I flew on the Pelco jet in around 2003 or 2004. I was designing systems for a new hospital campus in Oregon. The owner was using Pelco at one of their three existing campuses and insisted that we spec Pelco for their new campus. The reason: Pelco sent them advance replacements for defective cameras within 48 hours, while the other camera manufacturers that they used insisted that they send the defective cameras back first, and then often took 60 days or more to send a replacement camera back.
The Pelco jet picked me up in Seattle at a corporate flight center. I parked my car and one of the pilots came out to meet me. We were wheels-up within minutes after my arrival. We stopped in Portland to get my client representatives and the local Pelco rep before heading to Clovis, California. Coffee and pastries were served along the way by a female flight attendant.
When we got to Clovis, a limo was waiting and sped us off to the Pelco factory. We were met by a nice marketing lady who said we would be having lunch with the President of Pelco, but first, she wanted to give us a tour of the campus. She walked us from building to building, explaining the Pelco story and everything that they did differently from other manufacturers in the industry. One of the things they were really proud of was how many things that they did in-house rather than outsourced, including things like having an in-house travel department and in-house print shop.
Once we got back from our lengthy and somewhat tiring tour (walking outside for 2 hours in Clovis in the summer is no fun), we went inside to the Corporate Boardroom where lunch was waiting for us. Soon afterwards, the President of Pelco walked in and joined us. He asked us how our trip was, and how much we enjoyed the tour. We explained that we had a nice trip, and how that we were very impressed with the Pelco facility.
This was apparently not enough for the President: he started fishing for more compliments. He looked right at me and said "What specifically were you impressed with?". I gave it a few seconds thought, and said that I was impressed with the fact that when other companies seemed to be outsourcing as much as possible, Pelco seemed to be taking the opposite approach, and bringing as many things back in-house as possible. The President really lit up when I said this, and then went on to explain how he had brought in a top-notch chef to take over the company cafeteria, and how it was now considered by some to be one of the best restaurants in the city.
In my attempt to lighten the atmosphere, I made one of the sarcastic jokes that I have become known for. I said "Maybe you should forget this CCTV business entirely, and concentrate on what you are good at - running a restaurant". Everyone in the room burst out into laughter, except the President, who sat there red-faced. I don't remember how I recovered from this, but it seemed like everyone walked away friends.
On the flight home, we were served copious amounts of wine and a cheese platter by the flight attendant. We each also got to sit in the copilot's seat for a short time during the return flight, and had our picture taken at the controls. A framed copy of our picture was given to us when we landed.
Overall the trip was a success for all involved. An all-Pelco system was specified and installed at the new hospital campus, so I guess we ended up paying for our trip and more.
Just for the record, I generally avoid manufacturer's junkets and would probably never have accepted a trip like this on my own. I went at my client's insistence, and now, many years later, I look back on this as a once-in-a-lifetime experience.