Thursday, July 17, 2008

Things That Drive Me Nutso

I just spent an hour on the phone with a friend, trying to coordinate flights. We're going to Italy together, but she lives in a different state, so we're trying to find a way that she and I can both be on the same overseas portion, and still not pay an arm and a leg.

The best I was able to find for me is an American Airlines flight from National Airport in DC (yay for finding a cheap flight from the airport 10 minutes from my house!) to JFK in NY, then a direct flight to Rome. She's coming from West Virginia, however, so either she will drive to one of the DC airports to meet me, or find a way to get herself to NY to meet me, or whatever (she does a lot of business in NY, so that could actually work the best).

So it would stand to reason that her flight out of JFK would likely be less than mine, since I have a hop from DC to JFK first, right?

Wrong. Her direct non-stop flight from JFK to Rome is $100 more than my two part flight (DC to JFK, then JFK to Rome on the same flight as her).

In other words, it's cheaper for me to take an extra flight first.

That seems screwed up. When you factor in the cost of gas, why would they be giving me that DC-to-JFK (and vice versa on the way home) flight for free? Actually, they're giving it to me for negative money, really. They're paying me.

I hate airlines. The pricing makes no sense.

So what about you? What totally screwed up things drive you crazy?


  1. yeah...things like that drive me nuts.

    My thing lately is road work. Our city is replacing two bridges that connect the east and west sides of town...this road will be closed for a year and a half. It's a pain.
    BUT--then they also decided to do construction on the downtown detour AT THE SAME TIME.

    Hello? They ripped up downtown (the main detour), closing side streets intermittently and ripping out sidewalks. This was especially tough on the businesses at Christmas time.

  2. Dude, that really IS irritating. I totally don't understand it...

  3. Ha! You WILL go nutso trying to figure out airline pricing. We flew to Edinburgh from London last month and it was cheaper to fly THROUGH AMSTERDAM than fly direct. Yeah. No logic.

    Overseas call centers make me nutso. Especially for a business from my own state.

    Have a great time in Rome!

  4. Yeah, I think the airline pricing is dependent more than anything on availability, demand, and the likelihood of the customer going elsewhere (or not going at all), rather than on what might seem to be actual costs. IIRC there was a whole chapter of the book Freakonomics explaining how it works... :-)

    Things that drive me nutso:

    1) the conviction restaurants have that throwing a handful of cilantro on everything will make it better;

    2) the belief charities have that selling your name to a zillion other charities is in their best interest;

    3) my kitten's mania for eating my hair.



  5. Plus, the reason they charge you for the trip, not the SEAT is so they can bump you. But now they want to charge fat people more for the seat. Only they sell the fare, not the actual SEAT... so they can rip you off.

    If they can install the bill-feeds on virtually EVERY machine in the universe, why not gas pumps?

    I want to feed my 20 into a little slot, pump, and go.

    People who work inside those places freak me out. (I used to be one... and I freak myself out.)

  6. That is not a heck of a lot of gas.
    Just sayin.