have immense technological capabilities and advances that are meant to enhance our daily lives.  We have Alexa, our our very own personal assistant. Who hasn’t dreamed of having a personal assistant? We can live like a celebrity in ouw own home by telling a little gadget that we want her to play a particular song. Everywhere we turn our lives are being enhanced by something somewhere.
So. Answer me this. Why are airlines selling us more crap? Yes that is what airlines are doing more and more nowadays. Sure, Jet Blue just announced they will offer free Wi-Fi from gate to gate. That is fabulous. That is what we should expect from our airlines that are already collecting a ton of fees from us. However, jet blue is more like the exception. 
These days, some airlines are offering basic economy seats that entail sitting at the back of the plane with no overhead baggage space guaranteed. What is this about? Who wants crappier service? Its like saying you want a restaurant for the scraps. Its ridiculous. I understand that there may be a market for complete no-frills ride. But how large is that market?
Let me share this bit with you. I got a turn knee muscle as a result of sitting for 12 hours on a completely cramped international flight. And that wasn’t even a no-frills flight or seat. Why can’t airlines just offer a nice, comfortable experience with no expected extra payment. Where is the goal for a basic, good experience?
At one point there may have been a glamorous flying experience. But it seems that day is long gone. Despite those commercials featuring Jennifer Aniston. 
I know its a minor thing and maybe not much to rant about. But I needed to get it out of  my system. And I’m done. 

Categories: Culture, Humor, Psychology, Travel

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8 replies »

  1. I think the minimum should be a little better than what it is as there are some things that should be basic. Enough leg room to function and breathe is great, and having a guaranteed spot for baggage is also something that is almost necessary. I mean what happens when there is no spot for your bag and they won’t move the plane until you move the bag, right? But at the same time, I always go economy. I want cheap. I don’t care about wi-fi or headphones for the in-flight movie, or complementary champagne, or whatever. I want to get from A to B in a reasonable amount of time for the cheapest price possible. I do agree that they should try to do more for comfort and convenience sake, but I also don’t feel like I should have to pay for all the extra stuff that other people want on their flight.

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    • Yeah, I hear ya.
      Its crazy that having enough leg space so you don’t cramp up is something extra to pay for. Thankfully, I am not tall. I feel so bad for people that have long legs. Yeah, I definitely don’t need champagne or even the special food. (Which really isn’t that great).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m glad I am no longer a frequent flyer. In “the good old days” I, as you do now, used to travel a lot for business, and there were many competitive airlines that offered a variety of perqs for business travelers. In those days, some employers would also pay for the upgrade from tourist to business class, or, of course, the traveling employee could use (loyalty) points earned on previous flights to get the upgrade. Those were truly the days, my friend, which of course came to an end once the greedy employers decided that (the value of) the points earned by traveling employees should accrue to the employer. This first downgrade to the comforts of air travel was exacerbated 20 or so years later when gas prices rose tremendously under Bush II and the “poor” airlines took to justifying additional fees for what had been included in basic ticket prices in order to remain profitable. They have now reached profitable status but have somehow managed to overlook this fact which might otherwise encourage them to roll back the fees and other inconveniences and expenses of air travel these days. I guess, now that the Donald is President, the airlines, like the chauvanistic men in business, think they can follow his example and continue to gouge consumers in the name of the profit motive.

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  3. Don’t get me started on the checked bag fee if your bag is only an inch too big on a few certain airlines.
    I mean really? They don’t even make a bag in that size. And why should I check in luggage for a few hour flight?

    I used to like flying, and I still do, but it’s all about the experience.
    I hate the hassle.

    I like the idea of no frills. It’s great for the leisure flyer. All I need is couple of bags to carry on, a seat with decent leg room (re: not in squeezed into a tiny space), and friendly flight attendants. I don’t need anything more.

    Pay more if you are frequent flyer for business (or pleasure) to make the flight comfortable.

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