Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mile High Club or Turkey Club?

Sitting in Pensacola Airport, I realized something: I just ate a restaurant that I don't even know the name of. I look around there isn't anything with hint as to what this place is called...I guess its just Restaurant a la Airport, but hey, your guess is as good as mine. Faced with a chalkboard of sandwiches and fried foods galore, I wondered how many people are actually hungry when they come here, or are they bored and lured in by the smell of golden brown, well, anything.
This is the only airport I had ever been in where there is a single restaurant paired with a single magazine, souvenir, candy store. Before I experienced the uni restaurant hub, I thought the volume of restaurants per airport were required to keep up with the demands of hungry fliers, I guess not. At 5:30 on a Friday, the nameless restaurant's ticket count was barely scraping seven hundred. Impressive? Not at all. For all of the departing flights one would think that the count would be higher than that of a swimming pool bar on a summer day.
So I ask again: is this restaurant business a necessity in the airport. You could argue that a vast liquor selection is a must, but that's another topic in its entirety. Is it necessary to have four full service and a dozen quick service restaurants at your disposal when flying? I would opt to say no. Is the price for airport food reasonable, absolutely not. After paying fourteen dollars for a sandwich and a canned drink, I realized I could have had a starter and a soup at a fine dining restaurant.
At a career fair, I interviewed with a man who owned the franchise responsible for eighty five percent of the full service, off chain, restaurants in airports. After an hour of chatting I learned that the majority of the restaurants had large freezers. Translation: Lots of frozen food.
Could McDonald's handle the burden of seven hundred hungry passengers? Is that a joke? With "one million served everyday" it would be a pleasure to them and your pocket.

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