Seat cushion completely missing

Old Jan 8, 17, 11:13 am
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Seat cushion completely missing

I think I have finally experienced the worst flight I can remember (after years of flying Delta Y, mind you!). My family flew LHR-LAX on 31Dec, and upon boarding my husband noted that there was something seriously wrong with his seat. His seat was completely missing the seat cushion! There was empty fabric velcroed to the metal underneath, but the cushion itself was mysteriously gone. We immediately flagged down our cabin crew member and she hemmed and hawed for a moment before grabbing her supervisor. Who handed us an extra blanket to sit on and shrugged. No apology, no note made, no further attempt to make him more comfortable. I was absolutely shocked and dismayed. My husband and I took turns sitting in the seat, whenever one of us went numb from sitting on hard metal with a bar jammed into our backsides -- the folded blanket did little to mitigate the discomfort, as that is not what a blanket is designed to do. It was miserable, and I can honestly say I have never been so uncomfortable on a flight, to the point of actually being in pain. 11+ hours of this, with two small children in tow. We spent so much time hopping up and down, neither of us could settle in to sleep, read, or even watch the IFE.

I wrote an email and received the expected canned response. I'm very disappointed -- I do not expect luxury in Y, but I do expect the bare minimum that you would get on Ryan Air or Southwest. Which includes a darn seat cushion!
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:16 am
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Sorry to hear this very poor flight experience - I certainly would not have been as calm as you appear to be in the situation.

When you talked to the cabin crew about this issue, where there no other functioning seats to move to?

If not, I would have offloaded myself while still on the ground. That makes crew and groundstaff to take note, especially if they have to offload baggage.
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:19 am
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Very poor response from the crew - I would have been apoplectic and without hestitation would have requested a seat elsewhere and if the flight was full, rebooking onto the next available flight.

One wonders if the seat was actually certified as safe in its stripped down condition
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:19 am
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Agreed with rossmacd, I would also have offloaded myself. It is unacceptable.
Was there really no proposal to move to another seat ?
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:19 am
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Wow, that's shocking from many angles.

1. It wasn't noticed/rectified.
2. You were assigned an unserviceable seat, with associated safety implications.
3. The crew's provision of a blanket was totally inadequate for pax comfort, especially on an 11h sector.

We will wait for ...
4. BA's response is cut and paste and offers 5,000 Avios
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:20 am
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That's a long flight to be sitting on a faulty seat! It's very poor that you weren't given other options. I would have made my displeasure quite clear!
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:22 am
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We were coming off of a very long 10 days in Paris and London with a 6 year old, 6 month old, and two friends. Offloading wasn't an option, unfortunately., and the flight was almost an hour late departing -- I would have felt awful delaying other pax, especially if someone ended up missing a connection in LA because of us. I am not one to make a scene, but I wish I would have. I'm not a weepy sort, either, but I was near tears come 1am London time, dealing with kids, exhaustion, and severe discomfort.

It was just an all around awful experience. I was hoping for some sort of retrospective service recovery from BA to at least feel like they care and take the complaint seriously, but I don't think that is forthcoming. Edit to add: no Avios offered, which is truly shocking.

I can deal with decreased meal services onboard, take away the free alcohol, whatever. But I would very much like to know that when I board a BA flight, I will at least have the bare minimum -- a seat cushion and a seatbelt!
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:28 am
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The CAA might take an interest in you being sat in an unsafe seat for 11 hours. What would happen to your spine if you hit severe turbulence?

I suggest you escalate this ... others may have other suggestions as to where/who.
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:28 am
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I'm shocked that this has happened, the seat cushion would have been somewhere on the aircraft, are you also saying you had no seatbelt?
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:29 am
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No, no, CIHY, there was a seatbelt! I just lump the two things together as "bare minimum" requirements on any flight. Sorry for the confusing hyperbole.
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:30 am
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Ok understand, did you ask to speak to the CSD?
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:31 am
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Also of interest, the middle seat my daughter occupied was also broken. The seatback button was inoperable, the seatback just flopped back and forth. We shrugged it off, obviously, since a missing cushion didn't rate a response and we figured a broken seatback would not even raise an eyebrow.
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:33 am
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Originally Posted by AirNurse View Post
Offloading wasn't an option, unfortunately., and the flight was almost an hour late departing -- I would have felt awful delaying other pax, especially if someone ended up missing a connection in LA because of us.
Don't hesitate next time, not that there will be a next time, I've never heard of this before. The safety implications alone would justify you offloading yourself, the delay wasn't your fault, and if you or your spouse were not secure in the seat then the implications to you and other passengers do not bear thinking about. If there was no seatbelt then the aircraft should have returned to the gate even if it was discovered after leaving the gate, it's licence to operate stuff at that level. I presume it was a totally full flight, but yes, offload yourself if there wasn't another option (and actually something would have happened in that scenario, of that I have no doubt), a little polite but firm assertion goes a long way.

In your shoes, I would make a formal request for the return of a good chunk of the fare allocated for that sector, and use MCOL or Section 75 (if UK based) or CEDR (if not) to ensure payment. The EC261 thread isn't relevant here, but the mechanisms mentioned here are explained over there.
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:35 am
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Originally Posted by Can I help you View Post
Ok understand, did you ask to speak to the CSD?
I assume the chap who gave us the blanket was the CSD? We did not see him after that, and our cabin crew member referred to him as her supervisor.

I'm beginning to see we handled the issue wrong onboard. I fear causing a scene, and knowing we were late and being hustled onboard already, figured we just needed to suck it up and hope a solution would be offered after everyone was boarded.

At least we got a bassinet for the baby! Seems like that has been an issue for some, so +1 for BA???
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Old Jan 8, 17, 11:35 am
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It really is depressing how low BA standards are these days. Not because the seat was broken but because the crew once again demonstrate that 'couldn't give a toss' approach.

I would certainly have threatened an offload, only because normally the very mention if it results in the involvement of someone from BA with more than half a brain.
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