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January 14, 2010

Please let me go on vacation, Jet Blue?

[via ffffound]

Just when I thought I had nothing to ask, leave it to an airline to make my day.

JetBlue was having an amazing winter sale that ended at midnight-- with $99 fares between NY and San Diego, each way. Mr. A and I haven't had a vacation together in too long, so we decided to escape for a long weekend.

The sale was expiring at midnight, and at 11:45 I entered their site. (Cutting it kind of close, but I'd be jeopardizing my status as pro procrastinator if I got there any earlier.)

I rapidly selected tickets for the best dates and prices (since not all times were at the sale price). Woke up Mr. A to confirm he could miss work for a few days. Entered all my info. Confirmed it. And clicked submit. Before midnight.

Only to have the purchase screen go blank.

I waited a minute in case it was loading. Then, I tried on another browser and got an error message:

There has been a communications problem. Data lines may be congested right now, or another issue may exist. Please try again later or contact our reservations center.

We apologize for the inconvenience.
The use of pronouns and verb tenses alone would make for a nice master's thesis, but don't get me started.

I called JetBlue and explained what happened: I was trying to book the sale fare when my screen went blank. I was definitely on the site before midnight. Did the transaction go through? Could they still apply the sale fares if it didn't?

"The sale ended more than an hour ago and our computers are down now."

"Can you see if my card went through?"

"Our system is updating. And the sale ended at midnight Mountain Time, not Pacific Time." REALLY!? Fine print: 103,392. Roxy: 0. "Call back in 20 minutes and someone will be able to search for your transaction."

20 minutes later I called back, found out my card hadn't been charged. But, by some miracle, those cheap tickets were still available. Everything else had shot up by $50 or even $200, but those particular dates and times were unchanged.


Thanks, Jet Blue, if not for a soothing purchase transaction, then at least for keeping airfare prices reasonable.
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