I travel a lot
-- twice, three times a month some months. I have used Expedia for the past couple years, but I think I've just about had it with them. I like the "convenience" of Expedia; I can get a conference invite while I'm sitting in the keynote at another conference, price out the ticket, email the conference organizers and find out if that's acceptable, get a response by email and book the ticket.
But man, "convenience" is a slippery concept here. I need to extend an RT ticket from SFO to London by one day. I have spent hours and hours (six+ by my calculations) on hold with half a dozen different "travel agents" at Expedia, trying to make a trivial change. One agent actually told me, yes, the change has been made, that will be $200, but one of her cohort called me at SIX AM this morning to tell me that she'd been mistaken, the ticket could not be changed at all. Since then, I've been fed half a dozen different stories, including:
- You no longer have any ticket, we cancelled your ticket, it will cost $2000 extra to get your old ticket back
- No changes can be made
- The change has been made
- I will see if I can make the change
I sent Expedia a note telling them how disappointed I was with the "service" they provided, and got an empty, vacuous, unsigned form-letter in response.
I've had it with Expedia. A travel agent may be less "convenient" in that she will only be available during business hours, but nothing is worth the days of aggro that even the simplest change with Expedia entails.
I'm posting this to warn you off -- don't be suckered in by Expedia's "convenience." They clearly have no idea what they're about, have no concept of customer service, and will not get you where you need to go.
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
CEO Dick Costolo will resign, to be replaced in the interim by Jack Dorsey
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