Saturday, March 31, 2007

Airlines and their Overbooking Policies - Jet Airways

Recently there was a lot of heat generated when people heard about "Overbooking in flights by Air Deccan". I thought Air Deccan, being an airline known for its poor customer service, only such a thing could be expected of it.

But i was shocked to know that Seat Allocation/ overbooking is the most important problem even in the esteemed British Airways when i went through their case - "British Airways - Using Information Systems to Better Serve the Customer", as a part of my Marketing Course.

A Google search came out with the following incidents of overbooking by other airlines around the world.
  1. Overbooking Leaves Air Namibia Passenger in the lurch
  2. Air France Employees Protest Overbooking Policy
  3. Air NZ Passengers angry at being bumped

So we can safely come to a conclusion that it is a standard practice in airlines all over the world to overbook so that they could cash on the opportunity of people missing the flights or cancelling in the last minute. But atleast these airlines accept it and don't give a blank refusal as Air Deccan is doing now. It will be a lie if somebody states that Air Deccan is the only one employing this business policy.

During the last Christmas Holidays, I went from Indore to Chennai via Mumbai in Jet Airways. In Indore, though we reached the airport only 5 or 10 minutes before the take off time, we were still allowed to board. But in Mumbai, we went to airport 25 minutes before the flight take-off but were rejected to board the plane. Since i did not know about the overbooking policies of the airlines during that time, I coughed around Rs. 8000/- more from my purse for booking another ticket to Jet Airways. Thinking back, now I realize how foolish I was, not to take a hint from the way - Jet Airways Personnel handled us. They (including the supervisor) rejected us(i.e. they did not even speak to us or not even looking at us.. no eye contact.. not even an explanation that we won't be able to board the flight) as if the mistake was theirs & not us, when they could have easily explained that we were late.

Read the famoous Blogger - Kiruba's experience with Jet Airways when they rejected him a seat due to over booking.

So the Directorate General of Civil Aviation(DGCA) rather than opposing overbooking in flights(which is a standard practice and a must for the survival for the low cost airlines), it could come up with the standard policies for airlines on how to handle the stranded passengers due to overbooking like the EU's policies regarding denial of boarding due to overbooking.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

LTTE's Air Strike

Dear Indian Government,

Are you ready for the situation you find yourself after the recent air strike by LTTE on the Srilankan Air Force's Main Military Base. The implications this air strike has for the Indian government is numerous. If the Indian Airforce is not vigilant enough on this front, LTTE can attack any part of TamilNadu whenever it wishes[An attack similar to 9/11 on Chennai LIC tower???]. Now the TN & Indian Security forces find them self in a position where they have to shield their VIPs not only from the land attacks but also from the air. If some mishaps happens, Will the Indian government take the same pains as the U.S. [Searching Osama Bin Laden] to find the conspirators?

Also it raises the important question of howfar this technology is going to travel. If the naxalists or ULFA terrorists gets hold of this technology, God save India!!! Their power and strength would become uncontrollable.

India, This is not the time for being complacent in the Srilankan affairs. This is a time to be alert and Vigilant! A time for action and not a time for empty threats. Please act!!!

- A Patriotic Indian.

Update: Similar views to mine on "The Hindu" - LTTE air strike could be copied by other groups: experts

Saturday, March 24, 2007

This Summer @ Pune

Please don't read this if you don't want to know about the person behind the name 'Robin'.

The reason I choose my Blog title as "Tirunelveli--->Chennai--->Indore--->???" is mainly because it neatly sums up 'who I am' in a whole lot of ways. A person from a place unknown to most in the country(Tirunelveli) first experiencing a city that too a metro city with a more than a million people(to be exact - 4.2 million people in the city), then moving from the conservative TamilNadu to one of the places filled with highly intellectual people. These transitions and stays, coupled with my hopes about the unpredictable future have imparted an unique flavour to me. [My competitive advantage]

My home town - Tirunelveli, which is making a slow transition from a semi-urban to a city life style gave me a privilege of identifying myself with the rural masses of this land. Chennai exposed me to traffic, pollution, exorbitant auto rates, multiplexes and the beauty of beaches. Though i lived in the heart of the city, the hostel life surrounded by rural & semi-urban students prevented me to know about the true city/liberal lifestyle. Being cash-starved, also played a major role in it.[Luckily/Unluckily, Being surrounded by Computer wizards of CEG did not have any major impact/learning on/for me]. Indore in a year has made a whole lot of changes to my personality that even my undergraduate course was not able to accomplish in its four years. Though in Chennai, certain activities outside college transformed me as never before. Now for a short period of time(around 2 months), I am moving to Pune for my academic summer internship. Hope Pune too would have an impact of its own in my life.

P.S - Phew! A very long post to convey a simple message that 'I am moving to Pune during this summer'[Impact of studying in IIM???]. Hope to write the next article on 'My beautiful Memories with 2007 Batch of Planet-i".

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Human Beings! I am disappointed with you!

If the Earth's moon gets an chance to speak...
An Imagination...

Moon: "O Unfaithful men! How much have you changed in these thousand years?. In the early days of your rudimentary life on earth, you saw me as one of your gods/goddess. Even when the later religions gained importance, you still gave me the importance i deserved... [by deciding the date of celebration of the important festivals on the basis of my different phases.]

I was there everyday when you used to fear darkness; giving you hope that my Big Brother 'Sun' would come back, next morning. I with my star slaves gave you company at night when you were bored or afraid. I was there as your laboratory and your observation tower. You predicted the future of the nations and individuals based on me. My beauty always reminded you of your beloved. I gave you meaning for your night life. But when my competitor 'Science' came with new inventions you started forgetting me. You never cared when my brightness was slowly getting reduced by your inventions of different night lamps.

Then on 21 July, 1969, after years of decreasing interest on me, you finally found the courage to come near me. For a few days, i was thankful for the advances, my competitor 'Science' has achieved. I hoped your infatuation with me will never end. But you left after tearing my skin and taking them back to your earth. Now you are planning to go near my distant cousin 'Mars' by establishing a base on me.

Hmm! I never spent money on Research to improve myself but i expected a little bit of gratitude from your side. Today i remain forgotten. None of you come out of your homes to check my beauty. It is months since you saw me.

Hey! Human Consultants, What should i do to regain my market share against my competitor 'Science'? Shall i change my colour to 'red'? Or Shall i start playing 'Hide & Seek' with man?. What should i do?. Please give me a solution.

Though you have been unfaithful and without gratitude, never mistake me to act like you. I will still come out everyday(Oops, every night) and do my duty of giving you light in the darkness you once feared. Just remember however your attitude may change, I will be still there. Sleep/Rest in peace."

P.S : Just thought of writing about how our night life has changed in these last thousand years.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Google Gadgets for Cricket World Cup 2007

For Google Desktop Users Only

Google has released new desktop gadgets to help cricket fans like me, keep track of the scores, news, videos of ICC World Cup 2007. If you are in need of a desktop gadget that displays the live scores of World Cup cricket matches, download it here. You can even view the full scorecard for a match using the 'see full scorecard' link. It also displays the schedule of next match.

If you want to know about other gadgets that Google has released to cash in on the cricket fever, click here for a post by Amit Agarwal in his blog "Digital Inspiration".

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Holi @ IIM-Indore

Being a South Indian means you are only exposed to soft 'Holi' where at most a few colour powders were sprinkled on your face and dress. But now in IIM-Indore, as a 2008 PGP Batch we have a few traditions to live up to. Hearing senior's narrations and reading from super senior's blog, My expectations for the Holi celebrations were running high.

Tearing up T-shirts(only boys'!!!!), painting whole hostel blocks with colours, Rolling up people in the 'holi' water pool, Drenching them in mud pool, Bath in coloured waterfalls. It was all i expected to be. Hope the photos conveys the fun we had.

Body Skating in 'Holi' Water Pool
Mud Bath

Traditional IIM-Indore 'Holi' Photo 2007
Hmm.. Another year passes by and another Holi celebrated in this Planet-i. Another South Indian comes to know the ecstasy of 'Holi'.

Photos Courtesy: Asha Anju, PGP-I

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Predictions - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Disclaimer: I am not an astrologer nor i have any supernatural or paranormal powers to prophesy about the future. Believe these predictions at your own risk.
  • I am pretty much sure that J.K.Rowling would take us to a storyline where Harry Potter would be trying hard to find atleast one of the Horocruxes when it would be very near to him or easy to find out. [Expecting Kreacher to help them in the discovery of atleast one Horocrux.]
  • Sure that Harry Potter won't kill Voldermort; Basically, because i don't see the possibility of Harry Potter using a Unforgivable curse. So it leaves somebody else to do the killing. [Snape???]
  • Expecting one of the persons who will die in this book to be Hagrid. Also we will find out the reasons J.K. Rowling had to kill Dumbledore & Sirius Black.
  • The novel would be dealing more about the past rather than about the things that happen in the 7th year of Harry Potter's Hogwarts life. Expecting the histories of Harry Potter's Mom & Dad, Dumbledore to be dealt with extensively. Hoping Dumbledore's history would be given maximum coverage.
  • If anyone comes back from the dead, it is more likely to be Sirius than Dumbledore. [I believe that "Dumbledore not dead" phenomenons is due to the people's inability to accept the death of Dumbledore.]
  • Snape is not evil i.e. she is not a slave to Voldermort. But there is a rare possibility that she is not owing her allegiance to the Order of Phoenix too.
  • Harry Potter will defeat Lord Voldermort in a duel.
  • Hoping to hear about a Love angle for Snape in Book 7.
But one thing that i can be 100% sure of is that 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' is going to be one of the most interesting books ever. Hmmm... Waiting for July 21, 2007......

To read more about Harry Potter, click 'Posts with label Harry Potter'. Can follow the blog through RSS feeds. If you want to Compare the Predictions with the Real One - visit "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Book Review"