OK, where’s my car at Eagle County’s airport?
Vail, CO, Colorado
VAIL – The Eagle County Regional Airport spends quite a bit of time praising itself as a convenient, world-class facility for those who value convenience and time. It would be nice if it practiced what it preaches.
World class? When it comes to customer service, EGE is more like a Fisher-Price airport than the world-class facility it claims to be.
As a frequent traveler from EGE, I make perhaps a dozen trips in and out of the airport each year. On Friday, I arrived on a delayed flight at 9 p.m. only to find that my car was missing from the seven-day lot.
Yes, I had overstayed the seven-day limit, and I fully accept and take responsibility for my actions and my car. Was it stolen? Towed? Moved? Who knew? Nobody in Eagle County, apparently.
Despite signs in the lots warning that cars parked beyond the limit (or parked illegally) could be towed, there was no information about who or where to call about missing cars. No phone number, no information at all. Airport administration? Closed, apparently, at 5 p.m. on Fridays ” no human reachable.
Try again on Monday. There was one not-so-helpful suggestion from a sky cap. Airline people, rental-car staff, baggage folks? No clue. Calls to the Sheriff’s Office? They had no idea. State Patrol? Ditto.
Nobody knew anything, but everyone seemed to agree that it was ridiculous that there was nobody to call and no information posted.
So I wasted two hours that night fruitlessly driving around the lot in a rental car, making calls to authorities who had no advice on what to do. The following morning, two more hours of the same.
Finally, the sheriff’s dispatcher suggested calling the five towing companies in the area. Bingo. The third towing company was apologetic and said it had heard it all before. He said that if I’d called him, he would have released the car that night.
So I paid my towing charge and drove off, having wasted 25 percent of my weekend because of the lack of a common-sense system that should have been put in place years ago.
It just shouldn’t be this hard. I hope the airport administrators enjoyed their weekend while I was wasting part of mine. I guess I’m one passenger who won’t mind paying a professional management company for parking. At least they’ll look after their customers and keep track of the situation since the airport clearly can’t.