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An open letter to LIAT company

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Tue, Aug 23. 2011

Dear LIAT,

Thank you for the Subway sandwich and the large Canning sorrel drink and the KFC chicken strips and the bottled water, as I had to leave my bed at 6:30 am to get to the airport to check in two hours before, to catch my flight at 9:30 am. I therefore did not have breakfast. It is always a good thing when you can get something to eat around 1:30 pm (better later than never I always say).{{more}} And guess what, I finished the book also, all 486 pages of it; for this I say, again, thanks, having all those hours with nothing else to do allowed me the opportunity to get the book done. Maeve Binchy is a favourite author of mine; I just loved Circle of Friends. Oh, another thing, it was so thoughtful of you not announcing anything, again, I say thanks. Can you imagine the vitriol that would have been spewed had we, the paying cargo, known that the plane was not coming; brilliant move on your part. Even if I was a bit mystified by that tactic, in hindsight I saw it for what it really was, a masterstroke.

One more thing though, please do not insult us by lying to us; that’s my one point of concern. Forget the missed meeting, forget the missed connecting flight, forget the hours and hours and hours at the airport, all of these are forgivable (it has happened before, and will again), but lying is not. If the plane lost, tell us it lost, do not say it was delayed. A delay is fifty minutes, maybe an hour, not seven hours; when it’s seven hours, the plane lost. We can, I surely can, understand if the pilot, a rookie, missed Trinidad and landed instead in Aruba, or the instruments were not working and instead of getting to St. Vincent from Antigua, the flight ended up in Colombia, and with the subsequent explaining to do in a foreign language, any right thinking person would understand the hours it took to get re-fueled, plus a little rest for the weary staff, and lunch. Or the taxi man that the crew hired to take them from the hotel had one eye and was deaf and instead took them to Toco, rather than Piarco International Airport. We would have understood if we knew they were lost; it happens to the best of us, though it’s not every day a plane and the crew happen to get lost, but, things happen. Move on.

Did I say thank you for the sandwich? I had seafood, lovely, slightly toasted with extra cheese and jalapenos. The pineapple was a bit too much for me. Sorry for the tangential diversion from the topic.

So, in closing, do not lie to me again, and tell me there is a delay when the plane get lost and landed in a different country. I know it can be a bit embarrassing to admit, but the truth is liberating; yes, we would have a little chuckle here and there, but we would feel much better knowing that if nothing, we have a truth-telling carrier. That makes the sub more digestible.

Signed

The passenger in the blue shirt with the Subway and the big smile on his face.

Ps: I did not get to tell you thanks for leaving a whole hour earlier the other day. It was a bit surprising, but I got an entire hour to wait for my ride, who obviously was not expecting me at 6:23 pm, after I told him the plane would arrive at 7:20 pm. Kudos. By the way, what is the opposite of a delay?

PPs: Give my regards to the attendant who suggested I wait for the evening flight (around 6:55 pm), if I was in a hurry to get home. She made me smile; a bit of humour is always good in diffusing anger.

PPPs: I now understand why you had to lay off so many workers, with all those planes and crews getting lost, delayed, and what not, there is little to do during the day, well, except bring us food vouchers. I should have tried out Rituals; heard the coffee was not that bad.

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