Last night I received an e-mail from my favourite budget airline telling me that as a reward for flying with them this year I was being given a loyalty bonus. All I had to do to use this 'reward' was enter the six digit code when booking my next flight. The 'reward' was the chance to choose my seat before I reached the airport so that I wouldn't have to be allocated one by random at the check-in desk.
Now I'm not exactly a frequent flyer but when I book my flights online I always choose my seat for both the outward and inward journeys. Reward, pah!
Today I take my car for its MOT. It's amazing how these annual visits fly by and the ritual is the same, drive to the MOT, walk to the nearest bus stop (at least a mile away) take the bus into the nearest town have breakfast at a fisherman's café, do some shopping, get bored and go back to collect the car. It always rains, even in August when I go in for the annual service (the car not me) and last December of course it rained so much that I had to put Nathalie on a bus home and ended up in the cinema.
Anyway as I have done almost all my shopping the get bored part of the ritual arrived rather sooner than anticipated and I found myself on the outward bus around three hours after dropping off the car. This meant when I got back to the dealership I still had the best part of two hours to wait, this was my choice, I hadn't arranged for what is called 'an early collect appointment' and I sat down in the hospitality area and waited until the car was tested. I was asked at regular intervals if I wanted a coffee or other type of drink and kept informed of the progress of the test, there is a viewing area if you are that way inclined but car mechanics isn't a favourite national spectating activity for very good reason. Anyway when I came to pay the bill I commented on how little mileage I do now compared to years ago when I would travel to see West Ham every other week, and some away games. This conversation then spread to Speedway, Moto GP, Hill Climbing and Cycling with the employee who was 'looking after me'. The car passed the MOT and he said, "As you were back early and had to sit and wait and then we talked for a while I've given you five pounds off the cost of the MOT for inconvenience."
He then took me out to the car and we spent another ten minutes discussing off road bikes, road racing and the dangers of cycling alone - all topped off with festive wishes.
That's how you do loyalty *** ** (name of airline asterisked out to protect the stupid)