BURLINGTON – If you’re flying with Delta this holiday season, you’re likely to encounter some of their newest employees at the airline’s “Elf Service Check-In” counter. After massive layoffs at Santa’s Workshop due to growing automation in the factory, many elves have had to look for other employment. Burlington Intranational Airport now has over a dozen elves working to assist passengers with checking their bags and printing boarding passes.
“There’s not a lot of work up in the workshop anymore,” says Sparkle Fizzflake, who now checks people in for their flights. “It’s just machines everywhere. Where’s the heart? Where’s the love? Kids’ toys just don’t have the same spark they used to. Not when they’re made by these terrible elvish impersonators!”
Fizzflake says he feels comfortable with his new job, being used to checking lists, and checking them twice. His transferable skills from naughty list duty have served him well as he keeps tabs on the no-fly list. He also loves the weather.
“A few elves haven’t been able to find such sugar plum gigs,” Fizzflake says. “They’re stuck down in Florida or somewhere almost as bad. I’m lucky to be in Vermont. Not quite as much snow and ice as we’re used to, but it’s as good as we’re going to get I think. I just hope it gets below zero one of these days!”
So far the program has been a success, with both customers and supervisors singing the elves’ praises. “I don’t know how we ever got along without them!” says Delta manager Otto Mader. “The feedback we’re getting has been enormously positive. People love working with the elves. This is just what we need until we can get our self-service kiosks back online!”