Letters: Airlines are tearing us apart

Airlines are tearing us apart

Tatiana Podmore (Traveller Letters, March 9-10) - I suspect that the reason you are not seated together is that an increasing number of airlines charge a fee to allocate a seat. I guess they assume that if you do not pay the fee and they seat you away from your partner then maybe next time you will pay the extra charge!

- Dave Torr

I was taken aback when, on a recent flight to Britain with our four-month-old baby, we found out on check-in that my partner and I were seated 10 rows apart. I phoned to book a bassinet months in advance and was reassured that we would be placed in the bulkhead row with a bassinet for both flights; when we checked in not only were we unable to get our booked seats with the bassinet, we were not even seated together.

After a lot of effort from the check-in staff and then the hostesses on board we eventually were moved to a bulkhead row with a bassinet after take-off for our first leg but on our second leg when the plane was full we were only placed together after I lied and told ground staff we were married but had different surnames. I am unsure in this day and age how it can be relevant to our seating arrangements if we are married or not!

- Sarah Vander Stok

I agree with Tatiana. My husband needs a certain amount of assistance on flights and we are often separated by rows of seats. When it happens on international business I get very testy!

- Issi Lewis

First-class vent

What was the point of Dugald Jellie's article "The art of first class" (Traveller, March 9-10)? To remind readers of the privileges money and a few professions can buy? To stress that carbon footprints do not matter, provided the privileged can keep "turning left"? To encourage futile, unpleasant feelings of envy among those of us who "turn left" maybe once every five or 10 years - and are increasingly less likely to do so, given the myriad new restrictions on frequent flyer points?

Could the article have been edited down to its basic message, namely, "I fly first class and you don't, nyeah, nyeah, nyeah, nyeah, nyeah"?

- Mirna Cicioni

Privacy, please

The article on the Uffizi (Traveller, March 9-10) was delightful. My wife and I have only recently returned from a trip through the north of Italy and the discourse brought back wonderful memories. One thing I would suggest for anyone contemplating visiting the Uffizi is to invest in a private tour of the gallery. It is expensive (we booked ours on the internet through Presto Tours) but definitely worth it. The Uffizi is huge and having someone to guide you and explain the artwork and sculptures is invaluable. Without the guide, the place is daunting.

PS The statue of David on the front of Traveller is in the Galleria Accademia, not the Uffizi.

- Alan Shaw

Language barrier

Christopher Roper, what other language do you suggest should be on our signs at Sydney Airport (Traveller Letters, March 9-10)?

Like it or not, English has become the de facto world language. French used to be the diplomatic language but lost out to English decades ago. In most countries where dual signage is apparent, it is the countries' own language/s and English. If we go for a European language, which one or ones? If an Asian language, should it be Japanese, Chinese or Korean? There are smartphone apps that can translate from photographs of signs.

- Graham Lucas

Ask and receive

I would like to reply to Ann Beharell's question about a family-friendly resort in Japan (Traveller Letters, March 9-10). My wife and I and our daughters, aged six and seven, spent a fabulous week at Club Med Sahoro in February 2012. It is not the cheapest place to stay but we loved it.

As at all Club Meds, everything is included, and in this case that meant ski passes, lessons and guides. What really made it for us, though, was the entertainment for children apres-ski. My children loved it and this of course meant we loved it. The resort is self-contained, so extremely secure, making a relaxing time for all.

- Stephen McNulty

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