Why Airlines Cancel Flights and Hotels Don’t Give Out Toothpaste

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I’m at the Hilton at Logan airport right now because United canceled flight UA1699.

The flight was originally scheduled to depart at 5:46pm, but then was delayed to 8:40pm. Then 9:45. Then 11:15, and at 11:15pm the flight was canceled.

Disregarding union regulations on working hours, an airline would rather cancel a delayed flight than let it run late.

Airline ratings agencies rank airlines based on on-time performance, not cancellations. If United cancels all of its delayed flights, then it always runs on time.

If you measure a limited set of data, you’ll optimize for limited dimensions. Choosing the wrong things to measure is worse than not measuring anything at all.

My hotel room offers a fine selection of Peter Thomas Roth hair- and skincare products, but no hotel in the US provides toothpaste in the bathroom because hotels receive stars for providing two kinds of soap, shampoo, an additional bottled item, a hair dryer, a sewing kit, and a shower cap. But not toothpaste.

Anyway, it’s been a rough night. I got the last room at the Hilton. The girl behind me was crying hysterically because she had been waiting at the airport for our flight since 4pm. I briefly considered offering to share my room with her, but then I’m not that nice.

It’s better this way, because I don’t feel like wearing pants right now.

I had some heavy bags to carry. Travel tip: smarte cartes cost $5, but wheelchairs are free, and I am going straight to hell.
I had some heavy bags to carry. Travel tip: smarte cartes cost $5, but wheelchairs are free.
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