In the days after Hurricane Irene, many travelers find themselves stranded after cancelled flights or suspended train service kept them from going where they wanted to go. Even without extreme weather conditions complicating travel, most travelers have an an airline horror story or two, and many times the source of the problem is not the cancelled trip or lost bag, but inadequate customer service or lack of information from the airline. Several airlines are seeking to remedy this problem by using social networking for customer relations — a tactic many different types of companies are employing nowadays.
Takeaway line producer Sitara Nieves found herself in this position when stranded in California earlier this week. After being told she would have to wait a week to get on a new flight home to New York, Sitara tweeted at the airline. Within an hour, she was booked on a flight leaving the next day. Barbara Peterson, senior aviation correspondent at Condé Nast Traveler, says that Sitara's story is becoming more common in the age of social media.