The old saying goes that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Well, I don’t know about free lunches but it seems free air is rapidly becoming a thing of the past…
I refer, of course, not to the air we breathe but the air machines at petrol stations that check the air pressure on your car tyres.
It seems increasingly common for garages to charge 20p, 50p or even £1 to operate the air machine. Irritating as that may be, it’s even more irritating when they run out of air before you’ve checked all four wheels on your car and have to pay another fee to finish the job.
Even worse is to find, despite the fee being justified by the garage to pay for the machine to be there, the machine is out of order. This is surprisingly common in my experience, whether it’s a free one or not.
Air today, gone tomorrow
Do you think that charging for air is part of the trend to charge for extras, like low-cost airlines do? Or do you think the price is reasonable and justified? Perhaps it won’t be long before garages start to charge you to fill up your windscreen washer bottle with water… or to use their loos?
Charging for air is only a tiny example and it’s obviously a very small charge in the grand scheme of things, but surely there’s a benefit to providing services like these for free? That’s what good customer service should be about.
I’ll go out of my way for good customer service and, if I know a local petrol station provides free air, I would use it over one that does not. It’s why you’ll often find me in a supermarket petrol station – they generally do have free air and I think they know a thing or two about good customer service.
Are there any niggling charges like this that get on your wick?