The last week has yielded two high-profile instances of alleged shabby treatment on Canada’s official flag carrier.
Two Air Canada passengers were allegedly threatened with being added to a no-fly list after they complained about their seats being covered in vomit. And then a P.E.I. musician reported that Air Canada had cancelled his band’s return flight from Denmark without a refund, forcing him to pay $14,000 to get home via another airline.
In Dear Diary, the National Post satirically re-imagines a week in the life of a newsmaker. This week, Tristin Hopper takes a journey inside the thoughts of Air Canada.
You ever heard about the Sir John Franklin expedition? Get this; a whole boat full of guys are trying to get from one side of Canada to the other side. But they get stuck in Arctic ice along the way and after a couple years they all go crazy, resort to cannibalism and die.
It really puts things in perspective, doesn’t it? For more than 60 years, Air Canada has offered scheduled cross-continental service without suffering a SINGLE INSTANCE of cannibalism or prolonged Arctic isolation. If you board an Air Canada flight, 99.9 per cent of the time you will arrive at your destination just fine. To me, that is something worth celebrating.
Do you like delays? Because if this keeps up that’s what you’re going to get; more delays. A 737 Max 8 isn’t just some cheap carnival ride that you can hose off when it gets puke on it. It’s a $100 million piece of precision technology designed to move at speeds and altitudes that your peasant ancestors would consider a miracle. You know what would happen if we could put Leonardo Da Vinci on flight AC100 from Vancouver to Toronto? He would SOIL HIMSELF from amazement, and then he would die of shock. And the rest of you would be left to complain on social media that we didn’t clean up his soiled corpse fast enough.
Here’s how long-haul travel used to work: You would get aboard a steamship, and then you would proceed to shut the $%# up until you got to the other side. A ship was a floating fiefdom isolated from the rest of the civilized world, and the captain was its absolute, unquestioned ruler. Why? Probably because he was too busy evading gales, rogue waves and the occasional bloodthirsty pirate to entertain your whiny crap about the accommodations containing more human ejecta than usual.
If it was up to you humanimals, our pilots wouldn’t be able to so much as pull away from the gate without first convening an all-plane strata meeting to ensure your every worldly desire had been satisfied. “Wah, flying over Saskatchewan is depressing. Wah, the chicken cacciatore is cold.”
Tell me; have you tried running an airline? Quick; how many newtons of lift force are required to get 175 adult passengers to 35,000 feet? What’s the call sign for Montreal Centre? Oh no! The ground proximity warning system is beeping; what should you do?
If the answer to any of the above is “I’d make super-special sure that there was no puke in the passenger cabin” then I’m afraid that you’ve just created a smoking crater in the middle of eastern Manitoba. Let’s hope nobody vomited once the aircraft went into a flatspin!
I’ll be the first to admit that Air Canada has higher-than-normal prices, and may benefit from the occasional bout of monopolistic market power. But guess what? That’s just how things work when you’re servicing a feral, lightly populated corner of earth the size of Europe. “A land so wild and savage,” was what Stan Rogers famously called it before he mysteriously stopped releasing records in the 1980s.
Monopolies are what made this country great. The Hudson’s Bay Company. The Canadian Pacific Railroad. Imperial Oil. As these enterprises forged a country out of pure will, how much time and energy do you think they devoted to wringing their hands over whether someone had to sit in vomit for a few hours?
Musician says Air Canada resold his tickets, left him stranded and refused to give a refund
Air Canada apologizes after women kicked off flight for refusing vomit-covered seats