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Monday, April 17, 2017

United Air gets people off air and is in news !!!

Even today, we feel that Train travel is for the masses and elites travel by air ! – till a couple of decades ago, the most arduous part was standing in long queues and booking tickets.  Indian Railways revolutionized the way people travel, or rather they buy tickets when they first introduced Computerised reservation and later – the e-ticket.
When you book, ticket may not be readily available and you get wait-listed.  Some may still not know that waiting list ticket is invalid and one cannot travel holding the same.  Earlier, unconfirmed e-tickets only were considered invalid, but those with tickets (waiting list) can travel in general compartment and may get an upgrade, in case there is still some vacancy, with people not showing up.

Away in USA, a couple about to be married -  groom Michael Hohl,and his fiancee Amber Maxwell discovered people sleeping in their allocated seats when they boarded the plane, after a layover at George Bush Intercontinental airport after departing Salt Lake City.  They reportedly  moved to different seats in the same class, because people were sleeping in theirs and he didn’t want to wake them up ~ and now they are in no news, for seemingly no fault of theirs.

United Airlines, Inc., commonly referred to as United, is a major American airline headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.  By some accounts, it is the world's third-largest airline when measured by revenue, operates a domestic and international route network, and has presence in the Asia-Pacific region. United was founded in 1926 as Varney Air Lines  and was later known as United Air Lines.  United operates out of nine airline hubs located in Chicago, Denver, Guam, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark, San Francisco, Tokyo and Washington, D.C.

Recently they were in news for all wrong reasons - after passenger Dr David Dao lost two front teeth and suffered a broken nose when he was forcibly removed from a fligh.  United Airlines said the move was aimed at improving its customer services.
The incident involving Dr Dao caused outrage and widespread condemnation of the airline after shocking footage was shared and watched by millions of people online.His daughter, Crystal Dao Pepper, later told a news conference in Chicago that the family had been "sickened" by what had happened.Law enforcement officials dragged Dr Dao off a flight departing from Chicago for Louisville, Kentucky, because it was fully booked, and the airline wanted four passengers to make way for staff members.The 69-year-old Vietnamese-American physician had refused to leave, saying he needed to go home to see his patients. He was then dragged down the aisle of the aircraft.His lawyer later said that Dr Dao found the experience "more horrifying and harrowing than what he experienced when leaving Vietnam".

The ordeal led to demonstrations at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport and turned into a public relations disaster for United Airlines.  Now comes the news of a  bride and groom headed to Costa Rica for their wedding getting  kicked off a United flight out of Houston following an issue with seating on the plane.

Michael Hohl, the groom, said he and his fiancé, Amber Maxwell, were the last to board United Airlines Flight 1737 which was headed from Houston to Liberia, Costa Rica. According to Hohl, they noticed a man was spread across their row napping when they approached their seats, so they decided to move three rows up to row 21.He said they didn't think it would matter because the flight was half full with multiple empty rows.“We thought not a big deal, it’s not like we are trying to jump up into a first-class seat," said Hohl.“We were simply in an economy row a few rows above our economy seat.”In a Boeing 737-800 like the one the couple was on, United considers Row 21 "economy plus," which is an upgrade.

After sitting, Hohl said a flight attendant approached and asked if they were in their ticketed seats. The couple explained they weren't and asked if they could get an upgrade, but instead they were told they needed to return to their assigned seats.Hohl said after complying with the flight attendant's demand, a U.S. Marshall came onto the plane and asked them to get off.The couple cooperated and got off the plane without incident, but they still don't understand why.

United Airlines said in a statement that the couple tried to sit in an upgraded seat "repeatedly" and they "wouldn't follow crew instructions."The bride and groom were rebooked for another flight the next morning, but Hohl said they won't be flying United again and described the whole situation as "quite strange."

Despite their flight delay, their wedding is still planned for Thursday.United Airlines is steel reeling after the  viral video of passenger being dragged off a United flight went viral.

Strange are the ways of people

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

17th Apr 2017.

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