More PR trouble for United Airlines - man literally hauled off a supposedly overbooked flight

Dimples 77

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United Airlines isn't doing itself any favours on the PR front. The latest incident involves a man being physically hauled out of his seat because he was chosen to lose his seat as the flight had supposedly been overbooked.

From what I can gather the flight wasn't actually overbooked. The truth is that United wanted to get 4 of their staff to the destination in question, and so they described this as a situation of overbooking. To me overbooking happens when you sell more seats than the number that exist on the aircraft. Bouncing 4 paying customers off the flight in order to give those seats to United staff is simply looking after your own company's interests first, and not the interests of the paying customers. Paying customers shouldn't suffer if United has problems with getting staff to where they need to be.

Anyway, this has all resulted in the usual internet frenzy, with calls for boycotts of United.

The "three security officers" who hauled the passenger off the flight appear to not work directly for United, but they did the hauling at United's bidding. They work for Chicago’s Department of Aviation Police. The three appear to have the usual attributes of those who work in low pay security jobs - more muscle than brains.

On the PR front the apology issued by United was of the usual self-pitying sort that upsets people even more:
"This is an upsetting event to all of us here at United."

So everyone at United is upset? The poor babies. They are obviously the true victims in all of this.

There was also a reference to United having to be “re-accommodate these customers.” Corporate-speak is obviously strong within United.


United Airlines: Passenger forcibly removed from flight - BBC News

https://www.bustle.com/p/heres-why-people-are-so-upset-about-united-airlines-removing-a-passenger-from-a-flight-50155
 


danger here

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As one comment on Liveleak says... 'how times have changed'


 

Patrick Ronayne

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The computer decided which one was to be dragged off ahahaha
From link above:

...When no one took the offer, the amount was upped to $800. Still no one bit, so a manager boarded the flight and informed passengers that four people would be selected to leave the flight. That selection is based on several factors, but frequent fliers and higher fare-paying passengers are given priority to stay aboard, a spokeswoman for United confirmed...
The game's fixed if the computer isn't programmed to possibly boot off the snooty set.
 

O'Sullivan Bere

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Yeah, bad calls all around by United on that one.

In the US, as usual, corporations come first, and all he was really entitled to was a refund under ordinary laws or whatever the contract said, which is boilerplate by and for the company most times. The commie pinko EU offers more 'rights' to passengers such as inconvenience compensation.
These are your rights when your flight is canceled.

Still, United comes out of this one the worst insofar as PR, and they'd be wise not to press the issue with the passenger. The passenger didn't do himself any favours by his own conduct too as he wasn't entitled to act as he did (criminal in nature) in defiance of United's dick moves (civil in nature), so he'd be wise to let the matter go too.
 

Dimples 77

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$800 offer didn't do it - they could have gone to $1,350 but chose instead to bring in the muscle:


True - you'd think that market economics would rule the day, with the compensation being raised until they got a taker, but oh no...bring in the goon squad when nobody goes for the maximum offer.

Some are pointing out that standard air tickets say that passengers can be kept off a flight in the case where there is actual overbooking, but that isn't what happened here. Note that the paying passengers were already in their seats when United tried to bump 4 people off to make sure that their staff got the flight to the destination. That's not overbooking - that's making things convenient for United. They obviously had enough seats for every paying passenger, and then made a late decision to remove 4 passengers, after all the paying passengers had boarded.

Any time I've seen a real overbooking situation these offers are made in the departure lounge, so that things are sorted out before anyone steps onto the plane.
 

Patrick Ronayne

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I'm not sure if all the 'freelance' uploads will survive on YouTube once the legal papers start flying:

[video=youtube;cfB28wQs8uQ]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cfB28wQs8uQ[/video]​
 

Dimples 77

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Yeah, bad calls all around by United on that one.

In the US, as usual, corporations come first, and all he was really entitled to was a refund under ordinary laws or whatever the contract said, which is boilerplate by and for the company most times. The commie pinko EU offers more 'rights' to passengers such as inconvenience compensation.
These are your rights when your flight is canceled.

Still, United comes out of this one the worst insofar as PR, and they'd be wise not to press the issue with the passenger. The passenger didn't do himself any favours by his own conduct too as he wasn't entitled to act as he did (criminal in nature) in defiance of United's dick moves (civil in nature), so he'd be wise to let the matter go too.

What crime did the passenger commit?

Refusing to give up his paid for seat to let a non-paying United staff member take that seat?

The flight was not cancelled, and it was not overbooked/oversold. They simply tried to bump 4 paying passengers to suit the company.

United deserve the negative PR - they obviously pressed the issue by having the airport police goons brought in.
 

Strawberry

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For the $800 they were offering passengers to get off the flight they could have just hired a car and driven their four staff members to the other airport. It was only about 4-5 hours drive away and they didn't need to be there until the next day.

Pure stupid.
 

Dimples 77

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And more than the $1,350 that they were too tight to offer!
You'd think that companies would learn not to do this sort of thing, but obviously whoever was making the decisions put the company's interests first.

All this over United needing staff to be in some other place.
 

Dimples 77

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For the $800 they were offering passengers to get off the flight they could have just hired a car and driven their four staff members to the other airport. It was only about 4-5 hours drive away and they didn't need to be there until the next day.

Pure stupid.

Exactly.

Stupid people with power usually equals bad decisions.
 

Patrick Ronayne

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What crime did the passenger commit?
None, unless pointing out that he was due to work at a hospital the next day was some criminal level of 'awkwardness'.

You'd have thought that his 'excuse' should have alerted the goon squad to the social good that would arise from his reaching his destination on time.
 


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