Like To Throw Their Weight Around

| Greece | Popular, Tourists/Travel

(I work for a travel company on one of the heavily touristic Greek islands. This day I am working at the airport helping our customers as they are checking in for their flight back to their home country. The luggage limit is 20 kg per person. A family of three is checking in and a member of the Greek airport staff calls me over and tells me that she needs me to explain the rules about overweight luggage to the customer. Usually this means translating from English to the customer’s language.)

Me: *in the customer’s language* “Hello. What seems to be the problem?”

Man: *completely beetroot red in his face* “They –” *the check-in personnel* “– are telling us that we have 10 kilos overweight!”

(Usually the charge for extra kilos is almost 10 euros per kilo, so it can get quite expensive fast.)

Me: “How much weight do you have at the moment?”

Man: “70!”

Me: “Well, yes, the allowed limit is 20kg per person.”

Man & Woman: *screaming simultaneously* “YES, BUT WE ARE THREE PERSONS!”

Me: “Yes… and that means your total weight can be 60 kg. So you do indeed have 10 kg overweight”

Man: “WE HAVE EXACTLY THE SAME AMOUNT OF LUGGAGE NOW AS WE DID WHEN WE LEFT AND THEY DID NOT SAY ANYTHING ABOUT IT!”

Me: *with a sinking feeling of here-we-go-again-with-this* “I see. Unfortunately that is a mistake on their part and they are known to be quite inattentive when it comes to the weight limits, whereas here on [Greek Island] they are known for being extremely strict with the limits.”

Man: “THAT IS NOT MY PROBLEM. THAT IS A MISTAKE ON YOUR STAFF IN SO IT’S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY!”

Me: *thinking how on earth could I possibly control staff that does not actually work for us and are located almost 4000 km away from us* “Again, I am sorry, but they are very strict with the limits and—”

Man: “I ABSOLUTELY REFUSE TO PAY FOR THIS! THIS IS RIDICULOUS. THEY DID NOT TELL US AND NOW SUDDENLY THEY HAVE JUST DECIDED TO TAKE THE MONEY FROM ME. I WILL. NOT. PAY. FOR. THIS.”

Me: *starting to get fed up with this childish attitude but still remaining polite* “Well, I’m am sorry you feel this way, but unfortunately you don’t have a choice in the matter. Either you pay or you don’t board the flight.”

(The man keeps repeating the above things over and over again with his wife backing him up. Meanwhile their child, who looks about eight, is just sitting on their bags, looking sad.)

Man: “FINE. I will pay for it, but you can be d*** sure that I will claim the money back when I get home! This will not be the end of this!”

Me: “Would you like to have the email address to our reclamation-department?”

Man: “YES!”

Me: *writing down the address on a piece of paper* “You can send your claim to this email and in case you lose this piece of paper, you can always find it again from [our website].”

Man: *taking the paper* “This is the worst service I have ever had! This has never happened to us before! I am NEVER flying with this company again!” *to the check-in staff, in English* “How much is the cost?”

Airport Staff: “You must take this note to the office over there.” *pointing the location, about 50 meters away, but clearly visible* “They will tell you the price as there can be changes to it. When you come back, you don’t have to stand in line anymore, but you can come straight to the counter and we will finalize the check-in procedure.”

Man: *in his language to me* “I AM NOT STANDING IN LINE AGAIN WHEN I COME BACK WITH THIS!”

Me: “No, of course you don’t have to do that. As the check in person just told you, you can simply just pass the queue when you come back.”

Man: *storms off*

(The woman stays behind with the child, but steps aside and I am standing quite close to them, but not engaging her very much because I have grown aggravated with their, frankly, childish behavior. Meanwhile, my colleague and friend who works for our sister company engages the woman because she has even less tolerance for this kind of behavior than I do.)

Woman: *just repeating what they have been saying again and again and adding another gem* “Well, fortunately there are other tour companies so we won’t have to travel with you guys ever again.”

My Colleague: “The weight limits are mentioned very clearly in the travel rules and they are also in your ticket…”

(They later said that their daughter had gotten car sick because the bus that had brought them to the airport, provided by our company of course, had been taking “some d*** scenic route instead of driving straight.” For the record, there is precisely one route that the buses take on their way to the airport and it’s definitely not a “scenic” route. But this did not stop these two from not only complaining about it but also ENCOURAGING THEIR OWN CHILD TO TRY AND THROW UP ON THE AIRPORT FLOOR IN FRONT OF HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE because they were angry at us. So, yes, please do choose another company to travel with in the future. It’s not that we think that we have too many customers. It’s just that we prefer that our customers A) have basic decency, B) know how to read, write, and count or at least listen, and C) don’t use their own *children* as biological weapons.)

Need To Install A Listening Station

, | Denver, CO, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

(I am another customer in this case, observing. It is an extremely busy morning at the airport and there is a line of about 10 people for a coffee and pastry counter. This counter has a place to order, and a separate place to pick up and pay.)

Customer: *approaches the pay portion of the counter* “Is this where you order?”

Employee: “No, sir, you have to order down there.” *she indicates the large “ORDER HERE” sign hanging at the other end of the counter*

Customer: “I want a bagel, but I don’t want it cooked. Do you cook your bagels?”

Employee: “You can choose to have it toasted or not, if that’s what you mean. But you have to order down there.”

Customer: “Okay, well, I’ll have a plain bagel, not cooked, and a coffee.”

Employee: *at this point clearly flustered and just trying to move the guy along quickly* “Your total will be $6. Please stand off to the side and wait for that to be ready.”

Flight Plight

| Houston, TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Popular, Tourists/Travel

(A group of passengers whose flight has been delayed, causing them to miss connections, is waiting for a ticket agent to reschedule them to their destinations. Passenger #1 is a middle aged woman who has been complaining and berating the ticket agent.)

Passenger #1: “I can’t believe you can’t get me on an earlier flight! I have been traveling since ten this morning trying to get home to see my family! Do you have any idea how hard this is for me?!”

Passenger #2: *a teenage girl who up till now has been waiting quietly* “Lady, I don’t want to hear any more of your complaining. I’ve been traveling since five this morning Paris time, and I’m too tired to figure out the time difference. My luggage was lost at O’Hare, and I haven’t seen my family in a month. Now, I may be just a teenager, but even I know that this is going to go a lot faster for everyone if you just let the nice lady behind the counter do her job!”

Passenger #1: *shuts up*

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Presidential Supervision Required

| Miami, FL, USA | Crazy Requests, Popular

(My supervisor is assisting me with an irate customer and now the customer wants to speak to my supervisor’s supervisor.)

Customer: “Who’s your supervisor?”

Supervisor: “Sir, I AM the supervisor. I don’t have a supervisor.”

Customer: “Who’s the president of the company?”

Me: “[President].”

Customer: *to my supervisor* “THAT’s your supervisor. Everyone has a supervisor.”

Me: *genuinely curious* “But then who’s [President]’s supervisor?”

Customer: *to me* “You’re a horse’s a**.”

Being Foggy With The Specifics

| USA | Time, Transportation

(I receive a phone call from an airline dispatcher regarding a weather forecast. Why he’s calling the air traffic control tower and not the weather service is beyond me but I think I may have solved that issue for good.)

Airline Dispatcher: “What time is the fog going to lift?”

Me: *busy and tired of dealing with the inane* “9:47.”

Airline Dispatcher: *after a short pause* “Wow, that’s pretty specific. Are you sure?”

Me: “I’d bet your life on it.”

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