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Excuses, excuses, excuses

It's as predictable as a Midwest thunderstorm in August. This holiday weekend, the airlines will subject their passengers to more delays and miserable customer service. But it won't be their fault, they'll tell the news media.

As one group of aviation professionals to another, (and with our tongues only slightly in our cheeks), the Alliance for Aviation Across America has prepared the following checklist to help out the airline bigwigs when the public again asks, "Why are you treating us so poorly?" (AOPA is a founding member of the alliance and serves on its executive committee.)

Don't let the airlines keep using the same excuses. Make them take responsibility for their own mismanagement.

Go to the Alliance for Aviation Across America's Web site to learn more about the commercial airlines' lies and deception.

August 28, 2007

Delay Excuse Checklist

As airline delays increase, you need to know who you can use as a scapegoat so you can avoid taking responsibility for your own over-scheduling procedures, which even the DOT says are the second-leading cause of delays.

Blame the weather (i.e., too hot, cold, rainy, windy, sunny, etc.).

Blame a computer (after all, one laptop controls all flights at each airport).

Blame airports (be sure to remind everyone that when you over-schedule, they should build more gates).

Blame runways (they should accommodate you when you schedule 58 departures in an hour).

Blame pilots (they should be glad they still have jobs. Everyone else got laid off).

Blame private planes. (Try this game: Have the passengers try to spot one private plane during their five-hour wait on the tarmac. Hint: Because private planes rarely use the crowded hub airports, they will never see one. It's a good way to keep them too busy to realize that you didn't provide them with food.)

Remember: You are trying to get Congress to allot all of us a tax break. You want to make sure that you disregard all responsibility for any of the following:

  • Our policies of pushing all of our flights into the largest and most congested hubs. Whatever you do, avoid the phrase "hub-and-spoke system."
  • Poor customer service.
  • Laying off thousands of employees and cutting pensions while giving upper management millions in bonuses, benefits, and increased pay.

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