Sunday, October 02, 2005

Is it alzheimer’s or too much o’ the green?

I am such an idiot. I don’t know how I actually get by on the planet while stll being so stupid.
Last week, I decided to go home to California for the Jewish holidays. I had already decided not to but then I thought about how if I was starting school in March I probably wouldn’t want to go home before then, so here I am. I made sure to limit the amount of days I actually spent at home so that I wouldn’t want to die before the end of the trip. I actually bought the ticket eight days before I was scheduled to fly. I didn’t notice anything strange about the ticket at the time, but a few days later when I was giving my mom the info so that she could pick me up at the airport, I told her that the plane left at four and landed at midnight. After I hung up, it registered that that was weird, but I just put it out of my head. On Thursday I looked up the info at work and copied it into my planner-- again registering that the times seemed weird on the return as well: leaving LA at seven and getting in at eleven seemed too good to be true, but I again, just ignored it. On Friday evening I talked to Kelly about it, finally bothering to calculate. “Wait, so if I leave NYC at 4 I should arrive in LA at 9 o’clock Eastern time, which is 6 o’clock LA time. What’s going on?” I AGAIN put this out of my head, and we go make dinner. About halfway through making dinner, I decide to quickly take a look at the flight info and see what’s up. At this point I think I must be looking a something wrong, or that there’s a typo or somthing. Also bear in mind that this is at about 8pm, not even 24 hours before I’m supposed to fly. pull it up on the computer and there it is, right on the screen: LA to NYC! I TOTALLY reversed the locations and bought a ticket to New York instead of to LA! Do you believe that?? I called home and then called the airline, convinced that I was just screwed and not going to be able to fly at all. Here’s where it gets even more ridiculous. They said I would have to pay a change fee of $25, as well as any fare difference. So the ticket I bought 8 days ago for $261 is now $683. I don’t agree to this, of course, and ask what my options are. Well, they can just cancel the ticket and give me a credit, but it has to be with the same airline. I ask my mom and she says to go ahead and do this and just buy a new ticket (on a different airline) for the next day instead. So: the original ticket is on American Airlines. The flight I want is also on American Airlines, but now listed at $683. On the SAME website, Travelocity, Alaska Airlines has a flight “operated by American” for $361. In case this isn’t clear yet, let me point out that these two tickets, for sale on the same day on the same website are for the EXACT same airplane. The only difference is that I can’t use my credit towards the new ticket because it’s listed as Alaska Air. So I still have to just buy a new ticket and save the credit for later. Jeezus.

: I'm now "home" in LA and able to post this. It's Sunday morning. I already want to die.


Phil said...

I assume the typo in the first sentence is being used as a literary device?

This is the amazing thing about airlines. Can somebody name any other industry where a paying customer is required to go though such an unbelieveable amount of shit to make a fairly routine purchase?

Two out of the last three times I've tried to fly, bad things have happened right before the flight date. The first time, my grandfather died the day before we were supposed to leave. The second time, Hurricane Katrina hit before we were supposed to fly to New Orleans. In both cases, we were not able to use our tickets for reasons totally outside our control. In both cases, we had to go though an absolutely unreasonable amount of aggravation and had to pay totally unreasonable fees in order to reschedule our flights.

Now, I know that most of us have no recourse here, because none of us have our own airplanes, but just where the fuck to these people get off?

In the case of senior airline executives, I think that we should bring back tarring and feathering.

tina said...

I second Phil's proposal. Granted, most of the airlines are all bankrupt, but until teleportation happens, we're stuck with their ridiculous policies.

The worst is speaking to a zillion different people and getting different answers from every single one of them. I understand it's just their job, but AHHHHHHHHH! DIE DIE DIE!!!

That's all.