Welcome to Romneyworld, Part 1: “Corporations are People” …..Delta Airlines Edition

My cousin Ronny died last week. Ronny had been sick for a while, but his death still came as a surprise. He was the oldest of 11 cousins, all of us within 7 years of each other in age, which made us unusually close.

My cousins all live in Minnesota, but I’m in California. I called Delta Airlines, which has a virtual monopoly on flights from LA to Minneapolis, to book a flight to Minneapolis. The price: $901 for a round-trip ticket. I’d heard of ticket discounting for emergency flights for deaths in the family, so I asked the agent about it. She informed me that yes indeed, there is a discount; a whopping 5% off! Also, you need to fill out a form which requires the funeral director’s signature.

I decided to forego Delta’s generous discount, and proceeded to purchase my ticket online. After putting in my credit card information, I got my confirmation for the ticket. I wasn’t surprised to see I was assigned a middle seat in the second-to-last row. Fortunately, there was a “change seats” option offered, so I went to that page. The diagram showed many seats available, both aisle and window seats, and even other middle seats. However, each of them cost an additional $29, even the middle seats.

The final insult came when I went to print out my boarding pass. If I wanted to bring any luggage on my trip, I had to pay an extra $25 per bag. Since I usually change some of my clothes every day, I paid it.

Delta, you’re such a nice person.