Aug 1, 2008


Dear US Airways,
I am horrified by your new beverage policy. Charge for cokes if you must, but NOT water. In-flight embolisms kill more people than plane crashes, as you well know. Encouraging folks to dehydrate is flat-out dangerous. I will not be flying US Airways again until this policy changes, nor will I, as a travel writer, endorse your services.

I am not alone in my sentiments. Comments overheard: "$40 for bags each way and $2 for a fifty-cent can of pop? I'm flying another carrier from here out"; "a $9 rum and coke should come with a view of the Manhattan skyline" and my favorite: "I'm gonna hide this pillow before someone charges me for it."

Just raise the darn prices instead of holding our health – and tempers – hostage already.

Amanda Castleman
Freelance journalist


  1. an all inclusive price OR be decent and do it the way. £1 per ticket plus which case a $40 surcharge comes with the territory.

    I smell a business idea, though...

    "Readily packed suitcases at your destination. Pre-order your packed case and goodies online and pick up next to taxi stand at destination airport. $30 per week hire. Just click on your size and grooming requirements"

  2. You must have read by now that JetBlue has started charging $7 for a pillow and blanket, yes? Gotta admit, their rationale seems sound and it's much more sensible than charging for water or encouraging everyone to bring the kitchen sink as carry-on.

  3. Sascha: it's all rather puzzling. How are the no-frills booming while the multinationals whine into nickel-and-dime oblivion?

    Well, running older planes twice as hard, one could argue. But I believe their safety records are better thus far...

  4. PS: Petalina, I like your idea. As long as we all wear Mao suits and disposal paper underpants, it'll be a hit!

  5. Marie: I hadn't heard about Jet Blue – thanks. I'm much happier with that policy (as a coat and inflatable pillow carrier) than depriving people of potable water.

    Just wait until the first broke college student contracts a mystery disease from drinking from the tap...

  6. Amanda...not Mao suit. We'll do it the posh girl way: You can choose pre-chosen packs such as

    1. One week's supply of the Ralph Lauren Girl (2008-2009 season) $200

    2. On week's supply of the Ralph Lauren Girl (2006-2007) $30

    3. one week's supply of GAP (2005-2006) $9

    4. One week's supply of hiking gear etc, etc

    5. One week's worth of consignment store mixed pickles. Free plus a $30 cheque for disposing of it afterwards.

    You know...add Dr Hauschka washbag sample sizes and it'll set you back
    another $20

    BUT, BUT,'s the middle finger to the airline, plus the hilarity of doing the Pacific Trail in high heels and a pencil skirt becuase you accidentally ticked the wrong box.

  7. Each package MUST contain Thongalongs (pheromonally
    enhanced paper g-strings: "unlike her... they don't have to come home!"), however.

    Then I can finally deploy my footage of a gay Norwegian tourism official trying to rip a pair with his teeth (in the pub, mind – and not a pair ON anyone: good clean fun this. With pheromones!)