David J. Danto
Business travel thoughts in my own, personal opinion
†Sometimes Iím inspired to write about one significant issue, but sometimes I have a handful of rants about random things.† This is one of the latter blogs.† These are things that drove me crazy when I saw them, but didnít warrant their own post.†
Self-Service Tipping.† This one is making me constantly furious.† As frequent travelers know the airport is now a place where there are often stores where one has to self-check-out.† Grab your items, scan them, bag them (if you can find any bags) and pay.† What are these store owners thinking building automatic tipping questions into the check-out process.† Who the heck am I tipping?† The person stocking the shelves?† These people should be paid a living wage, not have tips solicited for them based on work I did myself.† This is expanding to many more self-service kiosks.† On my recent trip to Vegas, the indoor food-court at the Genting Resorts World required one to use the self-service terminals, and 15% tips were the default setting.† One had to read carefully and select ďno-tipĒ to eliminate them.† When I eat at a restaurant or have work performed on my behalf I always tip generously.† But when Iím doing the work all by myself itís insulting to ask me to tip the store owner for the privilege of doing that work.† I suggest we post each instance when this happens with a photo on social media and shame the greedy firm that is asking for a tip for the work we customers are doing.
Self-Service Cleaning.† When we all started traveling again during the pandemic we all focused on keeping our tiny portion of the airplane clean.† In the past (for decades actually) I always used hand sanitizer and a napkin to wipe-down the armrests, tray-tables, light-switches, etc.† Since COVID however the airlines now hand us sanitizing wipes so that everyone can do it.† At first it was appreciated to have the wipe given out, but the more I do it the more I begin to resent the fact that Iíve now become the de-facto, unpaid cleaner of the aircraft.† Is this just another service that the airlines are pushing to us and not adequately paying people and/or leaving time to do?† I can just envision some bean-counter in the airline headquarters rubbing his or her hands together as they realize that itís another service theyíve offloaded to passengers at no cost.
The TSA Hates Us.† It was recently reported (here Ė sadly behind a paywall) that TSA officers are getting fed-up with passengers.† They report that the angry and unruly mobs are making them think about quitting.† Iím no apologist for unruly, uncooperative passengers for sure, but reading that the TSA is fed-up with us is a hoot.† We passengers have been fed-up with the TSA for years and years.† From the illogical hassles, the instability and inconsistency of Pre-Check, the unequal airport lines and security processes, and on and on.† I wrote many times about how we need to replace this dysfunctional agency, including this blog from more than a few years ago.† Itís now been twenty years of this insanity and the illusion of security.† We can do better.
Airports Are For Moving People, Not Selling To Them.† More and more airports have removed moving walkways, and also take months to repair escalators and remaining walkways when they break, yet they open restaurants and bars all the time Ė often where these transportation conveniences used to be.† These US airport facilities are owned by the public and managed on their behalf by various municipalities and agencies.† Itís long past time that they refocus on keeping people moving and not helping vendors make a profit from selling things to them.† Fix the damn escalators and walkways Ė quicklyÖplease!†
Closing this week with another reminder from me that COVID ISNíT THROUGH WITH US.† Mask, Vaccinate, Distance, be careful!† Even vaccinated people are (sometimes Ė rarely) passing away Ė as we saw this week with the loss of Colin Powell.† Donít let your guard down just because youíre sick of the precautions.† Live with them instead of dying without them.† Even if you feel healthy and invulnerable, there are immunocompromised people (like General Powell was) that are counting on others to get vaccinated to minimize the spread.† Please do it ASAP if you havenít.† Please get a booster if you havenít done that.† And, while youíre at it, get the flu shot too. ††
This article was written by David Danto and contains solely his own, personal opinions.
All image and links provided above as reference under prevailing fair use statutes.
As always, feel free to write and comment, question or disagree.† Hearing from the traveling community is always a highlight for me.† Thanks!