Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Don't Hate on JetBlue

Yesterday, JetBlue the cool cousin of Southwest, announced it would begin charging $7 for a blanket and pillow. As usual, local newscasters made their requisite trip to LAX to raise their fist in ire over these new fees. Earlier in this blog I talked about how unfair I thought the checked baggage fee was, and how I felt it could be put to better use as an incentive fee. JetBlue has seemed to take on this advice.

First, not everyone needs a blanket and pillow. I don't even believe it has much to do with gender since I know a lot of women who suffer from hot flashes. Also, I don't even know if it has to do with age, since my Grandmother always travels with an extra sweater. I think this new fee from JetBlue really has to do with those who choose to sleep rather than read, watch the free TV or bother their neighbor with mindless chitchat. I am one of those people who can sleep anywhere, so $7 for a blanket and pillow which I can use AGAIN (hello, the environment) and is of better quality than the free one doesn't seem to me like such a big deal. I feel like this is in line with JetBlue's already genius idea to charge a few bucks for a nicer set of headphones.

US Airways on the other hand is running itself into a potential lawsuit with its new policy on charging for non-alcoholic beverages. I hope this doesn't extend itself to water, considering travelers' need to stay hydrated on flights. Not to mention what will happen if you're stuck in the airplane for longer than expected, and you forgot to get some cash out of the ATM. I know these small charges add up to large amounts for the industry, but maybe they should consider revamping their management? I'm starting to feel like the airline industry is becoming eerily similar to the already disastrous American car industry. Just like how GM killed its electric car so it could make Suburbans in the late 1990s, airline industries might want to bank its future on more than a Coke or two.


Colleen said...

Sadly, US Airways is charging for water:


I don't hate on JetBlue or Southwest much because their customer service (unlike Delta's) has been good to me despite being delayed for almost 3 hours on JetBlue and overnight on SW due to weather, but there's a point where enough is enough and pillows are kinda pushing it. Wifi seems to be a better idea to raise money since it isn't inconveniencing anyone who can't afford it or doesn't want to pay the extra fee.

toeknee said...

Man...I was listening to NPR this morning and I was wondering whether it was a good thing or bad thing. I guess you make sense. Damn you J mo.