I received an email last night from AARP. That in and of itself is enough to depress me, but the email contained potentially interesting – perhaps even optimistic – information – it was titled 9 In-flight Freebies that still Exist – You Just Have to Ask for Them.
In these days of devaluation after devaluation, perhaps there was something still left to be excited about. I clicked on the email link, which brought me to the post 9 In-Flight Airline Freebies, written by Julie Beer. I was hoping the list would be enlightening, but frankly I found the list to be lame. It’s not the author’s fault – it’s just that the airlines have shifted gears. Gone are the days of playing cards, cocktails and steaks. The business has moved away from the glam concept of airline travel in coach and has shifted back to the basic concept of getting a passenger from point A to point B, much like a bus company out of Port Authority.
Here is a synopsis of the 9 Freebies…..
1. Mai Tais and bubbly. A few airlines still offer drinks. Alaska Airlines serves a Mai Tai cocktail on flights to Hawaii, and Air France pours champagne on long-haul international flights. (My response: Interestingly, this doesn’t list all of the airlines that have stopped offering complimentary cocktails to coach passengers on international flights – yes, United, I’m looking at you).
2. A Tour of the Flight Deck. You can ask to see the flight deck or ask the pilot a question. (My response: I just wouldn’t look as cute as Baby Points Traveler on the pilot’s lap, so I’d rather let the pilots concentrate on the flight plan).
3. Wings for the Kids. (My response: I agree. Wing pins are cute. Sadly, I can imagine that the airlines will start to charge for them one day)
4. Travel Advice. You can get good and free travel advice by asking the Flight Attendant what he or she recommends. (My response: Hello. This is called conversation. Is this really a freebie?)
5. Germ Fighting Wipes. According to this post, they keep lots of sanitary wipes on board in case the toilets stop working. So, you can ask for a wipe to clean your filthy tray table. (My response: this is getting really disgusting. I am going to puke. Are barf bags still free?)
6. Decent Munchies. Biscoff cookies on Delta and Terra Chips on Jet Blue. (My response: Everyone else: Nada. Zip. Yes, United, I’m talking to you)
7. First Aid Supplies. Band-aids? We got ’em. (My response: Yawn).
8. Reading Materials. You can ask the flight attendant to bring you other people’s discarded magazines and newspapers (My response: once again, this is disgusting. Bring me another sanitary wipe, please).
9. Extra Soda. Don’t be bashful, ask for the whole can. (My response: are you freaking kidding me?)
But wait – they forgot about ice!!! There is no charge for ice – at least not yet!
It’s official: I’ve been de-sensitized. These days, I’d be happy if they would only clean the seat pocket in front of me before I boarded.