Normally news that these two companies have extended their relationship, first formed in 2003, wouldn’t really warrant a mention here. But on a slow news day, it gives me an opportunity to recount a less than amusing episode from almost four years ago at Nice airport in the South of France.

I had booked a rental car via Amex corporate travel for a business trip in the peak of Summer, but when I arrrived to collect my car, Hertz and Avis were almost empty, but the line of people waiting in the queue at Europcar was longer than the gap between any two recently made watchable movies featuring Whoopi Goldberg. I heard people at the front of the queue saying they had been waiting two hours. There was very little shade and it seemed to be almost exclusively families who had travelled on easyJet for a week long Summer holiday, so the kids were even less impressed than their parents.

After waiting for about 20 minutes, and being on the verge of walking to the opposition to make a new rental car booking rather than wait for the car I had reserved with Europcar, I walked to the the front of the line and into a second doorway where an employee was asking for customers with corporate bookings. Ten minutes later I had my car and was driving out of there, but for the poor sods who had booked via easyJet, well they had another 90 minutes of waiting in the midday sun before collecting their keys.

And on a totally unrelated contact, did you know such a thing existed as the 14th International Conference on Thinking? If I thought the infants on the plane were annoying, well I obviously hadn’t yet sat in a restaurant next to three women attending this conference, as I did last night. At least for the next few nights I’ll be having dinners with customers and prospects, so that promises to be much much more entertaining.

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