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Old 03-05-2007, 06:54 PM
Location: Gulfport, MS
469 posts, read 2,584,292 times
Reputation: 501


There's something about air travel that brings misery to a whole new level. Last year I was at BWI airport in Maryland, where I had missed my Air France flight. Not only did the Air France people utterly fail to get me on another flight (THAT's a whole nother saga) but I witnessed the worst customer service I have ever seen!

A man wheeled this elderly lady up to the counter to collect their tickets. I think he was her son or nephew. Anyway, the little old lady, who had to be 80-years-old, had some cases with her with hoses, etc. going out of them to her. Medical equipment. The man behind the counter flipped out and started yanking her bags off the trolley, yelling and screaming at her in French. She was begging him, "Monsieur, je suis malade" (I am sick) and telling him she needed to board the flight for Paris to get to her doctor. He just kept screaming at her and her poor son/nephew got so upset that he began crying. This went on and on in front of my horrified eyes. Finally, this little old lady gets up out of her wheelchair and hobbles over to the guy, begging him to let her get on the flight. Finally he relented and handed her a ticket. I was shocked. I had not, and still to this day, seen anyone treated the way he treated this sick little old lady. I promised myself after that I would NEVER fly Air France again and have kept that promise.

So what's your most horrible airline story?
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Old 03-05-2007, 07:13 PM
2,218 posts, read 5,024,414 times
Reputation: 1718
When I was on my return trip, this guy that took up 2 seats (his and mine thank goodness for armrests stopped most of his blubber dead in its tracks) sat next to me... He couldn't put his table down.. And his breathing scared me. I was wondering if he was going to make it.
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Old 03-05-2007, 07:38 PM
Location: Springfield, Missouri
2,814 posts, read 12,205,153 times
Reputation: 2000001335
Jeepers, what a terrible event to witness on the Air France incident I face general unpleasantness at airports as I get singled out every time for the specialized pat down, hands around my legs, up my front, back, arms straight out, shoes off, belt removed and treated like a criminal. I hate it so much and am so fed up with the system that I haven't flown since I had to from Hong Kong to get back to the U.S. in January of 05. I drive now wherever I want to go within the U.S.
But my worst experience while on an airplane was a business flight from Salt Lake City to San Francisco where I was headed home after three days on a business trip in SLC. I ended up on some kind of bench seat (was it Southwest Airlines? I forget) and I'm a thin man. I'm 6ft at 150lbs. I got set inbetween to extremely obese men whose bodies pushed into me, so much so that I had to hold my arms straight out and hold my kneecaps the whole flight. On top of that, one of the guys had keys or something sharp in his pocket which dug into my hip and left me bruised.
I could tell both men were embarrassed and I felt badly for them as I know they knew they were smothering me, but there was nothing they could do, nothing I could do, and I was so relieved to get off that plane.
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Old 03-06-2007, 11:22 AM
Location: Houston, TX
1,610 posts, read 4,460,939 times
Reputation: 1462
I'm sure the men were embarrassed but in view of their extreme sizes they ought to either fly in wider first-class seats or pay for two coach. Granted it makes for an expensive ticket either way but it isn't fair to take part of a neighbor's seat that didn't belong to them. The airlines ought to discount the second seat in this instance but they never will.
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Old 03-06-2007, 11:43 AM
Location: Beautiful TN!
5,453 posts, read 7,478,143 times
Reputation: 5660
I have a general fear (phobia) about flying, but what can a girl do? I fly but don't like it. Anyway, worse experience for me was flying from Grand Rapids to Chicago, small commuter plane with mainly business class. The weather was rainy and windy......the plane actually dropped while inroute, boy it was shaking and not a very pleasant experience. People screamed, it was pretty bad. I did not fly for at least 7 years after that, and now I take a mild tranqualizer before even leaving my house.
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Old 03-06-2007, 01:06 PM
Location: Gulfport, MS
469 posts, read 2,584,292 times
Reputation: 501
Scariest flight (as opposed to worst service) was a flight from Houston TX to Jackson MS. Middle of the night, raining and storming, lightning outside the windows, the plane shook the whole time, I think every hair on my head stood on end for the whole two hours.
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Old 03-06-2007, 01:11 PM
6,351 posts, read 19,685,492 times
Reputation: 9933
I've had very good luck flying commercially! Now that airline with the weird green and grey planes where you sit facing sideways or backwards and can't look out the window: that's another story... (Maybe that's why it's abbreviation stands for "Aircraft May Come...)
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Old 03-06-2007, 03:55 PM
186 posts, read 855,365 times
Reputation: 139
Chicago O'hare. Winter. Enough said?

Looking at your plane standing at the gate for 3 hours in the snow and than taking off without you because it's already "closed" furthermore, being told that you have to wait 24 hours for the next flight to London, oh and that you have to sleep in the waiting lounge, because of security restrictions... it was great fun!

Oh yeah, and that happened to me twice in last 2 years. British Airways - eat sh*t!
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Old 03-06-2007, 04:18 PM
Location: NC
531 posts, read 1,883,585 times
Reputation: 305
OK...I have most likely cause several of all of your flight nightmares! I have had to travel with my 2 year old 2 times this past year. Do I really need to say more?!

On the 1st trip, she was pretty good and the plane was mostly empty so they moved us all the way up to the front of business class to let everyone else enjoy their flight. I did not mind either because I wasn't worried about driving everyone else nuts!
The 2nd flight...ewww...it was bad, bad, bad. She screamed for the whole 2 hours! Not cried...SCREAMED! The plane was at capacity, had a late take off, and my daughter was miserable! I felt so bad for everyone on the plane! The flight attentdent and I tried everything we could think of to no avail. ( We later found out she had the beginnings of an ear infection) When we touched down and everyone was getting off I just stayed in my seat and apologized to every person getting off of that plane. I wanted to crawl under a rock! We turned into the story that everyone tells about being on a plane with a bratty kid!
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Old 03-06-2007, 04:51 PM
Location: Rocket City, U.S.A.
1,806 posts, read 5,196,282 times
Reputation: 853
The Chinese airport was a rude free-for-all where I was pushed and shoved despite having a baby wrapped around me. Literally, lines converge from everywhere, and like the roadways, are only a suggestion as to how you might motivate yourself.

Flying back from China with a 15 month old 'infant', struggling through security, removing the baby carrier, opening bags (diaper with 6 hundred compartments and the carry-on) and trying to reassemble while holding her. Brought water for her diaper bag in sealed bottles, had to open each one. Glad I only brought two. They then leaked.

I had people behind me giving me nasty looks because it took more than 60 seconds to get the carrier back on, her in it and then close up our baggage while other peoples' stuff piled on top.

THEN, flying back 15 hours non-stop with a child in my lap...she was only 16 pounds and already in the throes of separation anxiety - I wanted to purchase a third seat and bring a carseat but the cost was almost one thousand dollars more. Terrified, she would not have willingly stayed in the seat away from me, anyway. Bad for bonding, to say the least.

Very quiet compared to the other babies on board.

I could tell the American staff was annoyed that they had such a large amount of adoptive families flying back. Sorry - can't just beam myself back to Florida...would have rather had that option.

I tried to remain pleasant. I really, really tried.

It was impossible to navigate the isle. I swear every time I tried to get up an attendant would be coming from that way with a cart and I'd have to sit down again, yet when we needed something they would not respond to the bell. I had to address a messy diaper, but could not get through to the restroom with the changing table once again because carts were blocking both sides of the aisle...an attendant with a snotty attitude (pissy, really) told me that I could use the other bathroom, sans table. Oh really? Where would you like me to change this diaper? On the sink? That's SAFE. Fed up, I almost did it right there in my seat, but there was no room there, either.
Finally got to the bathroom only to find this tiny, tiny little ledge to change her on and of course once I got her on it we started in with some turbulence.

It was a freaking nightmare.

I used to love flying and have never before had anything but good things to say about the crew...but this time they made the trip memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Oh yeah - they lost our luggage in Chicago.
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