Monday, August 4, 2008

JET BLUE had us seeing RED

A week ago today (Monday), Joy and I were driving from New York City to our home. No, we had planned on flying, but JET BLUE didn't cooperate.

On Sunday, I preached three Sunday services for a friend in Connecticut. Following the services we had a meal in a VERY authentic Italian restaurant... exceptional food.

We arrived at JFK airport at 6:30 PM and then the adventure began!

We arrived in good time at the airport for our 8:30 departure, checked our bags in and passed through security.

Upon arriving at our gate, the departure time was delayed to 10PM - "weather problems". No problem, Joy and I had plenty to read and there was plenty of people to watch!

The departure gate was changed and departure time bumped to 10:30…. then to 11:00 PM…. then to 11:30… 12AM and finally 12:15AM.
The plane on which we were scheduled to return had arrived at 10PM and they were preparing the plane for our trip – so they said.
At 12:15 we were informed the flight was canceled (must have run out of flight crews).
Not only our flight, but the earlier flight to Chicago was canceled.
We were told to return to check in and they would rebook us for the next available flight.
I called Jet Blue to try to circumvent the long walk and wait at the checkin counter.

After waiting 20 minutes for a live person, I was told the earliest they could book us was Tuesday PM! To say I was shocked is an understatement. I knew that to find a hotel in NYC would cost a minimum of 250-300 per night!

At that time we were waiting in a line of about 150 people. It was about 1:45 am and they said, we are shutting down the ticket counter. I couldn't believe they were leaving all those people hanging. They said someone would be there to help them at 3AM.
After calculating how much it would cost us to stay two days for a standby seat, calling several airlines (750 to 400 each for a one way ticket) and calling Amtrak – they had nothing available until August 11, I said to "Joy, we can rent a car and drive home in 12 hours." My exceptional wife said, "lets go for it."

We pulled out of Budget Car Rental's parking lot at 3:45AM and arrived home at 6PM.

So that is the latest adventure of Earl and Joy!

I communicated with Jet Blue to see what they had to say and as of one week later, I still have not heard a thing.

The news last night reported that they are in some kind of financial distress. In spite of our latest adventure, I really do like the airline. Mainly because they have much more leg room between the seats.

I just heard that Jet Blue is now going to charge 7.00 for a pillow and blanket on the flight. Hmmmm.......


Glenda said...

i guess i have to say that if that is the way they treat their customers then i'm not really surprised they're having financial difficulties! in my opinion, at a minumum, you should be reimbursed for your tickets!!!! glad you made it home safe though!

Earl Thornton said...

You're right. And I am glad to say that they have already reimbursed us for the leg of the trip we were not able to complete.

Earl Thornton said...

I should have added that we rented a car from Budget. That was amazing in itself. Anyway, we rented a Hyundai Sonata. I was very impressed with the car. It was very comfortable, especially for 13 hours and 850 miles. Plus we averaged 33 miles per gallon.

ro.duh. said...

wow! what an adventure! i'm glad they reimbursed you somehow though! you gotta fight for it sometimes!

Director said...

sheesh. Always looking for adventure, aren't you? Wow, what a deal and then to drive 850 after all that lag time...Hey, aren't you 60?

Earl Thornton said...

You're right.
I've never met an "adventure" I didn't like... to borrow from Will Rogers.
Yup... I am 60. Most days I don't feel like it...