Wednesday, May 16, 2007

How Things Work Around Here: Angolan Airline Edition

Benguela Airport

This morning I got up at 5 am to get ready for my trip to Ondjiva. Check-in was at 7, but we had to pick up my colleagues and the airport is an hour away. We get to the airport at 7:15 and start to wait for the Gemini Airlines rep to come so we can begin check-in.

Around 8, the rep finally shows up. The following events took place:

Rep: I announce that as of today, the Luanda-Benguela-Ondjiva flight has been moved from 8 am to 1 pm. Come back at 11 for check-in.
Manuel Jose (my favorite driver): Why didn't you advise us of this change?!
Rep: Hey, you should have called the office to confirm the flight. That was irresponsible of you.
Manuel Jose: I DID call and confirm the flight, at 5 pm yesterday.
Rep: Oh. Um.
Manuel Jose: And you take down every passenger's name and phone number in case there are any changes, so you can call them and inform them of the changes.
Rep: That's just a formality.
Manuel Jose: This is very unprofessional.
Rep: Well, we weren't informed of these changes until 6 pm yesterday!
Manuel Jose: So you had plenty of time to call every one.
Rep: Yes.
Manuel Jose: But you didn't.
Rep: No. Of course not. You had to call and confirm the flight.

And so it goes....

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