Tag Archives: airlines

Friendly skies

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Believe it or not,  this is a gate at Boston Logan Airport.

Isn’t it festive?

Apparently a lot of cruises depart from this gate, and the airlines decided to have some fun with the decor. 

How human of them. How thoughtful. How fun for the kids who are accompanying their parents on the trip.

I think other airports and other airlines should follow suit. More than one person has stopped to look and take a picture.  It has put a smile on their faces too.

And smiles can be hard to come by during a long day of travel.

Good goes around

Sometimes, we attempt the impossible.  And it’s only with the help of others that we get ‘er dun.

Today, those somebodies were the folks at Delta Airlines.

That’s right – I’m gonna say nice things about an airline.  They deserve it…and probably don’t hear it very often.

I flew home from a business/personal trip in Kansas City today, giving myself a scant hour-and-a-half window to grab my bags, take a taxi home, get Rory Dog settled with the sitter – he traveled with me to KC – and then turn around and go back to the airport for another business trip to Chicago.

Whose brilliant idea was that?

Mine.  But when the two trips butted heads, it was far less expensive to leave the plane tickets as they were…and several weeks ago, all the taxiing back and forth didn’t seem like such a big deal.

Today?  I was sweating it.

But the Delta ticket agent kicked things off nicely by checking my bag all the way through to Chicago — even though I was switching airlines — giving me one less thing to monkey with upon arrival in New York City.

And the Delta crew landed the plane in NYC a full 35 minutes early!  So I had a little extra time at home with Rory.  Heck, I even ate lunch!

I’m writing this in my hotel room in the Windy City — exhausted, but exactly where I’m supposed to be…and there are a lot of Delta personnel ‘just doing their jobs’ to thank.

First, ya’ll

To paraphrase Katy Perry:

“I flew first class, and I liked it.”

Don’t get me wrong — I’ve been in the ‘uppity-up’ cabin before.  As a frequent flier for American Airlines, I earned points to travel first class from time to time.

But now that I am an elite member of Delta Airlines, they bestow first class on me whenever they have capacity (and no one higher up on the food chain is in the way).  It’s like this little gift that appears at the gate when they swipe my ticket.  Such joy!

This week, I’ve been upgraded on pretty much every flight — and there have been a lot of them — so I’m kinda getting used to it.

Now, first class is fairly stripped down these days.  On most flights, you are no longer guaranteed a meal or even warmed nuts (my personal favorite).  The drinks are still free, of course, and you board early.

But I think the two reasons first class will always be popular is the space and better service.  Being able to stretch out is such a luxury, and I’ve rarely met a flight attendant in first who wasn’t pleasant and helpful.

First class is like taking a tiny trip to the South every time you sit there.  Open spaces.  Friendly people.

And, oh yeah — the liquor.

P.O.V.

The geese.

No one had considered their side of the story — or given them any air time — until last night on Weekend Update.

And damn, was it funny.

One year ago, Captain Sully Sullenberger and his crew safely landed their US Airways jetliner in the Hudson River after striking a flock of geese five minutes after take off from LaGuardia.   Immediately following the incident, another US Airways pilot [cast member Jason Sudeikis] appeared on “Saturday Night Live,”  filled with sarcasm and envy that no one was honoring him for successfully landing his flight on the runway…like you’re supposed to.

Let’s face it — he had a point…albeit a bitter one.

Last night, a year after the tragedy, Larry the Goose had the spotlight to remember his fallen comrades in a parody of the name recitation ritual that is performed at the 9/11 Memorial.  Kinda wrong….but since no one actually died on the Hudson River, I’m assuming people gave this a pass, especially once they heard the goose names being listed, including:

Goose Springsteen

Ganderson Cooper

Geese Witherspoon

Honk Williams, Jr.

…just to name a few.

I don’t mean to simply recreate the sketch; you should watch it on nbc.com for the full effect.  And hopefully, like me, you’ll find more than the goose funny.

You’ll laugh at all of us.

Plugging along…

Have you flown American Airlines lately?

During the month of December, passengers are getting a big ol’ serving of product placement with their complimentary beverage.

You see, American is the featured airline in the George Clooney film “Up in the Air” [opening Friday in theaters everywhere], and they are promoting the movie on every screen, magazine and mixed nut package.

Vera Farmiga, the actress who plays Clooney’s love interest in the film, also just happens to be the cover story for the December issue of the American Way in-flight magazine.

Funny how those things happen.

As an extremely frequent flier myself – usually on Delta Airlines (full disclosure) – I am very excited to see “Up in the Air.”  While I don’t come close to the 322 travel days a year that Clooney’s character logs in the film, the promos that I have seen to date certainly capture the annoyingly-wearing-mind-numbing-sameness of business travel.

And while American Airlines may be pimping the movie a bit much, I’m still psyched to see this tiny slice of my life on the big screen.

It’s like I always tell people —  business travel is only glamorous if you’re not the one doing it…or if George Clooney is.