Let’s face it, the Jamaican taxpayers cannot afford to subsidize a national airline that continues to jettison their hard earned funds while a flummoxed government looks on, unable to exercise good judgment and free itself of this albatross before the nation’s economy is completely strangled. Out of concern for the well-being of the beleaguered taxpayer, here are ten ways the airline can haul in some desperately needed funds to support itself while our all-thumbs Prime Minister stalls for time:
10. Charge $25 for the first piece of checked in luggage and $45 for the second. That way passengers will be more likely to pack items they really need. Jamaicans need to start traveling light. Jack up the rates during peak.
9. Levy a surcharge upon passengers who exceed weight restrictions – not baggage weight, but body weight. It is unfair to charge the same fares for overweight passengers as you do for those disciplined enough to keep their weight under control! Weigh-in at check-in.
8. Reinstate smoking flights for those who wish to indulge, and charge them double. Serious smokers, a dying breed, couldn’t care less.
7. Make on-board restrooms coin-operated. Doors are activated only upon cash or charge payment, and cost covers no more than five minutes restroom use.
6. Charge extra for wheelchairs. These days, even the young and ambulatory are requesting wheelchairs just so they can get to the head of the Immigration line. Stay a step ahead and make them pay.
5. Charge extra for seats with oxygen masks. You could “bathe” off that one.
4. Introduce a surcharge for window seats and aisle seats.
3. Offer a choice of aircraft exit – stairs or Jetway — with a surcharge for the jet way, of course.
2. As always, food and beverage items should be on sale — and pricey too! Serve high-sodium snacks at minimal cost; it’ll make passengers buy drinks like crazy when they are wracked by thirst. And don’t forget, Jamaicans tend to carry their “long belly” with them everywhere they go, so make sure that oxtail, curry goat and all the Jamaican good stuff is on the menu, vacuum-sealed and heated upon request.
1. Charge extra for the safety demonstration video. If they don’t want to pay, let them read all about it!
The possibilities are endless: sell Air Jamaica umbrellas during the rainy season when there is a downpour and you need to get passengers off toot sweet to start boarding for the next leg;, invest in automated check-in counters and reduce manpower, and instead of paying expensive docking fees in foreign ports, try parking out on the tarmac and bus passengers into the terminal instead. I am sure you can use a little bit of imagination and think outside the box. There’s money out there, to be saved and to be made. And think of how much more disciplined the traveling public will become.