5 Times United Airlines Went Viral For Its Customer Service Blunders
United Airlines has gone viral for its recent controversial deplaning incident. While everyone is left investigating what exactly happened on that infamous flight, this is not the first time UA got itself in a tight spot. Here are five other times United found itself in serious hot water with customers.

The Leggings Incident

The Leggings Incident

In March 2017, United prevented two teenage women from boarding a plane bound for Minneapolis from Denver. This was after a gate agent declared that the leggings that they were wearing were not appropriate for flying. A witness tweeted the incident and the issue quickly became viral on social media. Many A-list celebrities and regular folk expressed their anger as they called the move sexist and inappropriate.

In response to the heat online, United stood by its gate agents. It even toughened up with a barrage of tweets saying that the leggings did not comply with the company’s dress code for traveling. The gate agents also said that they do not make the rules; they just enforce them.

When They Booted a Granny Off Her Business Class Seat

When They Booted a Granny Off Her Business Class Seat

Ninety-four-year-old Paz Arquiza was booted from her Business Class seat and moved to economy on her flight from Los Angeles to Melbourne. This grandma had not gone on long flights for years and was suffering from severe arthritis and a degenerative bone condition in her neck. However, the United Airlines staff did not seem to care when her daughter, who was flying economy, assisted her mother to the restroom.

The daughter requested if she could assist the grandma in opening her butter, which the flight attendant refused. They were then given two options. Either they move grandma to economy or both get off the plane so that the daughter could book the next flight in business class. Left with no immediate choice, they picked the first option.

The Drunk Passenger Harasser

Jennifer Rafieyan and her daughter were flying with a man who was clearly intoxicated. Throughout the trip, the drunk passenger reportedly repeatedly groped her and touched her legs and knees, kissed her in the hands and kept placing his head on her shoulders.

“I don’t react well. I freeze,” said the passenger. “When a man is inappropriate with me, I usually just run from it and maybe tell somebody. But I felt trapped. I could not leave the seat because I didn’t trust him with my daughter,” she added. The flight attendants obviously did very little to none at all in making this stop.

When An Old Man Was Beaten Up and Dragged from His Seat

A senior citizen was beaten and dragged off from his seat on a United Airlines passenger flight. The airline claimed that the flight was overbooked and had to deplane some passengers to make room for some of its staff. Three of those randomly selected had grudgingly gotten off, but the fourth person, a doctor, refused because he had to fly for a procedure. What the airline did next was the shocking part. It called in airport authorities who beat him up and literally dragged the old man out of the plane.

Pictures and videos of the incident quickly went viral online. Legal action is yet to be taken by the said passenger. The investigation continues as of this writing and the incident continues to draw flak from all over the world.

When Its CEO Issues One Tone Deaf Apology After Another

A big blunder can be corrected with a simple apology, but it looks like this was not the case for United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz. When he issued his initial statement about the latest incident, he referred to the passenger as “disruptive and belligerent.” This all the more incensed the online community and even the media as the apology did not exactly appear to be a sincere one. Munoz has since taken a softer tone in his next statements, but the damage has been done.

Do you have any airline horror stories you’d like to share? Tell us about them in the comments.


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