Go Back   > > >
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jun 16, 17, 5:56 am   #1
Original Poster
  
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: New Jersey
Programs: UA MM Plat, AA MM Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 2,073
Defending a GA

Yesterday (6/15) heading back from ORD to EWR, I was booked on UA 1995 at 4:30pm, but arrived early, around 1:30pm. I noticed that UA 1712 (originally an 11:35am departure) was late and had just completed boarding, so I asked if I could stand by. There was one seat left. I was #1 on the stand-by list, and just as the GA was about to print out my BP, a DYKWIA ran up, insisting (loudly) that he was on the flight. He came around the back of the desk to show her his mobile BP. She pointed out that he had not boarded and had been removed from the flight, and he yelled about being a 1K and threw his phone down on the counter. Keep in mind he was standing right next to her behind the desk and she was still being very polite. I was standing to the side of the desk on the other side of the GA, and before the GA could speak, I yelled (caps used to simulate volume), "ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR DAMN MIND? HAVEN'T YOU BEEN WATCHING THE NEWS? WHAT THE HELL'S THE MATTER WITH YOU?" I was just really pissed off, and it wasn't about losing the seat (a middle seat now on a 739 or my confirmed seat later on a 772 3 class in 20K). He looked at me and the gate agent, knew exactly what could be coming next, and immediately apologized profusely. He did get that last seat. The GA thanked me, and I told her there were plenty of FF'ers that would never let someone like that treat a GA that way. I feel the same way about crew.

I probably did the guy a favor, since the GA could have made his life very interesting in any number of ways. I'm not advocating we all become vigilantes, but I do feel strongly that elite level flyers should set an example of how to act, especially in IRROPS.

Epilogue: His flight, UA 1712, had a mechanical issue after it left the gate. I don't know what it was, but the flight ended up getting into EWR more than 8 hours late at 11:09pm, three hours after my flight arrived. Just wish I could have seen his face when the captain announced the delay.

Thanks for the venting opportunity.
tarheelnj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 6:20 am   #2
  
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: SEA/ORD
Programs: UA Plat, Marriott/SPG Gold, IHG Plat, National Exec
Posts: 498
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelnj View Post
Epilogue: His flight, UA 1712, had a mechanical issue after it left the gate. I don't know what it was, but the flight ended up getting into EWR more than 8 hours late at 11:09pm, three hours after my flight arrived. Just wish I could have seen his face when the captain announced the delay.

Thanks for the venting opportunity.
Regardless of whether you believe in it or not, that's karma in action. Always treat people with the same level of respect you want in return.
Explorer789 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 6:29 am   #3
  
Join Date: May 2006
Location: STL
Programs: UA Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 1,120
Waiting for the (counter) post to appear on FT about a 1K who arrived in plenty of time before scheduled departure that was removed off a flight (with the assumption that it was for a nonrev) and had to demand the GA to put them back on...then will start ranting about how UA is so customer un-friendly, treats passengers horribly, and will probably reference some other recent event that UA was in the news for.

BTW...thank you for realizing the opportunity to act like a sane traveler and cut the GA some slack realizing it wasn't their fault you didn't get that seat.
qukslvr619 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 6:32 am   #4
FlyerTalk Evangelist
  
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 30,579
While it all worked out for the best, the pity was that the GA reinstated the moron's reservation.

People who are disrespectful of others, whether customers or employees, do not deserve a break of any kind.

It's the only way morons learn. I'll bet that the guy forgets about the apology and later figures that yelling does work.
Often1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 6:34 am   #5
  
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: West Orange, NJ
Programs: UA 1K, HH Diamond, Hertz Pres.
Posts: 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelnj View Post
...but I do feel strongly that elite level flyers should set an example of how to act...
I agree with you but I had a very interesting conversation with one of the CS Reps on the 1K line this past week where the person I was speaking to said even on the 1K/GS line she gets more confrontational calls than not which kind of surprised me.

The call itself might make an interesting thread since she also mentioned a few other things to me that I was unaware of.
AugustusM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 7:01 am   #6
  
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: London
Programs: UA 1K MM, Hertz PC, BAEC Bronze
Posts: 6,723
I cannot understand why people behave so badly. If all sorts of things mess up your day so you turn up late, perhaps some blame should lie with people responsible for that, but there's no way the GA is responsible for that. Even someone with pretty well zero IQ would understand that. So why shout at the GA? It's not her fault, she's merely following procedures.

Sadly, I know the answer to my own rhetorical question: usually it works and, if it doesn't, nothing is lost. I remember having lunch with a friend of a friend who proudly told me that, when priority boarding was announced for people with disabilities, she marched straight up and claimed she had disabilities (she has none). If questioned, she merely shouts the GA down. I now regard her as untrustworthy, and I'm afraid it also calls into question my friend's judgment in remaining friendly with her. But the point is that this lady leads her life in that way. She's a bully and a cheat and knows that she will never have to face the consequences.

Sadly, after recent events with Dr Dao etc., it's giving every imbecile a free license to behave abonimably.
lhrsfo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 7:23 am   #7
  
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: CLT
Programs: Pre✓, Delta Gold, Hilton LT Diamond, Mariott Silver, PC Gold, National EE, Hertz PC
Posts: 449
Quote:
Originally Posted by Explorer789 View Post
Regardless of whether you believe in it or not, that's karma in action. Always treat people with the same level of respect you want in return.
Karma indeed. Got to love it ...

Great to hear the OP made it to his destination 3 hrs ahead of the other flight.
KenTarmac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 7:29 am   #8
  
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Boston MA
Programs: UA 1K/1 million miler, still shopping for OW/ST programs
Posts: 381
I did something like this, of sorts, in EWR once.

Flight for Tokyo was really late (5 hours). Mechanical issues. Plane was left at the gate for hours, but NOW they just found an issue. Doesn't look good.

UA, in their infinite wisdom, left a single GA to handle the less-than-pleased crowd.

Could clearly see many newbies at this, so I started chatting with them. Tone was going up with the GA, which was pretty polite.

I just purposely told a guy that was still polite but getting unnerved that this wasn't HER fault, but someone in a high office still sent her here to the sharks. He asked me if I was with UA. I said, nah, just went through a few of these, I know it is frustrating, but you know, that women has just been asked to go an ingrate job, that's all. And, yessir, sometimes I think United drops the ball, I agree with you on that one!

I also noted that the crew in Tokyo was pretty good, so in all likeliness when we arrived they would have all the backup plans in the world. "Yeah, but I really wanted to be with my family in Manilla". "Yeah, I understand, it really sucks, but let us see, maybe lady luck will come around".

Sometimes, you can disarm a tense situation with a few kind words, a pinch of humor, some human connection. I can tell you the GA appreciated.

Then, finally, better late than never, UA sent in reinforcement, and to be forgiven gave us $7 vouchers. Which we could purchase EXACTLY NOTHING WITH in EWR since they turn over all the restaurant to that horrible contractor, just putting a huge dose of salt on an open wound!

... OK, well sometimes there ARE kicks to the rear end of people that are very much in need!
skidooman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 7:38 am   #9
  
Join Date: Feb 2008
Programs: 6 year GS, now MM Jeff-ugee, *wood LTPlt, VX Gold, SkyPeso PLT
Posts: 5,276
Quote:
Originally Posted by qukslvr619 View Post
BTW...thank you for realizing the opportunity to act like a sane traveler and cut the GA some slack realizing it wasn't their fault you didn't get that seat.
First, I 100% agree that raised voices/yelling is not appropriate. I have several times (actually more than several) told yelling passengers flat out the FA/GA is correct, and can't do what they want. Most recent was at SEA, and some moron was yelling at the GA over our flight being late, and how it was the airlines fault, not "flow control" as the plane was there. I nicely explained the SFO issues, and offered to walk over to the monitors and show him how ALL of the SFO flights were late. GA thanked me profusely after he was gone. The job is hard enough w/o people going off on you.

Second, that said, I do feel that whenever the airline "off loads" people on a connection - where the passenger arriving late is inevitably due to the airlines operations - that the appropriate thing to do is give them their seat vs a stand by, if they arrive before a butt is in the seat. Do I expect someone to get yanked out of the seat? Not unless it is before the 10 min cut off. But if a stand by has not boarded, the GA should give the late arriving passenger the seat.

I was twice in the situation that OP describes, both were UA's fault in getting me there late, both times I arrived as they were boarding stand-byes, and both times I had to "fight" with the GA to get my seat back. The difference was that neither time did I raise my voice. But I should add that I was rather POed that I had to "fight" to get my seat back...
spin88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 8:01 am   #10
  
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: JFK/LGA/EWR
Posts: 1,126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Explorer789 View Post
Regardless of whether you believe in it or not, that's karma in action. Always treat people with the same level of respect you want in return.
Quote:
Originally Posted by KenTarmac View Post
Karma indeed. Got to love it ...

Great to hear the OP made it to his destination 3 hrs ahead of the other flight.
Yeah I'm sure all the other passengers on that flight feel the same way.
sbjnyc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 8:14 am   #11
Original Poster
  
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: New Jersey
Programs: UA MM Plat, AA MM Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 2,073
Quote:
Originally Posted by spin88 View Post
...But if a stand by has not boarded, the GA should give the late arriving passenger the seat...
I totally agree, but that may not apply in this case. The flight was already 2 hours late departing, so the person in question probably wasn't a late arriving connection. I had the feeling that he had settled in at the UC across from the boarding gate (B16) and lost track of the time. In his rant, he didn't say anything about having come from a late arriving flight, just that he had a BP and was a 1K and therefore he should get on this flight.
tarheelnj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 8:49 am   #12
  
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: OKC
Programs: AAdvantage Gold, IHG Gold, Choice Privileges, National Emerald
Posts: 1,097
Had an incident last year on AA where someone boarding was giving the crew a fit because it was on a CRJ and they wanted her to check her carry on (it was large) - she was convinced that her "thousands of dollars" of makeup would melt down below. After a few of us in FC made some comments to her, I immediately went on AA.com during the flight and submitted a compliment about how professional the crew was in dealing with her insanity. She was threatening to complain, write letters, screaming, etc., and they were just as calm as could be.

I showed the FA the comment I typed up before submitting - documenting her craziness and their professionalism. He was very thankful - hopefully it helped them if she did follow through on her threats.
bchandler02 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 10:05 am   #13
  
Join Date: May 2006
Location: STL
Programs: UA Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 1,120
Quote:
Originally Posted by tarheelnj View Post
I totally agree, but that may not apply in this case. The flight was already 2 hours late departing, so the person in question probably wasn't a late arriving connection. I had the feeling that he had settled in at the UC across from the boarding gate (B16) and lost track of the time. In his rant, he didn't say anything about having come from a late arriving flight, just that he had a BP and was a 1K and therefore he should get on this flight.
I should clarify that I was making the assumption from the OP that the late arriving passenger wasn't making a connection.

But I've been on both ends of the spectrum either as a late arriving connection or standby trying to get on. Yes, I tend to agree that a GA should make every possible effort to prioritize the late arriving connection, but at what point do you draw the line especially in scenarios where the GA offloaded said pax, handed me a boarding pass and I'm walking down the jetway only to be called back because they showed up.
qukslvr619 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 10:19 am   #14
  
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Providence RI
Programs: American Exec Plat, Hyatt Refugeeist, Marriot Gold, Air Canada Cattle Class, Korean Air Morning Plat
Posts: 898
I don't appreciate how this guy jumped to the front of the line.

As an aside, I had some lady try to do that and I flat out told her she was rude and needed to take her place in line. She barely skipped a beat and just kept talking to the GA about how she was important.
The smallest state is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 16, 17, 10:29 am   #15
Suspended
  
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Atherton, CA
Programs: UA 1K, AA EXP; Owner, Green Bay Packers
Posts: 21,694
Let's not forget that the guy who jumped in front of the OP may have been conscientious and purposefully scheduled a three hour layover as protection but still been screwed by a very late connecting flight.

Sometimes it's very hard not to get extremely annoyed with airline operations.
Doc Savage is offline   Reply With Quote
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Thread Tools
Search Thread
Go to Top
Forum Jump
Contact Us - FlyerTalk - Archive - Top