Dear Southwest

Update: The same day that I posted this, I received a response from Southwest. You can read my follow up letter to them here.

Dear Southwest

I love flying your airline. I love the Southwest way. But today you dropped the ball my friend.  Today you made me feel like a five year old in time out. Today you made me feel like a second rate citizen.  Today you actually made  me cry.

Southwest. You made me cry. 

Wanna know why?

Not because you were terribly rude to my family and I. It wasn’t because you weren’t accommodating {albeit begrudgingly}.

It was because you acted like every other airline. 

And THAT is not the Southwest way.

Now. Knowing this has to be a one off. This HAS to be an anomaly! I want to share with you some words of affirmation for how you made our destination flight so so wonderful.

Thank you for making our baggage check in process with a 16 month old smooth and enjoyable.

Thank you for  helping us through the lap child check in procedure making it painless and for receiving our questions and awkwardness with grace and a chipper attitude.

Thank you for helping us as we boarded our plane. One flight attendant saw us coming and held our coffee while we stowed our luggage and situated ourselves. Another saw our son’s pacifier hit the ground and quickly supplied us with a cup of hot water to sterilize it for us!

As my husband describes it, our destination trip experience was exceptional and full service!

Now the sad news:

Our return trip started off a bit turbulent. When we checked our baggage we were made to feel as if we didn’t follow the playground rules when we had honestly done our homework and thought we were going about it the right way.

Then in boarding, the plane loaded early (which is a wonderful thing by the way) but we missed our opportunity to load with our A tickets. Even missed Family Boarding. Not worrying too much we informed a flight attendant that we needed two seats together. We were met with a unsympathetic response to the tune of “you have a lap baby, you’ll have to split up”.

Now. If this were ANY other airline, this would have been a pill we’d be willing to swallow. But Southwest?

We felt as if we’d boarded another airline. The two flights we took on our return trip home felt so…cold.

And that is not the Southwest way.

We’ll fly again in a few weeks and Southwest is, of course, our choice of transport but we’ll hold our breath this time. We’ll be a little timid with our interactions. Something we’ve never even considered on prior flights.

Of course we acknowledge that everyone has a bad day and Southwest, this was yours. But pretty please Southwest friends, please wake up on the right side of the bed tomorrow. Please return to your loving ways. Please return to the exceptional service.

We love you Southwest. Sorry we missed you today. 

The Parkers

Patty Parker

My name is Patty Parker. I write about finding beauty in the every day.

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