Strange denial of boarding on MAN-PHL

Reply

Old Mar 28, 19, 5:41 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Bos-Man-Sxf
Programs: DL
Posts: 60
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”
dflanagin is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 6:10 pm
  #2  
LBJ
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Programs: DL DM
Posts: 13,290
"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.

Last edited by LBJ; Mar 28, 19 at 6:26 pm
LBJ is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 6:11 pm
  #3  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 41,316
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.
Steve M likes this.
Often1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 7:28 pm
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Bos-Man-Sxf
Programs: DL
Posts: 60
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
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.”


dflanagin is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 7:39 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: SAN
Programs: AA EXP, US, DL, CO
Posts: 363
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.
AA100k is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 8:46 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 2,985
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:
Stop the early boarding (D0) stupidity
Markie likes this.
Gig103 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:11 pm
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: DFW/DAL
Programs: AA Lifetime PLT, AS MVPG, HH Diamond, NCL Platinum Plus
Posts: 18,981
Originally Posted by dflanagin View Post
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.
mvoight is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:19 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: DEN
Programs: AA EXP, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 1,697
Originally Posted by Gig103 View Post
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:
Stop the early boarding (D0) stupidity
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.
bse118 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:27 pm
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Bos-Man-Sxf
Programs: DL
Posts: 60
Originally Posted by mvoight View Post
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.
dflanagin is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:36 pm
  #10  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Minneapolis: DL DM charter 2.3MM
Programs: A3*Gold, SPG Plat, HyattDiamond, MarriottPP, LHW exAccess, ICI, Raffles Amb, NW PE MM, TWA Gold MM
Posts: 80,359
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).
moondog and dflanagin like this.
MSPeconomist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:45 pm
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Bos-Man-Sxf
Programs: DL
Posts: 60
Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
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
dflanagin is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:46 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 2,985
Originally Posted by bse118 View Post
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.
Gig103 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:52 pm
  #13  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: FIND ME ON TWITTER FOR THE LATEST
Posts: 27,302
Question

Originally Posted by dflanagin View Post


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 View Post


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.
Often1 and dflanagin like this.
JonNYC is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:53 pm
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Bos-Man-Sxf
Programs: DL
Posts: 60
Originally Posted by JonNYC View Post
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.
dflanagin is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 19, 9:55 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: DEN
Programs: AA EXP, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 1,697
Originally Posted by Gig103 View Post
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.
nancypants likes this.
bse118 is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread