F seat poached by disabled passenger

Old Jan 20, 14, 7:00 pm
  #16  
 
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Originally Posted by jon0 View Post
Are you telling me that we might have been able to get out of the gate sooner if I had insisted that either 1) I get my original assigned seat, in which case we'd have to spend additional time to either convince the passenger to move voluntarily, or arrange to have her forcefully removed; or if I had insisted that 2) My involuntary downgrade is properly reflected in the system and my new boarding pass, in which case I will have to be unloaded and reloaded, and a new manifest printed...

Remember, I care much more about making my connection than I do of sitting in UX "First" for this brief flight.
I don't care where you sit!
There are many, many procedures that are required before your aircraft could be pushed back.
I'm saying that I don't care if it was Sister Theresa with a body cast, her a$$ is movin' out of my RPUed seat!!!
I pay too much money, and ride on too many planes, to fall for some sob story from ANYONE.
If you were that concerned about making your connection and didn't want to push it, what's your reason for mentioning it further. What exactly are posters on here supposed to do except get into a heated discussion about the rights of disabled passengers that don't want to pay for a F/C seat and park their a$$ anywhere they wish, AND GET AWAY WITH IT???

I'm off to BOS in the a.m. and one of my connections was upgraded with a CPU, however my itin still shows me in 7D. After over 1 hour on the phone with res (twice) and some tech support agent in India. I'm still in coach, but showing at being upgraded and with a F/C seat assignment, and F/C is now full. When I check in for my first flight in then morning I'm going to be proactive and seek IMMEDIATE action to get my rightful seat, or I'm cancelling and driving home.

To each their own, and I OWN the seat that I was assigned, PERIOD!!! I just had back surgery 5 weeks ago and I ain't switching with anyone, and if I can't sit where I'm comfortable, I ain't flying. 2,750,000 miles will make one a true believer, believe me!

A downgrade by a g/a in one thing, but this "Can We Switch?" back-braced chick ain't a g/a!!!
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:06 pm
  #17  
 
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Originally Posted by jon0 View Post
I'm only referring to the boarding order, not how important a customer is to the company.
Just to take a slight edge off OP fully justified irritation at a disabled passenger.

DW is disabled and we board early, often before upgrades are assigned. on more than one occasion they have come back to upgrade one of us, but she needs my help so we have to pass if it's a single. So it goes to the lucky next on list. So you just might get lucky if you are behind us on the list.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:13 pm
  #18  
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This is pretty obviously a calculated seat poach by an experienced poacher.
It's probably worth at least trying to get your RPU back.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:13 pm
  #19  
 
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I feel for you man, that F seat was yours. But like you said, a "F" seat on a Q400 is not worth fighting over and risk delaying a flight. If you insisted on your seat most likely they would've had that woman removed from the flight, which honestly probably wouldn't have been worth the trouble.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:22 pm
  #20  
 
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I commend the OP for his kindness (and astuteness for not escalating the situation especially not on a long-haul flight and a tight connection). If I were the OP though I would have immediately asked the FA to get the GA to re-issue the BP so UA will credit the RPU back to him and also the evidence that he actually sat in Y. Otherwise, there's no documentation that he didn't take the F seat. Otherwise, take down the FA's names on that flight so they can be tracked in case of a dispute.

But I agree with the OP. Given the situation and a tight connection, I'd have taken the "swapped" seat so the door will close and flight departs on time. However, if there's space on the plane, I'd have requested to be seated close to the exit door so I could get out ASAP to make my tight connection. Would definitely not have taken the back of the bus as a "swap" since I'd be doubly pissed if I missed the tight connection.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:22 pm
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by goalie View Post
witnesses when ultimately busted) and sort of reminds me of Helen Hayes in "Airport")
Made me chuckle - going to YouTube right now and see if I can see any scenes from her from that movie.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:26 pm
  #22  
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Originally Posted by ldsant View Post
As somebody who has been sick this last two years and has had to fly when sick I have always appreciated the displays of kindness e.g., I was in a middle seat and the person on the aisle offered me her seat so I could be more comfortable
There's a major difference between someone offering you something and you taking it as if you deserved it. When my wife and I are not seated together, I never assume someone is going to switch seats with one of us. We each take our assigned seats and only then do we ask someone to swap. I am not even convinced that this woman was disabled in any way, or that she didn't speak fluent English. The more I think about it, the more she sounds like a "professional" poacher to me.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:44 pm
  #23  
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Originally Posted by LilAbner View Post
If you were that concerned about making your connection and didn't want to push it, what's your reason for mentioning it further. What exactly are posters on here supposed to do except get into a heated discussion about the rights of disabled passengers that don't want to pay for a F/C seat and park their a$$ anywhere they wish, AND GET AWAY WITH IT???
Honestly, I did not expect this to turn into a discussion about the rights of a disabled passenger. For me, it was simple -- I had a right to the F seat, I had no duty to give it up, but I chose to voluntarily relinquish it because the incremental cost of claiming what is rightfully mine was more than what the seat was worth to me. Also because it was a nice thing to do, not just for the poacher but also the FA and GAs who would have to deal with the conflict. We may value these costs and benefits differently, and you are free to come to a different decision under the same set of circumstances.

I had just wanted to share an amusing anecdotal story -- perhaps someone might offer some insight into how this happened, or offer advice on how to leverage this to get something from UA, or perhaps share something similar that happened to them. The whole event has happened and is in the past, no amount of debating will that.

Originally Posted by LilAbner View Post
A downgrade by a g/a in one thing, but this "Can We Switch?" back-braced chick ain't a g/a!!!
Honestly, this was the one thing that irked me most with the whole situation -- that there was no attempt at proactive communication from anyone, nor was there any show of contrition from the passenger. I'm willing to chalk this up to what appears to be language barrier and different cultural norms and not hold a grudge over it. If it turns out I was gamed by a poaching pro, so be it.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:50 pm
  #24  
 
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Poaching an F seat certainly raises a security flag (as in, get close to the cockpit). I'm surprised a FA allowed it to happen although feigning "disability" and not speaking English seems like a good ploy to get away with it. I doubt that a FAM would have permitted the pax to remain in the poached seat.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:53 pm
  #25  
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Originally Posted by ldsant View Post
OP - you did the right thing. Karma will reward you.
^

Sometimes acting with grace is more important than sitting in F on an RJ.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 7:54 pm
  #26  
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Originally Posted by JetAway View Post
Poaching an F seat certainly raises a security flag (as in, get close to the cockpit).
That's a bit far-fetched. Why would poaching F be any more of a security flag than buying F? It's not like they vet everyone sitting in F.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 8:03 pm
  #27  
 
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I encountered this situation a few times in 2013. It's not even worth going into any debate with a seat poacher. I just pull out my boarding pass, put my finger beneath my seat assignment with it pointing to my seat and say the following:

"I believe you're in my seat."
"I would like to get to my seat, please."
"Do you see my seat assignment? I believe you're sitting in it."
"If you have your boarding pass, I can call the FA or GA and we can get this all sorted out."

If seat poacher does not move, I shut down verbally towards seat poacher and get GA immediately.
Hasn't failed me yet.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 8:06 pm
  #28  
 
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Originally Posted by jon0 View Post
Honestly, I did not expect this to turn into a discussion about the rights of a disabled passenger. For me, it was simple -- I had a right to the F seat, I had no duty to give it up, but I chose to voluntarily relinquish it because the incremental cost of claiming what is rightfully mine was more than what the seat was worth to me. Also because it was a nice thing to do, not just for the poacher but also the FA and GAs who would have to deal with the conflict. We may value these costs and benefits differently, and you are free to come to a different decision under the same set of circumstances.

I had just wanted to share an amusing anecdotal story -- perhaps someone might offer some insight into how this happened, or offer advice on how to leverage this to get something from UA, or perhaps share something similar that happened to them. The whole event has happened and is in the past, no amount of debating will that.



Honestly, this was the one thing that irked me most with the whole situation -- that there was no attempt at proactive communication from anyone, nor was there any show of contrition from the passenger. I'm willing to chalk this up to what appears to be language barrier and different cultural norms and not hold a grudge over it. If it turns out I was gamed by a poaching pro, so be it.


You were put in a no win situation. Either you lose your rightful F seat, or you look like the bad guy, forcing the poor disabled woman to the back of the plane, creating a commotion and potentially miss your connection in the process. Was she truly disabled, or was it a scam? Who's to say? I wasn't there. Even if it was a scam, this falls into the category of "pick your battles". For a marginally better seat on a short flight, I would have made the same decision you did. If it were a transcon or international flight, it would have been a whole different cost benefit analysis.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 8:07 pm
  #29  
 
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I would have been crystal clear I will sit in my assigned seat even if they have to use a crane and a block and tackle to move the poacher.

There are provisions for disabled and I think they should all be accommodated fully and enthusiastically -- these do not include class of service upgrades. It is like suggesting a disabled person who takes the bus deserves limo service just because he/she is disabled.
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Old Jan 20, 14, 8:13 pm
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
That's a bit far-fetched. Why would poaching F be any more of a security flag than buying F? It's not like they vet everyone sitting in F.
It's a method of testing the system, to assess procedures in place, to test push-back from the crew. Not necessarily to take action of any kind.
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