November 26 2008 by Chris McGinnis
Here it is Thanksgiving week. Despite all the gloom and doom these days, there is still plenty for business travelers to be thankful for. Here are three things for which I'm grateful. Check them out and then please click on the comments button and tell me what YOU are thankful for when it comes to life on the road....
- Lower gas prices. After a summer of discontent at the pump where I cringed each time it cost $60 to fill up my car, gas prices have crashed, and now stand at less than $2 per gallon on average. They've not been that low since early 2005. You should have seen me beam last week when the nozzle popped and the tank was full at $31!
- Hotels that don't nickel and dime me to death. When Internet, breakfast, parking and local calls are included in the rate, I'm a happy camper. Interestingly it's the moderately priced hotels that lead the way when it comes to inclusive pricing. I've recently noticed that while a lot of the fancier chains are busily discounting rates in this poor economy, those extras are still painfully extra when it comes to the final tally.
- Better airline on-time performance. As the airlines reduce the number of flights, on-time performance is on the upswing. (In October, nearly 85% of flights arrived on time--the best performance in 20 months according to flightstats.com.) I cannot remember a single flight this year where I was any more than 20 minutes late. (Well, there was that one in Los Angeles that was about 45 minutes late, but that was due to an inconvenient earthquake!) But keep in mind that I've not flown to, from or through New York lately, which is where most of the on-time problems are centered.
What are YOU thankful for? Let me know!