Imagining the Perfect Airline

Even the flight attendants were oohing and ahhing over the machine, telling me how easy it was to work. Suggestion: Let's put those baggage fees to work and buy a cappuccino machine for every plane. It would be mandatory on the perfect airline.

Bag Fees

Bag fees on the perfect airline? When pigs fly.

Pilot Chit-Chat

I have the greatest respect for airline pilots. Amazing skills, total professionalism, coolness in crises, nobody does it better. But I have to ask: What is it with these guys (and gals) and the Grand Canyon?!

Must every pilot point it out on every flight that goes anywhere near the thing? Yes, I know it's awesome, I know it's big, but I've seen it and I'm trying to sleep. It's as if there's an auto-dialogue switch inside every pilot's head that clicks on the moment the Arizona border comes into view, directing them to begin a monotone travelogue. I say, thanks but no thanks.

On the perfect airline, passengers would press a button labeled, "What's that, Captain?" and receive a private audio tour (turbulent weather permitting). There'd also be a button labeled, "I need a drink, fast" but I think our friends at Virgin America beat me to that.

Dings, Demystified

Speaking of audio, ever hear those onboard "dings?" Reminds me of a department store but I doubt any of those onboard audible signals mean, "Shoplifter in 3B." It would be nice if they'd include a decoding sheet in every seat-back, maybe even make up a couple of much-needed new dings for passenger use.

Be kind of nice to be able to sound three dings for, "Watch out, parents: R-rated movie on laptop in 27A" or maybe five dings for, "Quit serving the guy next to me, he has pressed his 'I need a drink' button 10 times already and is now totally wacked." Could come in handy.

I could go on and on but the maximum length of a scannable column in the Internet age simply won't do the perfect airline justice, so let me ask you: What do you want on an ideal flight?

The opinions expressed by Rick Seaney are his alone and not those of ABC News.

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