So Sad To Report This…

I’m wafting my way through hundreds of emails, just like I do every morning, and what to my wondering eyes should appear, but an email from Trip Advisor. So I look at it and discover that it has the new listing of the “Top Ten Airlines In The World”. Curious, I decided to open it. I was shocked and saddened by what I found.


There were only two United States based airlines in the top ten, and neither are what you are thinking of.


The top rated airline in the world was Emirates Air out of Saudi Arabia. That was followed by Singapore Airlines, Azul, an American airline at number four, Air New Zealand, Korean Air, Japan Airlines, Thai Smile, the other American airline at number nine, and Garuda Indonesia at number ten.


The two American airlines were Jet Blue at number four and Alaska Air at number nine.


What’s sad is that America started the airline industry. We created it. And we have sunk so low in the race to make the most money at it that we are totally out of it when it comes to service (which is what America is supposed to be good at these days, right?). Airlines from all over the world (and mostly the developing nations of the world) have over-taken us. Where are the United’s, American’s, Delta’s, hell, even Southwest’s? Have we become so much of a cattle-call nation when it comes to air travel that we have forgotten what quality air travel is all about?


I used to fly a lot more than I do now because quite frankly I live in a vacation hot-spot and don’t have to travel to one two or three times a year. I don’t fly for business anymore, so I don’t have to worry about that. And while I do make the occasional flight to see my son or daughter and their families, it’s usually once a year. So I’m no longer what I would call a semi-frequent flyer. Oh, I still fly for free because I have one of those credit cards that gives you air miles, and my wife loves to shop…but beyond that, I rarely fly. It’s too much of a hassle. The airport parking, the security, the wait at the gate, the delays with no information, the mad-dash to the plane when boarding is announced, the sitting on the tarmac because of some unknown delay, the flight, and then the whole rewind thing on the other end. In a lot of cases, I’ve found it’s easier (and cheaper) to drive. And I don’t have to put up with being cramped for hours at a time and can’t listen to my IPod, or watch a show on my smartphone when I want.


No, America has lost a lot in my generation…we’ve lost the ability to effectively manufacture. We’ve lost the ability to effectively govern. We’ve lost the ability to effectively educate our students. And apparently, we’ve lost the ability to effectively and efficiently fly from point A to point B. It’s shocking… and more than a little sad.


Carry on world…you’re dismissed!


2 thoughts on “So Sad To Report This…

  1. Well Desert, as a former decent frequent flier (Premier Silver on United when it was a decent airline) I couldn’t agree with you more.

    Why only two U.S. carriers and what we would call second tier make the list? Well, it is something I have always harped on, especially when I have to deal with Optum RX, my mail order medication supplier, customer service. While I have never flew either U.S. carrier mentioned in the list, I have always heard good things about Alaska Air and Diane confirmed it since Seattle is a major hub. Jet Blue I don’t know much about other than a discount airline, but I understand it has an extremely loyal customer base. I also have not flown on any of the foreign airlines mentioned but my Dutch friends have flown Emirates to Chicago several times when visiting in the olden days.

    I would like to say something about a foreign airline that did not make the list. Larry and I flew Ryan Air last year when we got tired of 12 hour train ride and train changes going from Avignon to Florence. We flew from Bergamo, Italy (highly recommend visiting this place, the old city) to Einhoven, Netherlands. The ticket was only $36 all taxes included, check in was a breeze, security (Ryan Air’s with clearance from the Italian government) moved us quickly and the personnel were pleasant even hilarious at times (they loved Obama), not surly, we were not charged for carry ons and even were served a nice continental breakfast that was actually quite tasty. I know that Ryan has caught flack in the past for charging for everything, but we were not. In short the customer service was something the major U.S. carriers could learn from. I would fly them again in a nanosecond and recommend them. BTW, if your itinerary is set for traveling in Europe and there is the potential for a long train ride, consider Ryan Air. Buying tickets way in advance (ours were about 9 months) is how you get them cheap. A caveat in that they fly from off beat airports, but with a Eurail pass, things are a breeze.

    Damn Desert, we agreed on something, am I becoming a conservative and you a liberal? Naw.

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