American Airlines: Buying the Friendly Skies? - Page 2
Planes Make Lousy Stores: The conditions in a plane don’t lend themselves to making a purchase that’s anything more than a necessity. It’s noisy, you have very little room to move and you’re often dead tired from work or play - not to mention running the security gauntlet. Agonizing over what size of heated dog bed to buy is probably the last thing you want to do on the red-eye between Portland and Chicago.
We’re Conditioned to Being Ripped Off: When was the last time you bought anything on board a plane that you thought was of surprising value or quality? The truth is, we’re conditioned to being ruthlessly gouged by air carriers and we resent it. I’ll typically only buy food on an aircraft if I’m desperately hungry because I resent overpaying for a horrible meal. I can’t imagine experiencing the same irrational urgency to buy tickets to Cats or a pair of lawn aerator sandals... but that’s just me.
Flight Attendants Are Not Salespeople: The airline industry has sunken so low in terms of service standards that the role of a flight attendant is now almost purely getting you from A to B safely. Safety is of course of utmost importance but sadly they seem to do so with very little interest in brightening your day or enriching the flying experience. To suddenly expect these same people to morph into cheerful, knowledgeable salespeople between cabin prep and cross-check simply defies logic.
Above all, there’s one thing working against this concept. It’s the nagging question that will play on the minds of passengers like me. Instead of resorting to peddling stuff to make a few extra bucks, why couldn’t American (and most other airlines) just put more effort into making their customers feel happy, comfortable and valued? That’s something I’d gladly pay $15.00 dollars to experience.