The Absurdity of Promos

Promos are all over the place right now. Blame it on competition, or I don’t know, sheer determination to sell.

For instance, here in the Philippines, you will see a Php1.00 fare from time to time. Recently, there was a Php1.00 fare for Labor Day, then there’s the 90% promo for another airline company. Almost every month, you will see new promos for both local and international flights.

Here’s the catch:

  • When you book for PAL, chances are the tax is more than twice the amount of the base fare. (e.g. ACTUAL FARE: $17, TAX: $119)
  • You’re not allowed to check-in your baggage. For Cebu Pac, you may pay an additional fee if you would like to bring luggage.
  • You’re not entitled to free meals.
  • More often than not, these flights are DELAYED.

I also heard that there were a lot of cases wherein AirPhil cancels flights if most of the passengers availed of promo fares. There were also instances where they refused to accept some passengers due to overbooking. This is actually stupid, because why would you still sell tickets if you know that the flight is already fully booked? Now, I only heard these stories in the radio because there were a lot of complaints, but it’s rather alarming. Also, before our trip going to Cebu, my friends who were taking AirPhil were advised that the seating will be a first come, first serve basis. Apparently, there was an “overbooking” so they had to go in early to ensure that they will have seats.

People can get really carried away with all these ads and marketing ploys, that sometimes we fail to realize that we are being fooled.

Case in point: Recently, Starbucks launched their Happy Hour promo from 2:00 PM until 6:00 PM where you can avail of their Frappucinos for 50% off.

Guess what? This afternoon my boyfriend and I decided to try it out. That was around 5:30 PM. As we lined up, the guard stopped us and asked if we were going to avail of the 50% off Frapuccino. We said yes, and then he told us that the store ran out of ice for cold drinks.

Can you believe that?!

A huge store that caters to both hot and cold drinks, who serves hundreds of people every single day, would run out of ice? Really? And during the Happy Hour time itself? You would think that a store such as this would have at least a stash of supplies hidden somewhere, because lack of something as essential as ice would prevent them from serving customers thereby affecting their sales?

So tell me, when are the ice going to be delivered? 6:01 PM? PATHETIC, if you ask me.

I’m not sure if this is true to all branches, but don’t you think it was a bit dodgy?


I’m not saying we should avoid these companies or establishments, because for all we know I might be mistaken and I’m just being my usual paranoid self. However, let us bear in mind that we should be responsible consumers. Let us not be swayed by colorful posters and striking ads.

More often than not, there’s a catch…so be sure that whatever it is you’re risking for is worth it. :)


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