The rudest BA crew member in 500+ flights

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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:07 am
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The rudest BA crew member in 500+ flights

I made my first ever crew member complaint to BA last week, and curious to hear what others think. Still fuming a week later and had no response from customer service team so chased via GGL team.

Was travelling LHR-NCE with family – 2 year old, 6 month year old and my partner. Always had good treatment with family on BA (30+ flights with kids under 3), but this time the Purser decided to create some drama.

We have a lightweight and expensive folding buggy that fits into the BA hand baggage sizer as we travel an awful lot and long walks carrying children get pretty boring.

On boarding the aircraft my partner was holding our 6 month old, and me the 2 year old and the folded buggy, and we began walking down the aisle.

Suddenly, the buggy was snatched out of my hand from my side. Without any explanation, the Purser, said “I have to check your buggy.” I started to explain that it was within regulation size and he said “it’s got to go in the hold” and he pulled the buggy out of my hand so hard I was close to knocking my child over.

At this point, I did not want to hold up boarding for other pax as we we first group on, and my family were attempting to find their seat. I therefore seated my family.

I returned to the galley, and asked him quietly to have a quick chat to the side of the galley so as to not hold up other pax. (other crew members were at the door). I told Mr xxx that the buggy fitted the overhead, was within the hand baggage restrictions and could show him in the overhead next to us.

To cut a long story short, he shouted at me, and marched me all the way back to the pushchair drop off point at jetty, past the line of passengers boarding to make me prove it fitted. One wheel was marginally above baggage size checker.

Crowing with joy, he grabbed it and threw it at the jetty door whilst I was trying to explain is that the wheels clip off if necessary - making it fit within the limits. (Never had to prove it before so hadn't taken them off).

He then shouted at me all way back down the jetty – in front of all the passengers who were queuing for embarkation.

Other pax boarded with significantly bigger bags after I retook my seat. In the end, there was significant space in the overheads though flight was busy. I understand the pressure on crew to minimize hand baggage delays, but we had minimal other hand baggage – far less than our allowance.

Buggy is of course is damaged.

Has anyone experienced or seen anything like this before? I’ve done 20,000 tier points with BA in the last 5 years and it’s by far the worst treatment I’ve experienced or even seen. I should say it's in complete contrast to the normal behaviour we experience from BA crew.

PS Photo of buggy in BA luggage sizer in case anyone doubts me!
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Last edited by NWIFlyer; Sep 3, 16 at 11:11 am Reason: Fix size tags for readability
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:25 am
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Originally Posted by kitey27 View Post
He then shouted at me all way back down the jetty in front of all the passengers who were queuing for embarkation.
I think that's 3 sets of shouting you got, which is 3 too many. You say you've never seen this before, I certainly haven't either, and what's more I don't see the point in being anything other than assertive (though even that was unnecessary give the spare space) which is most effectively done in lower than normal volume levels.

So I'm sure you have named the individual in your report to GGL, if this individual has "form" it will be useful in terms of adding to any management attention. And I am sure you are asking for a full repair on the damage caused too.

The slight difficulty here is that unless this was really your only "bag", he is in the right to demand it goes into the hold, in fact it's only the smaller item that is "guaranteed" to be in the cabin. Push chairs are not so guaranteed.

I guess you are badly rattled by this incident, understandably so. All I can say is that since this was the first time you've seen this, you will know it was a one off and you are most unlikely to get it again. Doubtless he felt he was justified, I doubt anything you can do will change that, but after recovery of losses and the pro forma apology from customer relations, I guess it's best to put it down to experience and not let it get to you. If you do let it get to you, he's inwardly chalking up another victory, and you shouldn't let that happen.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:27 am
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Shocking behaviour! I have found that buggy's are often an issue especially on smaller planes. Sometimes I am allowed and sometimes not - if not, I also try to explain that it fits and has done the trip - but, if I see it's not happening, I just let it go (albeit with a grumpy look on my face).

I did have an experience once a few years ago in Berlin with a 2-piece pushchair, not small - checked in - no tags were placed on the pram (I just assumed they would gate check it as I hadn't been through there before with a pram).
When we came to board the lady at the desk literally started shouting at me that I had "hidden" the pram and "lied" to her. I was stunned and told her that it was with me at check-in with a child in it right in front of her - and, she could gate check it there.
She told me that all the staff who could gate check it had gone home and continued berating me. Ended up boarding (they put the wheels section behind the captain in the cockpit), the ground supervisor came on board to my seat and lectured me. Was not very happy.

Since then, have gone with it and found the vast majority of crews to be extremely helpful.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:30 am
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WOW - Unbelievable. Some good advice above from CWS , and I hope you are never put in a situation like this again. Given Mrs Lavajava is now expecting, I need this buggy - what's the brand & model?
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:31 am
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Sorry that the OP had a bad experience. Please let us know how BA resounds.

Wise words from corporate-wage-slave.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:36 am
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I've never experienced anything like this either so hopefully it was a one off.

I've found that when faced with any situation where someone is making up rules on the fly or being particularly rude, I take out my phone and offer to record the conversation so that it can be reviewed later by customer services so there's no mistake about "he said she said".
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:37 am
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Just as a quick sidenote too - I was on a small AA regional jet last week (CR900) - on the outbound, they tried to stop me with my wheely bag - I told them it fits - they said "go ahead, show me" - it fit, I closed the door - the female cabin crew came along and started banging with her fist on the underside and the door. It held fast. She then brought the male crewmember to do the same. It held fast
On the return, I didn't want to go through it again as I had plenty of time for my connection and just gate checked it. In the end my 1hr 30 min ended up with 4 hours in the air as we tried to go around storm fronts landing (obviously) very late and then had to wait for the bag - missing the connection!
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:41 am
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Originally Posted by TravellerFrequently View Post
Sorry that the OP had a bad experience. Please let us know how BA resounds.

Wise words from corporate-wage-slave.
+1
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Old Sep 3, 16, 11:56 am
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Wise words indeed from CWS, however it would even wiser for the OP to give BA a wide berth from now on, as I suspect this will not be the last such incident we will hear of.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 12:57 pm
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No! I suspect that I know who he is speaking about.

OP - did he have a slight foreign accent? If it is whom I am thinking about then this is the sort of behaviour I have witnessed. Do not stand for this - complain and don't be fobbed off with cut-and-paste from Bombay.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 1:17 pm
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I have a similar fold up buggy which, believe it or not, is the exact size of the laptop bag dimensions for both width and height but is 1in more in depth. I have taken it on many flights with BA and.never had a problem. Folding it up usually creates a bit of discussion!

If I was treated in the same way as the OP I would be similarly disappointed. The most outrageous thing is that other larger bags were allowed on, which is the member of crew simply twisting the knife.

I would urge the OP not to let this rest with a bog standard response. I would also echo the sentiments of CWS - it is a rare event and Cabin Crew are almost always excellent with kids as they were with my 2 year old this morning from TLS to LHR.
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Old Sep 3, 16, 1:52 pm
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Rudest crew member

You obviously haven't flown with Iberia !
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Old Sep 3, 16, 2:15 pm
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Thanks for the advice all. Feeling much better!

Originally Posted by kanderson1965 View Post
Wise words indeed from CWS, however it would even wiser for the OP to give BA a wide berth from now on, as I suspect this will not be the last such incident we will hear of.
Indeed. Had 3 CW flights booked in September already; all of Octobers travel has been booked non BA.

Originally Posted by PUCCI GALORE View Post
No! I suspect that I know who he is speaking about.

OP - did he have a slight foreign accent? If it is whom I am thinking about then this is the sort of behaviour I have witnessed. Do not stand for this - complain and don't be fobbed off with cut-and-paste from Bombay.
I don't think so but perhaps. But then I only heard his shouty voice.

Originally Posted by lavajava View Post
Given Mrs Lavajava is now expecting, I need this buggy - what's the brand & model?
Babyzen Yoyo and Mountain Nano are the two most used, but there are lots. We found the Yoyo to be too fragile to push a lot. With the Nano technically you have to clip out the rear wheels to fit the gauge. We only use it for travel though. Good luck!

Originally Posted by Irubi View Post
Ended up boarding (they put the wheels section behind the captain in the cockpit), the ground supervisor came on board to my seat and lectured me. Was not very happy.
.
Exactly his tone. Like I'd tricked my way through the whole airport and I was a criminal whom he'd busted with his Holmesian deduction.

Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post

but after recovery of losses and the pro forma apology from customer relations, I guess it's best to put it down to experience and not let it get to you. If you do let it get to you, he's inwardly chalking up another victory, and you shouldn't let that happen.
Absolutely right - I'm annoyed I'm annoyed! I have passed on this name and hope they see me right.

Last edited by kitey27; Sep 3, 16 at 2:33 pm
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Old Sep 3, 16, 2:31 pm
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Originally Posted by TheOldMan View Post
You obviously haven't flown with Iberia !
Plenty of times. Have even done the LGA - ORD commute on American for a year which up until now thought couldn't be beaten for rudeness from both pax and crew!

A story for another day, but my previous yardstick was on China Eastern in Y. The plane was so old that on take off my seat collapsed backwards so far that my head was in the passenger behinds me lap. The crew (I promise without irony) told me I was lucky I didn't have to pay more for the extra recline and refused to re-seat me. But I digress...
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Old Sep 3, 16, 4:05 pm
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Did his name start with an S? Sounds pretty familiar to two of my flights with him unfortunately...
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