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United passenger threatened with handcuffs to make room for 'higher-priority' travele

United passenger threatened with handcuffs to make room for 'higher-priority' travele

Old Apr 13, 17, 3:48 pm
  #106  
 
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The fairest thing to do re: downgrades would seem to me to be

1. You don't downgrade someone who originally booked and paid for the seat outright (with either cash or miles).That is, someone who booked and paid for a seat in F has top priority, regardless of the amount of cash or miles paid.

2. If everyone in F is on a paid (and non-upgrade) ticket, then the lowest priority goes to the person who bought a ticket last. Simply put, it's not fair for the airline to boot someone who bought a ticket months ago in favor of someone who bought a ticket the airline didn't actually have available to sell.

The only exception might be protection for people who bought last-minute tickets, as their travel is more likely to be critical. But defining last-minute would probably be a hornet's nest.

3. People with booked-in-class tickets have priority over people with paid upgrades, who have priority over people with status upgrades.

Practically, that means airlines should not sell or give away upgrades until they are sure the seats are available (which means all paid pax are onboard or else the time to be at the gate has come and gone).

4. Check-in time is irrelevant for determining downgrades (except you must be checked in by whatever time is specified in the CoC). If the airline says you have until T-?? to check in, then you do, period. You can't get downgraded or booted because you took them at their word.

5. Non-revs and must-flies can't displace paying pax (either purchased-in-class or paid upgrade). In all fairness, they probably should not displace pax who have already received a complimentary upgrade either. Goes back to you don't promise (and certainly you don't sell) something and then take it back.

EDIT: I guess the situation could arise where a higher priority passenger (under my scheme) arrives st the gate before the cutoff time but after the cabin has boarded full. If that is the case, of course, the airline hasn't been paying attention or monitoring the situation. But I would argue then that you certainly don't downgrade a paid-in-class boarded pax or a paid-to-upgrade boarded pax. They could downgrade a complimentary upgrade pax (in this case using status as the selection criterion seems OK) but with decent compensation.

EDIT2: As for compensation, a downgraded paid or paid-upgrade pax should get the difference in the fares AT THE TIME OF BOOKING, plus interest (because use of that money was lost - it might not be much, but it's the principle - no pun intended!). Everyone downgraded (paid with cash or miles) also gets mileage compensation. I suppose this could be determined based on amount paid for ticket/upgrade and/or status.

Last edited by Kamalaasaa; Apr 13, 17 at 4:19 pm Reason: Add to list; add compensation
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Old Apr 13, 17, 4:16 pm
  #107  
 
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Originally Posted by Annerk View Post
Bottom line, money talks, and it's a lot cheaper to up the ante and get volunteers than it is to cancel and re-accommodate an entire flight. That's a third grade math word problem that UA failed, and really the bottom line in this entire scenario.
You might want to sketch out that 3rd-grade math on paper before you make your conclusion. It's simply not true to say that it's cheaper to up the ante. It doesn't take as much compensation as you might think to make it cheaper to delay or cancel another flight.

Let's take Delta's fiasco in which they are lying and screwing over hundreds of thousands of customers for stranding them and not giving due compensation. They cancelled about 4,000 flights and stats say they delayed thousands more. 10,000 cancelled and delayed flights in a conservative number. They estimate the problem will cost them 125 million in pre-tax income. Take 125m and divide by 10,000 flights. It's only $12,500 per flight. And that's mainline flights with an average passenger load likely north of 150. For the sake of simplicity, we'll assume the same CASM/RASM ratio for the UA Express flight as Delta mainline flight with 150 seats and adjust for a 70 seat airplane. It's only $5,833 per flight. That's not much. One cancellation is more palatable in no time. That's one danger with forcing airlines to raise IDB compensation above reasonable levels. It's harmful for the aggregate consumer.
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Old Apr 13, 17, 4:18 pm
  #108  
 
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Originally Posted by mre5765 View Post
What a stupid stupid airline.
LAX is a pathetic station to deal with as customers. Learn how service is supposed to be done, UA!
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Old Apr 13, 17, 9:00 pm
  #109  
 
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Originally Posted by Ber2dca View Post
Also lol at the handcuffs thing. Here's an easy trick to get threatened with handcuffs.

(1) Go to a business.
(2) Get into a disagreement with the owner of the business.
(3) Refuse to back down or leave.

There you go. Wasn't so hard, was it? In fact, I know some corner shops where you hope they call the cops rather than take things into their own hands.
Excuse me but what is the crime? Your analogy is to trespass (I think ) but lets say you paid for a hotel room. You think a cop will just handcuff a paying guest on the say so of the manager?
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Old Apr 14, 17, 4:56 am
  #110  
 
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Originally Posted by HomerJay View Post
Let me help you out:

1) If there's an aircraft switch and a problem, you take care of it BEFORE boarding. They didn't switch planes after boarding. It sure as hell wasn't the passenger's fault that he was boarded and sitting in his seat.

2. If you pay full freight for first class and already sitting in your seat, you should never be forced to relinquish that seat, unless it's for an FAM in a last minute security situation.

3. Threatening a full fare coach passenger who is minding his business and sitting in his assigned seat with violence (handcuffs) if he doesn't get off the plane is outrageously wrong, even if the guy isn't a corporate CEO. (The fact that he is a CEO and can make everyone's life a living hell by publicizing the story makes it all the worse - or all the more fun)

That's for starters, Eric. Hope this helps you see some of what's wrong here.
are we sure #2 isn't the case? What if the "higher priority" was they found out it was an air Marshall? Wouldn't know that until late in the process I bet...
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Old Apr 14, 17, 6:06 am
  #111  
 
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So true ual deserves this mess
Originally Posted by GottaGoFlying View Post
Exactly. The United Board of Directors and senior executives have ingrained a culture of greed and disrespect for passengers and employees. The entire BoD is responsible and should all be fired.
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Old Apr 14, 17, 6:22 am
  #112  
 
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Originally Posted by jp12687 View Post
are we sure #2 isn't the case? What if the "higher priority" was they found out it was an air Marshall? Wouldn't know that until late in the process I bet...
Aside from WN going into DCA (junior guys get that route) FAM's get a F seat nearly 100% of the time. Which I happen to also think is absurd as it isn't really a secret and if someone wanted to plan something it dramatically narrows down the list of potential undercover officers. Also, they get to pick their seat so sometimes when you get that last minute seat reassign in F that's the reason. To your point, we don't know that it wasn't a FAM that took this persons F seat but if it was the case then they aren't deep cover agents so I don't know why the airline wouldn't have told this traveler even if it were after the flight landed for security purposes.
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Old Apr 16, 17, 4:46 pm
  #113  
 
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Originally Posted by uastarflyer View Post
flights sometimes are equipment swapped on game day. Sometimes within an hour or two of departure.

key is to catch this before he walks into the aircraft with his BP to his seat and sits down.
I fully agree, but my thing is like...once everyone is on..if "Mr. Important" shows up last minute...then you just tell him sorry. I realize u don't wanna piss off your highest rev GS types. But you can't bump a paying biz customer based on yearly earn/spend. You'd bump an upgrade first, MAYBE a mileage ticket second, if they can even see that, but failing both of those, sorry, you just bump whoever is last if no one is willing to volunteer.
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Old Apr 16, 17, 5:01 pm
  #114  
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Someone who actually paid for a first class seat should never be removed for an elite who got upgraded.
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Old Apr 16, 17, 5:31 pm
  #115  
 
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Originally Posted by readywhenyouare View Post
Someone who actually paid for a first class seat should never be removed for an elite who got upgraded.
Including a TOD upgrade at check-in?

in general I wholly agree. But I could see United making an argument for prioritizing GS over a TOD.

I'm a 1K and was bumped out of my $129 P fare upgrade bought at check in, and then subsequently re-upgraded before boarding. I'm not sure what happened but it was very strange - the GA said to me "I take care of my 1Ks".. My fear of course was I bumped somebody else. All in all I agree that if UA is willing to accept any kind of payment for an F seat, that passenger stays.
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Old Apr 16, 17, 5:58 pm
  #116  
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Originally Posted by tcp1 View Post
Including a TOD upgrade at check-in?

in general I wholly agree. But I could see United making an argument for prioritizing GS over a TOD.
If they can't get their act together to ensure that the GS is upgraded before they start selling upgrades, they shouldn't be selling upgrades.
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Old Apr 16, 17, 6:16 pm
  #117  
 
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Originally Posted by halls120 View Post
If they can't get their act together to ensure that the GS is upgraded before they start selling upgrades, they shouldn't be selling upgrades.
They should never bump anyone out of F unless there's an equipment swap that decreases the number of F seats. If they're trying to plan for the possibility that an elite books an automatic upgrade fare, then they should hold some F seats open for that purpose. If no one purchases those types of fares, then you upgrade someone at the last minute; you do not upgrade first and then downgrade if someone purchases such a fare, period. If it's a last minute SDC where an elite transfers onto that flight, then sorry, he/she sits in the back. I've SDCed before and had to take a middle seat after doing so. So what? That's what happens when you make last minute changes. Deal with it.
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Old Apr 17, 17, 12:04 am
  #118  
 
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Originally Posted by tcp1 View Post
Including a TOD upgrade at check-in?

in general I wholly agree. But I could see United making an argument for prioritizing GS over a TOD.

I'm a 1K and was bumped out of my $129 P fare upgrade bought at check in, and then subsequently re-upgraded before boarding. I'm not sure what happened but it was very strange - the GA said to me "I take care of my 1Ks".. My fear of course was I bumped somebody else. All in all I agree that if UA is willing to accept any kind of payment for an F seat, that passenger stays.
So you think the cabin was full of GS and paying F customers. I bet someone was up there that either had and upgrade, used miles, certificate, etc.
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