I found myself jealous of travellers of more expensive airlines recently. I travelled Southwest again. Whereas I still think Southwest is better than a few other airlines I won’t name (passengers of a few of whom recently had much worse experiences than me), I got a reminder that they’re still a budget airline. I only thought about this because of a friend travelling an apparently nicer airline.
In my recent travels, I of course had delays. Both ways. Going out was only at most a half hour, but going back was at least an hour. What exactly was going on wasn’t communicated completely precisely. There was something about waiting for a window going out after an inexplicable delay and then something about our plane not having yet arrived on the way back. It wasn’t clear, and at most we got an apology. Mind you, that was the perfunctory “we’re apologizing because it’s a reflex and costs us nothing” kind of apology.
Meanwhile, a friend on Alaska Airlines recently traveling had an hour or so delay (I think). They were extremely apologetic to him. The entire flight got some kind of vouchers by way of an apology. Also free drinks.
Now, I imagine Alaska Airlines is a more expensive airline than Southwest. That’s one of the reasons I fly Southwest. Still, I’ve almost never gotten a meaningful apology for delays. I’ve certainly never got vouchers by way of an apology, though I did get a free drink many years ago on an airline I no longer remember.
Sometimes I wish I flew more expensive airlines so they’d actually try to make it up to me when they don’t manage to live up to what I bought a ticket for. Of course, I’ll still probably fly a budget airline next time I fly. I’m cheap.