Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Airport personality type

In a case of perfect timing, I listened to the Daily Telegraph podcast for Monday just as the airports shutdown in the UK today.
On Monday, as part of their self-help section, they looked at couples personality types based on being trapped in an airport.

There are 3 types
1) find a quite corner and curl up for a sleep
2) check with others in the same situation and get a "soul mate"
3) ring home and try to get let people know you are trying

Type 1 are the self-preservationists (home is important)
Type 2 are the "one-to-one" type who will pin you and talk to you
Type 3 are socials (less flatteringly called "pack animals") who want to get to THEIR tribe.

Type one are currently suffering, because as Tom Raftery points out, they have to drink all their duty free before they get on the plane. Airports do have their own wheelchairs as passengers can't use their own so they could be wheeled on to their flights. In theory.

Type two are chatting with everyone around them, probably passing the bottle around. Or would be... According to the audio reports I'm hearing, people are being asked to leave the airport. Expect a group outing to the ferries soon.

Type three, are busy calling home. To their TV, radio and newspaper offices and are giving all the details that they can while making sure they are no longer officially on holiday. Most business passengers apparently saw the chaos, turned around and headed to the bar for a long lunch.

As Bruce Schneier points out, the restrictions on what can be brought on board this is a reasonable short term measure. However as Mike Fitzgerald of Altobridge (who ironically have produced a suitcase sized emergency mobile network base station) "container and cargo security has gone through a lot of enhancement in recent years. But he says "security on hand luggage was beginning to get out of control again, and the airline industry needs to get hand luggage back into the hold of the plane."

Which hopefully means that the likes of Ryanair and the budget carriers will not longer be allowed to charge for luggage for the cargo-hold, and may have to return their weight restrictions back to normal... Because I suspect that the hand luggage permitted by security is going to be severely curtailed.


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