Monday, April 6, 2009

National Hate Week and Two is Better Than One

This week is supposedly National Hate Week. Of course, depending on who you ask, this week may occur several times during the year. But, if you ask around long enough someone will surely confirm that you, in your patient badgering, are correct. This works with all things. Sometimes it works in reverse as well. You have to be on your patient badgering toes at all times of need.

Yes, I've got examples. I knew you would ask. The wonderful D/FW based airline. The one known to most Americans as American Airlines is probably the best at the patient badgering until you hear what you want to hear approach. Don't forget.

Several years ago, when my wife and I were still dating, I was trying to buy her a ticket from Frankfurt to Dallas. I bought it for, let's say, $600 (round trip). A week later, my wife-to-be called me and said that things had changed and she needed to push the whole trip out one week. "Damn," I thought, "this is going to take a whole new level of patient badgering!"

I called American Airlines and the first person I talked to (a guy) said, "Well, we can move things around, but since you bought a non-refundable ticket, it's going to cost you a $150 change fee and if the date you want it more expensive, you'll have to pay the difference."

That wasn't bad, but not exactly what I wanted to hear, so I said, "Ok. Let me think on it and call my girlfriend and see what she says."

Next day, I call back. This time a woman answers. I say, "Yeah, I bought a ticket for my fiancée to come visit me next month, but her boss changed her plans and I really need to push it back a week. Can you help me?"

She piddled around a bit, came back and asked me my ticket number and the dates I needed it changed to and said, "Ok. The new dates are actually cheaper than the old dates so we'll be crediting you card $120. Here is your new confirmation number..."

Last week, I called the local Firestone to do warranty work on my GM car. I hate taking cars to the dealer. I'm going to save this for tomorrow. This week of hate must continue.

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