Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Props to American Airlines!

Airlines don't control the price of crude, and they don't control the weather, either. Case in point: Today's blast from Santa Claus Land that crippled much of the nation's air travel.

Ice crippled DFW on Tuesday

But you do control how you deal with the fallout, and I have to say that American, my airline of choice, once again has come through. I'm currently stuck in DFW, after coming back from my UCI race site inspection in the LA basin. All the (affordable) hotels are fully booked, so I was resigned to bunk out in some corner of one of the terminals after being told before heading out of CA that my Lubbock flight had been canceled. When I got to the Admirals Club here at DFW's Terminal C (for those of you not in-the-know, that's one of those lounges that you pay a few hundred bucks for to access on an annual basis), I ran into one of the fellas who know me by sight. He gave me the hardly encouraging news that my flight tomorrow morning has been canceled, too, and that I have been rebooked for a flight home on Thursday morning. Mind you, this is Tuesday! And then, with a bit of magic finger dancing on the keyboard, he rebooked me onto a Continental flight tomorrow around noon, going via Houston. Even better, a short time later he came by to tell me that the AC in this terminal will stay open all night to accommodate a few of us stranded members. Since then, they've brought me a cot, blanket, and pillow. Now, I say, that's taking care of the situation and your customers!

While I am at it: Bonelli Park, where the UCI race will be run, is an absolute gem. I wouldn't have thought that such a pretty park (lake, hills, trees, green grass) could exist in the middle of the LA basin.
Bonelli Park, looking north
I think the race will be a real success. My meetings with the key people who are putting on this event were fruitful and nothing but positive. Scott, who is the pres and owner of Sho-Air, has the vision and the will to use his own money to make sure that this vision becomes reality; Tom of Team Big Bear is one of the old hands in the sport with whom I have worked on numerous occasions; and Ty, the marketing guy but really the secret engine behind it all, is on the same wavelength as I am. So, WTF if I have to spend another night in some airport, eh? (As a matter of fact, Scott just sent me an e-mail pretty much ordering me to get into a hotel and send him the invoice, but I'm not going to waste $150 of his money for a few hours of marginally better bedding. Thanks, Scott!)

So, next time a race director wants me to fly an airline other than American because they are $2 cheaper, I'm going to pull out this blog post and say Thank You Very Much, But No Thank You. And what else do we learn from this? Always travel with some extra clothes, your toothbrush, and  a good attitude.
Some of Bonelli's single track

 Sleep well, and may the Miata start up tomorrow when I get to the airport parking lot.


1 comment:

  1. Not many people like you who would say something nice about the company I work for, thats very nice of you to blog good thing about us. I have worked for them since I was 20 and I can not see my self working for another airline. Even though people slam us and say they will NEVER fly AA we usually see them back at the counter. See you soon . p.s. nice blog

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