Sugar catches more flies than vinegar.
Or in this case, a satiric complaint letter commands more attention than an angry one.
In fact, this letter was so captivatingly funny that Virgin mogul, Sir Richard Branson, shared it with his three million Twitter followers, saying, “”How to write a complaint letter — read this hilarious note from a frustrated airline passenger.” Branson even blogged about the letter.
The letter titled “An open letter to LIAT”, written by a passenger disheveled after one of the most heinous flight experiences we’ve ever heard of, reads as follows:
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.
The letter was published in April, and it’s no surprise that, for an airline with such a circuitous route map, it’s hardly the first, nor will it be the last.
While nothing is funny about the misery of modern air travel, we congratulate its author, Arthur Hicks, for his uncanny use of restraint—using sarcasm instead of swear words is a hell of a lot more effective.
Branson, CEO and founder of his own airline, is also no stranger to complaint letters. He cited a 2008 complaint letter recounting a Virgin passenger’s “culinary journal of hell” as “the world’s best.”