Why can't I just press zero and get some assistance, for Heaven's sake? Now voice menus have gotten rid of dialing zero to get an actual real live person on the other end. No doubt too expensive to have to hire someone - they've taken away meals, soft drinks, water, movies and hand you a teeny-tiny bag of cardboard pretzels as compensation. Now you need five dollars to buy a can of soda, after having paid hundreds if not thousands of dollars to get to where you need to go.
They've gotten sneakier with ways to hide how to talk to a person. Sometimes you have to press "#" or "*" or some combination thereof. Or if you do get a real person on the line, they tell you to call another number where the other number puts you through voice menu hell. Again.
And when you do get someone, they have no idea what they're talking about. Even if I ask about really, really basic things like can I get luggage loss insurance or health insurance for my trip. Even that is asking more than they know, and some of these people are the supervisors. I called one of the Internet airline booking services the other day, by some miracle of Christmas, I got the supervisor on the line and even he couldn't tell me if I could insure my baggage against loss. He didn't have a clue. He would only tell me that I could have health insurance. What kind of travel operation doesn't have luggage loss insurance, I ask you? I can't even ask if I have a connection that I absolutely, positively must make, will the airline ensure I get to where I need to go. Will they hold the airplane if they're late because I need to make it to my destination or I might as well just shoot myself. It's just insanely stupid.
Why won't someone at the airlines or travel agents' booking offices just talk to me and tell me the truth? Why can't I rely on the travel industry to train their people so they know what they're talking about? Why are the travel people on the telephone so unhelpful? Why, why, WHY? Aaaaaaaarrrgggggghhhhhh!
I realize the time of year is not conducive to travel agents being able to help everyone with their plans. Christmas is an insane time in the travel industry. But they know it comes every year - why can't they plan to have more people on staff through the Christmas season? Why is there no back-up planning in evidence?
They just want to herd us onto planes, trains and automobiles at outrageous prices and not hear a word of complaint. And if you're paying many hundreds of dollars for service, why is all the service at an extra charge? Oh, you want to choose a seat for your flight? That will be $22. Oh, you want to have a guarantee that we may be able to get you to your destination on time as required? That will be another $35. Oh, you want headsets to listen to the movie that cost you $5? That will be another $5. Oh, you want to be fed on a twenty hour flight? That will be another $75 - each way, thank you very much for acting like the mindless automaton we want you to be. Just hand over your moola.
Oh and really, the flight crew isn't required to be polite to you, even if you are always polite to them. And, by the way, we forgot to tell you that, tee hee, your pilot was trained in the jungles of Papua New Guinea so the pilot doesn't have any verifiable flying credentials. Have a wonderful flight. Buh-bye!
For God's sake.
I'm going to wait until later to book my travel even though it'll cost me more because I can't deal with these people now. ***rolling my eyes***