A Change in Airlines

Michelle Higgins of The New York Times writes in a new article about the changing condition of Coach class airline tickets. With cheaper airfares, airlines are cutting back on some of the things that used to be expected with every flight. Here’s a clip from the article.

Doug Fesler, an executive at a medical research group in Washington, wasn’t expecting much in the way of amenities on his American Airlines flight to Honolulu in September. In fact, knowing the airline no longer served free meals, he had packed his own lunch for the second leg of his flight from Dallas to Honolulu. But he said he was shocked at the lack of basic services and the overall condition of the cabin.

On that flight, the audio for the movie was broken. The light that indicated when the bathroom was occupied was squirrely, causing confusion and, in some cases, embarrassingly long waits for passengers in need of the lavatory. And though food was available for purchase, it ran out before the flight attendants could serve the entire cabin, leaving some fellow passengers looking longingly at the snack he had packed.

His return flight was just as disappointing. This time the audio for the movie worked — but only in Spanish — and his seat refused to stay in the upright position. “I was just appalled,” Mr. Fesler said. “You pay $500 or $600 for a seat, and you expect it to be functional.” He said he has considered refusing to fly airlines with such poor service, but added that “if you did that with every airline that made you mad, you’d never get anywhere in this country.”

Read the rest of the article at NYtimes.com