Airlines Behaving Badly: Crispy Luggage, Crying Babies and More
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Vent session, anyone? In the second installment of our series, “Airlines Behaving Badly,” we take a look back the worst of airline conduct this week — and it hasn’t been pretty.
Let’s get into it:
We begin this week with a strange one. How often are 150 people kicked off a passenger plane because the president has a meeting? Well, three days ago at Beirut–Rafic Hariri International Airport (BEY), Lebanese President Michel Aoun had to get to New York for the United Nations General Assembly — which was bad news for everyone on Middle East Airlines Flight 308. The passengers weren’t pleased.
It would be a long time until passengers made it to their intended destination, Cairo (CAI), as they faced a lengthy nine-hour delay. Middle East Airlines has since issued an apology, claiming that the deplaning was “out of their control.”
A United Airlines crew member had the gumption to tell her a mother that it was “absolutely unacceptable” for her baby to cry for more than five minutes in business class. And unfortunately, this is only a small chunk of the drama that ensued between the mother, Krupa Patel Bala, and crew member on board the 13-hour flight from Sydney to San Fransisco. Bala actually detailed the exchange via Facebook, but here is a
highlight lowlight reel of the worst parts:
- Told her babies aren’t allowed in business class
- Told her child was stressing out the crew
- Gave her unsolicited parenting advice
- Threatened to move her, her husband, and 8-month-old to economy
- Said that allowing a baby to cry for more than five minutes was against the “United Airlines Handbook.”
We’d like to see that handbook. Thankfully, in addition to United releasing a public apology, she has since been offered a refund for her troubles.
It’s not every day that someone’s luggage is returned to them in a trash bag after all of their belongings were shredded and burnt to a crisp. However, in an exceptionally bad case of luggage handling, Spirit Airlines has managed to do exactly that. Exhibit A:
Adding insult to injury, Spirit barely tried to compensate the passenger, Ivy Ford, for the damages until ABC News’ I-Team got involved. Eventually, Ford received her $480 and $100 in travel vouchers from the airline, as well as the usual public apology. As for what happened to the luggage? Spirit believes the damage was caused by some sort of a friction burn. Interesting.
American Airlines Reduces Inflight experience
I guess this doesn’t exactly classify as “bad behavior,” but boy does it hurt. Joining the ever-growing list of unfortunate trade-offs, American Airlines has not only increased the prices of booze aboard its flights, but it’s also jettisoned the complimentary Bose headphones from first and business class on international flights.
Luckily, the noise-cancelling headphones (which were a TPG favorite) are to be replaced by Bang & Olufsen’s H9i model headphones, which retail for about $499. We’re struggling to find a bright side about the rise in drink prices, however. While it might disparage some of the more unruly drunken passengers from getting belligerent, prices before the increase were akin to happy hour in New York City. Now, with the extra dollar tacked on to every beverage, drinks are just expensive enough to irritate. Nobody wants an $8 beer.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants in the first three months of card membership.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
- Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees