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Do You Know Who I AM?! FlyerTalk Shares Stories of Entitlement from the Friendly Skies

Do You Know Who I AM?! FlyerTalk Shares Stories of Entitlement from the Friendly Skies
Jeff Edwards

Examples from a curated collection of the very best, “Do you know who I am?” stories from the FlyerTalk forums, range from absurd to infuriating and include everything from cringe-worthy exchanges to hilarious accounts of hubris. The assembled anecdotes may serve as cautionary tales for those searching for resolutions to tense air travel complications while still attempting to maintain humility.

Bridezilla vs. the Empty Suit: Battle for the Overhead Bin

When an irresistible force meets an immovable object, a paradox is created. Likewise, when an entitled bride meets an elite business traveler who doesn’t hear the word “no” very often, a DYKWIA perfect storm threatens to rip a hole in all time and space. From FlyerTalker TennesseTom:

If you have your bridal gown do you get your own overhead bin???

This one intrigued me. I was on the shuttle last week in first along with Bridezilla and her gown. Bridezilla got on in front of me and asked to have the gown put in the closet but alas the closet on e170 is really not well suited to her gown so she decides to fold it in half and give it its own storage bin instead. Used an entire other overhead for her bag and a box she had. Only issue here is with one side useless on the 170 this left not much room for others. First two people who tried to use the “dress bin” she told no go and they dutifully took their bags back to coach were there was space. Third guy must not have good memories of his wedding because he was having none of the “dress bin”. Told her that her dress was not entitled to a bin and basically tried to shove his bag in with her dress, Neither behaved well from that point on. He was wrecking her wedding. She was a spoiled prima donna and he felt sorry for the guy marrying her. FA tried to tell them that there was plenty of space back in coach but they both “paid” for FC and were entitled to the space in FC and were never flying delta if again if they did not get their way. Bride finally takes dress to coach and does not return. I assume she sat back there with the dress

Both had complete DYKWIA behavior. She totally had no right to expect there to be an empty bin for her dress but he could have been the bigger person and put his bag a few rows back even if was in egads COACH

 

Squatters Rights

In most cases, entitled passengers would have had a much better chance of getting their way if they had simply tried asking nicely before relying on their rights as members of an elite class. That’s not how it turned out for the seat poacher who tried to take FlyerTalker Jameseroh’s seat:

Had a guy with a small child yesterday on my BOS/DTW flight (girl looked like she was over 2 but apparently she wasn’t if she was a lap child). I think it was a gate upgrade because I saw the machine spit out a slip when the GA scanned his phone and he boarded with his wife and she took an aisle seat in EC.

He was my seat mate and boarded a few people ahead of me and I noticed he had some things on my seat and figured since he had a small child he was just getting situated so I put my bag in the bin and he proceeds to sit down in my seat. He told me he needed an aisle since he was holding a child and the GA only had windows available. 

I thought it took a lot of nerve to just take the seat and tell me he was taking the aisle. I told him I wanted the aisle and wasn’t going to take the window and he got a lot nasty about it and said it was a short flight. He asked a couple other people to trade that were in aisles and no one would and had the nerve to ask the FA to try to do a seat swap and she wouldn’t.

I guess it wasn’t that big of an issue to have a window seat because he didn’t give it up and didn’t need to get out of his seat the entire flight. If it was that big of a pain for him to be with a lap held child in a window seat he should have declined the upgrade or given the girl to his wife who was in a coach window seat.

I would have probably switched with the guy (and just warned him I was going to be getting up to use the bathroom during the flight and if the girl was asleep he would have to deal with it) if he wouldn’t have just sat down in my seat and would have asked. When someone is sitting in my seat and tells me they want it, then I am not going to do a seat swap.

 

You Will Respect My Authoritah!

In addition to forgetting how to read her boarding pass, a flight attendant flying off-duty may have also forgotten that it wasn’t her place to boss fellow passengers around while traveling non-rev. Luckily for her, an off-duty captain was seated nearby to put a stop to the know-it-all cabin crew member’s rude tirade before she put her job in jeopardy according to this story from FlyerTalker EnvoyBoy:

Sitting in 4B yesterday on CRJ700, the first row of EC. Sitting next to me in 4A is young man (late teens, early 20’s) in jeans and a hoodie, big headphones, etc. 

Boarding is about done and along comes a DYKWIA non-rev DL flight attendant who begins to rip into him for being in her seat. She doesn’t ask to see his boarding pass or suggest maybe there is some confusion. He’s obviously not a frequent flier and it takes him a moment to figure out what’s going since he was tuned out under the headphones. She continues to berate him and tell he needs to go see a GA to find out where he belongs. 

At some point during all this accusatory and unprofessional ranting and raving, she mentions that SHE is in 5A, not him. That’s when a uniformed, non-rev pilot seated across the aisle in 4C who has been witness to this points out to her that the young man is properly in 4A and that 5A is the empty seat behind him.

She mutters something about it not being the plane she thought it was (presumably thought she was boarding CRJ900, where the first row of EC is 5) and then moves along, not even trying to offer an apology.

Very lucky for her it was some novice kid and not me. She would have had a very different response from me during the incident, at her lack of apology, and with a nice follow up note to Delta with the details.

I guess pax aren’t the only DYKWIA on DL.

 

 

The Devil Wears Prada

A passenger who thought her shoes were too expensive to remove at the security checkpoint soon learned that the TSA is not especially impressed by designer labels. FlyerTalk member Canadiantransplant offers this brief one-act play, complete with stage directions, so that we all may enjoy the scene vicariously:

TSA Agent: Ma’am you need to remove your boots.

Younger woman: I don’t want to.

TSA: Are you TSA Pre? No? You will need to please remove your boots.

Younger Woman (whiny voice): But they’re Praaaaada and are hard to get off.

TSA: Well, I’m not the one who chose to wear complicated boots this morning, now am I?

This short drama, of course, leaves some questions unanswered. Not the least of these questions is, “What is the world coming to when owning expensive shoes no longer exempts you from security protocols at the airport?”

Criminal Status

This DYKWIA passenger discovered that there is no elite status level perk that offers immunity from assaulting fellow passengers – even if you are simply taking it upon yourself to enforce the rules. Policing other flyers is a time-honored tradition of the most entitled air travelers, but in this case, it seems one elite flyer took things a little too far. From FlyerTalker Puck021:

My favorite story. Flying JFK-MSP, on an A330, flight delayed after FA’s got stuck in traffic, gate next to the SC by the end of a moving walkway. Crowded gate area. GA made an announcement to try to clear the SP area as they start boarding Premium. This guy comes up behind me talking really loud on his BT headset. After he finishes his important call.

Him: “There are too many people in line who don’t belong here.”
Me: “Well there are like 34 seats and Diamonds.”
Him: “Well your not Premium.”
Me: “Yeah I am.”
Him: “Let me see your boarding pass.”
Me: “No.”
Him: “You have to show me.”
Me: “Are you a GA?”
Him: “Show me.”
Me: “I’m done talking to you.”

So he grabs the shoulder of the guy to the left of me and tries to turn him around and asks him for his boarding pass. That guy says “Get your hands off of me” which causes the BT guy to poke him and say “show me your boarding pass”. Well now I’m thinking that there’s going to be a fight, there would have except for the wise girlfriend of the poked guy who convinces him to ignore the guy. He did until he got to the front of the line where he told the GA that he wanted to file an assault complaint against the poker guy.

I board, the annoying guy boards ans sits across from me in F. Maybe 20 minutes later two Police Officers come onto the plane and tell the guy to grab his stuff and step off of the plane. The annoying guy says that he needs to get to LA for an important deal, and they ignore him and walk him off the flight. Ran into the guy he poked on the flight and congratulated him for getting the guy tossed from the flight. As I had a nice glass of Woodford, I smiled and hoped that he missed the VERY IMPORTANT meeting.

Classic DYKWIA moment.

Little Lord Fauntleroy

If the story of this precocious teen in the first class cabin is any indication, then our grandchildren’s grandchildren will still be dealing with DYKWIA passengers when taking shuttles to work on the lunar colonies. It seems entitlement isn’t just the hobby of those who believe they have earned the right to feel superior to fellow passengers and airline employees alike. From FlyerTalker JAldrich73:

One thing I am now sure of is that DYKWIA’s will continue on for generations to come…

I was on a flight from SLC to MCI. I was sitting in the first row of C+. A few minutes later, a family came on board to get to their seats in F. The mother and father were sitting in the last row of F on the right side, and their son, about 14 or 15, was sitting in the last row of F on the left side. The kid pulled his personal electronic device out of his backpack and sat the backpack on the floor next to his seat. He then said “my bag needs to be put in the overhead bin.” Apparently, no one listened, so then he reiterated, “I SAID (with emphasis) my bag needs to be put in the overhead bin!” An FA came along, grabbed the backpack and placed it in the overhead bin. The kid didn’t even thank her.

The FA then asked if he would like something to drink. He stated, “I will have a Coke.” The father looked at the FA and said, “He’ll have a Sprite.” The kid looked at his father and said “I SAID I will have a Coke.” The father reiterated, “I said you will have a Sprite.” The kid then said one more time “I’M GETTING a Coke.” The father then said very sternly, “You’re GETTING a Sprite!”. The kid took his headphones and forcibly put them over his ears with a loud “Hmmmmph!”

At the end of the flight, when we landed at MCI, the kid stated “I need my bag out of the overhead bin.” The father gets up, opens up the overhead bin, grabs the backpack, and hands it to the son. The son looked at his father, and said “Why did you do that? That’s why we have Flight Attendants! It’s their job to do what we want them to do since we are flying First Class!”

After the family got off the plane, and before I got off, the FAs just shook their head in disbelief.

Instant Karma at ATL

Perhaps the only good part of the DYKWIA crowd (other than the obvious entertainment value) is the rare chance to see an entitled flyer getting knocked down a peg in the wild. An elite passenger at Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) learned the hard way that having status doesn’t mean you can treat airline employees like indentured servants. From FlightAttendantSteve:

While commuting last week I watched a DYKWIA go off on an ATL GA, dropping the F-Bomb every other sentence. And he was screaming that he was a DM. Was priceless to watch his face when the Captain of the AC that walked up to the GA to get his release ask him if he was traveling to XXX… Then proceed to tell the GA to rebook Mr DYKWIA since he would NOT be traveling on his AC to XXX after witnessing how he was treating/talking to the GA..

I doubt he’ll act like that again..

For more tales of entitlement (and a few cases of just desserts), visit the Definitive Thread of DYKWIA Stories. or share your favorite DYKWIA story in the comments section.

 

[Image Source: Shutterstock]

View Comments (15)

15 Comments

  1. Canarsie

    May 15, 2019 at 4:55 am

    Plenty more of these stories exist on FlyerTalk if you search outside of the Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles forum.

  2. Mtothe M

    May 15, 2019 at 5:06 am

    Lord Fauntleroy: Yeah, swing by any suburban high school and that behavior’s expected – which is 97% the fault of the non-parenting adults – who teach little to nothing about humility, discipline or respect.

    Bridezilla: They have these things call SHIPPING COMPANIES that will often do a better job of getting your items where you’re going – before you even get there!

    Squatter: Squatting and then TELLING me “what’s what” would never, ever work for me either. I’ve traveled with kids and never dreamt of pulling that – with or without kids, actually.

    Criminal: I’ve been known to ask the “doctor” screaming into their BT how the surgery went, if he/she needs anything “STAT”, ask if they’ve run a chem panel or gotten a CBC, etc. until they get the message…which only about 50% do. The other half glare or talk back with “what’s YOUR problem”. I LOVE the fact this idiot was walked off the flight by cops. What an idiot.

  3. laperk1028

    May 15, 2019 at 5:12 am

    Leaving EWR for SEA one cold rainy Friday night. – #21 in line to take off, got up to #5 finally for take off and we headed back to the gate. A mother & grown son were about to miss a party in Seattle upon arrival, so they wanted off the plane. Everyone in FC started yelling that it better be some type of emergency and Mom yelled “It is, we’re missing the party because of this delayed plane”. I stood in the galley when we got to the gate waiting for a bathroom. Mom & son were brought to the front of the plane and police waiting to escort them off – they thought I was with her and tried taking me off the plane. When I explained I didn’t know them and was just waiting for the bathroom, I was let go. I had now missed my connection, so I got off the plane & stayed at at the Newark Airport Marriott that night.

  4. ameliaislanddave

    May 15, 2019 at 6:11 am

    This is the airline side of this story – I was a passenger.

    One of my twice weekly connects though ATL – 6+ years ago.

    Nonsense delays at gate – eventually boarded the GA come on PA – “Flight is cancelled – you will be rebooked…..”

    Captain interrupted GA announcement – “Ignore her – she does’t know what she is talking about…. Go to Gate XX – I secured us a plane and we will leave within the hour”.

    Went to the gate and we left. Turns out you can horse-trade your way to an airplane if you worked at Delta a while. I was glad fo the senior staff because it was the last flight of the night.

    I never knew the PA had a pecking order – but it does.

  5. ckfred

    May 15, 2019 at 7:00 am

    Story 1: My wife, son, and I were boarding at DFW for an AA flight to ORD. We are boarding with the elites. I heard a passenger behind me ask a GA, “When do kids get to board with the elites?”

    The GA replied, “When both parents are Gold.”

    I looked over my shoulder, and the passenger had a sheepish look.

    Story 2: A friend of mine is a captain with AA. He was flying ORD-LAX. During boarding, a passenger flying Y with his teenage son asked another passenger if he would trade seats, so the two could sit together.

    The passenger said that he wanted to keep his aisle seat, because if recent shoulder surgery.

    The father got a bit abusive, and four call buttons were pushed, simultaneously.

    Long story short, my friend ordered the passenger off, out of concern for an in-flight altercation requiring a diversion.

    Besides the father and son, mother and two daughters in F got off. So, the stand-by list was further cleared, and the threatened passenger was upgraded to F.

    I bet the family conversation at the gate while waiting for the next flight with open seats was interesting.

  6. MitchR

    May 15, 2019 at 7:09 am

    It’s interesting to see how many are examples of employees behaving badly. I flew on America West about 20 years ago. I was in the first row of FC. America West didn’t have a bulkhead so the front entrance door was next to the leg space of this row. The guy seated next to me had a backpack sitting in the leg space. FA tells him that it needs to go in the overhead. He flashes an America West employee as if that somehow supersedes FAA regulations. She insists that it go in the bin. Just then Karma intervenes and a passenger comes by with a guitar case and accidentally knocks my tomato juice off of the center console and onto the guy’s lap.
    On a flight from JFK to LAX and a non-rev employee has her “emotional support dog” in FC. She insists on an aisle seat and FA tells her that she should sit in her assigned seat. She flashes her employee ID and the FA makes me switch seats. Complained to AA and got a snarky letter that if I don’t like dogs I should request a pet free flight.

  7. MitchR

    May 15, 2019 at 7:21 am

    On a flight from LGA to PHX and the passenger in window seat has her stuff spread across all three under seat storage, and she is in my aisle seat, with more stuff sitting on the middle seat. Before I can say anything the FA tells her that she needs to either put it in the overhead or check it. I point out that I have the aisle and FA asks for her boarding pass. She tells FA that her father made the reservation and that she was supposed to get the aisle seat and that the middle seat should have been “blocked.” FA tells her to sit in her seat and put away her stuff so she calls her father but doesn’t get through so she calls her mother. She tells FA that her mother wants to talk to her but the FA, who is just trying to get the very full flight boarded tells her to move to her seat. Princess tells FA “You are going to be fired” then follows up with “Do you know who my father is?” FA resists the urge to say “I don’t know who your father is, didn’t your mom tell you?” Center seat passenger comes which causes a new round of complaints. She spent the entire five hour flight complaining to the center seat passenger about how unfair the situation was.

  8. lebelgo

    May 15, 2019 at 11:01 am

    I was sitting in 1st class, when a coach family, boarding group 6, came on, and explained that his teen-aged daughter had to have her large carry-on accommodated in the overhead bins, rather than checked at the gate, because she had “obsessive-compulsive disorder.” The daughter, in fact, grew a fit when told they would either have to check the bag or reschedule on a later flight. One of the 1st class passengers then offered to have his bag checked instead. The daughter never even thanked that passenger. I wonder if having OCD means you have to be rude as well? There’s a child who’s going to have a rough adulthood, unless she has her father “protecting” her for her whole life.

  9. 01spirit750

    May 15, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    Many years ago, flying out of Dallas. A very late flyer (Johnnv VIP) comes running onto full flight with 2 carry on’s and a garment bag. All the overheads are full and closed.
    He puts one bag under the seat in front of him and the FA tells him he will have to check his other carry on. He has a fit about having a meeting as soon as they land and he cannot check his bag. Johnny VIP says that he will put it on the floor in front of the person next to him and that person can put their feet on the carry on (a very uncomfortable position I am sure). Of course the FA says no and the bag must be checked.

  10. jamesteroh

    May 15, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    For story 1 with the wedding gown, if she sat in coach she must have been ticketed in coach. I think the first class passengers had a right to the first class bin space if they were ticketed for first class and the bride to be was in coach.

  11. pgary

    May 15, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    A long time ago I heard about a celebrity yelling to a gate agent “Do you know who I am?!” GA the announced “Ladies and gentlemen, I need your assistance. The gentleman in front of me does not know who he is. If you know him, please help us identify him.”

  12. thesaints

    May 15, 2019 at 3:01 pm

    Actually, it is “DON’T you know who I am ?”

  13. scubadog

    May 15, 2019 at 7:22 pm

    I have many similar experiences like those told above. However, I have had the opposite experiences too. Years ago on a flight from LAX. To Pittsburgh, I was seated next to a gentleman in biz. As the flight progressed, people from all over the place came to our row to ask for his autograph. He turned to me and apologized for what he thought WP was disruptive behavior. He shyly asked me whether I knew who he was. I replied that I was a former USC faculty member and was required to know all of USC’s Heisman winners. Marcus Allen was the man, and he was headed to call the Pittsburgh game on national television. He laughed and had a nice flight across country. He was the opposite of entitled. So refreshing and genuine.

  14. Jackie_414

    May 15, 2019 at 8:29 pm

    Rick Neuheisel is the KING of DYKWIA. Just ask Alaska Airlines.

  15. bikesonaplane

    May 16, 2019 at 10:43 am

    The problem is if you give in to people like bridezilla they will continue thinking they are special. They aren’t and need to be reminded, sadly I don’t think they really understand common curtesy

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