Sunday, February 09, 2014

Air Canada Getting the Attention it Deserves (Finally)

I used to travel across Canada for business on a regular basis. Many of those flights were on Air Canada because of company policy or due to scheduling and sometimes because there were just too limited choices of carriers. To be sure, I quickly learned what options were available on every route and learned the schedules by heart. I stopped using our company's internal travel desk for any trips that were being made for my own work and I made a point of  joining the preferred traveler plans for every hotel chain I used. I made a point getting to know the hotel management, marketing staff and customer relations people at every hotel I used for my own shelter and for the training events I led. My collection of business cards for travel was a powerful tool in planning and organizing meetings and training events from coast to coast.  Car rental and leasing agents, business services, catering providers, local shipping and delivery, car and limo services, every possible way of getting to and from the places I needed to do business.

I became the Business Travel Ninja (BTN).

The first rule of the business travel Ninja became to avoid Air Canada at all costs. Even though avoiding Air Canada usually meant actually saving money, it must be said that learning ways of the BTN requires the cost of extra effort and the practice of great discipline.

On the way to this state of enlightenment and personal achievement the BTN first needed to learn the traps and pitfalls that are used by the enemy to confuse and confound the traveler.

  • The distraction of many scheduled flights. This is a tactic used to trap the unwary into Air Canada domain where the the unwary will be become a victim to be abused at the whim every staff member from the ticket/baggage check to the in flight beverage server with the snot nosed attitude. The many flight options are a trap because the only option that matters is the one that gets you where you want to be WHEN you want to be there.
  • The Lie of Courtesy and Customer Service. This is a distraction technique of the marketing arm of the beast. If you see any Air Canada employee mimicking the  posters or brochures you can be sure that you are being "Grin Fucked" by the enemy.
  • The Lie of Convenient Booking. Air Canada's on-line booking is another trap designed to waste your time and frustrate the traveler. It is anything BUT convenient and is deliberately designed with false paths and dead ends with the added trap of surprise time outs and disconnection.
  • The Lie of On-Time flights and connections. The most dangerous trap of all. When the traveler arrives at the airport with the appropriate lead time all of the flight schedule displays will advise that your flight is due to arrive on time. When the arrival time nears, you will told the flight you are on is delayed by 20 minutes or some arbitrary number. When the 20 minutes has passed the information will be updated to to another delay. This may go on for hours. You will see that other flights have come and gone. You will see that flights going to the same destination have available seats, but policy says you cannot board these flights. You will be grin fucked by the customer service rep.
  • The Lie of  Compensation. To Air Canada, a voucher for a  dried out airport restaurant sandwich, a chit for cab fare to third rate hotel and yet another day of abuse is called compensation for missed flights and connections. It is really just another opportunity for them to give you the grin fuck,
  • The Lie of Reward Miles. This is simply a LIE. Reward miles are the travel service equivalent of Confederate Dollars. Unless you are willing (masochist) enough to suffer enough abuse to collect an obscene quantity of these consolation prize points you will NEVER acquire enough to be of any use.
I could go on ... but it seems like  somebody else has finally caught on to this ....

The Globe and Mail ....

Rude, unhelpful staff and poor communication among air traveller complaints to CTA 







Blogger MJ said...

How arrogant of you to feel you have the right to make such generalizations about our national carrier and try to turn others against it. I flew Air Canada 132 times last year and never had a problem. From your tone, I doubt they are too concerned you don't want to be their customer. Further, musings about the woes of air travel are tiring and I doubt many are interested in your perspective. I certainly hope you have a day job!

2/10/2014 7:30 a.m.  
Blogger OMMAG said...

Well aren't you precious?

2/10/2014 11:59 a.m.  

Post a Comment

<< Home