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-   -   Passenger removed for using phone (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/1970629-passenger-removed-using-phone.html)

narvik May 21, 19 5:15 am


Originally Posted by mikesyr18 (Post 31122884)

The FA was just upset because the passenger said something back. This isn't about safety, it's about power tripping whether you believe that or not.

Unless passenger said: "It's not like I am going to blow up the plane by making a call. If I'd want to blow up this plane I wouldn't use a phone to do it!"
FA responds: "Excuse me?", and goes to talk to captain.

fumje May 21, 19 5:16 am


Originally Posted by narvik (Post 31122863)
There seem to be rather strong opinions expressed in this thread considering the blatant lack of pertinent information.

I agree completely, and —


Originally Posted by mikesyr18 (Post 31122884)
Already said pax should have to listen to safety briefings and instructions. Read the post after the post you quoted.

The FA was just upset because the passenger said something back. This isn't about safety, it's about power tripping whether you believe that or not.

— in my experience there are a lot more mouthy or uncooperative passengers than there are power tripping FA's, so on balance one seems more likely than the other. Both exist, but given what we know and what we don't, that's where I put my estimate.

mikesyr18 May 21, 19 5:17 am


Originally Posted by narvik (Post 31122896)
Unless passenger said: "It's not like I am going to blow up the plane by making a call. If I'd want to blow up this plane I wouldn't use a phone to do it!"
FA responds: "Excuse me?", and goes to talk to captain.

That's still a stupid reason to use "excuse me?" in a sentence.


Originally Posted by fumje (Post 31122899)
— in my experience there are a lot more mouthy or uncooperative passengers than there are power tripping FA's, so on balance one seems more likely than the other. Both exist, but given what we know and what we don't, that's where I put my estimate.

Fair point, but what's the ratio of pax to FA's?

Either way, FA's are the ones on the job and should be held to a higher standard.

tarheelnj May 21, 19 5:56 am

Best response I've heard from a passenger replying to an FA request to get off a call - "I'm not talking to anyone, I'm recording a speech." She smiled and just waited a moment to see what he would do. He put the phone away (no way to tell if he was hanging up or just exiting the record app).

dmurphynj May 21, 19 6:07 am

That seems rather harsh, but depending on what the passenger said, maybe warranted. At least maybe a discussion with the captain before getting tossed?

i once had an FA who (playfully) thought I wasn’t paying enough attention during the safety demo, so she decided to quiz me. Actually asked “How many exit doors are on the plane?”

I replied “There are 4 exit doors on this Airbus A320, two on each side of the aircraft. There are also 4 overwing exits. In the event of a water landing, do not open the overwing exits unless advised by a crew member.”

She bust out laughing and we had a great flight. It was a way to get the point across without having to be nasty - for either of us.

So my point being - it’s their job to enforce the regs. It can be done nicely (ie being playful) or by barking. As a passenger, we can either respond in kind, or take the high road.

The difference is that only one of us is responsible to the FAA. I try to stick to the “catch more flies with honey than vinegar” theory.

venomtrilogy May 21, 19 6:29 am

This reminds me of the passenger next to me some years ago whose phone started ringing during our descent into SJU. From our side of the plane, no land was visible. So she pulled the phone from her purse, held it in her hand, and exclaimed "This is so weird. How am I even getting a signal?"

Often1 May 21, 19 6:40 am

The problem is that when people start deciding when to obey and when to disregard, the problems multiply. It's not just electronics, but then it's seat belts. and something else.

It is highly unlikely that the Captain ordered the passenger removed unless the Captain was satisfied that the passenger had disobeyed a lawful crewmember instruction.

We don't need to debate the merits of the law, rules, or UA's policies here. Those are in place. If they are wrong, they should be changed, but the solution is not in violating them.

We have a situation where the Captain has made a determination that the passenger violated at least a UA policy and possibly more and accordingly he was removed.

Good on UA, the Captain, and the FA. Problem easily solved by obeying the crewmember instruction or pointing out that the phone is off/ in airplane mode. Me, if it was on, I would have shut it down. If it was in airplane mode, I would have shut it down. Not worth arguing.

The way to deal with an incorrect FA would have been to complain afterwards. The way to deal with a correct FA is to obey the lawful crewmember order.

drvannostren May 21, 19 6:50 am

It would certainly be interesting to hear what his response was. I'm glad this story didn't end with "and another passenger from the gate was boarded after he was removed" because I've gotten that vibe a couple times that to get out of a VDB situation they've just FOUND someone to give the boot to.

JimInOhio May 21, 19 6:58 am


Originally Posted by mikesyr18 (Post 31122850)
Right, and FA's should learn more respect towards the passengers, really. Passengers shouldn't have to be obedient like a bunch of dogs or else get kicked off the plane.

From reading multiple flight encounters between pax and FA's, it seems like the FA's need a lesson in the delivery of a message. You can get a clear message across without being rude or using the words "excuse me??." Saying, "excuse me??" outside of when you accidentally run into someone or interrupt a conversation makes me want to rip that person's hair out, and I'm sure many others feel the same way.

Perhaps airlines should make customer service lessons a priority during training.

You don't have to be a dog to be obedient.

If you are married... during the ceremony did you just make up answers in response to the officiant or did you do what you were told?

Collierkr May 21, 19 7:03 am


Originally Posted by davie355 (Post 31122039)
This is faulty. Flying is an essential form of transit in today's world. Irrespective of what you think of the phone rule, it is widely known to be a superfluous rule.

completely disagree. Your flaunting of the rules is why people die in evacuations and the like.

Often1 May 21, 19 7:03 am


Originally Posted by JimInOhio (Post 31123152)
You don't have to be a dog to be obedient.

If you are married... during the ceremony did you just make up answers in response to the officiant or did you do what you were told?

There are also certain things which are not an "ask". Don't forget that by the time this FA encountered the passenger, a significant amount of time had passed since the doors were closed and the general announcement regarding electronics had been made.

JimInOhio May 21, 19 7:23 am


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 31123173)
There are also certain things which are not an "ask". Don't forget that by the time this FA encountered the passenger, a significant amount of time had passed since the doors were closed and the general announcement regarding electronics had been made.

This is pretty much how I view it, too. My experience, after more flights than I could ever hope to count, is I've never seen a passenger taken off a plane due to mobile phone usage. That alone suggests to me this instance must have been a very egregious situation. Also note that the OP makes no mention of any other passenger in the area protesting the removal. I know it's a leap but, if true, they must have concurred with what the FA was doing.

funkydory May 21, 19 7:32 am

I was on a PEK-CAN flight once (Chinese airline) and was using my phone which was on airplane mode while in the air and the sir stewardess screamed at me to put my phone away, even when I showed her I was on airplane mode. Some other airlines dont even allow you to take out your phone. It has to be turned off.

RoxyMountain May 21, 19 7:35 am

Maybe he was using an app that does audio transcription? I often "write" emails and notes by speaking into my phone. Most email, note taking, or messaging apps have this functionality these days. Much easier than typing on a little phone.

fumje May 21, 19 7:38 am


Originally Posted by funkydory (Post 31123264)
I was on a PEK-CAN flight once (Chinese airline) and was using my phone which was on airplane mode while in the air and the sir stewardess screamed at me to put my phone away, even when I showed her I was on airplane mode. Some other airlines dont even allow you to take out your phone. It has to be turned off.

When was this? Until last year, it was not allowed to use phones at all on board. That was a rule from Chinese authorities.


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