A funny thing happened on the way to Buenos Aires (BB.AA.) once… I was going for a short work week down in BB.AA.. At the time, my hometown airline, Delta, did not fly there so I had to connect in Miami to a United Airlines flight. The company was flying me on business class which was awesome for such a long flight.
I get to MIA and I find out I have been bumped off the flight. Me, someone who paid full fare for business class, gets bumped. Typical. Turns out, United had canceled the flight from the night before so the people from that flight were being placed on my flight bumping people off. In the chaos that is the Miami airport and with a bunch of Latin folks upset, it was hard to sort through this mess United had created.
Well, United’s great idea was to place me in a flight to Sao Paulo and then on another flight to BB.AA. from there. Since I had to get to BB.AA. the next day, I took the offer. And what sealed the deal was when they told me they would make it up to me by putting me on first class. Yes, this was back in the day when there was still a real international first class. And let me tell you – it was SWEEEEETTTTTTTTTTTTTT! The flight attendants were all over the service, constantly refilling champagne glasses, and taking care of every detail of the meal and the comfort of the passengers.
All said and done, the swap was not a bad thing! Of course, once I landed in BB.AA., since that flight did not originate in the U.S., the cabin was sprayed/fumigated right after we landed as was the custom in those days – and I am allergic to those sprays so I ended up two days in bed in BB.AA. missing my important first day of meetings at work. There is no such thing as a free first class…