Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > United Airlines | MileagePlus
Reload this Page >

Boarding door closed and seat given away 25 mins before departure. Any recourse?

Boarding door closed and seat given away 25 mins before departure. Any recourse?

Old Jan 1, 16, 9:49 pm
  #106  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 31,404
Originally Posted by channa View Post
Continuing on your exercise, put yourself in the GA's position. You just bent the rules and closed the flight early, the OP shows up, and now you have to compensate him by law. You're a contract employee who needs this job who can be terminated in a heartbeat.

If you compensate him, corporate is going to ask why you IDBed someone after taking maybe a standby or two, or at a minimum, without following the correct IDB order.

Your only shot of avoiding trouble is to laugh in the OP's face, hope he's an uneducated consumer and goes away. This is precisely what the agent has done. And if the OP does complain, obfuscate some facts to hopefully get out of trouble (no doubt, if called on it, she's going to say he was not at the gate in time anyway). This is why, another recommendation in this situation is to self-scan your BP if you're at the gate in time. It will fail, but there may also be a record of the scan.

It's naive to expect the agent to own up to their error on the spot and make right. It's simply too risky for them.
Yeah, that's exactly what I think.
Loren Pechtel is offline  
Old Jan 1, 16, 9:57 pm
  #107  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: EAU
Programs: UA 1K, CO Plat, NW Plat, Marriott Premiere Plat, SPG Plat, Priority Gold, Hilton Gold
Posts: 4,550
Originally Posted by LaserSailor View Post
I'm just making sure those actually read these pages for advice on travel ignore all the chest thumping on DOT complaints and the belief that this influences how airlines act. Closing early isn't that uncommon, so if you want hassle free travel, get to gate by T-30, even if the rule is T-15. That's the reality and FT is unable to change that by whining about the rules. You don't have to suffer the indignity of the Al cigar for an extra 15 minutes, just wait at gate.
Booting a passenger with a paid ticket to close early IS uncommon. As it should be. And the passenger should expect compensation when that happens, because UA violated the contract they had with the passenger.

There is absolutely no reason anyone should get to a get more than the published cut-off time, and if they do get there before the published time, and the airline does not have a seat for them, that is the airline's fault, not the customer's.
raehl311 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 12:01 am
  #108  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: LAS HNL
Programs: DL DM, 5.7 MM, UA 3.1 MM, MARRIOTT PLATINUM, AVIS FIRST, Amex Black Card
Posts: 4,463
I am with UA on this one.
kettle1 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 12:56 am
  #109  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Programs: WN A-list, Hyatt Glob, HH Gold, Marriott Plat
Posts: 419
You made yourself clear in your first post. Unfortunately the facts and the consensus here are against you.

Originally Posted by kettle1 View Post
I am with UA on this one.
flyersky1 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 3:16 am
  #110  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Maryland
Programs: United, Turkish
Posts: 640
FWIW

As I tell my students "yes you have an absolute legal right to walk across campus at 2 am. No one has the right to rape or assault you at anytime for any reason. However, IMHO anyone who walks across campus alone at 2 am should not be surprised to encounter evil people with evil objectives. So standing on your legal rights may be stupid"

Same advice applies to getting to the gate. You may have a full legal right to T-15 but exercising that right may be stupid.
morelegroom is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 3:27 am
  #111  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: EAU
Programs: UA 1K, CO Plat, NW Plat, Marriott Premiere Plat, SPG Plat, Priority Gold, Hilton Gold
Posts: 4,550
Originally Posted by morelegroom View Post
FWIW

As I tell my students "yes you have an absolute legal right to walk across campus at 2 am. No one has the right to rape or assault you at anytime for any reason. However, IMHO anyone who walks across campus alone at 2 am should not be surprised to encounter evil people with evil objectives. So standing on your legal rights may be stupid"

Same advice applies to getting to the gate. You may have a full legal right to T-15 but exercising that right may be stupid.
And the same result applies: If someone assaults you during your 2 AM campus walk, there will be legal repercussions, just like if United IDB's you even though you were there on time.
raehl311 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 3:48 am
  #112  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: NYC
Programs: AA DULtArer
Posts: 5,525
Originally Posted by jsk1973 View Post
This has been my experience as well. They clearly try to cheat, especially early in the day.

I had the same thing as the OP happen to me with United at one such small airport.



Right. I'd much rather miss an occasional flight than sit in a boring small-city airport for an extra 15-30 minutes every time.
It's not cheating to board early. It's only cheating if pax are off loaded before T-15 and they show up. I share the same experience at out stations, btw, ergo I arrive at T-30.

T-15 isn't the boarding time. It's the last opportunity to board. Claiming its your boarding time is pure DYKWIA.
LaserSailor is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 6:25 am
  #113  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Philadelphia, LAX, Paris
Programs: UA 1K/2MM, SPG/Marriott Lifetime Titanium, HHONOR Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, AA Platinum
Posts: 2,639
Originally Posted by morelegroom View Post
FWIW

As I tell my students "yes you have an absolute legal right to walk across campus at 2 am. No one has the right to rape or assault you at anytime for any reason. However, IMHO anyone who walks across campus alone at 2 am should not be surprised to encounter evil people with evil objectives. So standing on your legal rights may be stupid"

Same advice applies to getting to the gate. You may have a full legal right to T-15 but exercising that right may be stupid.
Very well put

Seems like we all agreed that the GA offloaded the OP too early, and therefore the OP deserves some sort of compensation.

But the OP was not very smart in not showing up early enough & therefore missed the flight, and the repercussions are many:
1. He misses making Platinum
2. He missed his 'important' meeting
3. He felt 'humiliated' (his words)

As I've said a couple times in this thread, you need to be at the gate early at UX airports, and I agree with LaserSailor that the experienced & smart traveler makes decisions based on what is important to him, e.g. making the flight or spending a few more minutes with the family. That way, there is no need to rely on 'legal rights' which will not get you back everything that you lost.
sapguy is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 6:31 am
  #114  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Philadelphia, LAX, Paris
Programs: UA 1K/2MM, SPG/Marriott Lifetime Titanium, HHONOR Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, AA Platinum
Posts: 2,639
Originally Posted by LaserSailor View Post
T-15 isn't the boarding time. It's the last opportunity to board. Claiming its your boarding time is pure DYKWIA.
These days, DYKWIA gets you nowhere unless you're a GS paying full fare, and even then, a contract UX GA may not even know the full implication of IDB such a person (see examples earlier in this thread)

Last edited by sapguy; Jan 2, 16 at 8:00 am
sapguy is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 6:43 am
  #115  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 42,846
There are two entirely separate issues at work here. They are somewhat related, but the only one that matters to OP is whether he was boarded as ticketed when he showed up prior to T-15 (the published cut off for domestic UA departures). He did. Thus, he should seek IDB compensation from UA. If he does not, he may file a complaint with DOT. Alternatively, OP could also send in a note explaining that he is not looking for compensation, but would prefer a customer service gesture of EQM and a UC membership or whatever. That is a matter of negotiation.

As to the early departure, flights routinely depart when all ticketed passengers are boarded. There is no reason to hold. Especially true for a regional carrier at a small outstation where everybody gets to go home when the last flight pushes.

The problem here is that the GA offloaded OP and boarded somebody else. At that point, nobody else has visibility into what happened. The Captain, cabin crew and dispatch see a manifest with 50 pax. That's all they care about.

Finally, US airports do not have conformance as at LHR. Thus, there is no time by which one must be through the checkpoint and there is no linkgage between the TSA scanner at the checkpoint and the gate (also, bear in mind that the TSA scanner is at the start of the checkpoint, not the end). The requirements for UA are simply that one have checked in by T-30 and be through the gate reader by T-15. With OLCI, for an originating pax, this means that UA has no idea where in the world you are until you show up at the gate reader.

This GA probably does this regularly and nothing ever happens. This time it did.

The rest of the posts are all about good practice and sensible travel advice. Might it make better common sense to turn up at the gate earlier than T-21? Sure. Even for a -200 where there is no advantage to early boarding, it makes sense to at least be in the boarding area. But, there is a world of difference between what makes sense and the requirements of the law.
Often1 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 8:00 am
  #116  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: ORD
Programs: UA Silver, Marriott Titanium/LT Platinum, Hilton Gold, AA Platinum
Posts: 4,435
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post

This GA probably does this regularly and nothing ever happens. This time it did.
This is a great point. The GA probably thought it was the right thing to do. I'd hope the OP gets compensation without a fight, and the GA gets a quick reminder/retraining on this.

Nothing more is necessary.
JBord is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 9:07 am
  #117  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 8,805
Originally Posted by exerda View Post
Huh? I consider myself a pretty experienced traveler, and that's nonsense. Anyone blaming the OP for not being there earlier... sheesh, it's 100% on the GA here, folks.
Yeah, it is nonsense.

Basically we should ignore whatever United puts on their boarding passes, websites, etc. as United can and will arbitrarily change this without notice.

Experience travelers should show up a day early and pitch a tent at the gate to insure they make their flight. United can start selling tent space and spin it as a "Change you are going to like"
Surftel is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 9:29 am
  #118  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Programs: UA Plat, SPG Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 677
Originally Posted by JBord View Post
This is a great point. The GA probably thought it was the right thing to do. I'd hope the OP gets compensation without a fight, and the GA gets a quick reminder/retraining on this.

Nothing more is necessary.
UA has already violated the DOT IDB rules by not providing immediate compensation in the form of cash or cash equivalent, and by not notifying the OP of his IDB rights. Both of these appear to be common violations by UA, so I would add that a significant fine for UA is also in order.
Soccerdad1995 is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 9:30 am
  #119  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Programs: Northwest WorldPerks, Amtrak Guest Rewards
Posts: 686
Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
And the same result applies: If someone assaults you during your 2 AM campus walk, there will be legal repercussions, just like if United IDB's you even though you were there on time.
I guess it's a question of whether "legal repercussions" balance the trouble you've faced.

Using a more extreme example, if you cross the street with a walk sign, walking within the marked crosswalk, and some speeding car flies through the red light and hits and kills you, the driver will still face legal repercussions. On the other hand, you're still dead.

While certainly nowhere near the same scale of consequences, the difference between showing up 30 minutes before the flight and 21 minutes before the flight is, in this case, the difference between making the flight and not making the flight but having UA face legal repercussions. Are UA's legal repercussions enough to compensate for the passenger not making the flight, and all the subsequent issues that causes?

I see this as a problem with society in general. Too many folks think only in what's legally necessary (or what they think is legally necessary) when just a little bit more prudence would save a lot of trouble on both sides.
rmadisonwi is offline  
Old Jan 2, 16, 9:51 am
  #120  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: CHS
Programs: Starriott PP, UA 1K, Hertz PC
Posts: 2,013
In this case, the GA is also done...she is out of it and cares not what legal ramifications there are, she will never see the passenger again most likely. It will take some company 17 years of this to have enough ammo to fire the GA without a lawsuit for something.

Meanwhile the passenger who was their at the last minute, but apparently in time, got no flight and has to fight to get what is due to him for the actions of others.

I have always wanted to be able to scan my phone/BP at TSA and have the phone record the time or have the BP stamped by a timeclock type thing. Same for when you get to the gate, UC etc. For the someone watching me freaks, you could easily turn it off. That way United knows where you are and you know where you are, but they can't even track our baggage, so I am not surprised they do no better with people.
Hipplewm is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread