Every Friday, FlyerTalk looks back at the week’s most charming individuals. While there are always plenty of contenders for our Worst Passenger of the Week award, only one lucky flyer can take home the glory. Here are this week’s winners.
A teensy stowaway on a British Airways flight from London Heathrow Airport (LHR) to San Francisco International Airport (SFO) caused a nearly four-hour delay on Wednesday. Once the mischievous mouse was spotted scurrying about the cabin during the boarding process, airline officials had very little choice but to immediately ground the aircraft.
Though it sounds like the premise for a new children’s book series about a plucky rodent’s adventures in immigrating to the US, this particular version of An American Tail likely didn’t have a happy ending for the pesky pest. The plane was removed from service until crews could certify the aircraft mouse-free. Likewise, the human passengers on the flight had their own American dreams deferred for hours until a suitable replacement plane could be readied for the trip across the pond.
“We know almost everyone wants to fly with us to San Francisco, but on this occasion there was one very small customer who we had to send back to the gate,” BA officials explained. “Everyone with two legs is now on their way to California, and we are sorry for the delay.”
In truth, there is nothing at all cute about a rodent on a plane. Mice have a knack for squeezing into small spaces and a tendency to chew on wiring. Both talents are most unwelcome on modern commercial jetliners.
For two passengers on an AirAsia domestic flight from Guwahati International Airport (GAU) to Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) in India, the good times stopped soon after takeoff. The pair, who were reportedly returning home from a wedding, learned that the time for celebrating was over when they ran afoul of the cabin crew after loudly and repeatedly demanding drink menus.
According to the airline, the troublesome passengers were already intoxicated when they boarded the flight. It wasn’t until a flight attendant informed the allegedly intoxicated duo that drink menus were not available, however, that things got really out of hand. According to media accounts, the out-of-control passengers were so incensed by the lack of food and beverage choices that they “began to scream at and verbally abuse the crew.”
Police met the rowdy revelers at the airport where a formal complaint was filed by the crew. The two men were quickly taken into custody, where they were again very likely denied access to a decent wine list.
“The alleged passengers in question, inconsiderate of flying etiquette, caused much disturbance by not only being extremely loud, but were uncouth in their behavior displayed in causing nuisance to cabin crew as well,” AirAsia officials lamented following the incident. “The airline condemns this unfortunate incident and calls out the implications that directly lead to the safety and security of cabin crew and guests on-board.”
A celebrity dentist’s smart aleck remarks may have gotten him booted from an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to John F Kennedy International Airport (JFK) on Sunday. While the airline says his ejection had more to do with his disruptive behavior onboard than his questionable sense of humor, Shawn Sadri, DDS says that he believes his outspokenness and his Iranian heritage had more than a little to do with the decision to kick him off the flight.
Sadri counts an impressive list of movie stars, professional athletes and well-known comedians among his exclusive clients. On the flight in question, the “dentist to the stars” apparently decided to try out a comedy routine of his own. It did not go very well at all.
The dentist says he was returning from doing some pre-Oscars dental work on his celebrity patients when the unfortunate incident occurred. According to the dentist, a small child of Hispanic descent seated next to him on the flight was upset and crying when he arrived.
“[I] asked the boy, ‘Are you OK? Are you traveling alone?’” Sardi later told reporters. “Out of nowhere, he runs down the aisle and starts screaming!”
Sadri says he was trying to lighten the situation when he was approached by a flight attendant, joking, “Maybe Trump is trying to deport him.” His comment did not lighten the situation at all.
Sadri says the FA, who was not a fan of his wit, sharply told him, “Don’t say that!”
“Fine, you must be a Trump supporter,” Sardi recounted replying. “And she said, ‘What if I am?’ So I said ‘If you are, you are, but you’re also incompetent and need to do your job. Why am I dealing with this kid?’ I wasn’t yelling, I wasn’t swearing, it was 6 a.m., I hadn’t been drinking. I’m a New Yorker — I’m not going to back down — and I was born a Muslim in Iran. I do think all those things played into it.”
The airline said that it was not Sadri’s inappropriate jokes, his insistent political stance, ethnic background nor a deep-seated prejudice against dentists that got him booted from his flight. American Airlines officials insist that the passenger was removed for “not following crew instructions.”