With over 1.15 billion Facebook users and 200 million active Instagram users, social media is the place to go to if you want to find out what people are up to, who they’re with, and how they feel about things. So, if a business ever wanted to see how its customers felt about them, they need look no further than cyberspace, as Maiguetia International Airport recently found out.
The biggest international airport in Venezuela recently started charging people 127 bolivars, which would be £12 or $20, for the air they breathe. Naturally, people are not happy about it at all, and took their frustrations to social media.
@VeronicaTorresA tweeted “While the stench of the toilets asphyxiates me … they have started to charge 127 bolivars for breathing the ozone.”
Radio presenter Daniel Martinez tweeted, “Could you explain to me the ozone thing in Maiquetia? The toilets have no water, the air-con is broken, there are stray dogs inside the airport, but there’s ozone?”
The ultimate hidden fee was put in place to cover the cost of the airport’s newly-installed ozone purification system. According to a press release from the Ministry of Water and Air Transport, this is the first system in the Caribbean and in South America to use such technology, which protects travelers’ health by eliminating bacteria, and sanitizing the building, which means that the airport is basically making people pay for high-end air.
To some the air fee is humorous; to others it’s absolutely infuriating. Regardless of whom you ask, you have to admit that it’s pretty surreal — especially since it’s coming from a country that has shortages of domestic staples like sugar and toilet paper, but simultaneously has the one of the largest reserves of oil in the entire world.