06
Aug
07

The Good and Bad of Big Business

The Good: Wyndam By Request.

I decided at some point to sign up with every hotel and airline reward program since I travel so much. Up until Anime Festival Orlando I never saw any benefit to it. Then I stayed at the Wyndam in Orlando. Since I was a ‘By Request’ customer I had a fruit basket in my room, and an ice bucket with two free bottles of water and two cans of diet coke. When I signed onto the Internet I had the connection fee waived by putting in my ‘By Request’ number. It was nice. I will attempt to stay at Wyndam hotels now. I guess their ‘By Request’ program worked on me. I’ll be ‘requesting them.’

The Bad: Wellsfargo

There’s a series of Wamu commercials here that make fun of ‘big banks’ that charge ridiculous fees. I wholeheartedly believe that Wellsfargo is the prime target of the jabs. I agree with the commercial: Why do I have to pay a $2 fee at an ATM, and then be charged another $2 fee by Wellsfargo for using a non-Wellsfargo ATM?

Still, at least that fee can be rationalized. The one I just saw on my statement can’t be. (It’s time to switch banks). July was a month of big conventions. With Anime Expo, Anime Next, Otakon, and San Deigo Comic Con (as well as the smaller Sac Anime) I was depositing large amounts of cash into my Wellsfargo account. The other day I say a huge ‘Cash Deposit Fee.’ I emailed asking them what the meaning of this was. They replied saying that when you deposit more than $5000 in cash in one month you’re charged $.10 for every $100 over that amount.

In other words, Wellsfargo penalizes you for putting money into your bank account with them.

What possible logic can they have for this ridiculous fee? They claimed that it was expensive to organize and sort cash deposits. I say bullshit, because in California the ATMs are capable of taking cash deposits. You put a pile of 30 bills in and it sorts and organizes the money right there. I presume that the 20s are put in with money the machine spits out to people withdrawing cash. Thus requiring less money to refill the machines with. As for cash deposited at the branches, I’ve seen them ‘sort and organize it.’ It goes in a bill sorter and comes out in neat piles of $1000. And might I add that when you deposit cash you already ‘pre-organize’ it for the bank. You put all the bills face side up, all in the same direction. If you don’t the teller shoves the disorganized pile of bills back under the bullet proof glass and tells you to get it ready for depositing. Shall I now bring in a trashbag of wadded up bills to make sure I get the benefit of this ‘sorting and organizing’ fee I’m paying for?

Of course, having too much cash to deposit is a problem everyone would like to have. I know you may be groaning over this rant. Please understand that this July money was spent back in January. Conventions are paying the bills for Yaoi Press. I’d rather put the money Wells Fargo robbed me of towards mailing a galley to the LA Times.

Good and Bad

First class flying.

The return flight from AWO was the first flight where I had enough miles to upgrade to first class. It was the first time I’d flown in First Class in my life. I saw how the other half lives, and considering I’ll have to go back to coach for many flights thereafter, I call this both good and bad.

I was on US Airways. I don’t know if all other airlines handle the coach/first class division the same way, so I won’t generalize. I can only tell you how this airline handled this flight from Orlando to Las Vegas.

The bad is that it seems the airline is making First Class more desirable by making coach worse, rather than first class better. I never knew that you see a different movie in First Class than in Coach. Our movie was Spiderman 3. Coach got that movie where Hugh Grant was an aged 80s pop star (the title escapes me).

Yes, in First Class you get free headphones, everyone knows this. However, the free headphones in first class are large comfortable padded things with little wings that you hook on the tops of your ears. The headphones that you have to pay for in coach are ear buds. ??? So First Class = Not only free but better. Coach = You pay for it, and it’s cheap garbage.

One reassurance was that the Bloody Mary I had in First Class was just as awful as the one I’d purchased during the flight out in coach. They need to stock airplanes with olives.

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