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Then: Friendly Skies

Now: Jet Blues
 

I remember my very first plane ride, back in the day when PSA was in business.  A smiling stewardess dressed like a "Go-Go" girl handed my sister and me each a pin announcing to the world that it was in fact our very first flight.

Once seated, we were given soft pillows and were told to please ask if we needed anything else. Soon after take-off, our parents lit up their cigarettes and were served cocktails, which they did have to pay for, but everything else was free.  From the movie to the meal to the peanuts.  And it really all did come with a smile.

Now, how things have changed.  I know some of these changes are necessary.  I don't mind all the post 9/11 security.  In fact, I welcome that.  I wish we could still greet our friends and family at the gate, but I've learned to live with these new rules.

It's all the other "consumer unfriendly – more costly" changes that have me ticked off.

First, we now have to pay for our luggage.  Unless of course you just take a carry-on bag.  But what woman is going to anywhere without her face creams and hair products? And those cannot be carried on board.  

So, next week when I fly to Hawaii for my daughter's wedding, it's going to cost me twenty dollars for my first bag and thirty dollars if I take a second one.  Which seems backwards to me.  And if I take one larger suitcase it could turn out weighing too much or being oversized and that will cost extra.  It's a no-win situation.

But once in my seat, I will sit back and relax, knowing that my luggage is safe in the baggage quarters.  Hopefully.  

After I finally get a cocktail, during which transaction a serious faced flight attendant will ask for exact change, I'll flip through those exciting magazines, knowing that soon we will be offered a movie.

"Sure," I'll say.  "I'd love some headphones."
"Five dollars, please." The flight attendant will say with her hand out.
Right.  I think I'll just watch and lip read.  

After all, the meal will be served shortly.  What?  Of course, how I could I forget?  We now have to pay for an exciting box lunch consisting of processed turkey on a huge white bun, two cookies and chips.  Or I could just buy the chips alone at three dollars a can, which boils down to about ten cents a chip.

Money better spent on a glass of champagne or two, because after all this is celebration.  And how often do we get to celebrate our daughter getting married?  Oh right. In my case, it's the second time around, but that's a story for another day.

For now, I'll drink up, look out window at the clouds and remember the good old days when soaring through the air really was a friendly experience.

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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Lindao wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Amen, Janie!  Even worse, my husband and I used a lot of airline miles to fly first class on a trip a few weeks ago.  We flew east on red-eyes, so I guess I can understand that, although we were offered wine and other drinks, the only food was snack stuff.  But when we flew back, at lunchtime, we were again offered drinks (yay!) and the kind of sandwich that used to be served in economy class, not a first class kind of meal (boo!).  At least we didn’t have to pay to check our first bag.

      And best wishes on your daughter’s wedding!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Linda,

       I’ve never flown first class, but hope to some day.  Maybe!  Thanks for the good wishes.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tinaf wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Congrats on your daughter’s wedding!  

      Thanks for this stroll down memory lane...

      And FYI, on Southwest and United, you can only get a drink now with airline coupons or credit/debit cards.  It’s surreal to me that CASH is not an option!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Tina,

       Really?  Cash is not an option anymore!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Kandykahne 5 wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • So true! Congratulations on your daughters wedding!happy



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Encee wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Enjoy your trip - and every happiness to your daughter!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Kandykane - Thanks for commenting and the good wishes.

      Nancy - I’m getting excited now. I’ll pass your wish on to my daughter.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Anne E wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • I too remember when flying used to be fun.  My boyfriend would meet me as I stepped off the plane with a bouquet of flowers.  The flight attendants would smile and wish everyone a good day.

      But now I want to wish your daughter a very happy wedding day.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Anne Lyken-Garner wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • I hope everything goes really well for you and your family during this exciting time.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Lazylola wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • A lot has changed, the skies aren’t so friendly anymore, on top of that we now have to worry if our pilots will be distracted by laptops or cellphones, given that most of their piloting is done on automatic....congrats to your daughter, have fun in Hawaii, I had a wedding there, it was breathtakingly beautiful.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rnfisher wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • I never flew as a child, but I can remember my first flight (I was heading to Orlando for Navy bootcamp), I agree that a lot has changed but it has always been a challenge.  Especially now that I have to pay for my travels.  I am heading to San Diego in just over 2 weeks to participate in the Breast Cancer 3-day.  I don’t mind the security, but the rudeness sure bites.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      L J wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • congrats on the wedding also miss janie!!!!
      i hope u have a great time in hawaii!!!
      LJ

       [Link Removed]


      Lindaj44, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rnfisher wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Wishing your daughter well, I hear that Hawaii is a great place to have a wedding.  1rst, 2nd or 10th....hehehe



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Yana Berlin wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Because you will be flying for such a great occasion don’t let anything spoil your mood estatic

      I do have to say, that I had to buy a ticket on a short notice and it was way too expensive, so I opted to use my miles, 100K of them from Los Angeles to New York, it was a first class ticket, I had no choice, I booked it. Flying red eye, first class I was hoping to get a pillow and a blanket, but the stewardess advised me that they were all out. I couldn’t believe it, 100K miles, first class and you are out of pillows? She recommended that I write a letter to United, I did.  

      They reply was, “we apologize for the inconvenience, and hope that next time your flying experience with us will be a pleasant one”

      really????? the last friendly skies that I was on was Air Canada frown



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rnfisher wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • I have my own travel pillows for this trip.  My luck they won’t let me use it because it isn’t theirs.... worried



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Catfan - Wow.  Flowers when you got off the plane.  How nice.

      Anne - Thanks for your good wishes.  

      Lazylola - Yeah, about thos laptops.  That’s a scary thought.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Rnfisher - Yes, Hawaii is a great place, no matter what number marriage it is.

      Lindaj - Thanks for your congratulations



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Yana - Nothing will spoil my mood.  I’m too excited.  And you know the skies are friendly on Mexicana, too.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • In the UK we have two low cost airlines and they are like cattle trucks for the sky – you pay for everything luggage , drinks, food ........ and soon use the toilet ! I have used them twice and never again – I now take two planes instead of one or pay over the odds not to go Ryan Air or Easy Jet  

      You have to walk across the tarmac to get on the plane and no allocated seats so people run ......vile
      My daughter went to New Zealand last year and it was first class the treatment was amazing from the minute she checked in to the minute she landed ......
      Have a great time at the wedding



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Katalin Goencz wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Going to your daughter’s wedding in Hawaii has to be great fun. Congratulations- for the second time!

      Don’t let the airlines stole your mood. We usually bring chocolate, nuts, books, headsets, water, a netbook, and large sweaters in the carry-on.

      During my February trip I promised myself newer to fly Swiss Air again. They were late, unorganized, expensive, and rude. The seats were hard and uncomfortable.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Maybe wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Congratulations on your daughters wedding, Janie!
      Well, I woke up while traveling in USA first time 7 years ago. Beeing spoiled in Europe (for example:1 hour flight, economy class you get cafe or tea (Baileys included), drink, chocolate, great sendwich) I got shocked and treated with little tiny package of peanuts herehappyfor 5 hours flight!.
      I am ready now and take most of my stuff with me on the board (if they let mehappy.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Faye43 wrote Nov 1, 2009
    • Have fun at your daughter's wedding and Congratulations. Have a safe enjoyable trip. My first flight was on Eastern Airlines when I went to basic training 25 years ago and I do agree it was friendly. Back then they had a hot meal and it was pretty tasty. I have been lucky all of my flights have been friendly and I have been on about 20 of them. I am in the south and my family up north. The food isn't near as good as it use to be though. happy



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Angelcart wrote Nov 2, 2009
    • Oh I too remember flying as a child and the then called “stewardess’s” were dressed as go go girls and very friendly.  Remember they had a weight limit and only females????  We flew from TX to HI last year and I hated it the whole way!!!  I paid I think it was $5 for chips!!!  You are so right...........the good ol’ days of “flying the friendly skies” are a thing of the past!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mariana Calderon-Thornton wrote Nov 2, 2009
    • Congrat’s on the wedding, and Yes!! definetely how things are changedm some for the good, some for the bad! and flights not so good I remembered when they were a lot more friendly



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Chattycathie wrote Nov 2, 2009
    • I just came back from Hawaii last month.  Being on a limited budget, I prepared myself.  I went with my sister and we packed one suitcase together with all the items we couldn’t bring on board like Lotions, etc.. and then we both brought a carry on and a large purse (filled to the brim).  We packed sandwiches and snacks in our purse and then the airlines provided free nuts or cookies and drinks (but not alcohol.  The lady next to me stowed some small bottles of alcohol though.  I don’t know how she got those through, but she was more than happy to share.  Something else we found out is the earphones for our ipods worked if we plugged them in to watch the movie.  You have to be creative these days if you want to get around the changes with the airlines.  All in all it was a good flight, but I wished I had brought my own pillow.



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