A complaint letter written to Caribbean airline LIAT went viral a couple of weeks ago when it was publicized by Sir Richard Branson of Virgin.
I didn’t write about it at the time because it wasn’t that funny, even if it was being touted as the greatest complaint letter ever.
Sadly, the story goes from mildly amusing to just plain said.
Here’s the letter, then I will explain.
May I say how considerate it is of you to enable your passengers such an in-depth and thorough tour of the Caribbean.
Most other airlines I have travelled on would simply wish to take me from point A to B in rather a hurry. I was intrigued that we were allowed to stop at not a lowly one or two but a magnificent six airports yesterday. And who wants to fly on the same airplane the entire time? We got to change and refuel every step of the way!
I particularly enjoyed sampling the security scanners at each and every airport. I find it preposterous that people imagine them all to be the same. And as for being patted down by a variety of islanders, well, I feel as if I’ve been hugged by most of the Caribbean already.
I also found it unique that this was all done on “island time,” because I do like to have time to absorb the atmosphere of the various departure lounges. As for our arrival, well, who wants to have to take a ferry at the end of all that flying anyway? I’m glad the boat was long gone by the time we arrived into Tortola last night — and that all those noisy bars and restaurants were closed.
So thank you, LIAT. I now truly understand why you are “The Caribbean Airline.”
P.S. Keep the bag. I never liked it anyway.
Branson repeats the old line that LIAT stands for ‘Languishing in Airport Terminals’.
LIAT responds like any airline who cares not a whit for customer service would — by focusing on being called out by Richard Branson rather than on its operations and service.
It released a video that it hoped would go viral. Only….
Worst attempt at a viral video ever. It gets the message completely wrong. The production values are so bad it’s tough to make out the ‘challenge’. And most of all, it underscores what is fundamentally wrong not just with LIAT but with the entire Caribbean — peddling the idea that awful service and dilapidated facilities are just the price of being in beautiful surroundings.
The video is so bad it doesn’t make me want to just avoid LIAT (and in full disclosure they’ve been perfectly fine when I’ve flown them), it reminds me why I don’t even want to go to the islands they serve.
If you ran LIAT, how would you have handled?
(HT: Roger Williams)