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EWR gate agents blame “unruly” passengers to solve oversale

EWR gate agents blame “unruly” passengers to solve oversale

Old May 30, 2024, 6:42 am
  #151  
 
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Originally Posted by LaserSailor
I think this thread has passed zebras for Unicorns, instead of horses.
It had its dig at UA staff at ZRH which every thread should, so yeah pretty complete.
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Old May 30, 2024, 9:23 am
  #152  
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Originally Posted by PlungeTEX
if offloaded for being unruly, they presumably got no comp and just were rebooked after a cooling off period. Note I don’t know this part of the sorry. Just throwing a third option out there.
the offload part makes no sense in the context of everyone else boarding first. Presumably the GA knew there was an oversell so they would not issue duplicate BPs for the same seat.
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Old May 30, 2024, 9:48 am
  #153  
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Originally Posted by Boraxo
the offload part makes no sense in the context of everyone else boarding first. Presumably the GA knew there was an oversell so they would not issue duplicate BPs for the same seat.
Didn’t mean physically offloaded. Instead, reservation for flight being removed involuntarily for reason of being unruly/unfit to fly.
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Old May 30, 2024, 10:57 am
  #154  
 
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Originally Posted by LaserSailor
I think this thread has passed zebras for Unicorns, instead of horses.
Occam's Razor favors positing rational actors who are behaving in accordance with (possibly perverse) incentives over irrational actors behaving out of gratuitous malice.
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Old May 30, 2024, 2:41 pm
  #155  
 
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Originally Posted by physioprof
Occam's Razor favors positing rational actors who are behaving in accordance with (possibly perverse) incentives over irrational actors behaving out of gratuitous malice.
Thanks, PsychoProf

Wait, did I get that right?
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Old May 30, 2024, 3:13 pm
  #156  
 
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Originally Posted by physioprof
Occam's Razor favors positing rational actors who are behaving in accordance with (possibly perverse) incentives over irrational actors behaving out of gratuitous malice.
Yes. Why for one second should we believe the Captain who said that there was no such occurrence on that flight of a passenger being denied boarding for being unruly? Afterall they are only the captain - how would they know more than we United experts on FT (who were not even there)? The Captain only flies the plane and has no clue as to what happens on the ground and as a United employee has no means of actually finding out what really did happen....
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Old May 30, 2024, 3:35 pm
  #157  
 
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Originally Posted by 757FO
With absolutely all due respect to your mom, I think she may have misheard. I know the gate agents managing this flight personally, and there is no way they would have done this. I spoke with them multiple times as the flight was boarding, and they were doing their best to make it all work. (if you were in the gate area, you would have seen me. I was discussing the rivalry between HNK Rijeka and Dinamo Zagreb football clubs with some of the former players, which elicited a number of laughs from the paxs.)
The airline as a whole has a storied history marred with conflict and shortcomings, does it not? They were wrong right off the bat by overselling a premium section, were they not? If they didn't offer at least 10K for a flight like that, they weren't really trying to solve the problem. I regularly take 1K for simple hub to hub Delta bumps that only inconvenience me by a matter of a couple of hours. American Airlines gate agents in my history have been the lowest of low as far as air travel goes. I'm siding with the passenger(s) on this one.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; May 30, 2024 at 9:10 pm Reason: {lease stick to the issue and not the poster --- FT Rule 12.2
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Old May 30, 2024, 9:23 pm
  #158  
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Originally Posted by Lagunist
T,,,,They were wrong right off the bat by overselling a premium section, were they not?.....
A point of clarification. The premium cabin can become overbooked for multiple reasons beyond overselling
Some mentioned earlier but additionally
-- FAM
-- Must travel employee
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Old May 30, 2024, 9:52 pm
  #159  
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Originally Posted by PlungeTEX
My mother came to meet us in DBV on EWR-DBV last night. She was in paid J. The flight was more than 3 hours late due to a mechanical. At the gate they announced that Polaris was oversold by 3. Y and W sold out so rebooking option was the next day. They offered 2500 and then 3000. No one took it. They then said only Y and W could board. Even 1Ks in J were refused. Not sure if there were GS but no J passengers boarded. Offer went to 3500. No takers. She was in the front of the queue and ultimately heard the gate agents scheming that they would call a supervisor to solve the issue by claiming unruly passengers. There had been no unruly behavior. Indeed shortly thereafter as boarding was still held while the entire Y and W cabins had boarded, a couple expressed their irritation that they had paid lots of money for their vacation which was being unnecessarily delayed which was then backed up by an elderly woman. Not aggressive, unruly or physical - an assessment backed up by many other passengers. Sure enough gate agents claimed them to be unruly and offloaded them. The elderly woman’s husband of course refused to fly which explains why the fight went out 32/34. Presumably one of those two was crew rest.

fWIW I rarely post second hand stories. But given it’s my mother, and she was a lifelong frequent traveler during her career and now in retirement who has the context and experience, I trust the facts are accurate.
Since VFTW's post went viral, I'm more tempted to address it...ah, the power of clicks...

I still don't understand the motive. I've seen many gate agent memos and none threaten the agents not to IDB.

If there was last-minute duty travel or two seats went INOP, there is not a lot that can be done. I understand no one will take $3.5K, though I would think someone would take more and do not understand why the offer was not increased.
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Old May 31, 2024, 6:57 am
  #160  
 
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Originally Posted by MatthewLAX
... I understand no one will take $3.5K, though I would think someone would take more and do not understand why the offer was not increased.
In my mind this is really the biggest challenge to the whole story. I just can't fathom why this easy solution, with the seemingly least downside to the airline and passengers, was not taken.
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Old May 31, 2024, 7:34 am
  #161  
 
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Originally Posted by fastair
.. the agents saved 30 min for all of the passengers
Well not "all" - for some they brought a significant delay ....

Originally Posted by FlyingHoustonian
..I hope the 2nd hand story was not embellished in such a fashion. Nor do you have any proof yet United acted badly (though it is 'possible')..
The captain's account isn't 1st hand observation either.
And outside of mathematics, there aren't any "proofs" - you can provide evidence and both sides have done so convincingly. The evidence just conflicts.
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Old May 31, 2024, 8:04 am
  #162  
 
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Originally Posted by weero
The captain's account isn't 1st hand observation either.
I'm really confused by this mindset, do we really think if there was an issue with passengers being unruly in the gate area, even if those passengers were ultimately off-loaded, the captain & remaining flight crew would be left in the dark about that situation occurring? Seems to be that would be something mentioned in a pre-departure briefing as part of a safety assessment before they lock themselves in a metal tube with the remaining passengers for the next 8 hours.
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Old May 31, 2024, 10:11 am
  #163  
 
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Originally Posted by Lux Flyer
I'm really confused by this mindset, do we really think if there was an issue with passengers being unruly in the gate area, even if those passengers were ultimately off-loaded, the captain & remaining flight crew would be left in the dark about that situation occurring? Seems to be that would be something mentioned in a pre-departure briefing as part of a safety assessment before they lock themselves in a metal tube with the remaining passengers for the next 8 hours.
Exactly. I went back through the captain's comments in this thread and, for practical purposes, the only conversation in the boarding area that he mentions has to do with discussion of football clubs. There's no mention of seeing unruly passengers or being alerted of such by GAs. Nor is there any knowledge of who was removed or whehter it was voluntary or involuntary.

Frankly, if there were passengers causing a real problem and scene, wouldn't the GAs alert the caption of this and how they were hoping to resolve the situation? I can understand they might not if they're on the flight deck doing their checks but it seems the problem started well in advance of anyone boarding.
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Old May 31, 2024, 10:41 am
  #164  
 
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fa’s barely have time to do safety & galley checks before agents want to rush boarding much less know the latest drama of the day in the boarding area. briefings are for flt time, possible weather issues, broken equipment etc. we have no control on oversell situations, mis connects etc. the blame game finger pointing is endless in airline world.
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Old May 31, 2024, 10:52 am
  #165  
 
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Originally Posted by JimInOhio
Exactly. I went back through the captain's comments in this thread and, for practical purposes, the only conversation in the boarding area that he mentions has to do with discussion of football clubs. There's no mention of seeing unruly passengers or being alerted of such by GAs. Nor is there any knowledge of who was removed or whehter it was voluntary or involuntary.

Frankly, if there were passengers causing a real problem and scene, wouldn't the GAs alert the caption of this and how they were hoping to resolve the situation? I can understand they might not if they're on the flight deck doing their checks but it seems the problem started well in advance of anyone boarding.
Folks, please read this, JimInOhio gets it….

The gate agents usually will not brief us in the flight deck if there is an oversold situation, quite frankly that happens pretty regularly and they handle it per their procedures.

However if there are unruly passengers that are unfit to fly or someone has been denied boarding we, the pilots, are very much incorporated into the loop…every single time. Removing a passenger and/or bags directly affects the weight and balance calculations for our takeoff/landing data.

Additionally, since it is an international flight, positive bag match happens as well. The offloaded passenger must have all their bags removed from the aircraft prior to departure. This is non-negotiable and going through the cans (wide body aircraft) looking for a specific bag takes quite some time. Information that is also communicated to us.

There is so much rampant speculation and misinformation in this thread. Hopefully we can dial things back to reality more towards the way these situations are actually handled.

I really hope this insight helps, this thread is getting tough to muddle through.
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Last edited by clubord; May 31, 2024 at 1:33 pm
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