…suck big time. You spend hundreds of dollars of your hard-earned money to get from point A to point B by air. The duration of the flight is 5-6 hours. You take two such flights to reach your final destination, and no food is served on either! NONE! Sure they ‘sell’ you food on the flight, but there is nothing really worth eating for a vegetarian! Sure they bring out the ‘complimentary beverage cart’ out a few times but how much cola/sprite/coffee/tea can you drink in 5 hours? Add to that the fact that you now have to pay if you want to check in bags, and that they don’t offer you brand new blankets and new headphones anymore, and you have one joy ride!
Contrast that with the Indian flying experience. You have the option of paying for tickets on an airline that actually serves food. Some, like Kingfisher provide you with real, steel cutlery to eat with. I remember my first ever flight was from Hyderabad to Tirupathi, a grand total of 40 minutes in the air, and the air hostesses scrambled to get us our food as soon as the plane took off. We ate, the trash was collected, tray tables stowed and it was time to land. Very smooth! On my last India trip I flew on Kingfisher, Air India and Spicejet and my experience with all of them was pleasant, even enjoyable. Spice Jet is a low-cost airline and they did not provide food, but the air hostesses and stewards smiled, and behaved like they liked to have us on board. Not like the snobbish air hostesses and stewards on American planes who give you a smile-while-looking-in-another-direction treatment. I am now certain that the airline experience in the land of atithi devo bhava is supremely better than in the land of the free!
PS: Here is a fine post that talks about a good experience on Air India flights.