City Ticket Offices: A Thing of the Past?

FlyerTalk member TrojanTraveler laments about the recent closure of what was apparently the last city ticket office of Delta Air Lines, this one being located in New York.

There was a time when city ticket offices of Delta Air Lines were located in major cities around the United States. They were convenient when you wanted to purchase or change an airline ticket, or conduct virtually any other business with Delta Air Lines without having to travel all the way to the nearest airport.

Alas, with the advent of the Internet and its popularity — combined with Delta Air Lines charging a fee for conducting certain business transactions in person — the city ticket offices started disappearing, until the last one standing in New York finally closed this year.

I cannot say that I blame Delta Air Lines. While I myself originally lamented the closing of the city ticket office closest to where I am based, I must say that I have not missed them at all — aside from the personal interaction with Delta Air Lines employees. Many times, I had to take a number and wait in line — something I never have to do when purchasing my tickets at the Internet web site of Delta Air Lines. Sure, I might have to wait on a telephone for an agent to answer and help me change the itinerary of a ticket already purchased, but as inconvenient as that can be, I am in the comfort of my own home and can work on the computer while I wait with the speakerphone activated on my telephone so that I can hear when an agent responds.

Closing city ticket offices saves Delta Air Lines money on such expenses as salaries, rent, utilities, and maintenance of equipment. Still, it was nice to walk into one of those city ticket offices and see the smiling face of an agent of Delta Air Lines as he or she would ask “How can I help you today?”

Do you miss city ticket offices? What do you think?

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Comments (Showing 1 of 1)

  • ffI at 5:21am February 12, 2012

    This is not just in the US. I was shocked when I found that LH had outsourced their city ticket offices in many Indian cities to a call center in another corner of India. The city office consisted of a sign, a doorman and a phone on the wall that you could pick up and be connected to a call center! I guess they had a real estate contract and they wanted the free advertising space till the contract ran out. It was basically a free phone call and I could have saved myself the hassle of traffic and time to get there.

    It is the same story with internet today all over the world. You save on rent, utilities and staff pay when you close a city office.

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