Maybe American Airlines needs someone from Disney, too

Thanks to Clay Heery, who volunteered this story for my blog:

To: TSA Contact Center
Subject: American Airlines — DFW

Good Morning:
On Dec. 29th, we flew into DFW to find out that the entire airport had been closed due to bad weather. Okay, that’s understandable. Hundreds of flights were canceled, inconveniencing thousands of travelers. [Read one of the news stories here.]

What was NOT understandable were the procedures initiated by the American Airlines ground personnel. In order to “cope” with the crush of passengers with a minimum of difficulty, several REMOVED and/or hid their IDs, so that their deliberate misinformation (we were deliberately lied to several times) would not be attributable to them.

Very possibly, AA could respond that this was an isolated incident, but I submit that it was so coordinated and pervasive, that an isolated incident could not possibly be the case.

As for the TSA’s concerns, having people in airline uniforms running around an airport without ID on a somewhat-regular basis, does not make for a secure operating environment.

Thank you for your time.


Clay Heery

Clay continued in his email to me:

While we were in a SIX HOUR line at the American Airlines counter at DFW (two windows open for “regular” passengers, four windows open for First Class), I did an interview for the local ABC station, WFAA.

That interview, without my knowledge, was picked up by CNN and broadcast worldwide for a 24-hour period, at approximately the 50-minute mark every hour.

So, if the terrorists didn’t know about this security breach by AA before, they do now.

By choosing to post this in my blog, I am deliberately participating in negative word-of-mouth advertising. I, too, have had terrible experiences with American. While I don’t know whether the TSA will do anything about this flagrant infraction, perhaps by posting this someone at American will take notice. Perhaps they’ll even consider hiring a VP of Customer Experience, like United just did.

Tip of the Day: If you really don’t care about your customers, act like American did. But, don’t be surprised if you end up on a blog.

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