When Should A Passenger Be Removed From A Flight?

by Anthony Losanno
Angry Delta Passenger

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I flew from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) to Nashville International Airport (BNA) today. When I boarded, I stowed my things above seat 1B and got settled in. The man across from me had his bags at his feet and when the flight attendant told him that he could not have them there, he began to yell at her, other passengers, and the fact that “Boeing doesn’t have a good reputation.” The flight attendant went to speak with the captain and he stowed his bags and settled down. This exchange (which lasted off and on with him yelling for a few minutes) got me thinking, when should a passenger be removed from a flight?

This man was clearly angry. He shouted that he’s flown nearly three million miles with Delta and that he was done. Freaking out for being asked to stow your bags in the bulkhead row is an odd reaction for someone who claims to be such a frequent flier. He carried on a bit. The flight attendant and I rolled our eyes at each other and he was quiet a few minutes later. His rant about Boeing was misplaced as was his anger about having to stow bags. He was not intoxicated, but clearly annoyed at life. Later in the flight, he said that he can’t wait to retire so that he no longer has to fly.

Delta A321

Other flight attendants might have had him removed from the flight, but this one did not. She maintained her composure and spoke to him quietly and respectfully. Whatever his issue was, he thankfully quieted down. I had visions of the flight diverting when he went on another rant at 35,000 feet. Had she decided to remove him, we might have all had to deplane.

Luckily, none of this happened and we made it to Nashville. I’ve been on flights that were diverted during the pandemic for bad behavior or had passengers removed for same.

Anthony’s Take: If this man had not settled down, the flight attendant should have had him removed. There is no need to speak to anyone like he did and shouting on a plane is not a good idea. He calmed down and we were on our way. What do you think?

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derek March 4, 2024 - 4:10 pm

The FA’s judgment appeared to be good. She was not a bully or lying with a made up story. I’ve seen a similar display of good tact by an Air New Zealand gate agent.

Christian March 4, 2024 - 8:07 pm

Props to the FA for keeping her cool. Nonetheless I think booting the jerk off the flight would have been justified.

Had I been sitting nearby I would have considered asking him what Boeing aircraft do that harms overhead bags.

Richard March 7, 2024 - 5:35 pm

Across the board, people everywhere are too entitled. Whether it’s flying, driving, or in line at a carry out — it is “me” first and the heck with everyone else. Gimme, gimme, gimme!!!

We all might want to consider being thankful for life …. Thankful we can fly, thankful for our family and country, and think of others once in a while.

ACP March 7, 2024 - 6:01 pm

Kudos to the flight attendant who captured the moments professionally and maturely while the man was ranting.
I personally like Delta Airlines, and it is my number one choice for flying if possible.

Fred Dilligaf March 7, 2024 - 9:37 pm

Delta, American, whatever; it doesn’t matter, all bulkhead seats must use the overhead for storage. This guy is lucky the flight attendant had patience. I have scene numerous FAs who are more police than service and safety oriented. I have also frequently seen the bins above the first row filled with crew baggage.


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