Air India in a Downward Spiral

"How can anyone make firm travel plans with Air India when even confirmed tickets are being routinely rebooked?"


Air India, now owned by Tata, is spiraling out of control with extreme mismanagement and a horrible customer experience. Here are some recent firsthand experiences of Air India's appalling customer service:

1. I had a confirmed ticket on a flight from San Francisco to Bhopal for March 18th, 2023. On February 17th, 2023, Air India arbitrarily rebooked my flights on a completely different route and schedule. Even though my initial itinerary was carefully chosen at a paid premium, for a short travel duration, the new itinerary had a 15-hour layover in Delhi. I did not complain about this severe discomfort and delay, as these things sometimes happen.

2. On March 20th, 2023, I boarded the connecting flight ( AI435 ) from Delhi to Bhopal. When the passengers were waiting to take off, the Captain announced that there were 2 passengers who were just clearing security checks and the flight would be delayed by 10 minutes. Nobody complained, as these things sometimes happen. After 45 minutes of waiting in the plane, passengers inquired about the flight status and were told that there were 23 passengers who were about to reach the security checkpoint and that we would have to wait another 45 minutes for take off. This revealed that the initial announcement about 2 late passengers was a complete lie. Some passengers were traveling with small children, who were getting cranky. We asked the Air India representatives why 200+ people were being held up because of 23 people. Air India staff simply told us to wait for the 23 late passengers to arrive.

We had been sitting in the plane for 2 hours at this point. Some passengers had traveled internationally in a hurry to attend a funeral, which they would have to miss. Other passengers had important medical and business appointments that day. The 200+ passengers got irate and demanded that we take off immediately. Air India staff offered an empty apology, but stuck to their stance of not taking off to ease the discomfort of 200+ passengers. On further questioning, it was discovered that these 23 late passengers were in a bus that had not yet reached the airport.

"We asked to speak with a supervisor but were told, 'Sorry. That is against the Standard Operating Procedure.' We asked whether favoring 23 passengers over 200+ passengers was part of the Standard Operating Procedure."

The passengers demanded to speak with the flight Captain, but the Captain safely locked himself in the cockpit and refused to come out, or even address the passengers on the PA system. We asked to speak with a supervisor but were told, "Sorry. That is against the Standard Operating Procedure." We asked whether favoring 23 passengers over 200+ passengers was part of the Standard Operating Procedure. No reply. The Air India representative was a woman who just stood there doing nothing, while passengers tried to talk to her. She would periodically mumble, "sorry". There was real anger and frustration in the air. 3 hours passed before the 23 late passengers finally showed up.

3. A few hours ago ( on March 20th, 2023 ), Air India notified me that my confirmed return ticket to the USA had been arbitrarily rebooked. My flight from Bhopal to Delhi was on April 1st. But my connecting flight from Delhi to San Francisco is on April 3rd. The layover is now 2 days! I have important appointments in the USA, and cannot afford to be late. Air India is not even offering to pay for 2 days' accommodation in Delhi.

It is now quite clear that Air India is being grossly mismanaged by Tata. Air India is no longer able to even reasonably guarantee firm travel plans. As such, I recommend avoiding Air India entirely. Just sit back and watch Tata slam Air India into the ground at maximum speed.

Mister 420 (A Short Story)

Photo of a man wearing glasses, and a red shirt showing The Beast of Cairbanagh from Monty Python

I am a rabbit of a programmer. I deliver code fast and then take it easy while I test, tweak, and polish it. Oh, and I help the other programmers, usually tortoises, integrate with my spiffy, already working code. I am actually not that good of a programmer. My secret is that I smoke weed, travel to the future, and sneak a peek at the final code, before I've written it. This helps me write the code better.

Lately it appears to me that I would be better off using my inter-dimensional travel skills to score enough game points ( crypto or fiat currencies ) to attain Nirvana and free myself from the Matrix. Or maybe that's a money trap. Hmmm.

Anyway, I decided to run a scam to score some game currency. It's almost the oldest scam in the book. It works like this — you pick 1024 wealthy people as potential marks. You send half the marks ( 512 people ) the message: "Bitcoin will go UP tomorrow." And you send the remaining half ( 512 people ), the message: "Bitcoin will go DOWN tomorrow." Depending on whether Bitcoin goes up or down the next day, you follow up with the 512 people who got an accurate message. Repeat this procedure for 7 days, and you will have 16 marks absolutely convinced that you're a Prophet. Being the Profit seekers they are, they will gladly follow your sure-shot investment advice. Easy pickings from there on.

Cool, right? It doesn't work any more. In the Internet age, information travels fast, and if you try this scam today, you are sure to get exposed as a scammer.

So I toked up on some Blue Dream, revived this archaic scam, and took it to the Cosmic scale. Instead of picking 1024 people as my marks, I picked 1024 parallel Universes. You all were sent messages in 2031 other Universes ( 1024 + 512 + 256 + 128 + 64 + 32 + 16 - 1 ). After a week, I jumped to the Universe where all my predictions had come true. If you're reading this message, you are one of the lucky 16 people who happen to be in a Universe I chose to jump to.

Although I appear to be a true prophet in this Universe, I sometimes enjoy jumping to a Universe where I am a false prophet, a motley fool of an investment advisor who is so laughably and consistently wrong, that he is a source of valuable information to those who listen.

Why does this scam work on the Cosmic scale, and will it continue to provide material wealth forever to stoners and mystics everywhere? If people could talk to other versions of themselves, across parallel Universes, and warn themselves about this Cosmic scam, it wouldn't work. The more connected people are, the less likely they are to be scammed.

So how do we get connected and stop being scammed on such a vast scale? The answer, my friends is — "Everybody must get stoned!"

Microsoft "Philanthropy"

Microsoft donates Windows licenses to schools. Windows has already been made, so donating licenses costs almost nothing. Microsoft gets tax ...