Old Dec 24, 2006, 11:34 PM
grannyme grannyme is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 1
Default Flight from Hell

Just returned from a trip from Phila. to St. Louis to see my new grandson. The flight to STL was beyond belief. After many delays the flight was FINALLY scheduled to leave hours late.

(Some of the passengers spent these hours in the bar across from the gate we were supposed to take off from.) Everyone boarded the plane. I was traveling with my daughter, 8 year old grandson and 6 mo. old granddaughter. It was the last flight to STL of the day. Everyone is on board and we wait and wait. Finally we are informed that due to head winds our flight will be longer than expected and they had to take on more fuel. As a result, they will have to take 2 people off the plane. Two volunteer. Then after more delay we are told that they are going to have to bring all gate checked luggage from under the plane into the cabin and squish it wherever there is room. This procedure takes quite awhile because every piece had to be held up and identified so that the owner would know where it was being placed. After all that, we were then told that they had to take ALL remaining luggage off the plane and that it would be sent on the next plane to STL and we would all have our luggage delivered to us by 9:00am the next day. (It is 11:00 pm when this is happening.) We were told not to take this out on our flight attendant and that we would be compensated for the inconvenience by giving us a free alcoholic drink! Remember, most of the traveling businessmen spent the waiting time in the lounge so this was a good choice of compensation. However, they would have to charge $3.00!!!! for snack boxes but there was a limited amount of them. They then moved a few people around on the plane for weight distribution. Now, I thought I had boarded a plane that would handle fuel, passengers AND luggage! Guess I was wrong! Had to wait in line with a screaming infant at 3:00am to fill out paperwork so they could deliver our luggage when it "appeared".

We left PHL at 72 degrees. It is now in the 20's in STL but we could not reach into our luggage and pull out coats or a snowsuit for the baby. (Formula, diapers, etc had all run out over the long wait)

Well, you guessed it... next day - NO LUGGAGE, next day - NO LUGGAGE. Repeated LONG phone calls only produced rude remarks like "you should not have carried that in your luggage" and "your luggage is not lost (they couldn't find it) but it was termed "misdirected". 2 days later at 3:00 am our luggage was THROWN from a truck into my daughters front yard. Our suitcases were damaged beyond use. For the two days we were without luggage, we had to purchase new clothes, diapers, formula, toiletries, etc (as well as new luggage to return home). American Airlines offered us a grand total of a $100.00 voucher for the four of us!!! which has to be picked up at the airport (a 1 hour drive from us). I can't tell you how rude and obnoxious EVERYONE at American Airlines was. I urge everyone to NEVER travel American Airlines.

As I have told my family... I hope this is like child birth and I will forget over time because we have always traveled alot and I would like to have the desire to travel again. I have new heard of what happened to us nor have I ever experienced anything so unpleasant. My excitement over a new grandchild was taken away by an experience that could have been handled differently with a totally different outcome. I vow to only fly Southwest from here on out!

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