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Travel: An Abysmal “Social” Experience!

When it comes to air travel today, no one enjoys it.

Recently I had to be in New York City. My meeting was scheduled for 10:00 am EST. I live in Nashville TN and none of the commercial airlines had flights that would get me to New York that morning early enough for my meeting. Subsequently I was forced to fly in the night before.

I had to leave two hours early from my home to get to the airport then  park my car and get through security in time to catch my flight.  The flight to New York took five hours because of delays and connections. Upon arriving I had to spend $75 on a cab and 45 minutes to get to my hotel which cost $210 for one nights stay. The next day I spent $25 on a simply breakfast and $40 to get from the hotel to my meeting place in New York.

After my meeting I had to take yet another cab (for $75) to get back to the airport two hours early in order to get through security. Then the flight was delayed.  The trip home took another five hours because of delays and connections. Then I had to pay $20 for parking my car and I got home late that night, tired and worn out.  My productivity level the following day was affected and it took me a full day to get back into my normal healthy routine.

The airline ticket was $589, parking, hotel and meals totaled close to $500. Out of pocket cost were over $1,000. However, the higher cost was my time. From start to end I spent a total of 18 useless hours (not including sleep time the night before) traveling to a two hour meeting. The cost of my time and the inconvenient experiences far exceeded the out of pocket cost of travel.

The cost to the U.S. public for a broken air travel system is enormous.

  1. over 140 million hours of loss passenger time per year. Over $4 Billion in cost for businesses.
  2. U.S. tourism industry has lost 200,000 jobs and $98 billion in revenue because of the poor quality of our national transportation service.
  3. loss in U.S. travel time productivity is only the tip of the iceberg. Billions are lost every on our personal well being and the stress caused by the existing “system” of air travel.

Is There A Better Way?

I am not sure there is a better way for the commercial airline industry. However, having once owned my own jet I know that private aviation is much more productive and a much better experience. But private aviation is too expensive…..unless the entire private aviation industry changed it’s system.  Social technology will enable private aviation to become social for the masses if the industry could see it.

Watch the video below and give this alternative some thought the next time you think about using a commercial airlines.  This alternative would have enabled me to go to New York city and back within the same day and total travel time would have been roughly five hours instead of 18 and at less cost!

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