After violently dragging a passenger from overbooked flight, United Airlines apologizes to everyone else

United Airlines had a passenger knocked unconscious and dragged violently from a full plane for refusing to yield his ticketed seat to an employee who wanted it. This is CEO Oscar Munoz's public apology, to those who needed to be re-accommodated.

Hopefully they'll never have an overbooked plane again.

Notable Replies

  1. "We apologize for having to apologize. Apologizing is not how United likes to do business, and we know our passengers trust us to not have to apologize for anything. We are taking all steps necessary to ensure that we don't apologize again."

  2. This is absolutely deplorable. Presuming that the situation is as described, I'd absolutely hope I'd literally stand in the aisle and block this travesty from occurring.

    At one point, I was travelling to San Francisco from Toronto every three weeks (for about four years), and I'd absolutely lose my shit if I saw this.

    I suppose we'll get more details soon, but there's no way this is appropriate, and United better act fast to ensure it's the only time. They hit his head on the seat across the aisle and literally knocked him out! I mean, wtf?

  3. Cunk says:

    "Whoa, whoa, whoa...we did not sell more tickets than seats. Every ticketed passenger had a seat. We simply arbitrarily decided to steal one of those seats and give it to one of our employees. BIG difference, pal."

    • Airline Spokes-Asshole
  4. Overbooking makes sense - it's a calculated hedge on the part of the airline that some of the passengers will cancel. I think everyone has experienced standing at the gate, hearing the "overbooked" announcement and mentally weighing the advantages of taking a later flight with a fat voucher in their pocket. If I'm with family, especially kids, hell no, but if alone, it's always a possibility.

    The thing that gets me here, which is apparently a completely alien concept to the United folks, is that they could have just bumped up the offered voucher value until they got someone to bite. I'm pretty certain that laying out a couple hundred extra dollars to entice a true volunteer would have been more attractive to EVERY SINGLE PERSON involved.

  5. jimp says:

    "However, I am going to introduce some controversy here by claiming the passenger also bears some responsibility by not being reasonable and agreeing to walk off the plane as instructed. "

    With respect to you, maybe it's better if airlines get their act together and work out schedules like this in advance so they know how many seats they need for crew etc and keep a couple in reserve for last minute whatevers.

    Might be time for people to stop being reasonable when treated as disposable objects to be shuffled about at the whim of a company they paid good money to to receive services.

    It is not the passengers' duty to fix problems the airline caused itself.

    The staff there was bone stupid. They, as others have said, could have upped the ante...most of the time they give out vouchers that cost them effectively zero and just offering more of that, sooner or later someone would volunteer. Hell offer a couple of free upgrades to first or something on a long haul and there'd probably be a stampede of volunteers.

    The fact that this happened after passengers were seated means someone really f****d up in their planning. or simply decided the cattle needed no respect and it need be could be beaten into submission as we now see.

    Going to cost United a ton of money even if they prevail which is one more indictment of their stupidity.

    I'll give one concrete example; I will not fly United now for some time to come and will be cancelling my United credit card.. That's a direct, attributable cost for their actions that can be measured.

    Will they care? Not one whit because corporations are inherently stupid.

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