PHOTO: A United Airlines Boeing 747 taxiing at LAX. (photo via Flickr/Alan Wilson)
United Airlines’ nightmare April continues as a bride and groom who were scheduled to fly to their destination wedding in Costa Rica Saturday are accusing the carrier of unjustifiably kicking them off the flight.
According to KHOU.com, Michael Hohl, his fiancée Amber Maxwell and their friends had arrived at George Bush International Airport in Houston for a layover before their journey continued to Costa Rica.
The couple was the last to board United Airlines Flight 1737 and found that their seats in row 24 were occupied by a sleeping man. Instead of waking the passenger, Hohl and Maxwell moved up to row 21, which was empty.
While the couple did not see the issue, a flight attendant approached them and asked if they were in their proper seats. When Hohl and Maxwell informed the attendant of the sleeping man, the crew member told them that they were in “economy plus” seats and would have to return to their originally assigned seats.
Hohl and Maxwell asked the attendant if they could be upgraded to the economy plus seats, but were turned down and asked again to return to their seats. A short time later, a U.S. Marshall boarded the plane and ordered them off the flight, a demand in which they complied with following the recent incident involving a passenger being dragged off another United plane.
“They said that we were being disorderly and a hazard to the rest of the flight, to the safety of the other customers,” Hohl told KHOU.com.
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Following the ordeal, Hohl and Maxwell were rebooked the next morning but claimed they would not be flying with United Airlines anymore.
“We’re disappointed anytime a customer has an experience that doesn’t measure up to their expectations,” a United spokesperson said about the incident in a statement. “These passengers repeatedly attempted to sit in upgraded seating which they did not purchase and they would not follow crew instructions to return to their assigned seats. We’ve been in touch with them and have rebooked them on flights tomorrow.”
Thankfully for the couple, they confirmed their wedding is still planned for Thursday.
“I think customer service and the airlines has gone real downhill,” Hohl said. “The way United Airlines handled this was really absurd.”