My sister bought me a cheap ticket to Las Vegas the other day and for the first time, I looked at everything one actually pays for when purchasing a ticket. Sure, flying is much cheaper than it used to be, but there are so many hidden fees.
And that’s kind of how I feel about relationships.
Long gone are the days when you actually had to call an airline. Long gone are the days when you actually had to call a woman. Once upon a time you had to wait in a line. Nope. Not anymore. Just like the self-check in kiosks these men have an easy access pass to their penises. Not to mention, like Kayak, you can book some of these folks online. Relationships are much cheaper than they used to be, but there are so many hidden fees.
Like a seat fee? I remember a time when you only paid extra for a seat if it was in first class. These days, if it’s a certain route, extra! If it’s in the front of the plane, extra! If you want more leg room and choose an exit row, extra! More fees to go the way you were already going? More fees to sit in the front of the plane, get off early, and still wait with the people from the back of the plane for the luggage carousel to start running? More fees to have more space AND I have to be responsible for someone’s life in the event of an emergency landing?! PASS. That sounds too much like my last relationship. But I learned this wonderful trick from a friend of mine who is a gate agent. Airlines save the best seats for last in hopes that someone will purchase them but even when no one does, they eventually run out of “normal seats” and push you up to the “best seats” free of charge. I think I’d rather wait. I’d rather wait and be the best seat that happened at the last minute than the “normal” seat that cost someone extra.
Like carry-on fees? These fees can be anywhere from $25-$100 depending on if you pay at booking versus paying at check-in (or worse, at the gate). You meet someone. You know they are carrying something but they say it’s only a laptop. Cool. You can handle that. The problem is you find out they’re also carrying golf clubs, a shoe bag, and several changes of clothes. And maybe you are the kind of person who doesn’t mind someone carrying on all that extra stuff, but they tell you at the gate when you’ve already paid for this journey as opposed to the moment you were deciding whether or not to book…and it’s costly. You mean to tell me in addition to what I paid for this flight, I’ve got to pay extra for all the stuff being held over my head?! PASS. We’ve got to stop hiding all the stuff we’re carrying. If we gave people the option of whether or not they want to pay extra before they get to the gate, maybe we’d have a lot less people stuck in miserable life journeys.
Like extra baggage fees? We all have baggage. Some airlines charge $25 for the first bag and $50 for the second. Southwest Airlines lets your first two bags fly free, but even they charge $75 for a third. So how much baggage is too much baggage? With the increase in cost of fuel came the increase in baggage fees all in an attempt to make people pack lighter. When an aircraft is overloaded it takes longer to take off, it accelerates slower, climbs slower, and there is more stress on the aircraft’s fuselage connections (according to my aviation friend). We can’t reach new heights in our relationships because there’s too much stress on our wings. And though I personally don’t mind helping you tote that first bag, why should I have to pay for the 2nd and the 3rd when I didn’t help you pack them? And why do people board relationships knowing they have stuff from their last trip that they still need to unpack? We’re carrying too much baggage…and it’s costly.
Travelzoo has this great list of ways to avoid paying hidden fees. My favorite on the list is “Do the math.” They say, “If you’re buying a ticket because it appears to be the cheapest option, do the math to see if it’s still the cheapest after fees.” I’m going to offer that same advice to anyone dating in this day and age. Do the math. Yes, relationships are much cheaper than they used to be, but there are so many hidden fees. Count the cost before you start booking.