pay toiletThere are a few industries that continue make me ‘scratch my head’ as much as the airlines does. They have been very creative in coming up with ways to extract additional money from passengers. They charge for pillows, more legroom, baggage, seat assignments and food.

Comtel airlines, a charter service, stopped for fuel this week and told the passengers they did not have enough money to pay for the fuel, airport, etc. If passengers did not have enough money they were escorted off the plane to go to ATM stations to collect the cash. If they did not obtain the cash they could not continue on the flig

ht, even though they had paid in full for their tickets. Shouldn’t someone remind the airline that customer service is not just a department?

Customer Service is the minimum expectation from any supplier. How can an airline think that the backlash from this kind of stupidity won’t create bad PR, reduced sales and diminished profits? Is this a new low in customer care? Does the airline expect passengers to ever get on their planes again? How can they overcome this disappointment? How do they do damage control over this situation?

Airlines, like every other business, have experienced increased prices, worldwide competition, and escalating customer expectations. However, they know we can’t walk great distances, can’t swim to the Caribbean or Hawaii, and often don’t have time even if there is an alternative choice for bus or train options.What do you think of the actions of the airline industry in attempting to charge for services that used to be free? How would you feel if other industries started to follow the same practices?

Perhaps the airlines should remember that we have choices. Maybe we should remind them of the days when their older advertising slogans established an implied promise.

Remember these slogans?

  • Fly the Friendly Skies–United Airlines
  • Something Special in the Air–American Airlines
  • There’s No Better Way to Fly–Lufthansa Airlines
  • A Whole Different Animal–Frontier Airlines
  • We Really Move Our Tails for You–Continental Airlines

With the pay toilet on planes more a reality that a joke, Comtel may become the most innovative airline by creating a new double meaning slogan of charging passengers for fuel as well as the toilet. I think the slogan”Pay As You Go” would be fitting for the new Comtel slogan.

Got any new airline slogans you want to make up and share? Post them in the comments section or tweet them at me @ShiftHappensNow.