Air Future

Just imagine.

“This leg of your journey is sponsored by Progressive,” a soft voice states in your head as you stride along the beach. Progressive agents clad in their white and blue uniforms approach you with a smile and a tray of drinks.

“This is the life,” you say, accepting a glass of wine as a sea breeze and sunshine caresses your face.

You’d never believe you were flying thirty thousand plus feet above the earth, would you?

That’s the point.

Marketwatch posted a piece about air travel and passengers’ dissatisfaction with one another. As a result, most folks don’t like air travel. Instead of being a pleasurable method to go from one place to another, it’s become a gritty, exhausting experience.

So says me. My issues aren’t with the other passengers but the airlines. They cut services and space, increase ticket prices, improve their profit margins while customers like me and my wife suffer more and more. See, the older you become, the harder it is to wedge yourself into a tiny space.

Marketwatch did note that the airlines might be blamed for the rise of the irritating passengers.

“Why do planes seem to bring out the worst in people? “Planes are more crowded, seats are smaller, connecting times are shorter and amenities are growing more rare,” frequent traveler Nic Lesmeister told The Wall Street Journal in October, all of which stress passengers out and, experts say, may contribute to the bad behavior.

“He’s onto something. As MarketWatch reported in July: Airlines and plane manufacturers are reconfiguring planes to fit more people on them, shrinking (and in some cases eliminating) bathrooms, creating seats that don’t recline, and reducing the amount of legroom and the amount of padding in seats.”

Yeah, you think? IMO – you knew I’d have one – airlines need to do some quick fixes. Like what? Virtual reality, of course! Issue googles or glasses and plug us in as we enter. Create a different reality, something we’d like, to trick us into believing we were enjoying ourselves, rather than enduring a flying hell.

Yes, I know, costs, costs, costs! But with irritating passengers and air travel by volume on the rise, something needs done. Just think of the advertising potential. Flights, or segments of flights, and, or, aircraft could be sponsored by companies who would pay for the rights, like they do with sports stadiums. Companies could also bid for the naming rights for just the terminals, to help offset costs, and increase profits. Just imagine hearing them announce your six AM boarding call by saying, “Now boarding United Flight six seven three in the Home Depot terminal at the Red Lobster Gate. Flight six seven three is brought to you by Kellogg’s. Kellogg’s – the best to you each morning!”

Before and after your virtual interlude after seating yourself on the flight, your virtual reality sponsor can make an announcement. “This flight is made soothing by Verizon. Verizon, giving you the best world on the horizon.”

Come on, airlines, throw us a bone. Use some imagination and technology. Make it easier to for us to cope with one another and endure you.

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