The Amazing Ryanair Raffle Ticket

We rarely do anecdotal stuff here, but I thought this was interesting enough to comment on.

TSA Arrests Penis Pump Terrorist

TSA Arrests Penis Pump Terrorist

There’s simply nothing more awkward than being caught with a penis pump. By your Mom. On vacation. While the TSA accuses you of being a terrorist.

Westjet Delays, Pays Happy Traveler

Westjet Delays, Pays Happy Traveler

7.50 worth of complimentary drinks at the airport bar. That’s the way customer service is handled in Ireland.

Southwest Airlines Sues To Keep Seating Inconvenient

Southwest Airlines Sues To Keep Seating Inconvenient

If you’re a Southwest Airlines flier and want the best seats, an entire cottage industry has sprung up. You enter your Southwest Airlines account and password into sites like boardfirst.com, apassonly.com or alineonline.com will automatically check you in online the second Southwest Airlines starts accepting seat reservations. It costs about $5 bucks per use… an excellent deal if you really want to get that extra leg room near the emergency exit door.

Real Snakes On A Plane: Viral Marketing or Implausible Adventure?

Real Snakes On A Plane: Viral Marketing or Implausible Adventure?

From the Too Timely To Be Real Department, this just in: a 62 year old West Virginia pilot screams “I’m sick of these muddafuggin’ snakes!” right before grabbing a cobra around the thorax and punching it right in the face.

Airlines Owe Frequent Flyers 27M Free Trips

Airlines Owe Frequent Flyers 27M Free Trips

Thoroughly filed in the ‘old news’ department, there’s a USA Today article up complaining about just how gosh darn difficult it is to redeem your frequent flyers miles these days. There’s no new information in the article, except a statistic we didn’t know that makes airline stinginess seem even worse: growth in frequent flyer programs increases at a rate of about 13% per year, even as it gets harder and harder to do anything with your points.

Expedia Closes Ticket Change Fee Loophole Around Customer’s Throat

Expedia Closes Ticket Change Fee Loophole Around Customer’s Throat

All our best correspondents have alliterative names. Consumerist Grant G. decided to use Expedia to book a couple of round-trip flights from Denver to San Francisco. But when his plans changed and he needed to fly back a day later, he was told there would be a $200 extra charge to change the booking.

United Lies To Another Customer. Also, Continental’s Bitch CSR!

United Lies To Another Customer. Also, Continental’s Bitch CSR!

Apparently, lying to customers is an integral part of United’s strategy for dealing with frustrated travelers. A fter Laura complained to us about United delaying her flight, losing her bags and then unblinkingly lying to her, we received this email from Brian,who details another experience in which United lied to a customer about a lost bag.

United To Reps: “Delayed Their Flight? Lost Their Baggage? Lie to Them.”

United To Reps: “Delayed Their Flight? Lost Their Baggage? Lie to Them.”

Outside of a small child incessantly kicking the back of your seat and being powerless to reach around and slug him, there’s few things more frustrating in travel than flight delays and lost baggage. No one really likes flying… it’s a slightly filthy, slightly scary, rather expensive cattle car experience that leaves even the most seasoned traveler feeling a bit drained. You just want the ordeal to be over, get home or to your hotel as quickly as possible.

Southwest Launches Corporate Blog, But Where’s The CS?

Southwest Launches Corporate Blog, But Where’s The CS?

Southwest Airlines have launched a pretty respectable example of a half-decent, minimally-manipulative, somewhat-entertaining corporate blog. If you know what we mean. This isn’t McDonald’s stupid “Horse Whsiperer” Corporate Responsibility nonsense. For example, we got a kick out of the entry about a bee hive that was found in the tail of a plane that was being repaired and the bee keeper who was brought in to deal with the problem.

The Flying RyanAir Horror Show

Although I personally love RyanAir for allowing me to fly anywhere in Europe practically for free, I’ve known enough people who’ve worked behind the scenes to know it’s a pretty horrific company to work for — or even fly with — if you know what they know. Cheapness, apparently, doesn’t come cheap… it comes with a huge cost in customer service and, more importantly, competence and safety.

RyanAir: Flying Customers For Free

RyanAir: Flying Customers For Free

Ireland’s premier discount airline Ryanair envisions a time in the next ten years when all of its customers fly for free. That may seem ludicrous, but Ryanair is already a quarter of the way there: 25% of its current customers fly for free.

Upgrade Travel Disaggregates Fare Aggregators

Upgrade Travel Disaggregates Fare Aggregators

The Upgrade Travel blog has an excellent look up at various online fare aggregators, trying to find the best one to do your online fare searching with. He compared Kayak, Sidestep, Farechase, Mobissimo, Pricegrabber, Berzurk and Farechaser for accuracy, depth of information and output control.

Airplanes Start Charging You For Peanuts

Airplanes Start Charging You For Peanuts

In Ireland, we have a discount flyer called RyanAir. Although flying in a RyanAir jet is hygenically similar to flying through the friendly skies in a Time Square porn theater circa Taxi Driver, you can fly to most of Europe’s hot spots for as little as a couple euros, if you order your tickets a couple months in advance. Of course, where they gouge you is in buying standard airplane amentities. A vacuum-sealed bag of peanuts will cost you more than you paid for your ticket. 250ml cans of soda cost more per milliliter than liquid smack. And so on.

Airline Loyalty Programs Don’t Make Sense Anymore

Airline Loyalty Programs Don’t Make Sense Anymore

Frequent Flyers Can’t Get Seats

Frequent Flyers Can’t Get Seats

Consumer Affairs has an article up, detailing the airline industry’s attempts to severely limit Frequent Flyers’ ability to cash in their miles for seats.

Consumers Speak: The Excellent Side of Southwest’s Seating Policy

Totally awesome tip from our boy Nick Weaver. The gyst? Travel Southwest whenever you can: