avoid qatar airways

Old Nov 27, 12, 11:11 pm
  #1  
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avoid qatar airways

Re: Flight from Manchester to Phuket via Doha on 23/9/2012
E- ticket number XXXX

To whom it may concern,

I write further to your email of the 9/10/2012.

I would like to take this opportunity to inform you of the events that occurred on the 23 September 2012, whilst on board your plane, which ultimately lead to my arrest and detention.

For some time now I have used electronic cigarettes as an alternative to smoking. They are environmentally friendly and can even be used on planes, as I have been able to smoke it on several previous flights without causing any trouble. However, whilst on board your plane, I started smoking my electronic cigarette and was confronted by a member of your flight attendant team. I ceased smoking immediately upon their request and I asked if they had any evidence of the prohibition, I was curious as to the reason why, as the cigarettes are prohibited as they are deemed environmentally friendly. I was shown a magazine and a brochure but none of them mentioned anything about electronic cigarettes. I decided not to enquire about the matter any further until approximately an hour later, when the Head Attendant came back and asked for my boarding card and passport. When I enquired as to the reason why, he informed me I must pay $300.00 fine. In shock, as I complied with the original warning and ceased smoking, the flight attendant took my British passport and asked where I was originally from. I replied by informing him that I was originally from Iran, to which his attitude appeared to have changed for the worse and he took my passport off me.

When the flight attendant returned after half an hour, he informed me that I was going to be arrested and gave me no further explanation as to the reason why. When the plane landed I was held on board and the police arrived. I was mortified as I was treated like a criminal in front of other passengers on your plane. The Police questioned me, asking why I was smoking cigarettes on the plane. I informed them that I was not smoking real cigarettes but an electronic cigarette, and showed the device to him. He then asked me to show him how it is used and he appeared to be shocked as to the harmlessness of the device and went back to speak to the flight attendant. After five minutes he came back and told me he had to take me to the police station nonetheless. I explained that I only had an hour to catch my connection and that I would also like to lodge a complaint against the flight attendant (Mr. ….) for his poor attitude. I was then taken to an empty bus parked near the plane and after ten minutes of conversation with the flight attendant, the police came back with a noticeably changed attitude and said: “I believe you are from Iran”, and asked if I spoke Arabic. I told him I only speak English and Persian (Farsi). He replied in a very rough tone and attitude, and I quote: “Here is Qatar, and this airline belongs to this country. Just forget about your complaint and I will take you back in the police car to catch your flight.”

The police put me inside a car together with a Qatar airline staff, who again assured me that I would catch my connecting flight on time. I was then taken inside the building where they stamped my passport. I then expected to be lead to my flight however, to my dismay and surprise they put me back into the police car and I was taken to the police station and later to a prison. I was not allowed to call anyone nor was I given the opportunity to have a solicitor or an interpreter present. No one spoke to me in English and everyone insisted that I speak Arabic, of which I had confirmed I am unable to speak. I spent the night in prison. The next morning they began to call the names of some of the inmates in the cells. I asked a cell mate, who understood English, why my name is not being called for the court. He asked the prison officer, who told him that the judges are on their three month holiday and they are short of judges and I may have to wait for fifteen days before I go to court, unless I pay 150 in bribe to be taken to court the same day. I agreed to pay the 150 and after half an hour I was taken to court.

At court I was fined roughly about 130 and was taken back to the police station. After an hour they gave my belongings back and again put me behind bars. When I enquired as to the reason why I was back in the prison, I was told I was not allowed back into the country and that they will organise the next flight for me and I will be taken to the airport in the police car. After approximately five or six hours, I was taken to the airport by two policemen who handed me to Qatar airways staff. I was then taken in transit. I enquired as to what time my flight was, to which I was informed that my ticket had been suspended and I am not allowed to fly by Qatar Airways. I had no passport at this point and I was not allowed to leave the transit to buy my own ticket. This was a catch 22 situation, since the ticket offices were outside the transit area. I was told that they will only give me my passport once I get on board a plane. Eventually I found an internet cafe and managed to buy a ticket online.
This aforementioned detail is only a brief description of the horrific ordeal that I was subject to as a result of your airline services. I am a good citizen; I have never been inside a police station in my life, let alone inside a prison. I experienced a great deal of fright, uncertainty and panic. I did not speak the local language and did not know what was going to happen to me. I have been treated with disdain and discrimination. This experience would be traumatic for any individual, in particular myself, as I have been suffering from a serious case of depression prior to this incident and the main reason of my holiday was to recover from my depression. This was the suggestion of my GP, Dr. Williams, after six months of psychological counselling. As a result of the incarceration, I was unable to take my medication which is due every few hours, and my family were worried and did not have any news of my whereabouts for some period of time.
I am taking the opportunity to inform you of the above occurrence and that I am considering taking further action. However, I will wait for your response to my letter before I do so.
Regards
(name removed)

Last edited by eightblack; Nov 27, 12 at 11:22 pm Reason: Removed personal details
helen1351 is offline  
Old Nov 28, 12, 12:14 am
  #2  
 
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If you had listened to the safet video you would have known that electronic cigarettes are banned on Qatar Airways flights. I believe it is also mentioned on their website.

Smoking an electronic or a real cigarette is an offence.

Based on your experience I will definitely not avoid Qatar Airways.
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Old Nov 28, 12, 12:41 am
  #3  
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Is up to you mr
When you see photo and video on youtube( coming soon)you might change your mind
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Old Nov 28, 12, 12:45 am
  #4  
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Mr katakata
Also if you watch tv sometime or look at those cogarett promption they say use electronic cigarett !!! Not smoking electronic cigarret!!
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Old Nov 28, 12, 12:59 am
  #5  
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Did you request diplomatic assistance while you were in custody? Was your Embassy or Consulate notified of your detention?
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Old Nov 28, 12, 1:01 am
  #6  
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No when you are there you have no right to have lowyer or interpetier !!! Nobody speak english and they only know one word shut up!!!!!!
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Old Nov 28, 12, 2:35 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Originally Posted by helen1351 View Post
Re: Flight from Manchester to Phuket via Doha on 23/9/2012
E- ticket number XXXX

To whom it may concern,

I write further to your email of the 9/10/2012.

I would like to take this opportunity to inform you of the events that occurred on the 23 September 2012, whilst on board your plane, which ultimately lead to my arrest and detention.

For some time now I have used electronic cigarettes as an alternative to smoking. They are environmentally friendly and can even be used on planes, as I have been able to smoke it on several previous flights without causing any trouble. However, whilst on board your plane, I started smoking my electronic cigarette and was confronted by a member of your flight attendant team. I ceased smoking immediately upon their request and I asked if they had any evidence of the prohibition, I was curious as to the reason why, as the cigarettes are prohibited as they are deemed environmentally friendly. I was shown a magazine and a brochure but none of them mentioned anything about electronic cigarettes. I decided not to enquire about the matter any further until approximately an hour later, when the Head Attendant came back and asked for my boarding card and passport. When I enquired as to the reason why, he informed me I must pay $300.00 fine. In shock, as I complied with the original warning and ceased smoking, the flight attendant took my British passport and asked where I was originally from. I replied by informing him that I was originally from Iran, to which his attitude appeared to have changed for the worse and he took my passport off me.

When the flight attendant returned after half an hour, he informed me that I was going to be arrested and gave me no further explanation as to the reason why. When the plane landed I was held on board and the police arrived. I was mortified as I was treated like a criminal in front of other passengers on your plane. The Police questioned me, asking why I was smoking cigarettes on the plane. I informed them that I was not smoking real cigarettes but an electronic cigarette, and showed the device to him. He then asked me to show him how it is used and he appeared to be shocked as to the harmlessness of the device and went back to speak to the flight attendant. After five minutes he came back and told me he had to take me to the police station nonetheless. I explained that I only had an hour to catch my connection and that I would also like to lodge a complaint against the flight attendant (Mr. ….) for his poor attitude. I was then taken to an empty bus parked near the plane and after ten minutes of conversation with the flight attendant, the police came back with a noticeably changed attitude and said: “I believe you are from Iran”, and asked if I spoke Arabic. I told him I only speak English and Persian (Farsi). He replied in a very rough tone and attitude, and I quote: “Here is Qatar, and this airline belongs to this country. Just forget about your complaint and I will take you back in the police car to catch your flight.”

The police put me inside a car together with a Qatar airline staff, who again assured me that I would catch my connecting flight on time. I was then taken inside the building where they stamped my passport. I then expected to be lead to my flight however, to my dismay and surprise they put me back into the police car and I was taken to the police station and later to a prison. I was not allowed to call anyone nor was I given the opportunity to have a solicitor or an interpreter present. No one spoke to me in English and everyone insisted that I speak Arabic, of which I had confirmed I am unable to speak. I spent the night in prison. The next morning they began to call the names of some of the inmates in the cells. I asked a cell mate, who understood English, why my name is not being called for the court. He asked the prison officer, who told him that the judges are on their three month holiday and they are short of judges and I may have to wait for fifteen days before I go to court, unless I pay 150 in bribe to be taken to court the same day. I agreed to pay the 150 and after half an hour I was taken to court.

At court I was fined roughly about 130 and was taken back to the police station. After an hour they gave my belongings back and again put me behind bars. When I enquired as to the reason why I was back in the prison, I was told I was not allowed back into the country and that they will organise the next flight for me and I will be taken to the airport in the police car. After approximately five or six hours, I was taken to the airport by two policemen who handed me to Qatar airways staff. I was then taken in transit. I enquired as to what time my flight was, to which I was informed that my ticket had been suspended and I am not allowed to fly by Qatar Airways. I had no passport at this point and I was not allowed to leave the transit to buy my own ticket. This was a catch 22 situation, since the ticket offices were outside the transit area. I was told that they will only give me my passport once I get on board a plane. Eventually I found an internet cafe and managed to buy a ticket online.
This aforementioned detail is only a brief description of the horrific ordeal that I was subject to as a result of your airline services. I am a good citizen; I have never been inside a police station in my life, let alone inside a prison. I experienced a great deal of fright, uncertainty and panic. I did not speak the local language and did not know what was going to happen to me. I have been treated with disdain and discrimination. This experience would be traumatic for any individual, in particular myself, as I have been suffering from a serious case of depression prior to this incident and the main reason of my holiday was to recover from my depression. This was the suggestion of my GP, Dr. Williams, after six months of psychological counselling. As a result of the incarceration, I was unable to take my medication which is due every few hours, and my family were worried and did not have any news of my whereabouts for some period of time.
I am taking the opportunity to inform you of the above occurrence and that I am considering taking further action. However, I will wait for your response to my letter before I do so.
Regards
(name removed)

They inform you at the begining in each flight by speaker, in the PTV's, in every row of seats in the overhead signs, that SMOKING IS A CRIME, and in the toilets as well. Well, you did the crime now do the time. Im really sorry that you did this; but it certainly was not smart to smoke in a plane.

Why would you smoke electronic cigarettes on a plane? At least you could have asked the cabin crew before taking such a step...

Please take a look at this article:

http://www.newser.com/story/140268/p...ff-flight.html

I think you should avoid Continental Airlines as well.

I think you should be smarter than do commit a crime onboard an airliner!

Article 18 of QR rules

4. Non-smoking flights

All Qatar Airways flights are non-smoking flights. Smoking is prohibited in all areas of the aircraft

It does not mention e-cigarettes or cigarettes. Just smoking so what you did is prohibited.
QatarA340 is offline  
Old Nov 28, 12, 3:12 am
  #8  
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Qatar a3040
For your information is no sighn of no electronic cigarett in plane amd you dont smoke this cigarett !! You use (use) this cigarett .is no dirty smoke coming out as i mention that to your flight attender he told me alot of thing isnot dirty in england but it is in qatar!!!!also as british person e en if i do any crim i have rigjt to ask for lowyer and interpetier not just get answer of shout up!!!! Also i spoke with many people (got some evidence for court) they have been in police cellfor days for some stupid reason like pushing arab woman by accident (is big crime over muslim country get touch by non muslim even by accident) or just complain about flight sttaf!!!! I have been inform by police officer myself f i complain about flight aytender they can keep me there for frw mounth( he didnot know i had my voice recorder on my phone inside my pocket).
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Old Nov 28, 12, 3:44 am
  #9  
 
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I'm sorry for what you experinced but I think your problem is with the authorities within Qatar and not Qatar Airways. I'm sure the FA had contacted the pilot about the incident and the pilot was in contact with ground control who advised the FA you would be arrested on arrival.

I don't when this incident happened but I have flown with QR and distinctly recall the video mentioning no electronic cigrattes, as I mentally thought it was odd to mention it.

I'm not going to blame a flight attendent for doing their job in the times we live in.
kmcbrid2 is offline  
Old Nov 28, 12, 4:03 am
  #10  
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Dear kmcbrid2
Acctually the problem was Fl which for some reason i wont mention his name .but over last 8 days i have conyact with some other people had problem with qatar airways and mr M... is going to have big problem !!! We just waiting for more evidence. Also you can have look at this website too http://www.nairaland.com/472106/qata...ery-wicked-fly
helen1351 is offline  
Old Nov 28, 12, 4:28 am
  #11  
 
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Originally Posted by helen1351 View Post
Qatar a3040
For your information is no sighn of no electronic cigarett in plane amd you dont smoke this cigarett !! You use (use) this cigarett .is no dirty smoke coming out as i mention that to your flight attender he told me alot of thing isnot dirty in england but it is in qatar!!!!also as british person e en if i do any crim i have rigjt to ask for lowyer and interpetier not just get answer of shout up!!!! Also i spoke with many people (got some evidence for court) they have been in police cellfor days for some stupid reason like pushing arab woman by accident (is big crime over muslim country get touch by non muslim even by accident) or just complain about flight sttaf!!!! I have been inform by police officer myself f i complain about flight aytender they can keep me there for frw mounth( he didnot know i had my voice recorder on my phone inside my pocket).
Why didnt you ask Cabin Crew before you smoked?

You cant have a fake gun or fake bomb onboard either.

Smoking is a crime; and you smoked (if the smoke was healthy or not its shouldnt have happened)....
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Old Nov 28, 12, 4:35 am
  #12  
 
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There is culpability on both sides, the entire incident is a long way from being clear, and i'm wary of making comments - unless QR are given right of reply (and they wouldn't reply on here) then I think this thread should be shut down.

I was unaware that electronic cigarettes were acceptable on any flight (for the reason IATA give here : http://www.iata.org/whatwedo/safety_...cigarettes.pdf "Operators should not permit the use of any item which could insinuate that smoking is permitted on board aircraft."

The original poster should have checked with crew before lighting up / pressing a button for the above reason - this to me is painfully obvious (and to them now also).

However, from reading what followed - there was a massive overreaction that should have been dealt with oh so differently. Recent flights i've taken have seen the problem QR have - a lot of new, young, inexperienced crew (who are fantastic and 100% service orientated when things are going well - but struggle when there are problems) - this includes implementing procedure towards passengers, and dealing with difficult situations - especially for 'grey areas'.

The idea that a single female passenger should end up in jail in Qatar, needing to bribe guards, and facing the possibility (so we are told) of 15 days in jail fills me with dread. Aspects of Dubai's jail time for eating a poppy covered roll in Heathrow spring to my mind.

The original poster should be seeking legal assistance in the UK, then contacting the media if all is as per what is said, not focussing on attacking QR on social media. I'm not sure Flyer Talk is the best place due to the level of rants we do get. If I was QR though, i'd be looking to seek a resolution as quickly as possible, and I hope they have tried to make contact as opposing to fobbing off. I am minded that I do not know QR's side of the story, and won't be avoiding them (once new terminal is finished anyway!!).
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Old Nov 28, 12, 4:45 am
  #13  
 
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Folks

We're going to take a quick intermission. I have been in touch with QR, they are aware of the situation as outlined above and I think its best if we allow the 2 parties concerned to resolve their issues.

SIMON
(eightblack)
Moderator-QR Forum
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