I carry an Amex Platinum card for several reasons not the least of which is free access to several airline clubs (I wish there were more included but as you will read below the Delta Sky Lounge access is was a great thing for me this week). I also use the Platinum card for reservations in hard to get-in restaurants as they have a few tables every day and night in all the top places.
Amex Platinum also offers 2 for 1 business or first class tickets if purchased on the card – no other discount applies but still it can be a very good value. So it’s worth the high yearly fee since I get a lot of use out of it.
On Monday I was at LaGuardia and as I went through security the TSA agents asked to look through my bag. This was the second time in my last two flights. Last time they said it was random. This time they saw something which turned out to be a cigar lighter that I had forgotten was in the bag (and I have been looking all over my house for it – I just knew it would turn up). My Dad gave me that lighter and it has a lot of sentimental value to me as well as the fact that it works really well.
When something like this happens normally TSA takes it and it goes into the great abyss never to be seen again. This has happened with a cigar cutter I had (right after 9/11) in my luggage that was confiscated. (Apparently a then overzealous TSA agent felt I could pressure the pilot or flight attendant to put their finger through the cigar cutting hole and I would then threaten to cut it off – this policy has changed from what I am told).
So what to do? I remembered the Delta Sky Lounge was right next door so I asked the TSA agent to wait and quickly went into the Delta Sky Lounge to see if could get one of the attendants to come out to pick up the lighter and hold it for me until I returned. I walked in, explained my situation, the lovely attendant Marilyn was ready to help and walked right out, to pick up the lighter from the Agent Eric whom she said she knew. (We forget sometimes that the TSA agents are people with names, families and yes, personalities).
Marilyn came back in smiled and said she had it and would hold it for me and would be there when I returned since she was working that today. She was, I picked it up from her she escorted me out as per the TSA policy. This was a great example of a Delta Sky Club employee representing the brand as well as it can be done. I have had my issues with Delta Airlines http://wp.me/pJX7l-6a but they should be credited with having a class act like Marilyn as a part of their team.
Wish I had taken a photo of her – thanks Marilyn!