A recent airline commercial has me thinking... So I'm sharing with you... At what point does the argument "It's the principle of the thing" become nothing more than a rationalization for making yourself uncomfortable?
On our holiday flights to and from the East Coast last month, we got only a little bag of snacks (maybe twice per flight) and some beverages - everything else, including a more "full" meal and a personal movie player, cost extra. Now, if you're able to plan a bit ahead, the lack of "free" food (though it's hardly free when you've paid for a plane ticket) isn't a problem. You bring a few granola bars, pack a sandwich, pick up something at an airport shop before you board the plane - no problem. If you're not able to bring your own sustenance, however, the hot meals on the flights I've taken lately run anywhere from $3-5 each.
It used to be you could count on a movie to distract you from at least a couple hours of a long flight - and even if it was a movie you weren't interested in seeing, you'd strap on those headphones anyway. Now, it seems rare that there's even a bad movie on offer. Instead, you're given a chance to pay roughly $10 for an individual player that has several recent movies and TV shows pre-loaded on it.
So, to get back to the title of this post - on principle, I refuse to pay for these "extras." I feel like I've paid enough for my plane ticket that I ought to get more than a bag of peanuts for a five-hour flight without paying even more. I feel like if they've already got a bunch of movies and TV shows in a machine, they ought to drop those little screens and let us all enjoy them. As far as I'm concerned, it is, as you can now guess, the principle of the thing. And I'm starting to think now that's a stupid argument.
People seated around us on our flights both ways sprung for both the hot meal and the movie player, and even though I had snacks and plenty to read, I was - naturally - envious. Did the flight go faster for them? I have no idea. The one thing I did realize, however, is that the "principle of the thing" argument really only ends up hurting the one who's trying to be principled.