Sunday, June 25, 2006

The American Way?

San Francisco (June 25, 2006) 5:30am PDT - In the post-9/11 era of travel, what is the rule of thumb for arriving at the airport? Isn’t it two hours before your flight? If that’s so, then can anyone explain to me why I was booked on an American Airlines flight scheduled to depart San Francisco at 6:02am, and yet the ticket agents at the American counter at SFO were visibly and audibly angry that the people on that flight were attempting to check in at 4:15am?
The automated check-in stations were not operational, and the baggage check windows were not open. Workers were there. One woman in an American Airlines uniform actually screamed, “These are not supposed to be open for another half hour!”
The American Airlines person on duty with the best attitude could easily and fairly be described as surly.
One poor traveler, who looked exhausted, finally had enough of their recalcitrance and got into a full-blown argument with one of the agents.
I was frustrated, but more than that I was embarrassed for American Airlines. The flight was full, by the way. There were even stand-by passengers. Surely someone knew we were coming.
Is that the American way, or a San Francisco treat? Either way, the attitude and behavior of the people in American Airlines uniforms was disgraceful.

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