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Monday, February 15, 2010


Fifteen years…..that is how long I have toiled in the trade of travel. I have good clients. I have bad clients. Overall, I have loved my job for a long time. However, if I hear “you people” one more time, so help me I will just come unglued. I have heard a lot of things over the years, and yet, travelers still never cease to amaze me. Here are some of my favorite conversations. And by the way, when you call your travel agent, don’t start the conversation by saying “I need….”. What about my needs?!

Basic things you need to know:

It is helpful if you know what your name is. No, really. What is your name? Your name is really Nacho? Yes, I know everyone calls you Nacho, but is that your legal name? It is? Okay, that's how your ticket will read. Oh, your drivers license says your name is Guillermo? Yes, that is different than Nacho.

You say you like an aisle seat in the bulkhead with extra leg room? What’s your frequent flyer number? Oh, you don’t have one. Well, now you like center seats. In the back. By the bathroom.

If you show up 20 minutes before your flight, your seat WILL be given away. I don’t make the rules, I’m just telling you how it is. Your itinerary says check in 1 – 1 ½ hours prior to your flight. Heed my advice.

No, I do not know which plane you left your Ipod on. No, no one will be calling me to tell me you left your Ipod on the plane. How would they even know who to call?

If your name is Visyantha Padahytham, do not be offended when I ask you to spell it. Every time you call.

No, I do not know if your flight 3 weeks from now is going to be cancelled due to bad weather/mechanical problems/acts of God.

Yes, I can tell the hotel you would like a room with no bugs. I’m pretty sure if I do they will go out and find some especially for you.

They are called flight attendants. Not Stewardess, Honey, Nurse, or Sky Hookers. They are responsible for keeping you safe. Behave yourself.

No, I cannot travel back in time and get you to Tokyo yesterday. I realize they are over the international date line. It doesn’t work that way.

Do not be offended that I do not know who you are or how important you are. Even though you insist (with a disgusted sigh) that you book with us “all the time”, realistically, you’ve booked travel once. Nine months ago. And it was a car rental. Which you cancelled.

No, I did not intentionally put you between the two fattest people on the plane.

No, I did not intentionally put you in the non-reclining middle seat in the last row next to the bathroom. (Actually, this is almost always a lie. Do you remember how you talked to me?)

I am not responsible for your lost luggage, the kid screaming behind you, or the BBQ chicken lump the airline tried to pass off as your lunch.

No, I do not know who you will be seated next to. No, I cannot guarantee that it won’t be next to a fat person, a person of xyz nationality, a person who snores, someone who ate onions for lunch, or someone who wants to talk you.

I also cannot promise to seat you next to a sexy, desperate, wealthy widow with a penchant for arrogant, paunchy, balding, obnoxious business men.

When you call to make your arrangements please know where you are going. It is also helpful if you know when. I can pick something, but I doubt you’ll be happy about it.

I realize you believe you can run from one end of the terminal to the other and make a 15 minute connection. You can’t.

Ben Wa balls will set off the metal detectors at airport security. Leave them at home. And for God’s sake, at the very least, take them out.

Hooked on Phonics is not for everyone. Case in point, the following conversation.

XYZ Travel, this is Andrea.
"Yes, I need to go to F*** it."
I’m sorry?
"F*** it."
Um…what state would that be sir?
Ok, could you spell that for me?
Oh. Of course.

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