Tracker Pixel for Entry

​Which airline is best for musicians?

by HPR Contributor | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | Last Word | March 14th, 2018

By Andrew Vait
https://www.facebook.com/andrewpaulvait

We made it to Austin! The sun and warmth feel good, but it was a hard day of travel and I think some of you guys might benefit from knowing what we learned today.

United checked our equipment in at SeaTac (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport) this morning and we were charged the full baggage fee of $120 for 4 bags and an additional $100 for an oversized piece of gear. Annoying but typical commerce transaction. At our gate, because of our ticket class, we were charged an additional $175 for a single carry on-size suitcase full of equipment.

In Houston, at our layover, we were walking through the gate to our plane and were called back to the counter and charged an additional $350 for our remaining equipment when a managing agent got involved. This agent seemed intent on ignoring our pleas that they were personal instruments and aren’t meant to be checked. All told, we spent $745 to get ourselves and our gear to Austin today.

I have flown with almost every major airline with gear and never had much of an issue. With United, there always seems to be an issue. Every agent I spoke with was short-tempered and looked run-down. It occurs to me that United probably has not adequately addressed their company culture.

I realize it’s partially a fluke and that all airlines can demonstrate inflexible behavior, but in the face of other notorious cases of United literally assaulting their customers, it feels significant that they would still treat their customers -- and evidently employees -- with such disregard, though I intend in no way to conflate our experience with assault -- there is no comparison to be made.

I find this equally an opportunity to check my privilege. At the end of the day Emily Westman and I can afford a one-time price gouging. We’ll still have a great time in Austin and put this behind us. I feel for folks who don’t have the means to recover as easily — folks like us who rely on their art to cover unexpected and effectively hidden business costs. It’s a shame.

I promise I’m going to go enjoy this festival, but United needs to be heavily scrutinized - our interactions with agents today were each aggressive, disparaging and ultimately humiliating. This story goes far beyond our experience and my personal comprehension. There is a culture at United that needs to be addressed -- until then, please consider utilizing any other airline.

We won’t make the mistake of booking economy tickets with United again. I know Alaska Airlines has a fantastic mileage program and we will likely move our business to them permanently. Any other airlines you guys enjoy working with? Any tips for us or artists like us who tend to go with the cheapest ticket option on 3rd party sites without reading the fine print and have armfuls upon armfuls of untold gear to transport?

Please, share your airline stories so we can all be a little better informed, and/or share this story if you think someone you know might benefit from the information!

YOU SHOULD KNOW 

Sisters (Emily Westman and Andrew Vait) 

Friday, March 16, set starts about midnight 

Maggie Mae’s, 323 E 6th Street 

Austin TX; (512) 478-8541

Recently in:

FARGO – The day Tiffany Abentroth stood up before a thousand and more Trump-loving Republicans, she knew the GOP blessing was not within reach. She wasn’t even nervous about it. Still a Marine Corps staff sergeant, she squared…

Last week we talked about my lack of photographic skills and then what the heck am I going to do with all of these bad pictures that I take. Storage options for those pictures continues this week:RAIDAnother storage option is a…

Wednesday, April 25, 9pm-howlingThe Aquarium, 226 Broadway, FargoYou may have heard their sick beats on 95.9 lpfm on Friday's from 5pm-midnight. Now you can dance your pants off in the presence of the minds behind ”The Riverside…

According to Greek mythology Hades is to blame for the Earth’s mournful state of winter. The story involves Persephone the goddess of nature and Hades the god of the underworld in a classic caper of obsession, abduction, and…

Does That Old-Time Religion Signal The End Of Rational Thought?An incident about gender identity in the Maryland Legislature last week magnified a microcosm of what we are going through in the United States about religion in the…

FARGO - A collection of memories from High Plains Reader's annual Cocktail Showdown. Participants were judged on creativity, flavor, and presentation; and this year we added a new category. Like years before, each establishment was…

All About Food

​Oysters

by HPR Staff

By Ben Myhrebenmyhre35@gmail.comAs a North Dakota native, raw oysters are just not a food staple that I think about. We are about as far from the coasts as we can get and we have a backyard full of tasty local cuisine, like walleye…

Record Store Day is all about music artists and fans celebrating “the culture of the independently owned record store.” A variety of unique and special releases are pressed for Record Store Day and those are only distributed to…

Leveraging whatever name-brand clout it might carry with the target demographic, “Blumhouse’s Truth or Dare” -- the onscreen title for the pre and post-credit sequences -- won’t make the kind of impact previously enjoyed by…

There are so many cool places to be in Austin during the South by Southwest Festival -- like the Flatstock Market, which displays the works of the world’s top gig poster artists. The show features posters of varying styles,…

By Nathan Roybardsdream@gmail.comYou are absolutely right. The title is not “To be or not to be” from the famous Shakespeare soliloquy in "Hamlet." I won’t be talking about Shakespeare particularly. I will expound the…

Fargo has its share of people who are passionate about stand-up comedy, even if the success of clubs devoted to it has been mixed. Despite the fact we have seen places like Courtney’s Comedy Club and Level 2 Comedy Club close…

I consider myself an avid wine drinker, but I recently found out there are more than 10,000 varieties of grapes, and about 1,500 of those are used to make commercial wines. I don’t know about you, but I could probably name about…

A few months ago, I was introduced to the concept of probiotics and how they work with our bodies. I would never have guessed the change that occurred after their introduction into my system.I always considered myself a fairly…

By Melissa Martin melissamartincounselor@live.com “I’m sorry” are two vital words to be used in relationships because human beings are imperfect people living in imperfect environments. Ask yourself the following…

Calm was the day in late JulyAnd bright was the sun across the skyBut inside his chest the calm had brokenGovernor Sinner had started croakin’.I laughed the first time I read that, and I’m still laughing every time I think…