Boy, I'd love to have access to their voice mail or email system.
The website Forbes.com recently issued a list of what it calls the 10 most boring cities in the U.S. It's a subjective list, of course, but the people of Forbes said there was a method to their madness. To make it scientific, they looked at 2008 news coverage of the country's largest cities in various national media outlets, including big newspapers, national magazines and business magazines, including, naturally, Forbes.
What they found was that big cities overshadowed by larger neighbours were the least newsworthy. And most of them were in the west.
So you don't stay in suspense too long, we can reveal now that the most boring cities in the U.S. are Chula Vista, California (near San Diego), Mesa, Arizona (a suburb of Phoenix), Chandler, Arizona (ditto), North Las Vegas, Nevada, Henderson, Nevada, Santa Ana, California (near Los Angeles, in Orange County), Hialeah, Florida, Bakersfield, California, Gilbert, Arizona (another Phoenix suburb) and Aurora, Colorado.
(Having a friend in Santa Ana and once dating a girl in Bakersfield, I can testify to the fact that they're really, really dull. I don't know how they missed Fresno but there you go.)
"The people who live there might not be bored, and they could be fun places to live, but they're certainly not in the national spotlight," Forbes said of the cities. "Being subsumed in a larger metropolitan area can make for a vibrant economic region, but one consequence is that these smaller cities often lose their distinct identities and places in the national conscience."
It makes you wonder what cities in Canada might make the list. If you've got ideas, let me know by sending a note to firstname.lastname@example.org.
AIR CANADA BIZ KUDOS
Air Canada has been voted by readers of Business Traveler Magazine as offering the best in-flight services in North America, as well as being the Best Airline for Business Class Service in North America and Best North American Airline for International Travel. Star Alliance, of which Air Canada was a founding member, was voted best Airline Alliance Program.
"We're thrilled," said Ben Smith, executive vice president and chief commercial officer. "We have been receiving extremely positive feedback from customers on the new additions to our fleet and the major enhancements we've made to our in-flight amenities and travel experience in general."
As a frequent Air Canada flier, I gotta admit the in-flight entertainment is a huge improvement. It's great to get a choice of so many movies and tv shows to watch, especially on longer flights.
MONTREAL ON SALE
Coach Canada says it's selling bus tickets between Toronto and Montreal, which is remarkable even if you do have to pay the GST.
Officials say the deal is valid for travel between Jan. 5 and March 8, 2009 and that they have more than 10,000 tickets available at the price. Go to coachcanada.com or call 1-800-461-7661.
CRUISING FOR A BRUISING
A story on openjaw.com says folks who sell cruises in the U.S. are fighting for survival, with prices plummeting and commissions on the decline.
"A year ago, belt tightening began for many agents," says Rick Kaplan of WeCanPartners, a strategic planning company specializing in the hospitality industry. "Now, for the first time, I'm hearing friends at large agencies talking about survival."
"It was costing one individual $75,000 a month right out of his own pocket to stay open; another it was costing $100,000 a month to stay open," reports Kaplan. "Whatever their model, there are very few organizations that are getting stronger."