While traveling for work last week, two of us found ourselves with the ability to go home a few hours earlier than we had originally anticipated. At about 5:00 in the morning, I called the airline I frequently use and asked about changing flights that afternoon. I had already looked online and saw there were tons of empty seats, so I figured it wouldn't be a problem.
The customer service agent who answered was very kind. She thanked me for my loyalty to the airline and said, "Let me see what I can do for you." I was excited to learn that my newly upgraded status would allow me to make the change without paying a fee. Yippee!! Rewards for the pain of being away from my sweet husband and precious dogs.
Not so fast.......
"I'm so sorry", said the very nice customer service agent, "I don't see any seats for this flight."
"Really?" I was confused. I not only saw about 15 open seats, some of first class was even open. "I just looked online and saw several open ones. I wonder what is the difference."
We clarified the time (3:54? yes), then she asked, "What day did you say again?"
I repeated, "Today's flight."
She stopped, and said, "Oh! I wasn't looking for today's flight. I thought you were looking at yesterday's flight."
Hmmmmm......please can I say it? Can't help it. I have to.
"Ummm....no, I don't need any seats on yesterday's flight. Just today's would be great."
She found me a seat and we were good to go, but it left me wondering whether I can truly make flight arrangements for the past. That sounds like a do-over-----something we sometimes wish we could do when we communicate with others.
Just for today, remember we don't always have a do-over and make every communication effort worthwhile.