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-   -   Strange denial of boarding on MAN-PHL (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/american-airlines-aadvantage/1963018-strange-denial-boarding-man-phl.html)

dflanagin Mar 28, 19 5:41 pm

Strange denial of boarding on MAN-PHL
 
So normally EC261/2004 protects passengers from being bumped, delayed or cancelled on. I am actually pretty familiar with the law and its workings. Now here’s a strange scenario that has been brought to my attention and I’m curious of other folks thoughts:

Friend of mine is on a flight MAN-PHL, it’s an American Airlines flight. This is the return flight on the itinerary, friend lives in SLC. Friend checks in 7:30, prints boarding pass that says:

boarding starts at 9:15

departure at 10:05

and at the very top of his boarding pass it says “doors close 10 minutes prior to departure.”

Friend rolls up to the gate at 9:31 and they tell him they closed the gate because they made the last call for him and he wasn’t in the boarding area at 9:15. Plane departs 9:43 without him, 22 minutes early.

Airline says he was there at 9:35 and they close the door 30 mins prior to departure. Boarding pass says they close the door 10 minutes before departure. Friend says doesn’t matter he was there at 9:31.

I found some folks with similar situations here but still not sure what the outcomes were. Seems to me like they violated the agreement printed on the ticket, regardless of their “30 minute policy”

LBJ Mar 28, 19 6:10 pm

"Doors close" doesn't really sound like airline terminology. Does he have a picture? I have a couple Delta domestic BP's on me and they say "Boarding ends 15 minutes prior to departure time."

Okay, well I guess they do use that terminology in the CoC -- https://www.aa.com/i18n/customer-ser...f-carriage.jsp
Just sounds a little off to me -- like something you'd see on a ticket to a show or event instead of boarding an airplane.

Often1 Mar 28, 19 6:11 pm

The gate deadline for international is T-30. Doors close at T-10. But, that has nothing to do with whether your friend was at the gate at the required time. If he blew that deadline, he is SOL and properly offloaded. No EC 261/2004 (EUR 600) or DOT (400% of segment fare to a maximum of $1,350) compensationThat leaves the question of whether your friend was at the gate by T-30. He apparently has told you 09:31 and AA says it was after 9:35. That is a factual dispute.

AA's system will have logged, to the second, when your friend was off-loaded. So, that is going to be hard to beat.

Once the gate deadline has passed, any standbys processed, the flight will be closed and depart because there is no particular reason to wait around. Thus, unimportant that the push was early.

dflanagin Mar 28, 19 7:28 pm


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 30940980)
The gate deadline for international is T-30. Doors close at T-10. But, that has nothing to do with whether your friend was at the gate at the required time. If he blew that deadline, he is SOL and properly offloaded. No EC 261/2004 (EUR 600) or DOT (400% of segment fare to a maximum of $1,350) compensationThat leaves the question of whether your friend was at the gate by T-30. He apparently has told you 09:31 and AA says it was after 9:35. That is a factual dispute.

AA's system will have logged, to the second, when your friend was off-loaded. So, that is going to be hard to beat.

Once the gate deadline has passed, any standbys processed, the flight will be closed and depart because there is no particular reason to wait around. Thus, unimportant that the push was early.

it seems to me that the language in their conditions of carry only allows AA to “reassign” his seat, not void his ticket. They will have to prove, even if he was late to the gate, that his seat was reassigned to a standby and the flight checked in full. It doesn’t say “if you are at the gate later than T-30, your reservation is completely void.”



AA100k Mar 28, 19 7:39 pm

I fly these TATL routes twice a month and you never want to blow the gate deadline. I once had a lounge agent send me to the wrong terminal and gate in PHL and I nearly got locked out. I do my own gate research these days and always show up five minutes before published boarding time.

Gig103 Mar 28, 19 8:46 pm

Unfortunately, AA habitually starts boarding super early. I've arrived at "Boarding time" and found entire flights boarded once (HNL) and up to group 7 of 9 another time (PVG).

Here's a thread about the topic:
https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/amer...stupidity.html

mvoight Mar 28, 19 9:11 pm


Originally Posted by dflanagin (Post 30941184)
it seems to me that the language in their conditions of carry only allows AA to “reassign” his seat, not void his ticket. They will have to prove, even if he was late to the gate, that his seat was reassigned to a standby and the flight checked in full. It doesn’t say “if you are at the gate later than T-30, your reservation is completely void.”

If his seat has been reassigned, there might not be more space on that flight, but clearly it seems to say he can still board before the 10 minutes.
That said, did they void is ticket, or let him take another flight?

***********************
  • 30 minutes before departure for international flights
If you're not, we may reassign your seat to another passenger.

The doors close 10 minutes before departure and you will not be allowed to board once the doors close.

bse118 Mar 28, 19 9:19 pm


Originally Posted by Gig103 (Post 30941374)
Unfortunately, AA habitually starts boarding super early. I've arrived at "Boarding time" and found entire flights boarded once (HNL) and up to group 7 of 9 another time (PVG).

Here's a thread about the topic:
https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/amer...stupidity.html

When AA starts boarding is completely irrelevant to the OP's issue/question.

What matters is if the passenger was present at T-30 or earlier.

dflanagin Mar 28, 19 9:27 pm


Originally Posted by mvoight (Post 30941446)
If his seat has been reassigned, there might not be more space on that flight, but clearly it seems to say he can still board before the 10 minutes.
That said, did they void is ticket, or let him take another flight?

***********************
  • 30 minutes before departure for international flights
If you're not, we may reassign your seat to another passenger.

The doors close 10 minutes before departure and you will not be allowed to board once the doors close.

voided ticket, charged $303 for rebooking and offered nothing. Ive searched the international CoC and the only mention of boarding is here:

HOWEVER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 60(F) (RESERVATIONS), ALL PASSENGERS MUST PRESENT THEMSELVES AT THE LOADING GATE, FOR BOARDING AT LEAST TEN MINUTES BEFORE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE.

MSPeconomist Mar 28, 19 9:36 pm

IANAL, but if the boarding pass says T-10, that should apply rather than the T-30 that *we* *know* applies to international flights. Of course, it would be better if the passenger had proof of being at the gate by T-30.

Since this was an AA flight from the EU (currently) to the USA, the passenger has a choice between claiming under the EC261 regulations or USA DOT rules (which require an IDB to be a situation in which the flight was oversold, so the OP should try to find whether the flight departed with empty seats and whether nonrevs/standbys were boarded in the end).

dflanagin Mar 28, 19 9:45 pm


Originally Posted by MSPeconomist (Post 30941493)
IANAL, but if the boarding pass says T-10, that should apply rather than the T-30 that *we* *know* applies to international flights. Of course, it would be better if the passenger had proof of being at the gate by T-30.

Since this was an AA flight from the EU (currently) to the USA, the passenger has a choice between claiming under the EC261 regulations or USA DOT rules (which require an IDB to be a situation in which the flight was oversold, so the OP should try to find whether the flight departed with empty seats and whether nonrevs/standbys were boarded in the end).

Was told the flight went out with empty seats, but from second hand source so not verifiable

Gig103 Mar 28, 19 9:46 pm


Originally Posted by bse118 (Post 30941463)
When AA starts boarding is completely irrelevant to the OP's issue/question.

What matters is if the passenger was present at T-30 or earlier.

I would say that it is absolutely relevant because OP's friend was denied boarding for "not being in the boarding area at 9:15" which was the published start of boarding. We all know that AA is not JAL, and if the aircraft had began boarding on time, 9:31 (which is not 9:35 aka T-30, by the way) would have not been an issue.

JonNYC Mar 28, 19 9:52 pm


Originally Posted by dflanagin (Post 30941480)


voided ticket, charged $303 for rebooking and offered nothing. Ive searched the international CoC and the only mention of boarding is here:

HOWEVER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 60(F) (RESERVATIONS), ALL PASSENGERS MUST PRESENT THEMSELVES AT THE LOADING GATE, FOR BOARDING AT LEAST TEN MINUTES BEFORE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE.


Originally Posted by dflanagin (Post 30941505)


Was told the flight went out with empty seats, but from second hand source so not verifiable

This was AA735 on March 25th, to confirm?

Personally, I'm not sure that that sounds right that that ticket should have been voided with the presented facts.

dflanagin Mar 28, 19 9:53 pm


Originally Posted by JonNYC (Post 30941519)
This was AA735 on March 25th, to confirm?

Personally, I'm not sure that that sounds right that that ticket should have been voided with the presented facts.

yes that’s the flight, yes it was voided.

bse118 Mar 28, 19 9:55 pm


Originally Posted by Gig103 (Post 30941508)
I would say that it is absolutely relevant because OP's friend was denied boarding for "not being in the boarding area at 9:15" which was the published start of boarding. We all know that AA is not JAL, and if the aircraft had began boarding on time, 9:31 (which is not 9:35 aka T-30, by the way) would have not been an issue.

The thing that OP's friend can be denied boarding for is not being in the gate area at T-30.

The 9:15 boarding time is irrelevant - that's not what he or she was actually denied boarding for. When the aircraft began boarding doesn't matter. What matters is if the pax was present at the T-30 cutoff or not.

Whether the pax was at the gate at 9:31 vs 9:35 is a he said / she said argument, unless OP's friend has conclusive proof.

moondog Mar 28, 19 10:01 pm


Originally Posted by dflanagin (Post 30941480)


voided ticket, charged $303 for rebooking and offered nothing. Ive searched the international CoC and the only mention of boarding is here:

HOWEVER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 60(F) (RESERVATIONS), ALL PASSENGERS MUST PRESENT THEMSELVES AT THE LOADING GATE, FOR BOARDING AT LEAST TEN MINUTES BEFORE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE.

Unlike most FTers, I always try to board at the last possible minute because I always check my bag, and I prefer waiting in the terminal, as opposed to inside the metal tube. I do, however, show up at the gate area at T-30, and make my presence (and intentions) known to the GAs.

The bottom line is that if the BP says "10 minutes", that is pretty much gospel. Since your friend met this requirement, I believe he has a solid case for IDB compensation.

gitismatt Mar 28, 19 10:23 pm


Originally Posted by Gig103 (Post 30941374)
Unfortunately, AA habitually starts boarding super early. I've arrived at "Boarding time" and found entire flights boarded once (HNL) and up to group 7 of 9 another time (PVG).

Here's a thread about the topic:
https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/amer...stupidity.html

this happened to me on one of the few AA flights I took last year. super surprising to me that in PHL of all places, the boarding was hyper-efficient

Dave Noble Mar 28, 19 10:27 pm

Given the conditions of carriage do state 10 minutes and the passenger was there > 10 minutes before departure , I cannot see how the passengers are not entitled to protection under EC261

Even, as mentioned, the 30 minutes reference only states that seat assignments may be lost

I would be putting a claim in for any costs incurred plus the EUR600 compensation per person

fotographer Mar 29, 19 1:42 am

OP, dont understand why your friend would leave it so late to get the gate, especially for an international flight.
I fly in and out of LHR quite a bit.. Even when the boards in the airport say boarding, groups 4 -9 are being called.
Would rather be at the gate earlier then posted, other then miss the flight

xenole Mar 29, 19 1:44 am

Depends on what doors they're referring to.

From my experience at MAN, lets take Ryanair as a simple example.

The flight leaves at 10:00am
Boarding generally starts 35-40 mins before that, or when the plane arrives and the doors open.
At 9:40am, 20 mins before the scheduled departure time, security logs are checked to see who is missing from the flight and whether they have scanned their BP at the start of security.
At 9:45am, 15 mins before departure, or sooner if no-one has come through security, any passengers not on board are offloaded along with any bags and seat assignments, paperwork given to the dispatcher (who does his/her things before going to the captain), and the doors to the jetbridge etc. are closed. The doors to the aircraft remain open until the captain has done what needs to be done with the paperwork, the aircraft is fuelled or whatever happens. This could be 2 minutes or 30 minutes. Who knows?
If someone comes turns up after that point, they are no longer a ticketed passenger and have missed the flight (there's also the airport doing a time related final tannoy call - don't turn up after that and you're a no show)

It generally takes a bit of time to get through MAN security (sometimes it can be single digit minutes, other times an hour depending on whether you get held up, pulled aside for secondary or whatever).
If the agents see you only came through at say 9:30am, then it's pretty much guaranteed you won't get to the gate in time, especially at Gate 55 is a bit of a walk from security (not a patch on T2 when it opens - good 20 mins in places there!).

I'm not 100% sure as to the exact situation, but it's possible everyone else was onboard early, there was no response to calls, the op could have come through security late, ICTS (the people with the machines for SSSS / explosives etc. sampling) had started to clear up etc.

I see it all the time at MAN where people wander slowly up to a gate a few minutes before a plane is due to leave, see the doors to the plane are still open as the lane won't go without them and expect to walk onboard, take their seat and then the plane takes off.

Dave Noble Mar 29, 19 1:59 am

It doesn't really matter how Ryanair works. What matters is the CoC of the airline that the passenger is flying on. It does seem documented that 10 minutes is the latest time of acceptance both in conditions and on the boarding pass. It also seems that the passengers complied with this requirement


Originally Posted by fotographer (Post 30941857)
OP, dont understand why your friend would leave it so late to get the gate, especially for an international flight.
I fly in and out of LHR quite a bit.. Even when the boards in the airport say boarding, groups 4 -9 are being called.
Would rather be at the gate earlier then posted, other then miss the flight

Then again, who wants to sit on an aeroplane longer than necessary? the passengers didn't miss the flight, they seem to have complied with the airline's requirements

eqeqeqx Mar 29, 19 2:41 am

For other AA-idiocy, see this: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.2c980866ed08

Good luck to the OP's friend and hope he gets duly compensated.

no2chem Mar 29, 19 3:19 am

Wow. I started the D0 stupidity thread, but this is completely and utterly ridiculous. I'm not even sure what AA's motive here is other than to annoy customers, nobody cares if the flight takes off 22 minutes early.

​​​​​​I hope you get some response from AA and post back. That they voided the ticket was completely unacceptable, but oddly, I'd expect outstations, particularly in the UK to be sticklers for "rules". With AAs toxic culture of making up rules, it can be a ... bad combination resulting in situations like this.

And to all the people who say "I'd never be at the gate that late". Well good for you. But this isn't about you, some people have better things to do with their time and expect the airline to abide by their posted rules and CoC.
​​​​​

Often1 Mar 29, 19 5:36 am


Originally Posted by JonNYC (Post 30941519)
This was AA735 on March 25th, to confirm?

Personally, I'm not sure that that sounds right that that ticket should have been voided with the presented facts.

There seem to be other reports of AA voiding tickets for people who arrive late, but before scheduled departure. In that window, it seems that they ought to be charged a change fee and fare difference and then rebooked. Once the flight has departed, the ticket would be properly voided.

It may be that the change fee for an international ticket + fare difference exceeds the cost of a new ticket, so the new ticket may make sense. But, that ought to be explained to the passenger.

dflanagin Mar 29, 19 6:33 am


Originally Posted by xenole (Post 30941860)
Depends on what doors they're referring to.

From my experience at MAN, lets take Ryanair as a simple example.

The flight leaves at 10:00am
Boarding generally starts 35-40 mins before that, or when the plane arrives and the doors open.
At 9:40am, 20 mins before the scheduled departure time, security logs are checked to see who is missing from the flight and whether they have scanned their BP at the start of security.
At 9:45am, 15 mins before departure, or sooner if no-one has come through security, any passengers not on board are offloaded along with any bags and seat assignments, paperwork given to the dispatcher (who does his/her things before going to the captain), and the doors to the jetbridge etc. are closed. The doors to the aircraft remain open until the captain has done what needs to be done with the paperwork, the aircraft is fuelled or whatever happens. This could be 2 minutes or 30 minutes. Who knows?
If someone comes turns up after that point, they are no longer a ticketed passenger and have missed the flight (there's also the airport doing a time related final tannoy call - don't turn up after that and you're a no show)

It generally takes a bit of time to get through MAN security (sometimes it can be single digit minutes, other times an hour depending on whether you get held up, pulled aside for secondary or whatever).
If the agents see you only came through at say 9:30am, then it's pretty much guaranteed you won't get to the gate in time, especially at Gate 55 is a bit of a walk from security (not a patch on T2 when it opens - good 20 mins in places there!).

I'm not 100% sure as to the exact situation, but it's possible everyone else was onboard early, there was no response to calls, the op could have come through security late, ICTS (the people with the machines for SSSS / explosives etc. sampling) had started to clear up etc.

I see it all the time at MAN where people wander slowly up to a gate a few minutes before a plane is due to leave, see the doors to the plane are still open as the lane won't go without them and expect to walk onboard, take their seat and then the plane takes off.

Thats interesting, they can see when he scanned through security? We would be in luck here, as he was through security by 8am (photo evidenced to me). The fact remains; the '30 minute cut off' time only refers to seat reassignment, and the AA International general rules only have one stipulation regarding boarding,

Rule 0087 - Denied Boarding - Article C(2)(D): ALL OTHER PASSENGERS ON A FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS. HOWEVER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 60(F) (RESERVATIONS), ALL PASSENGERS MUST PRESENT THEMSELVES AT THE LOADING GATE, FOR BOARDING AT LEAST TEN MINUTES BEFORE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE


If you do a search function for "gate" or "boarding" in that document, this is the only result that makes a rule about boarding time. I just don't see how they are going to argue their way out of this, regardless if "T-30" means something to well traveled folks. This was my friends first international return flight also, so it's not like he even understood the concept of T-30

moondog Mar 29, 19 6:49 am


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 30942208)
There seem to be other reports of AA voiding tickets for people who arrive late, but before scheduled departure. In that window, it seems that they ought to be charged a change fee and fare difference and then rebooked. Once the flight has departed, the ticket would be properly voided.

It may be that the change fee for an international ticket + fare difference exceeds the cost of a new ticket, so the new ticket may make sense. But, that ought to be explained to the passenger.

If the BP says t-10, and you present yourself at the gate before t-10, you are not late.

Often1 Mar 29, 19 6:52 am


Originally Posted by moondog (Post 30942403)
If the BP says t-10, and you present yourself at the gate before t-10, you are not late.

The BP does not say T-10 for presentation. It states that doors close at T-10.

Whether the passenger was late is a factual question. Because OP was not the passenger, that won't be resolveable here. OP says his friend says T-34, which would have been timely. According to OP, AA says T-29. Whether AA said that to the friend or to OP is unclear.

dflanagin Mar 29, 19 7:17 am


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 30942412)
The BP does not say T-10 for presentation. It states that doors close at T-10.

Whether the passenger was late is a factual question. Because OP was not the passenger, that won't be resolveable here. OP says his friend says T-34, which would have been timely. According to OP, AA says T-29. Whether AA said that to the friend or to OP is unclear.

Again, this T-30 cutoff is not in any agreement. Sure, AA says they can bump him and fill the seats, but it doesn't say "we will not wait for passengers after this point". In EU law, burden of proof is on AA, so they're going to have to prove he was late, that his seat was reassigned, which resulted in the flight taking off full. Sure, they could argue that they cancelled his reservation instead of reassigning his seat and the flight did not leave full, but that means the wording in the CoC isn't correct, and they broke a contract with my friend. EU261/2004 is all about protecting the passenger; NOT the airline.

My evidence presented as: His airport check-in time, his security scan time, his boarding pass' t-10 warning, the AA COC wording of "reassign", the AA COC wording of "doors close 10 minutes prior", the 22 minute early departure, and finally the AA International Rules for Denied Boarding, AA Rule 0087 (C)(2)(D):
  • (D)ALL OTHER PASSENGERS ON A FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS. HOWEVER, IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 60(F) (RESERVATIONS), ALL PASSENGERS MUST PRESENT THEMSELVES AT THE LOADING GATE, FOR BOARDING AT LEAST TEN MINUTES BEFORE SCHEDULED DEPARTURE.
I think we have a pretty solid case against their "YOU SHOULD HAVE KNOWN ABOUT T-30"

jliehr Mar 29, 19 7:24 am

Another link

https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/...ng-process.jsp

When and how we board

Most flights start boarding 30 - 50 minutes before scheduled departure, but the exact time depends on your destination and plane. If you get to the gate less than 10 minutes before departure, the doors will be closed and you’ll be unable to board.


Pascal Liu Mar 29, 19 7:28 am

We know about the T-30 rule simply because we fly AA frequently or visit Flyertalk regularly. Bear in mind not every members of public are like us, if T-10 is stated on the boarding pass then T-10 is the cutoff time for most.

eqeqeqx Mar 29, 19 7:29 am


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 30942412)
The BP does not say T-10 for presentation. It states that doors close at T-10.

What would "doors close"-time mean, if not the cut-off time for boarding? Is there any other reason the average passenger would be interested in knowing what time the doors close?

Would anyone holding an already paid for bus ticket with departure time set for 10:05 be ok with the non-full bus leaving 09:35? Obviously AA knew the passenger, having already checked in, was still missing. Perhaps they could even see what time he entered airside, depending on the computer system and the airport. AA denying him boarding 20 minutes before the "doors close" time printed on his ticket is ridiculous.

This is what AA says (https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/...-process.jsp):
"Most flights start boarding 30 - 50 minutes before scheduled departure, but the exact time depends on your destination and plane. If you get to the gate less than 10 minutes before departure, the doors will be closed and you’ll be unable to board."

An idiot may of course argue that the above text does not say that if you arrive earlier than T-10, you will be able to board. That it only says what happens if you arrive later than T-10, but I sure hope the OP's friend complains, and then complains again via one of the "we complain for you" airline services if his own complain is not handled properly by AA.

JonNYC Mar 29, 19 7:34 am


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 30942208)
There seem to be other reports of AA voiding tickets for people who arrive late, but before scheduled departure. In that window, it seems that they ought to be charged a change fee and fare difference and then rebooked. Once the flight has departed, the ticket would be properly voided.

No, I don't believe that is correct.

I'm led to believe that AA might have been well within their rights to depart as early as they did but then had the obligation to accommodate the off-loaded passenger in the OP's description (assuming all is as presented) without any out-of-pocket cost on a later flight.

moondog Mar 29, 19 7:41 am


Originally Posted by dflannagin (Post 30942506)
I think we have a pretty solid case against their "YOU SHOULD HAVE KNOWN ABOUT T-30"

If the BP says T-30, sure, but if it says T-10, that is the rule.

SpinOn2 Mar 29, 19 7:54 am

Used to work gate for AA, we were only allowed to close the flight earlier than 10 minutes if ALL passengers were accounted for. The only reason we could deny a pax on the flight is if they came late and their seat was needed for someone else. On that case, 30 min for international, 15 minutes for domestic. We definitely had times were someone would come up to the gate to find their seat had been given away, and they'd use the "It says door closes 10 min prior!" Sure does, but your seat can be given away earlier per CoC.

So I'd say IF AA really didn't just take his seat away and just decided to close the door earlier than D10, then your friend has a case. Might be hard for him to prove though honestly.

craz Mar 29, 19 8:08 am


Originally Posted by eqeqeqx (Post 30942542)
What would "doors close"-time mean, if not the cut-off time for boarding? Is there any other reason the average passenger would be interested in knowing what time the doors close?

Would anyone holding an already paid for bus ticket with departure time set for 10:05 be ok with the non-full bus leaving 09:35? Obviously AA knew the passenger, having already checked in, was still missing. Perhaps they could even see what time he entered airside, depending on the computer system and the airport. AA denying him boarding 20 minutes before the "doors close" time printed on his ticket is ridiculous.

This is what AA says (https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/...-process.jsp):
"Most flights start boarding 30 - 50 minutes before scheduled departure, but the exact time depends on your destination and plane. If you get to the gate less than 10 minutes before departure, the doors will be closed and you’ll be unable to board."

An idiot may of course argue that the above text does not say that if you arrive earlier than T-10, you will be able to board. That it only says what happens if you arrive later than T-10, but I sure hope the OP's friend complains, and then complains again via one of the "we complain for you" airline services if his own complain is not handled properly by AA.

"Doors close" means to me that @ T -10 ether the door to the aircraft is closed , it tells me by T-10 I need to have already boarded the flight. That said that doesnt mean the flight cant leave early and IMHO it shouldnt unless all tkted passengers have boarded. If it the flight is closed to anyone holding a tkt/B before T-10 its the carriers responsibility to get me to my destination and yes even on another carrier if it will get me there before that carriers next flight

So IMO if our OP got to the gate and normally would have been able to get on before T-10 had the door not been closed then AA needs to step up and own the error

dflanagin Mar 29, 19 8:16 am


Originally Posted by SpinOn2 (Post 30942627)
Used to work gate for AA, we were only allowed to close the flight earlier than 10 minutes if ALL passengers were accounted for. The only reason we could deny a pax on the flight is if they came late and their seat was needed for someone else. On that case, 30 min for international, 15 minutes for domestic. We definitely had times were someone would come up to the gate to find their seat had been given away, and they'd use the "It says door closes 10 min prior!" Sure does, but your seat can be given away earlier per CoC.

So I'd say IF AA really didn't just take his seat away and just decided to close the door earlier than D10, then your friend has a case. Might be hard for him to prove though honestly.

It wont be difficult to prove in UK County Court, burden of proof is on the airline. I still think in your example he deserves to be compensated since his ticket gave him certain limitations and he was fully within them. If AA was really trying to enforce this rule, why would they choose to put a then seemingly arbitrary "doors close 10 minutes prior" heading on the boarding pass? Why not put "gate closes 30 minutes prior to departure"

Article 15 in EC261/2004 deals with deceptive terms and voids them if it increases the likelihood of denied boarding.

dflanagin Mar 29, 19 8:32 am

1 Attachment(s)
I'm sorry, I keep running into post limitations, but here is a link to his BP (i cant post images yet!)(or links so delete the spaces...)

imgur . com / a / 4Pq22lX

ijgordon Mar 29, 19 8:32 am


Originally Posted by JonNYC (Post 30942557)
I'm led to believe that AA might have been well within their rights to depart as early as they did but then had the obligation to accommodate the off-loaded passenger in the OP's description (assuming all is as presented) without any out-of-pocket cost on a later flight.

Surely that would also then trigger EC 261 compensation then too, right, if the passenger is delayed by more than the specified time based on flight distance? Obviously harder to make a US-mandated IDB claim if the flight wasn't oversold, but EC 261 would be more straightforward I would think.

iadisgreat Mar 29, 19 8:39 am


Originally Posted by ddflanagin (Post 30942688)
It wont be difficult to prove in UK County Court, burden of proof is on the airline. I still think in your example he deserves to be compensated since his ticket gave him certain limitations and he was fully within them. If AA was really trying to enforce this rule, why would they choose to put a then seemingly arbitrary "doors close 10 minutes prior" heading on the boarding pass? Why not put "gate closes 30 minutes prior to departure"

Article 15 in EC261/2004 deals with deceptive terms and voids them if it increases the likelihood of denied boarding.

I would agree, the actual passenger can make a claim against AA saying they were there at >=T-30. AA would then have the burden of proof to show that they offloaded his seat at <T-30 (which is of course logged to the second) and not earlier. Should be very easy to prove either way - though I imagine there's a very low probability that AA would actually let it get that far.

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dflanagin Mar 29, 19 8:50 am

Response after final letter:


Thank you for your recent correspondence.

I have reviewed your client's case and the information that you have provided. I realize that you are not happy with our response; however, it's our final decision as check in times have been established to help facilitate customer comfort as well as timely arrival and departures. Despite the circumstances, our agents do not have the ability to override the check-in systems. Therefore, since Mr. ****** didn't arrive at the gate prior to the cut-off time, we must respectfully decline your request for compensation and adjustments.

When considering matters regarding EU regulations, we conduct a fair and unbiased assessment. Generally, we are successful in resolving controversial situations to everyone's satisfaction. Although we have given all aspects of your claim every possible consideration, we are unwilling to resolve it as you have suggested.
Why are they saying check-in times AND cut-off times in the same explanation?


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