In the world of customer service, the phrase “The customer is always right” is a classic, but there are instances where some customers prove this wrong. A fictional yet clever story illustrates how a check-in counter agent at LaGuardia Airport in New York dealt with a rude passenger in a professional yet amusing manner.
During a busy Southwest Airlines flight cancellation due to bad weather, the agent was re-booking passengers for future flights. In the midst of this, an angry passenger pushed to the front of the line, demanding a first-class seat.
He slammed his ticket on the counter and declared, “I HAVE to be on this flight, and it has to be FIRST CLASS.” The agent calmly replied that she would help after assisting the others in line.
The passenger, angered, loudly asked, “DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHO I AM?” Seizing the opportunity, the agent grabbed the public announcement microphone and said, “May I have your attention, please? We have a passenger here at Gate 14 WHO DOES NOT KNOW WHO HE IS. If anyone can help him with his identity, please come to Gate 14.”
As laughter erupted from those behind him, the man glared at the agent, and she responded with a smile, “I’m sorry, sir. You’ll have to get in line for that, too.”
This fictional story humorously highlights the challenges faced by customer service professionals and how a clever response can bring laughter even in tense situations.