I went on vacation and forgot to tell you. I have a friend in South Carolina and I decided I needed to look at her in person because she is sick and I wanted to know how she was really doing. What's the best way to do that? Impose myself into her house and have her make coffee for me every morning.
And then, when she drops me off at the airport, I imagine she sighed deeply to express her relief as she drives away.
Then 30 minutes later she gets a text from me: "I need you to come back."
Well, super. The good news for me is that she turned around and came back to the airport and didn't make me sleep on a tile floor or dirty carpet at my gate. Those were my only choices otherwise, because as you know if a flight is cancelled due to weather, they do nothing for you. I remember saying something about not having a car and what am I supposed to do now and she said, "That really isn't my concern."
You see, apparently United Airlines cannot fly in the rain. I imagine they have an algorithm somewhere that states: If it rains at (X) destination, then flights that are not full from any other destination shall be cancelled. Combine them the next day and save moolah.
Because she sweetly drove all the way back to the airport, I stayed another night, woke up both of them at 4:30am, climbed into the car and drove all the way to the airport again so I could rush to Chicago only to have my next flight cancelled.
You'll never guess, so I will tell you right away: It was raining in Des Moines.
I spent the entire day wandering around O'Hare airport sending tweets to @United telling them someone had crushed a cookie into the carpet, there was coffee spilled on the wall, the air conditioning wasn't working and so on.
I saw the crazy shoes people wear when they travel
I carved out some private space inside a trio of pillars behind a recycling bin
And I found the most spacious bathroom stall in any airport anywhere. I've read that in Japan, apartments are the same size
No joke, it was huge and I could actually turn around. Since everyone travels with their bags now, I don't know how some people can even get into a stall these days. And of course the door comes inward. This bathroom was wonderful.
I was all over Terminal I at O'Hare trying to help them. I figured if they could annoy me, I could annoy them. But as much as I tried to establish that relationship, they had no idea. Overall, as a hostess, I would give @United a 2 on a scale of 1-10. As a housekeeper, considering all the traffic at O'Hare, I would give @United a 7. I would rate their sense of humor at a 1, maybe a 0.
USA Today's article began with, "As an industry, airlines received the fourth-worst score in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) rankings of customer satisfaction. Only pay TV, social media companies and Internet service providers rank lower. Even wireless carriers and car dealers rank higher. That may not be an indictment of the industry, but it does indicate a lot of room for improvement."