Need a Wheelchair? Try Tweeting


I was skimming through USA Today the other day when I came across an article about an interesting use of tweeting. No, it wasn’t an article about bird watching – it was about the use of Twitter, a social networking site.

“Tweets” are the one line updates sent via cell phones, blackberries, laptops and even desktop computers by twitter-users around the world. Twitter-users can follow tweets of certain people or (if they have the time and the inclination) they can follow the whole network of tweets. So for example, if I wanted to tweet right now I could say something like “I’m writing a blog post about tweeting and travel”.

OK, so you get the concept.

In any case, the USA Today article was about travelers using Twitter in unique ways. The one incident that caught my eye was about a JetBlue customer who needed a wheelchair, but apparently couldn’t get the attention of customer service at the terminal. So she tweeted about it.

I can understand how that happened. I imagine if I used Twitter and was waiting for a wheelchair and getting frustrated, I’d probably tweet something like, “Dang, I’ve been waiting here for 15 minutes for a wheelchair at the JetBlue counter. I’m getting very frustrated – I do have a plane to catch,” or something along those lines — depending on how frustrated I was.

Which was pretty much what the traveler in question did.

But here’s where the story gets interesting. It appears that someone in the JetBlue customer service department was actually monitoring Twitter at that time. He heard the frustrated tweet, contacted customer service at the airport and in short order the frustrated tweeter had her wheelchair.

I guess the moral of the story is, you never know who is listening to your tweets; so if you are in need of something in your travels, then it never hurts to let the world know.

Can’t hurt to tweet. And apparently, in some cases it helps.