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DonRocks

United Airlines (1926) - Based in Chicago, Illinois

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Most of the stories say the flight was overbooked.  From what I've read the flight was not overbooked. The flight was boarded and either during boarding or after crew showed up and said they needed to get on the flight.  This should have been handled prior to boarding.  Its a failure of the crew the showed up, its a failure of the ground staff, its a failure of person scheduling loads, its a failure of whomever is supposed to make sure the crew get to where they need to go, and even more its a failure of the local law enforcement.  (I don't see it as a passenger failure, not everyone is versed in travel law and would know that you have no rights whatsoever on the plane.)

Finally it is an issue where law enforcement is able to inforce contact law.  I understand how the captain should have total control in the air but now even at the gate you are at risk if you don't understand or choose not to follow crew orders. 

In Cabo one year we were downgraded from business class to coach on a coach flight which I upgraded with miles.  They found us in the lounge and its a difficult situation but I knew that I could do nothing about.  I completely understand why someone would not know that the airline can do whatever they want to you including having you forcibly removed you from the airplane.

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Wapo article with some facts.

Flights gets "overbooked" all the time.  Whether they sold more tickets than seats, or maybe they sold as many tickets as seats but the seats became unavailable as in this case.

So I believe any passenger bumped should be compensated.  However, if no one is willing to accept compensation, then someone has to get off the plane involuntarily.

At this point, I feel it is the passenger at fault.  If you've been bumped, then you're trespassing by staying on the plane, and your refusal is delaying the flight and all other passengers.  The airline can't use force, so it has to call the local authorities.  The local authorities have no choice but to remove the passenger physically if the passenger refuses to deplane. 

How would the 3 passengers who had to deplane involuntarily feel if this dude got to stay?  What about the 5th passenger who got booted because the 4th refused to budge? 

 

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25 minutes ago, Ericandblueboy said:

 if no one is willing to accept compensation

The airline is free to offer increasing amounts of compensation until enough people step forward to accept being bumped.  United could have offered more, but chose not to.  They created this situation and had the means to fix the problem, but opted instead to enforce its legal rights in a customer-unfriendly way IMO.  And the optics of their subsequent PR efforts have made the matter worse.  As some have quoted in the blog comments, this would almost never happen in any other industry (I mean, would a hotel or restaurant ever boot a customer in this way in remotely similar circumstances?) but is somehow tacitly accepted with airlines.

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Actually, the passengers may not have been required to deplane - the legal standard for getting kicked off is different once a passenger has been boarded.

Referencing the true experts here.

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I am guessing based on the past couple weeks that they had their own in house PR people- at this point it's just silly.   Also, why not go up to the limit of what is it $1350 or something for bumping someone and see if there were any takers.  The problem is this has opened the flood gates for anyone who had an issue with United to bring it up- I have seen at least 3 on facebook and I RARELY am ever on facebook (no shade, I've been sick with bronchitis) and that kind of repetition starts sticking in people's minds.  Of course avoiding United is easier said than done at this point.  If they could have guaranteed what next flight I was going to be on and offered me some big cash (starting with $400 and a hotel was a troubling sign that you aren't leaving anytime soon).

Also, makes me want to fly Emirates, Ethiad and Turkish Airlines (they delivered a baby on one of their flight and were super nice!) even if I have to bring a paperback.  Not good timing for US Airlines.

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On 4/12/2017 at 4:10 PM, ktmoomau said:

Of course avoiding United is easier said than done at this point

We're so lucky to live where there are three major airports -- all within 30-40 minutes depending on where you live and the time of day -- and most folks aren't captive to any carrier, either domestically or internationally.  I was 1K on UA for many years and almost never bother with them anymore.  Thrilled that my mileage balance with them is down to triple-digits.

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Axios......LAST YEAR, on the next-to-last Sunday in March, United flew 419,000 passengers at a load factor of 91%. YESTERDAY, United flew 64,000 domestic passengers at 24%. Last Sunday -- March 15 -- United flew 233,000. They lost 169,000 passengers from last week to this week.
 

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