In most business the mantra is that the customer is always right. After all if they don’t like you, they can shop someplace else for whatever it is you are selling.
With airlines, it can be a different story. Sometimes you can have many choices in a city. Other times you may have only a few. You may love Delta and choose to fly them. Or, you may be what we call a “Hub Captive” that is, you must fly Delta since they are just about the only game in town.
So this is why Ryan Airlines CEO can get away with calling either one or all of it’s customers “stupid” if they do not know the airline’s fee rules. Now I think that is just a stupid thing to say; don’t you think so too? No passenger is ever stupid. They may be uninformed, but not stupid. But gosh, does this bring up a bunch of things for us to consider.
First, let me commend you for reading DeltaPoints. Anyone who reads any travel blog is to be commended. Why? You want to be an informed traveler. Information is power. I have blogged before over how Delta Air Lines is “Ancillary Fee Drunk” right now and shows no signs of ever getting off the wagon. A drunk is not in full control of the faculties. They make irrational decisions that can have devastating effects on others. Airlines are acting this way and are willing, like Ryan Air, to show it publicly.
So are Delta flyers ever “stupid”? No, but let’s say you have not flown with our beloved airline for say 10 years. Would you know the bag fee rules as to number and weight? Can you check your bag free if you have a Delta AMEX card? How about domestic vs international? What about carry-ons and boarding zones? What if they force you to check your bag plane-side? Do you know if they are liable for, say, your camera then? What if Delta informs you of a schedule change; do you know your rights? I could go on all day long here and I am sure you could add a few dozen of your own (since you are NOT STUPID)! Also answers to all of the above can be found in my Essentials Tab.
Bottom line is it is up to us to be educated. About our airline. About hotels. About cars. About what cards charge international transaction fees. About our options when things go wrong. I say in my Rookie Tab (worth a read if you have never looked at it) that I disagree that travel is stressful and not fun. I love it all. Why? I am educated in the system. I am not upset when things go wrong as I know how to make such things work for me not against me. So smile today and know, at least when it comes to Delta, none of us are stupid! – René
PS – you still have a chance to win a set of Delta amenity coupons from yesterday’s post as well as a shot at a $25 AMEX gift card as well!