Tis the season of gift-giving, and as the old adage goes, “The best present is your presence.” It doesn’t cost any money, yet is extremely valuable: a lesson that our Customer, James Bass was reminded of when they encountered PHX Flight Attendant Michael Broadhead on a recent flight.
Mr. Bass, his wife, and their two young sons were traveling from Sacramento to Raleigh-Durham on the same aircraft for eight hours when they met Michael on the PHX to DEN portion. Michael immediately began engaging the Bass boys in conversation; they were mesmerized by his knowledge of planes. But Michael did not stop there.
During the next layover in Denver, Michael asked the boys if he could borrow the stuffed animals that they had been holding on to during the flight. He took Pooh and Wolf Pup to the Flight Deck and took a picture of them at the controls. He brought the picture back and shared with the boys more about the safety features of the aircraft and how the Pilot uses them to fly the plane safely.
Michael’s attentiveness was especially impactful to the Bass’ 10-year-old son who walks with Autism every day of his life and deals with sometimes debilitating anxiety in stressful situations.
As Mr. Bass puts it, “Michael took time to give my son information that comforted him and gave him a sense of control that relieved much of his worry to the point he actually enjoyed the flight,” as any parent of a child with special needs can tell you, that is a gift on which you cannot put a price.
For more stories worth their weight in Hospitality gold, click here. Happy Holidays!
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In fact, pet hamsters are not accepted onboard Southwest flights at all, which our Customers, The Reinhardts, soon found out upon checking in for their flight from DAY to LAX this past summer. So where do hamsters go when their owners are off flying Southwest to fabulous destinations? Why, to DAY Customer Service Supervisor Loren Stacy’s house, of course!
Even though Loren did not know the Reinhardts personally, she recognized that they were Southwest Customers in a bit of a bind, so she offered to sit for their pet hamster, Kylie, until they returned home from their month-long vacation. Loren admits that there was a bit of a learning curve involved with caring for a hamster, but she and her three kids figured it out, and Kylie reunited with her owners outside of Dayton International Airport safe and sound some 30 days later.
Thank you, Loren, for welcoming Kylie the Hamster into your heart and home!
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At Southwest, we’re raising the bar when it comes to Hospitality and Reliability. Just ask Customer Ron Wilson, who recently had a very uplifting experience with some of our finest at our Detroit (DTW) Cargo Office. If you ask DTW Freight Agent Sandy Tarrant, DTW Ramp Agent Joe Toth, and DTW Ramp Agent Mac Macintosh though, they say it’s all in a day’s work.
Ron Wilson’s daughter and pole vaulting trainee, Tally Wilson, is an all-state high school pole vaulter whose pole recently broke during a practice jump a mere four days before she was to defend her record vault of ten feet and six inches at a state track and field meet. Devastated at the thought of his daughter’s chances of a state title slipping away, Mr. Wilson and another of Tally’s vaulting coaches arranged for a new pole be shipped from Carson City, NV to Detroit, MI via Southwest Cargo from Las Vegas to DTW.
Mr. Wilson can think of no other way to describe Sandy, Joe, and Mac than “awesome.” Sandy greeted Mr. Wilson by name, inquired about Tally’s upcoming meet, and wished her good luck. To expedite the delivery process, Joe met the plane carrying the new pole, and he and Mac performed the delicate and tedious process of transporting the very large piece of equipment across the tarmac to Mr. Wilson’s car.
Tally took possession of her new pole 36 hours before the state meet, where she crushed her competition and vaulted to a state title and new personal best of 11 feet! The Wilsons thank Southwest for “going above and beyond to make sure that [Tally] was in the best position possible to achieve success.”
Way to go, DTW Cargo!
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The term that comes to mind when thinking of Customer Support and Services (CS&S) Customer Representative Joy Fress is “Team Player.” As one of seven children, Joy understood from an early age the value of cooperating with others and working as a Team. Those values helped shape Joy’s future interests—both personal and professional—and brought the sports lover to Southwest Airlines, a Company that sees itself not only as a Team but also as a Family. Joy was raised in the great state of Texas by parents who have been married to each other for 54 years. Joy has been married to her husband, Pete, for 12 years. The two enjoy shing in Galveston and relaxing in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. And they indulge their love of sports by feeling the roar of the engines at Texas Motor Speedway near Dallas and cheering on their favorite football teams: the Texas Christian University Horned Frogs and the Houston Texans. Joy has worked for Southwest for 11 years, all at the Houston CS&S Center (HC). As a CS&S CustomerRepresentative, Joy is a professional problem solver; she assists Customers with their reservations, Rapid Rewards Frequent Flyer program accounts, policy questions, and much more. She embraces her role and feels that each day can bring new challenges as well as opportunities to keep learning. When asked what she loves most about her work, Joy says, “I love the feeling of satisfaction I get when I know I have helped someone have a beer travel experience.” She adds, “I enjoy working with my HC Coworkers to build Customer loyalty with each problem we solve.” Joy is proud to be a Member of the Southwest Airlines Family and is honored to have been chosen as Star of the Month. She shows her Southwest Spirit with every call she takes, every question she answers, and every reservation she books. Way to go, Joy!
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This is Jodi. I just wanted to thank you all for your recaps and your support. We have been forbidden from talking to any type of press until we were eliminated from the race. Rules! Something they don't show on TV....our cab driver took a 30 minute delay leaving the airport. He tried to take us to the wrong city. So 30 minutes after we left the airport we passed by it again. Stopping for gas was just a result of our unplanned city tour. That is what really cost us the race. I had such an amazing experience being part of this cast and I thank everyone at Southwest for their help in making it happen.
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Southwest Flight Attendants, Jodi and Christie (J/C), are used to looking down from the window seat of a plane, but they've never had the luxury of looking down from the 1st place position at an Amazing Race "Pit Stop"--until now! When I think of Siberia, a harsh-faced man in a fur coat walking alone in a frozen wasteland comes to mind. Well, I got the frozen and fur parts right! The Amazing Race couples tried their hands at wood stacking, shutter constructing, and bobsledding in this week's leg, and had to brave the cold while doing it. Even though J/C started second to last, they quickly moved up the ranks by taking a trip to the local Transylvanian Internet cafe to book their flight to Russia. Athletic sisters, LaKisha and Jennifer, and stuntman brothers, Mark and Michael, were fortunate enough to join them, but the remaining five teams were left to take a later flight, and they largely raced against each other until the end. Wood stacking was a piece of cake for J/C (proving that all of their experience magically arranging baggage to fit in overhead bins is good for something other than ontime departures), and Christie's quick eyes and a lot of luck in unscrambling C-H-E-K-H-O-V put the girls ahead of LaKisha and Jennifer to finish victoriously as Team #1. Their prize: two brand-new motorbikes! Meanwhile, using not-so-friendly but effective means, Margie and Luke sent Amanda and Kris on a "Blind U-turn," forcing an extra task that ended up being more than they could bear as they were eliminated from the race. Next week, cold-weather conditions continue, and our Flight Attendants show a little more SOUTHWEST SPIRIT than they may have bargained for.
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I noticed that Jodi and Christie seem to be using roller bags for their belongings. I don't think I've ever seen that on the "Amazing Race" before, and I'm pretty sure I've seen every episode. If anyone can pack a tight suitcase it's our Flight Attendants. Good Luck ladies!
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