Friday, October 21, 2011

Three inches too few

In the paper today there's a piece about Delta Airlines adding three inches to their coach seating.
For a mere $99 upgrade fee, you can now have back the three inches they took away sometime last year.
Isn't that peachy?
It makes it so you can actually push past your fellow passengers on your way to the middle and/or window seat without doing permanent damage.
It puts the tall guys — like my husband — back in the game. It means when you drop something, you can actually bend down to get it without getting your head stuck.
It's just great and certainly big of them.
It's also a bit insulting to think the airlines believe we won't all remember a time when there was actual legroom AND little meals AND free luggage AND perks like blankets and tiny pillows and earphones that made traveling fun that came with the ticket price.
I'm not that old that I don't remember when airlines were vying for our business and working to get us to fly more often.
Now it's painful and uncomfortable.
Besides the security check-ins and privacy invasions on the way to the plane, today traveling by air means going hungry and getting fleeced all along the way.
I recognize the need for airlines to make money.
I know it has to be expensive to keep planes in the air and fueled and maintained.
I recognize the need to recoup the cost of high-priced jet fuel. It's got to be tough to pay pilots.
But it would help if there was some honesty in the hype.
Don't try to tell us they're "giving" us three inches when it was our three inches to lose.
Don't try to sell us on the value of being able to purchase a $7 sandwich that used to come with the flight.
And don't try to tell me they're are doing me a favor by letting me bring on a bag for $50.
The formerly  "friendly skies" are today's perilous horizons, give or take a few inches.

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