The coronavirus pandemic had practically wrecked the travel industry. Right now, either your travel-related business is losing money, or you can’t work for your company because it’s closed or downsized, or you can’t (or don’t feel safe enough) to travel. And even those who do travel are faced with all kinds of changes, some of which are more annoying than others. Overall, it makes for anger, sadness and frustration.
Doug Parker, American Airlines CEO is apparently one of those people who is very frustrated. He’s tired of throwing caution to the wind. So even though our country has had 25% of the world’s cases and deaths, and even though there’s a huge, daily uptick in positive cases of the virus in more than 30 states right now, he says it’s time to travel.
“Let’s go fly, for God’s sake,” he recently said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
Sorry Doug, but HELL, NO!
I understand that airlines are flying at about 25% capacity of what they did last year. There’s a reason for that. Lots of people are scared to fly.
- The American public has shown time and time again that they stink at social distancing, and there’s no way of knowing if that person too close to you at the airport or on the plane is positive for the virus and contagious but just not showing symptoms.
- American (and other airlines, but since Doug is the CEO of American) stopped keeping the middle seat empty. I have no interest in my face being 18″ from my seatmate’s, especially when, if (s)he is wearing a mask but it doesn’t fit well, their exhaled air is going to go out the sides, which means it’ll be aimed right at me from a foot and a half away.
- Besides filling flights, American is overselling them. Sure, a $750 voucher sounds nice (although it can be something of a pain to use), but who wants to stay in the corona-laced petri dish of an airport for hours on end?
- American’s encouragement of wearing a face mask sounds nice but I have 2 words: Ted Cruz. Why was he so special? And it makes people wonder who else won’t be told to put their mask back on after they’re done eating and drinking (or just sitting at the airport, waiting to board, with no mask on).
But let’s say that I did fly. Where am I going to stay? At a hotel like one of these? Where am I going to eat? I’ve eaten out a total of 2 times since all this coronacrapola started, because, again, you don’t know who’s positive and who isn’t, as they sit 6 feet away but then get up to go to the restroom without putting their mask on. And things to do? Let’s not even go there.
“I just hate this,” said Parker. “There’s not enough demand to support the people we have.”
You know what, Doug? I hate this, too. I hate that I’ve had to cancel 6 trips this year. I also hate that I can count on 1 hand the number of times I’ve done anything outside my house aside from “essential” visits around town since March 12.
But that’s all first world problems. There are many more important things to worry about. I hate that although some people show no symptoms of the virus, others wind up with long term heart, lung, kidney, brain, digestive, neurological and/or cardiovascular issues because of it. And that doctors have no ideas why or who any of those maladies will happen to. Even moreso, I hate that some people have had to die of the virus without their loved ones near them.
Those are what I hate the most, Doug. Those are what I fear the most, too. So for now, no, I’m not going to go fly.
Your Mileage May Vary.
PC: USMC/Sgt. Isaac Martinez
#stayhealthy #staysafe #washyourhands #wearamask
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary