The talk of travel agencies in the 'Never Shopping There' thread reminded me of a brainhurt from several years back.
I was dating
long distance, and had decided to pay my then-girlfriend's way out here so she could spend christmas with me and my family. I sent her several hundred dollars, as well as links to flights at the appropriate times, with enough stops in the sort of airports where her claustrophobia wouldn't act up much, with plenty of time to move between gates, and all for a good chunk less than I'd sent her, roundtrip. All she had to do was choose and book, and she'd have spare cash on hand to do whatever she pleased.
I asked if she'd booked her flight yet in our next phonecall, only to be told that yes, but she'd had to shell out her own cash because I hadn't sent enough to cover it.
Odd, because what I sent her should have covered the tickets, baggage, etc with spare.
Turns out that she had decided to ignore my links and suggestions and had instead gone to a local travel agent. She spent twice what she could have, didn't have time to eat because the time between her flights was small compared to how much ground she had to cover between gates, and was stopped off in one of the busiest, most crowded airports in the country. You could feel
the stress and anxiety I'd been trying to avoid rolling off her.
Suddenly, I understand her 'I don't like to fly'.