We may disagree on the state of a person’s well-being if they need a 70-lb potbelly pig for comfort. But, the fact is emotional support animal (ESA) is a fact of life for some. And, we all have to put up with it or suffer through it.

Perhaps nowhere is ESA more of an issue than air travel. With your ticketed seat, the option of moving further away inside an aircraft cabin, is just not available. Everyone is stressed enough in a confined space. We don’t really want to deal with someone else’s ESA quacking duck.

Every airline has its own ESA policy. They are all similar. Passengers traveling with ESA need to provide ESA documentation.

  • An ESA travel letter, issued by medical doctor or mental health professional.
  • Stating the person has a mental or emotional disability, and is under professional care.
  • The person needs an ESA to accompanying air travel.
  • The number and type of ESA.

Individual airline may have additional requirement. American Airlines and United Airlines require a 48-hour advance showing of the ESA documentation. Others have rules governing where the ESA should be placed.

What about other passengers’ rights? Sorry. You don’t have much. Your inconvenience or even your allergy are not valid reason to deny ESA access.

One problem is that ESA is treated the same as service animals. Perhaps Congress or FAA should set stricter guidelines and distinguish ESA from service animal. Ultimately, there is probably no perfect solution. You just have to hope that ESA is providing comfort somewhere else. It certainly is not supporting your emotional well-being.


The recent sickening incident of United Airlines (UA) injuring and then forcibly dragging an involuntarily bumped passenger off the plane, speaks volumes about the corporate culture at UA. True to form, the CEO of United Airlines soon proved beyond any doubt the toxic culture he created and the stupidity of the man in charge.

These days everyone has a smart phone with a camera. In no time, the video of the entire horrid episode is available for the whole world to see – how United Airlines treated its passenger. CEO of United Airlines, Oscar Munoz, sent an email to UA employees, further inflamed the outrage. Just like the video, didn’t Mr. Munoz think the email would also get out for the whole world to see?

Mr. Munoz supported the actions. “Our employees followed established procedures for dealing with situations like this.” You mean established procedures like forcibly dragging a passenger off the plane? He commended their actions. “I want to commend you for continuing to go above and beyond” I think the world would agree injuring and dragging a passenger off the plane is indeed going WAY above and beyond.

The employees of UA would not have acted this way without the CEO establishing a belligerent culture at the company. The employees of UA would not have acted this way without explicit or tacit approval from corporate higher-up. Mr. Munoz also said “we are taking a close look… Treating our customers…with respect and dignity is at the core of who we are.” No, apparently, treating your customers with respect and dignity is NOT your core value. And, dude, as for your close look, look no further than in the mirror. You, Mr. Munoz, are the problem.

Whatever United Airlines and this CEO thought they would gain (about getting 4 staff to their next flight), pales into such insignificance when compared to the bad publicity and damage to their brand. Apparently, damaging to the UA brand is no big deal for this CEO. The victim has already lawyered up. This will end up in court, and costing UA millions. Is the United Airlines Board of Directors watching the news? There is an idiot running your corporation. Do the one and only defined duty of any board – show the CEO the door.


I’m sad because writing this post reminds me that this Taiwan trip has come to an end! The main character of this post is me. The setting of this post is Terminal 2 of Taoyuan Airport. Since I took a flight that left Taoyuan around midnight and I got to the airport early, I had plenty of time after checking in my bag and flying through security to explore the terminal. In all honestly, since I had never spent so much time at this airport, I had no idea that it was so decked out — it’s not a surprise though since Taiwan is all about making these visually appealing and cute. Let’s reminisce together:

Hello Kitty EVA Air check-in

Terminal 2 features

History of mail


Glass art exhibit

Hello Kitty store

Flying Hello Kitty!

Explaining native flowers

Books about love

{phx} flying los taquitos

January 19, 2015

I fly Southwest a lot and the vast majority of my flights leave from the C Gates at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. This means I see Los Taquitos Mexican Grill all the time even though I’ve never eaten there. Recently, I was at the airport quite early in the morning and having left my apartment even earlier, I wasn’t thinking straight and didn’t grab anything to eat. “What a waste of money!” … was all I was thinking because if I didn’t want to starve, I would have to buy some food. And since we all know that airport food was expensive, I was expecting the worst.

To my surprise, the breakfast burritos at Los Taquitos weren’t so bad so I didn’t feel that sad about parting with a few bucks as long as the burrito was going to be delicious. While I was a little surprised at how small the burrito was, it turned out to be just yummy! My burrito also came with potatoes that were super bland and also cold, but the burrito itself with egg, cheese, and salsa was worth it!


Their story

My burrito


{detroit} fun airport

November 1, 2014

I’m very familiar with the Detroit airport even though I’ve never lived in Detroit because when I went to college at MSU (East Lansing, MI), I more often than not flew to DTW and then rode the Michigan Flyer up to East Lansing. There were a few times I transferred at DTW and then flew the tiny and very scary commuter flight from Detroit to Lansing. It is seriously very scary, especially when it even slightly breezy.

Anyway, I’ve always though DTW was a rather fun airport because it has some funny stores that make transfers less of a torture like the Sanrio store and Dylan’s Candy Bar! What’s even better though is that DTW’s McNamara Terminal, Concourse A, is the second longest concourse in the world stretching almost one entire mile from one end to the other. There are times I have literally had to run from one end to another with carry-on luggage because of connections!! Since the concourse is so incredibly long, there is, of course, an Express Tram with three stops that services the concourse high above pedestrian traffic. My most recent visit to Michigan, though, is literally the first time I have ever ridden this Express Tram … it’s so fast … so red … and so clean!

Sanrio Store

A Candy Bar?!?!

Central fountain and Express Tram in the background

Inside the very clean Express Tram