Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A Letter to Cebu Pacific Air

The only time I fly with you is when I'm left with no other option—like when I want to go to Cambodia and you're the only airline that connects the Philippines to that country.  Thank you for having the Manila-Siem Reap flight, but no thank you for almost everything else. 
Having said that, because you're never (EVER) my first choice, sometimes I book you on the last-minute, in places that don't have very good internet connection.  [Let's face it, when I'm comfy, I wouldn't think of flying with you.  You are not, in any way, associated with comfort or convenience or other good things.  Ridiculously cheap fares, on occasion, perhaps, but that's it.]  When one doesn't have good internet connection, that buffer GIF with the smiling blue plane and the yellow clouds often does not load properly.  Sometimes it loads but often does not disappear, resulting in me getting stuck on a non-functioning page because nothing happens even when I click on the dimmed background.  I end up having to reload the page over and over again.  I've been trying for over an hour now and I'm persistent because no other airline offers a direct Cebu-Bacolod flight. 
Why do you even have that buffer image, anyway?  One can see the page having successfully loaded in the background and yet it still lingers there.  We don't need to see that smiling plane.  It's absolutely unnecessary.  What do you think we are, children that clap at the sight of cartoon planes?  What are you trying to do by making your website less accessible?  Are you trying to discourage people from flying with you?  If you are, then good news: It's working!  Your ill reputation (of intolerance and many other bad things) already precedes you so it doesn't take much, really. 
One of my aunts vowed never to fly with you ever again because when it was her turn to be checked in at the counter, a good hour before her flight, you denied her a seat and chose to accommodate chance passengers instead just because she didn't get to the check-in counter two hours or over an hour before the slated departure time.  My backpacker friends roll their eyeballs hearing your brand.  Take note: backpackers!  They're not elite fliers; they're like me—budget-conscious—but the idea of flying with you or dealing with you in any way makes them cringe.  You know what word they often use to describe you?  "Ilad-ilad," which in our language means SCAM!  Oh, we know you're legitimate; you're just way too good at infuriating your clientèle. 
Having said all this, because sometimes I still fly with you, I genuinely do hope for changes—not because I'm selfish and I want a life of convenience but because I wish the same for everyone.  This might sound like a rant of purely destructive criticism but it's not.  I really wish you'd get your act straight.  I hope, one day, when people suggest I fly with them with Cebu Pacific, I may return a smile or an enthusiastic "Sure!"  Maybe one day I will no longer hear my friends say, "Oh, you mean Cebu F**k?" 
Sincerely and with zero apologies,
A perpetually dissatisfied customer 

P.S.  It still hasn't loaded.  Forget it!  I'm sailing to Dumaguete and taking a bus to Bacolod instead.  I'd rather put up with six hours of bus time than spend an eternity staring at this smiling plane and having hot fumes build up in my head.

Just in case you were wondering what the GIF image looks like...