Delta Airlines and children

Old Jul 27, 06, 8:45 pm
  #1  
bjl
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Thumbs down Delta Airlines and children

Before I quit to stay home full-time with my three children I worked for a regional airline as a general agent, and I'd like to think what happened to me and my kids on Delta would NEVER happen on my former employer.

On a recent (July 2006) flight from Salt Lake City to Boise -- a flight CERTAIN to have children, by the way -- we were forced to view an episode of the sci-fi show "Dr. Who" called "The Unquiet Dead" featuring zombies, faceless specters, and grannies in open coffins. Thank goodness my four-year-old was home with Dad and the baby was too young to care. The nine-year-old had to cover her eyes, but at least she didn't have nightmares.

In the jetway I asked the captain what was up with THAT, and he said, not in an unfriendly way, he didn't know anything about it and to take it up with the lead flight attendant. Which I did, and she said it was just what Delta happened to have on at that time. Neither said they were sorry it had happened.

I sent Delta a complaint on their online form, and this is part of what I got back more than two weeks later:

We show a preview of the movie so passengers have information about the content before choosing to view it.
Which of course they didn't -- the little screens popped down and they showed it. That was that. But the bigger point is, what idiot would even preview, much less approve, a show for general viewing called "The Unquiet Dead"?!?

My advice for traveling with children: stick to Southwest and bring a portable DVD player!
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Old Jul 27, 06, 9:00 pm
  #2  
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Oh man! My eight year old boy would have loved that! Enjoy your flights on Southwest!
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Old Jul 27, 06, 9:06 pm
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Originally Posted by bjl
Before I quit to stay home full-time with my three children I worked for a regional airline as a general agent, and I'd like to think what happened to me and my kids on Delta would NEVER happen on my former employer.

On a recent (July 2006) flight from Salt Lake City to Boise -- a flight CERTAIN to have children, by the way -- we were forced to view an episode of the sci-fi show "Dr. Who" called "The Unquiet Dead" featuring zombies, faceless specters, and grannies in open coffins. Thank goodness my four-year-old was home with Dad and the baby was too young to care. The nine-year-old had to cover her eyes, but at least she didn't have nightmares.

In the jetway I asked the captain what was up with THAT, and he said, not in an unfriendly way, he didn't know anything about it and to take it up with the lead flight attendant. Which I did, and she said it was just what Delta happened to have on at that time. Neither said they were sorry it had happened.

I sent Delta a complaint on their online form, and this is part of what I got back more than two weeks later:



Which of course they didn't -- the little screens popped down and they showed it. That was that. But the bigger point is, what idiot would even preview, much less approve, a show for general viewing called "The Unquiet Dead"?!?

My advice for traveling with children: stick to Southwest and bring a portable DVD player!
A little unconventional, but I see no reason to complain or switch airlines.
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Old Jul 27, 06, 9:19 pm
  #4  
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That's a short flight.

How much could be shown?
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Old Jul 27, 06, 9:24 pm
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I grew up watching Dr. Who. Part of the fun was seeing if I could watch the whole show without hiding my eyes! It's a great show. Very campy and kids love it. While you may not deem it appropriate for your children, I think that saying Delta "forced" you to watch it is a little strong.
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Old Jul 27, 06, 10:06 pm
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Originally Posted by justhere
I grew up watching Dr. Who. Part of the fun was seeing if I could watch the whole show without hiding my eyes! It's a great show. Very campy and kids love it. While you may not deem it appropriate for your children, I think that saying Delta "forced" you to watch it is a little strong.

So what were the OP and her family supposed to do, cover their eyes the whole time? Yes, if it was on the overhead screens and there was nowhere they could go to avoid seeing it, they were "forced" to watch it.

Maybe you like that type of show. We don't, and I would have been furious to be on that flight. I also disagree with the statement "kids love it" - mine hates gore and creepy stuff, and gets nightmares from it. I could name you a dozen more kids like him in about 30 seconds. It seems you even acknowledge that such shows are hard to watch - "Part of the fun was seeing if I could watch the whole show without hiding my eyes!"

Delta screwed up, and I think the OP should complain in the strongest terms about what was shown. If they want to use similar programs on seatback systems where passengers have a choice, fine, but they should not put programs that will give a certain percentage of their PAX, adult and child, nightmares on the overhead screens.
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Old Jul 28, 06, 9:07 am
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The OPs concerns are valid, not every parent will deem that Dr. Who is appropriate for their children (although my children do watch it), but I'm not sure it is enough for me to switch carriers, because this happens on a lot of carriers.

First time we went to Germany we flew on AA RDU> LGW>BRE and we only had to deal with the “in seat” TVs. They offered either NICK or Cartoon Network as one of the channels, but some other channels were questionable and they had nothing really for my “tween” to watch, but he survived. (LOL)

Last time we flew to Germany we went Delta from GSO>ATL>AMS>BRE (return BRE>AMS>JFK>GSO) and we had some questionable things on the "big flight" in seat TV (I want to say it was 50 first dates and Hotel Rwanda or something like that) , but they did offer NICKTV, again nothing really for the “tween” but I figured that 50 first dates was not so bad and let him watch that.

Last year, we flew to Lithuania GSO>JFK>CDG>HAM>KLJ mostly on Airfrance planes. Some had the drop downs and the long flight had the “in seat”. The drop down was Constantine and I did not want my then 9 year old to watch this, so we took out his Gameboy and he watched those with the earphones on.

I always either take the portable DVD or make my youngest watch his Gameboy movies. I never "figure" that any flight will have children appropriate media for him to watch because they are trying to please so many people at one time and it is the adults who are paying for the ticket, not the child. It would have been an equally huge complaint if they had show "Blue's Clues" on part of the adult passengers.

In other words, they are going to try and please the ones who actually purchased the tickets and if that means the majority on that flight are adults, then the movie will be more adult in nature.

They can't please everyone, so you have to make sure you compensate yourself for their shortcomings with any airline and protect your children from things you don't want them to watch. I know it is a hassle sometimes, but I have learned that I have to do this because they airlines aren't.
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Old Jul 28, 06, 9:09 am
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I'm concerned about similar problems on a TATL trip I'm taking my 4-year-old on in September. We're bringing along a personal DVD player for her so that if anything objectionable is being shown on the main Y cabin screen, we can distract her with her own video and she won't be "forced" to watch the main cabin screen.
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Old Jul 28, 06, 9:45 am
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What about a SLC-BOI flight have lots of kids?
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Old Jul 28, 06, 10:03 am
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Originally Posted by CDTraveler
So what were the OP and her family supposed to do, cover their eyes the whole time? Yes, if it was on the overhead screens and there was nowhere they could go to avoid seeing it, they were "forced" to watch it.
Oh, I don't know.....read a book, play cards, nap, read a magazine, talk to each other. Subjected to, maybe. Certainly not forced.
Originally Posted by CDTraveler
Maybe you like that type of show. We don't, and I would have been furious to be on that flight. I also disagree with the statement "kids love it" - mine hates gore and creepy stuff, and gets nightmares from it. I could name you a dozen more kids like him in about 30 seconds. It seems you even acknowledge that such shows are hard to watch - "Part of the fun was seeing if I could watch the whole show without hiding my eyes!"
Disagree all you want. Here are some facts:

"The programme is one of the longest-running science fiction television series in the world and also a significant part of British popular culture. It has been recognised for its imaginative stories, creative low-budget special effects during its original run and pioneering use of electronic music (originally produced by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop). Elements of the programme are well known and identifiable even to non-fans. In Britain and elsewhere, the show has become a cult television favourite on a par with Star Trek and has influenced generations of British television writers, many of whom grew up watching the series. It has received recognition from critics and the public as one of the finest British television programmes, including a BAFTA Award for Best Drama Series in 2006." (Wikipedia) (Bolding is mine)

Originally Posted by CDTraveler
Delta screwed up, and I think the OP should complain in the strongest terms about what was shown. If they want to use similar programs on seatback systems where passengers have a choice, fine, but they should not put programs that will give a certain percentage of their PAX, adult and child, nightmares on the overhead screens.
You cannot please everyone. Someone will always dislike what is shown. Does that mean that Delta screws up every time they show something?
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Old Jul 28, 06, 10:36 am
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The BBC received 50 complaints from parents indicating this episode was too scary for younger kids when it aired in the UK. The BBC indicated this particular episode would be more suitbale for kids 8 years and up. (I googled it).
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Old Jul 28, 06, 1:57 pm
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My advice to you bjl, children under the age of 13 shouldn't fly. Leave the rug rats at home or take a train, bus or drive. Yes I dislike young children on flights.
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Old Jul 28, 06, 2:10 pm
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Ah another parent who thinks entire plane loads of people should cater to her children, my favorite topic *rolling eyes*. So I am curious, what would the OP like, every movie shown to be barney or rugrats? If your child doesnt like the movie, dont give them the headsets and they are not even likely to look at it (a soundless movie is very unlikely to hold a child's attention). Give them something to play with and let the rest of us enjoy the movies.

BTW your comment about a movie on a specific route. As you should be aware having working for an airline, movies and tv are not set route by route on Delta. They are set by whether you are flying west to east, east to west, north to south and south to north and whether it is the 1st -15th of the month or 16th to end of the month.
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Old Jul 28, 06, 4:41 pm
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You're right, children should not watch programming about witches, ghosts, goblins, axe wielding monsters, or nazi's. No shows with racial slurs against blacks, jews, or asians. They should not watch programming that show getting shot in the head, blown up by explosives, run over by cars, trains, buses. graphic electroshock therapy, etc.

That's it....no more Bugs Bunny.

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Old Jul 28, 06, 8:56 pm
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I have to agree with the later posts in this thread. While I personally do not like horror films or TV programs, I would much rather have that playing than Pokemon or Dora the Explorer. Majority of the pax are not 9 year old girls. There are plenty of other things to do on a plane than watch the movie and as a parent you need to plan accordiyngly and have an alternative activity for your child. Also I think complaining to Delta is ridiculous.
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