Aug 26, 2008

The day I win the lottery, I buy a jet

Aren't you getting fed up with commercial flights in the US? I am. It's a pain in the neck to fly nowadays. It's bad. It's really not fun and a bigger hassle than anything I could imagine. I mean, it's always been just like a glorified bus service with the minimum of the latter, but it has turned into a joke.
And I am a pilot after all. I love flying airplanes. I love airplanes and everything that flies. But being a passenger on American commercial aviation has turned into a real challenge. If there's one thing that Obama won't change, believe me, here it is.

I fly a lot and flown a lot in the last 5 years. All airlines. United, Delta, US Airways, American, Spirit, Jetblue, Southwest.... I have been in them all and more... American Eagle, Continental, Northwest...
My last flying trip, 10 days ago was a simple O'Hare-San Francisco. Of course, if you don't pay full price, you end up with 1 stop-over and usually a very short layover so that you really stress you may miss your flight and run between gates. I am sure that the airlines have taken upon themselves to sort out American overweight problem and make the time in etween flights is the shortest possible, and the boarding gates the farthest possible so that, while carrying your 2 carry-on's, you gotta run, and run hard!!!
Especially when, as it was the case for me, the pilots have a mechanical issue before take off (I get those 2 out of 3 flights) and you end up waiting on board, for 2 hours, not knowing whether they'll ask you to change airplane (happened to me 1 month ago on another ORD-SFO flight) or they just tell you after 2 hours that all is good and that the man in blue fixed the FMC (flight management computer), like on my last SFO flight, when the airplane developped hydrolic issues on push-back.
I am sure that in most cases, they don't actually fix anyting, just recycle the FMC and the engines and try until all lights show green. Gosh, I hate being a back seat pilot :-)

So we took off with 2 hours, just barely made the connection in Phoenix and arrived 3 hours late in SFO, and waited another 45 minutes for luggage.

On my return flights, things got better: while printing my boarding pass (at the office, while having a sales meeting) for a 7pm flight, I found out hat my flight was actually cancelled! Lovely, like he says. anoter hour on the phone with US Airways and I am told my replacement flight is at 5pm and it was 3pm at that time.... It's awesome.

I hate commercial airline flying. They have lost any sense or knowledge of what "customer service" is long ago, and have gone too far to be able to grasp its meaning.

Anyway, if I win the lottery (Yeah, dream on Favro!), I called Netjets immediately to buy my fractional ownership for life!!!