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(CBC)   United Airlines loses 10-year old girl flying to summer camp. Airline representative to little girl: "we can't help you" ... Airline representative to parents: "Sorry, my shift is ending". Anger ensues   (cbc.ca) divider line 162
    More: Fail, Chicago's O'Hare, O'Hare, Traverse City, customer service representative, airlines  
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18036 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Aug 2012 at 4:19 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-14 01:44:41 PM  
Excuse me, but do you by any chance have a 10 year old girl in your lost and found box?
 
2012-08-14 01:50:01 PM  
There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.
 
2012-08-14 02:12:03 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.


Basically this.

I don't care how great that summer camp is, she isn't going by herself to some summer camp across the country until at least H.S.
 
2012-08-14 02:14:41 PM  
At one time there was a good airline known as Continental Airlines. They had respectable customer service and helpful employees.

Then they were eaten by a troll known as United airlines. Now all we have is a fat, lazy troll.
 
2012-08-14 02:20:19 PM  
I can't remember flying on a bad airline at that age. Of course, I was that age during the late 70's.
 
2012-08-14 02:25:50 PM  
You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it
 
2012-08-14 02:26:55 PM  
She asked three times to use a phone and they told her to wait.
Phoebe then missed her flight and informed a United employee and asked them to make sure the camp in Michigan knew she was late. She was told United would "take care of it."


Phoebe sounds more mature at 10 than the United employees. But yeah, never send your kid off alone on a plane without a cell phone to keep you updated at every stop. She could end up anywhere and United are a bunch of farktards.
 
2012-08-14 02:45:51 PM  

minoridiot: At one time there was a good airline known as Continental Airlines.


Yeah, unless you're flying overseas. They were f*cking vultures and artificially inflated airfares after wiping out all their competitors in the Central Pacific. Continental/United can go f*ck themselves.
 
2012-08-14 02:49:17 PM  
She told him the "unaccompanied minor service" in Chicago "forgot to show up" to transfer Phoebe to the next flight.

This moment right here? After this moment, I don't think any parent could be held responsible for his/her actions.

/you had ONE JOB
 
2012-08-14 02:56:07 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.


I used to fly cross-country by myself (with greeters at each stop, of course) at age 8 to go visit my dad. It never bothered me in one bit. Yeah, airline employees back then seemed to care more.
 
2012-08-14 03:09:59 PM  

scottydoesntknow: I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place...


That's the exact reason I never pack my travel-porn in my checked luggage.
 
2012-08-14 03:10:23 PM  

xanadian: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

I used to fly cross-country by myself (with greeters at each stop, of course) at age 8 to go visit my dad. It never bothered me in one bit. Yeah, airline employees back then seemed to care more.


Yea I should've included the "now" part at the end of that first sentence. I flew when I was 9 to Chicago from Houston and it was awesome, even got to go in the pilot's cabin and got some of those pin-on wings. Nowadays, no way in hell.
 
2012-08-14 03:19:49 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


Yeah, this really needed politics dumped into it. Good job, you shiat in the pool!
 
2012-08-14 03:36:08 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.
 
2012-08-14 04:10:08 PM  

WhyteRaven74: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.

Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.


I guess that is getting to the "culture" of the company. Because, in this case, we have a very specific thing as far as "why" she wasn't picked up ("Uh, I forgot")..... then, you have the customer service people who didn't seem to give enough care to the fact that they were put in "charge" of a 10 year old, and apparently she wasn't where she was supposed to be.

Any one of those people acting that way could be chalked up to "that person had a bad day, is a dick, etc"... multiple people acting in this way though shows some sort of company policy of "cannot deviate" from the rules.... ie, the person who says "My shift is ending" to the person pleading to know where their daughter is... is that just being a dick, or is it because there are some sort of draconian strict policies of how/when you can do your job. The guy who forgot, who knows, and it appears isn't really a direct employee of the airline. In any case, it comes down to a large group of people who don't have enough pride in their company/jobs to give a shiat. Is that bad company hiring practices, or a bad environment grooming the employees that way?
 
2012-08-14 04:22:17 PM  
I suppose you could just call Chicago police and report a missing child.
 
2012-08-14 04:24:53 PM  

Cheron: I suppose you could just call Chicago police and report a missing child a case of willful child endangerment.


Also, no Home Alone pictures yet?
 
2012-08-14 04:25:59 PM  
United wrecks guitars, so I can only imagine what they'd do to a little girl.
 
2012-08-14 04:26:09 PM  
Anger ensues? I don't see why. Can someone explain it for me?
 
2012-08-14 04:27:11 PM  

xanadian [TotalFark]
scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

I used to fly cross-country by myself (with greeters at each stop, of course) at age 8 to go visit my dad. It never bothered me in one bit. Yeah, airline employees back then seemed to care more.



Aren't you gay? And You don't think all that time spent with stewardesses has had any effect?

/jokey-joke.
 
2012-08-14 04:27:17 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


So...that log in the pool was yours wasn't it?
 
2012-08-14 04:27:40 PM  

Valiente: United wrecks guitars, so I can only imagine what they'd do to a little girl.


Wrecking little girls? They should just have a seat over there...
 
2012-08-14 04:27:45 PM  
If you can afford to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it.
 
2012-08-14 04:27:55 PM  
Try baggage claim.

www.michaelbales.com
 
2012-08-14 04:28:16 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


In case you haven't read an newspaper since 1985, Airline unions have been effectively neutered over the last 25 years. So, good call.
 
2012-08-14 04:28:52 PM  
Hang everybody at United that had anything to do with it. Start with the CEO and go down to the janitor that cleans the toilets if you have to.
 
2012-08-14 04:28:56 PM  
There's got to be a good chunk of change in a lawsuit. Get some parents on the jury, and they'll give the plaintiffs whatever they ask for.
 
2012-08-14 04:29:28 PM  

pippi longstocking: If you can afford use frequent flyer miles to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it are a cheapass and probably a bad parent.

 
2012-08-14 04:30:22 PM  
After re-reading the headline, I have a question: Why does it matter that this kid's parents are together?
 
2012-08-14 04:30:23 PM  
The problem I have with this is that they are spending way too much money on the little rugrat's personal vacation. You've got to be pretty picky that summer camps closer to home simply aren't good enough.
 
2012-08-14 04:30:29 PM  
I've only connected through O'hare once. I know we're ripping the airline here, but O'hare's customer service sucks balls too.

"We can't find your ticket." "Go stand in the back of that line and wait 'till we figure it out."
 
2012-08-14 04:30:29 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


This is why I only fly on nonunion Delta and never on union Southwest. The difference in quality service is obvious.
 
2012-08-14 04:31:10 PM  

scottydoesntknow: I flew when I was 9 to Chicago from Houston and it was awesome, even got to go in the pilot's cabin and got some of those pin-on wings. Nowadays, no way in hell.


Me too, back in the 70's they let me peek in the cockpit and get wings (I liked movies about gladiators).
It was with a heavy heart that I had to tell my daughter on her first flight that she wouldn't get to do that cool stuff nowadays.

Then, since we were the last folks off the jet, they told her to come on up and sit in the pilot's seat, grab the yoke, put on a headset and and talk on the intercom.

Thanks a lot for making me look like a dick, cool airline crew.
 
2012-08-14 04:31:19 PM  
As someone who was "lost" in an airport once as an 8yr old, i'm getting a kick out of this. Beilng locked in a deserted side office for 6 hours without food, water, bathroom, or outside contact/checkup of any kind, was not very much fun...
Ahh, the days when we all said "oops, that sucked" instead of sueing for millions....
 
2012-08-14 04:31:19 PM  
The day I trust an airline to take care of my child is the day I am committed to a loony ward.

That said,the airline deserves and should pay a little bit for this one. She was four hours late...at 50 bucks and hour...200 dollars to the plaintiffs please.
 
2012-08-14 04:31:32 PM  
The airline rep.
2.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-08-14 04:31:48 PM  
What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?
 
2012-08-14 04:32:39 PM  
Sounds an awful lot like US Airways. Are we sure it's not them?
 
2012-08-14 04:32:44 PM  
FTFA:
In speaking with their daughter, the Klebahns discovered:

When Phoebe landed, no one was there to get her.
The attendants told their daughter they could not help her and to wait.
She asked three times to use a phone and they told her to wait.
Phoebe then missed her flight and informed a United employee and asked them to make sure the camp in Michigan knew she was late. She was told United would "take care of it."

While I agree United farked up big time and then did as little as possible to try to make it right (which considering what could have happened to the 10 year old in a big city airport while alone, there probably isn't anything they could do to make it up.); why didn't her parents equip her with a cell phone. I am not a parent but considering you can get a rechargable phone for $20, I would be darned if my kid would be going on a trip like that without one. It probably would have resolved the missing kid proble a lot quiker too. Just my opinion.
 
2012-08-14 04:33:04 PM  
United was paid to provide a pretty important child welfare service that they failed to perform. Shouldn't this be a straight up lawsuit for child endangerment?
 
2012-08-14 04:33:09 PM  
The kid couldn't know her connecting flight number and look at the screen to see what gate it was departing from and go to that gate?

Was this a camp for "special" kids?
 
2012-08-14 04:33:28 PM  

minoridiot: At one time there was a good airline known as Continental Airlines. They had respectable customer service and helpful employees.

Then they were eaten by a troll known as United airlines. Now all we have is a fat, lazy troll.


Yep, up until 3 years ago they still gave meals to economy for free. Then they realized service doesn't matter, only fares, because people are stupid and will continue to fly no matter how they're treated, as long as it's "cheap"
 
2012-08-14 04:33:33 PM  

Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?


It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.
 
2012-08-14 04:33:58 PM  
 
2012-08-14 04:34:50 PM  
i483.photobucket.com

/butthurt
 
2012-08-14 04:35:32 PM  

cman: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.


Actually not in this case. They outsourced their babysitting to a third-party company, who called in sick and made United cancel their dinner plans.
 
2012-08-14 04:35:48 PM  
Well, next time use an airline-approved travel cage and maybe this sort of thing won't happen.

Kid is old enough to use a cell phone. Should have had one with clear instructions on how to call home at the start/end of every flight and every 10 minutes in between. But I suppose that yes, perhaps the airlines shouldn't be a bunch of farktards. If they're going to offer unattended child service, they should probably not lose the children.
 
2012-08-14 04:36:05 PM  
Parents to airline: Lawsuit

I know it would of crossed my mind if I was a parent.
 
2012-08-14 04:36:46 PM  

scottydoesntknow: xanadian: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

I used to fly cross-country by myself (with greeters at each stop, of course) at age 8 to go visit my dad. It never bothered me in one bit. Yeah, airline employees back then seemed to care more.

Yea I should've included the "now" part at the end of that first sentence. I flew when I was 9 to Chicago from Houston and it was awesome, even got to go in the pilot's cabin and got some of those pin-on wings. Nowadays, no way in hell.


Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
2012-08-14 04:36:50 PM  

cman: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.


Granted, but, as stated... we can hardly trust the airlines with our luggage. But, there are probably sometimes legit reasons for emergency purposes to get your kid across the country by themselves. But, if you are from San Francisco, I can't imagine what the hell that summer camp in Traverse City, MI had that is so awesome you had to fly your kid out to it by themselves for it.
 
2012-08-14 04:36:56 PM  

FrancoFile: pippi longstocking: If you can afford use frequent flyer miles to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it are a cheapass and probably a bad parent.


I don't understand this. If you have them, why wouldn't you use them? Is the seat somehow tainted because it was paid for with miles instead of money?
 
2012-08-14 04:37:12 PM  

blatz514: I've only connected through O'hare once. I know we're ripping the airline here, but O'hare's customer service sucks balls too.

"We can't find your ticket." "Go stand in the back of that line and wait 'till we figure it out."


To be fair, the entire airport is a shiatshow. Especially terminal 5.
 
2012-08-14 04:37:46 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


They outsourced to non-union 3rd party to deal with unaccompanied minors.

/win win for everyone??
 
2012-08-14 04:38:16 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


Why should an employee have to work late because you failed as a parent. It's not the employees problem. The parents should have the child taken away for even letting a 10 year old fly alone in the first place
 
2012-08-14 04:38:38 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: FrancoFile: pippi longstocking: If you can afford use frequent flyer miles to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it are a cheapass and probably a bad parent.

I don't understand this. If you have them, why wouldn't you use them? Is the seat somehow tainted because it was paid for with miles instead of money?


Because you're using something you most likely got for flying a farkwad of miles for business, aka you're not home much, ergo you want to kick the rugrat out of the house whenever you are home.

/only partially a troll
 
2012-08-14 04:39:30 PM  
Well, with the proceeds from the lawsuit, the kid will be able fly to summer camp on a private jet next year.
 
2012-08-14 04:39:43 PM  

Cheron: I suppose you could just call Chicago police and report a missing child.


Better yet, claim the airline KIDNAPPED!!! their child.
 
2012-08-14 04:40:11 PM  
My brother and I flew by ourselves from (yay, no parents!) Indiana to California to spend the summer with our grandparents. I was actually kinda scared shiatless. However, this was back in the late 80's. Really, really good service though. The flight attendants constantly checked on us during the flight and then there was someone waiting for us at the gate and took us to where we needed to go next.

But today, fark that!
 
2012-08-14 04:41:04 PM  
Also, pretty sad how low the Airline industry has gone in so short a time.
 
2012-08-14 04:42:31 PM  

Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?


Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.
 
2012-08-14 04:42:48 PM  

dletter: cman: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.

Granted, but, as stated... we can hardly trust the airlines with our luggage. But, there are probably sometimes legit reasons for emergency purposes to get your kid across the country by themselves. But, if you are from San Francisco, I can't imagine what the hell that summer camp in Traverse City, MI had that is so awesome you had to fly your kid out to it by themselves for it.


Being from SF myself, probably... Sun.

/and warmth
 
2012-08-14 04:42:48 PM  

FrancoFile: pippi longstocking: If you can afford use frequent flyer miles to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it are a cheapass and probably a bad parent.


Why? Its as good as cash. Had they paid regular money they wouldn't have received a different level of service.
 
2012-08-14 04:43:13 PM  
"When local news in San Francisco took an interest in the Klebahn's story in August, the airline responded. "

Coincidence! They were ALWAYS going to give this matter the highest priority. The media intervention more than likely SLOWED the process, due to having to involve media representatives!


"And on Aug. 13, company officials released a statement saying they had apologized to the family and are "reviewing the matter."

PROBLEM SOLVED! Internal reviews are always the best solution!
 
2012-08-14 04:43:36 PM  
A long, derpy battle about this started on Flyertalk's United forum yesterday. It amazes me that there still exist United Airlines apologists, given how much that airline has gone into the tank in the past year.

That said, some of them do make a valid point -- the airline never actually lost the kid; instead they simply told the kid to sit down and be quiet at the gate waiting for the unaccompanied minor folks to help her to her new flight (which they eventually did), but that this made her late. Also they lost her bag, which is the new normal on UA. But there is no suggestion she ever went for a period with no airline-employed adult there watching her. Instead it is that those people were their typical, ORD less-than-useful selves.
 
2012-08-14 04:44:50 PM  

I May Be Crazy But...: Wrecking little girls


Sounds like a punk rock group doing covers of the Sex Pistols.
 
2012-08-14 04:45:29 PM  

Warlordtrooper: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it

Why should an employee have to work late because you failed as a parent. It's not the employees problem. The parents should have the child taken away for even letting a 10 year old fly alone in the first place


Because you paid an additional $99 for them to escort the kid.
 
2012-08-14 04:45:43 PM  

Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?


Awesome ones? Non helicoptery ones? Sent our kids multiple times, they had a blast, knew what to do and how to change planes; it was an adventure. No fun having your boat anchor parents tagging along. Your kids will grow up if you let them. At the time, we paid the fee, and it was actually required for under 13 as I recall.
 
2012-08-14 04:45:48 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


You want privatized "services," you got privatized "services." Who dropped the ball first?
 
2012-08-14 04:46:24 PM  
How come those moral authority "B b b b but the children!" types never jump on trying to get their elected officials to pass legislation ENSURING that an airline NEVER ignore/lose a precious snowflake because JESUS.

I mean, it seems slightly less ridiculous than trying to pass bills to ban gay people or Satan.
 
2012-08-14 04:47:06 PM  

farkityfarker: The kid couldn't know her connecting flight number and look at the screen to see what gate it was departing from and go to that gate?

Was this a camp for "special" kids?


I'd guess that airlines don't allow children to board all by themselves. Airports are confusing enough for adults, let alone a behemoth like O'Hare.
 
2012-08-14 04:47:12 PM  

kemosabe: My brother and I flew by ourselves from (yay, no parents!) Indiana to California to spend the summer with our grandparents. I was actually kinda scared shiatless. However, this was back in the late 80's. Really, really good service though. The flight attendants constantly checked on us during the flight and then there was someone waiting for us at the gate and took us to where we needed to go next.

But today, fark that!


I concur, born in 1984 and traveled multiple summers to my nanny's in Guadalajara alone. Not a single problem evah, even without cell phones and such. I wouldn't go as far as not allowing my kids one day to do the same, especially since phones are a dime a dozen. Shouldn't have been a problem but there was, she made it to camp, eventually. Customer service should be doing more than reimbursing them for their troubles. Like say, free summer camp the following summer.
 
2012-08-14 04:47:21 PM  
As much as people biatch about the airlines, they have brought flying to unprecedented levels of safety not known even 20 years ago. To me, that's the most important issue.
 
2012-08-14 04:47:24 PM  
Unaccompanied minors break my freaking heart every time I see one.
 
2012-08-14 04:51:03 PM  

xanadian: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

I used to fly cross-country by myself (with greeters at each stop, of course) at age 8 to go visit my dad. It never bothered me in one bit. Yeah, airline employees back then seemed to care more.


Me too (not your dad). Used to fly once or twice a year unaccompanied, cross country to visit my grandmother. I'm not sure if I'd let my kid do the same. Back then customer service actually meant something. These days both the customers and the service is too many times sketchy at best.
 
2012-08-14 04:53:38 PM  

Warthog: Instead it is that those people were their typical, ORD less-than-useful selves.


That is a good point. O'Hare seems to be staffed entirely by misanthropes. Even compared to other airports they're notably hostile and unhelpful.
 
2012-08-14 04:54:03 PM  
Dletter: I can't imagine what the hell that summer camp in Traverse City, MI had that is so awesome you had to fly your kid out to it by themselves for it.

http://www.interlochen.org/
 
2012-08-14 04:55:04 PM  

heavymetal: FTFA:
In speaking with their daughter, the Klebahns discovered:

When Phoebe landed, no one was there to get her.
The attendants told their daughter they could not help her and to wait.
She asked three times to use a phone and they told her to wait.
Phoebe then missed her flight and informed a United employee and asked them to make sure the camp in Michigan knew she was late. She was told United would "take care of it."

While I agree United farked up big time and then did as little as possible to try to make it right (which considering what could have happened to the 10 year old in a big city airport while alone, there probably isn't anything they could do to make it up.); why didn't her parents equip her with a cell phone. I am not a parent but considering you can get a rechargable phone for $20, I would be darned if my kid would be going on a trip like that without one. It probably would have resolved the missing kid proble a lot quiker too. Just my opinion.


Don't know for sure, but a lot of summer camps, like schools, have no cell phone rules. Kids have been traveling alone safely by airplane for decades. It's a very controlled environment and in truth, the kid was never lost or never in any danger.
 
2012-08-14 04:56:09 PM  

MorePeasPlease: scottydoesntknow: I flew when I was 9 to Chicago from Houston and it was awesome, even got to go in the pilot's cabin and got some of those pin-on wings. Nowadays, no way in hell.

Me too, back in the 70's they let me peek in the cockpit and get wings (I liked movies about gladiators).
It was with a heavy heart that I had to tell my daughter on her first flight that she wouldn't get to do that cool stuff nowadays.

Then, since we were the last folks off the jet, they told her to come on up and sit in the pilot's seat, grab the yoke, put on a headset and and talk on the intercom.

Thanks a lot for making me look like a dick, cool airline crew.


I can remember being able to climb into the cockpit and play with the radios and headsets, too, only I got tasered, arrested, and stuck in a room with a bunch of angry guys in uniforms for it. Apparently they don't like it when drunken forty year old men play pilot.
 
2012-08-14 04:56:24 PM  
Next time, take your kid to camp yourself?
 
2012-08-14 04:57:46 PM  
^ just a hunch ^
 
2012-08-14 05:00:59 PM  

Barbecue Bob: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.


Well, they didn't stow the kid with the luggage.
 
2012-08-14 05:01:34 PM  

Kaka: Unaccompanied miners break my freaking heart every time I see one.

He's all alone :(
img163.imageshack.us
 
2012-08-14 05:01:37 PM  

Burning_Monk: But, if you are from San Francisco, I can't imagine what the hell that summer camp in Traverse City, MI had that is so awesome you had to fly your kid out to it by themselves for it.

Being from SF myself, probably... Sun.

/and warmth


I was going to say "normalcy", but I suspect they were going to Interlochen. Interlochen is Michigan's destination for over-privileged shut-ins.

Traverse City does have extensive beaches, proximity to the prettiest of the Great Lakes, and is adjacent to one of the largest sand dunes in the United States.
 
2012-08-14 05:01:51 PM  
It's been touched on, but I have to reiterate. We don't let our 13-year-old daughters walk to the corner store without a cell phone. How you could send a child across the country without one blows my mind.
 
2012-08-14 05:03:23 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.


Exactly what I came here to say. I wouldn't let a ten year old girl run to Walgreens a block away for aspirin, let farking along fly across the country.by herself
 
2012-08-14 05:03:25 PM  
They mailed a package, and the package got lost. It happens.

/won't be mailing my daughter anywhere
 
2012-08-14 05:04:39 PM  

Zombieman: Kaka: Unaccompanied miners break my freaking heart every time I see one.
He's all alone :(
[img163.imageshack.us image 469x600]


You've lost me.
 
2012-08-14 05:06:45 PM  

Kaka: Unaccompanied minors break my freaking heart every time I see one.


I flew to Phoenix this summer alone!

/34yo..acts like a 10yo most of the time
 
2012-08-14 05:07:40 PM  

pippi longstocking: If you can afford to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it.


The camp was probably Interlochen Arts Camp. It's pretty much one of a kind. It's intensive, lasts several weeks (or the whole summer), and attracts high level faculty from around the nation. It's not a summer camp put on by your local directional university where it's a week long and all of your counselors are 20 year old college kids. For some parents, it's important-even if it represents major financial sacrifice. After paying for it, they might not have been able to afford two more round trip tickets for an adult (take the kid to Michigan, go home. Go to Michigan in 5 weeks, pick up kid.). It's not unreasonable to expect that, if you pay for unaccompanied minor service, that you actually get...well...service. That's what it's there for.
 
2012-08-14 05:08:28 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.


i was on a flight to england a few years ago with an unaccompanied infant.

no i am not kidding, it was a screaming child brought on by the staff, placed in the seat and strapped in. the two people on either side of it pitched a bit of a fit, but the airline basically told them to deal with it or get off the plane. blew my mind
 
2012-08-14 05:08:38 PM  

Barbecue Bob: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.


It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.
It's only 4 letters.
 
2012-08-14 05:09:30 PM  

Zombieman: Kaka: Unaccompanied miners break my freaking heart every time I see one.
He's all alone :(
[img163.imageshack.us image 469x600]


Well played Sir.

/I weep
 
2012-08-14 05:10:49 PM  

Inflatable Rhetoric: It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.


Paging rotsky, rotsky please pick up the white courtesy phone.
 
2012-08-14 05:11:13 PM  

Warlordtrooper: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it

Why should an employee have to work late because you failed as a parent. It's not the employees problem. The parents should have the child taken away for even letting a 10 year old fly alone in the first place


2/10
Too obvious.
 
2012-08-14 05:11:17 PM  

The Bestest: Zombieman: Kaka: Unaccompanied miners break my freaking heart every time I see one.
He's all alone :(
[img163.imageshack.us image 469x600]

You've lost me.


You too? Go sit with Phoebe. But not too close.
 
2012-08-14 05:11:35 PM  
Unfarking acceptable. not just losing the kid but out sourcing the escorts for non accompanied minors.
 
2012-08-14 05:15:23 PM  
Back in the 80s my mom and I took a cross country flight -- I was maybe 8 at the time. She and I sat next to each other the whole way, played card games, etc. The flight attendants were super nice to me -- gave me a set of plastic pilot's wings, gave me a tour of the cockpit during the flight (a pre-9/11 world) and I got to meet the pilots. My mom and I thought it was great that they were being so cool to me.

When we landed, the flight attendants came to "get me." My mom explained we were flying together -- that she was my mom. Like "Do you think I'm the nicest lady in the world, playing cards with a strange kid for five hours?" The flight attendants freaked the fark out. Apparently they knew there was a kid flying alone on the flight, and they thought I was that kid. So some poor little kid was on a flight full of strangers, and by that time probably wandering around the terminal.

So based on this article and my 25 year-old anecdote, this shiat happens all the time.

/csb
 
2012-08-14 05:15:24 PM  
In 1983 my older bro and I flew from Glasgow (Prestwick really) to Bozeman Montana with a stop overnight in Minnepolis with my Uncle. Had a great time, crew treated us nicely, and even got us bumped up to first class during the Billings to Bozeman leg (like 20 minutes). Paper tickets and all of it. Escorted on, escorted off, but got a seat right next to the galley so the squad could keep an eye on us. Survived it, but that was before PROFIT was the most important thing. And flying wasn't about moving the sheep I mean Airline Profit Units around. Flying has gotten just worse and worse and worse. It saddens me.

Now I wouldn't let my kids do anything other than a direct connect where I walk them onto the plane and somebody I have blood relations to walks them off of the plane.

Never do a connection!
 
2012-08-14 05:15:45 PM  

Inflatable Rhetoric: Barbecue Bob: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.

It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.
It's only 4 letters.


Maybe they let it out to run around. You know, give it a little taste of freedom.
 
2012-08-14 05:16:01 PM  
Considering what I went through the last time I flew, if I ever have to again (meaning that should there be no alternative), I will wear flip-flops instead of shoes, suspenters instead of a belt, only have one or two carry-ons (no big luggage that can be lost), and will forget about eating until I arrive at my destination.
 
2012-08-14 05:16:14 PM  
I was 5 or 6 when I started flying solo. Back then Delta had a fantastic unaccompanied minor program. On one cross-Atlantic flight I got motion sickness so the stewardess (that's what they were back then) moved me up into first class so they could keep a better eye on me.

A steward pointed to an enormous black man sitting on the other side of the cabin. The only other occupant in first class. "Do you know who that is? George Foreman. Want me to see if I can get you his autograph?"

/CSB
//Still have the autograph.
 
2012-08-14 05:19:04 PM  

mcreadyblue: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it

They outsourced to non-union 3rd party to deal with unaccompanied minors.

/win win for everyone??


HAH! Threadshiatting and it isn't even pretend correct.
 
2012-08-14 05:19:36 PM  

Inflatable Rhetoric: Barbecue Bob: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.

It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.
It's only 4 letters.


Obviously, "loose" is the correct one to use here, since it has five letters; obviously the correct word to use, since 5 is better than 4.
 
2012-08-14 05:21:54 PM  

I May Be Crazy But...: Inflatable Rhetoric: Barbecue Bob: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

Came to say this...
/This.

Airlines loose luggage every day. You're going to send your 10 year old kid alone with them?
Idiot parents.

It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.
It's only 4 letters.

Maybe they let it out to run around. You know, give it a little taste of freedom.


I've met some loose luggage in my time. A got a red hard-shell in Cleveland to spread for me.
 
2012-08-14 05:22:13 PM  

Elegy: Obviously, "loose" is the correct one to use here, since it has five letters; obviously the correct word to use, since 5 is better than 4.


Noo woonder Leoon is getting laaarger.

i190.photobucket.com
 
2012-08-14 05:23:30 PM  
This guy is supposedly a frequent flier and thinks it's OK to send his daughter on a connecting flight through ORD in the summer? Hell, half the flights through there are delayed in the summer. It's probably worse than the winter.

Also, they live in San Fran. Couldn't they have just booked a direct flight to Detroit? Oh yes, they would have had to actually pay for that ticket. So headline should read, Cheap ass dad too much of a prick to pay $400 to get his daughter a direct ticket flips out when the inevitable happens. Seriously if not being able to contact your daughter for 45 minutes freaks you out that much (which it should) then why did you put her on a flight with a connection?
 
2012-08-14 05:24:54 PM  

Lord_Dubu: A steward pointed to an enormous black man sitting on the other side of the cabin. The only other occupant in first class. "Do you know who that is? George Foreman. Want me to see if I can get you his autograph?"

/CSB
//Still have the autograph.



That is a CSB. I had divorced parents living in different cities, so I used to fly alone a lot. There were usually several of us kids going solo, and they let us board first. I learned how to do the old 80s "fold and roll" move with the cuffs of my jeans from a kid on one of those flights. We were kings then.

On one flight, I sat next to a guy who was some kind of game designer for Nintendo. This is when the first 8-bit Nintendo was still the big thing, and I thought I'd won the lottery. We talked Nintendo all the way, and he told me what hardware and games not to buy.
 
2012-08-14 05:28:19 PM  

spectrek: suspenters instead of a belt


I just got one of these. Best quality non-metalic belt I could find.
 
2012-08-14 05:34:13 PM  

heavymetal: FTFA:
In speaking with their daughter, the Klebahns discovered:

When Phoebe landed, no one was there to get her.
The attendants told their daughter they could not help her and to wait.
She asked three times to use a phone and they told her to wait.Phoebe then missed her flight and informed a United employee and asked them to make sure the camp in Michigan knew she was late. She was told United would "take care of it."


Kidnapping charge, anyone?
 
2012-08-14 05:34:45 PM  

Contrabulous Flabtraption: Yep, up until 3 years ago they still gave meals to economy for free. Then they realized service doesn't matter, only fares, because people are stupid and will continue to fly no matter how they're treated, as long as it's "cheap"


Huh?

You mean a "snack" - if you were on a flight lasting at least 4 hours that occurred during hours considered mealtimes?

They stopped serving free meals much longer ago than 3 years.

And how can you complain about the lack of free meals and then turn around and say people are stupid because they only care that it's "cheap"?

You know what I care about when I choose a flight? Mostly price. Speed and convenience are also a factor. I prefer not to take 3 different flights to get to one place so I'll pay a little more for a direct flight. For convenience I'd prefer to fly when I want to but if I have to get my ass out of bed early or arrive late at night to save a little money I'm okay with that.

The airlines made it clear a long time ago that they don't have stewardesses, they have flight attendants and they aren't there to wait on you hand and foot. They are there to make sure things go smoothly and safely. Some of them are rude, most of them are indifferent and some of them are polite.

I don't fly because I enjoy the experience. I fly to get places that I can't drive to in under 4 hours. If you want to be treated nicely, fly first class. It will NOT be cheap. For the rest of us, there's coach and you're darn tootin' we're gonna pay the cheapest fare possible.

The meals were never that good anyway. If you're flying for the dining experience, you're doing it wrong.
 
2012-08-14 05:36:51 PM  
United is surpassed by only US Air as worst customer service. I'm not happy they bought out Continental, because now I have to fly shiatty United out of IAH all the time.
 
2012-08-14 05:38:35 PM  

WhyteRaven74: Inflatable Rhetoric: It's lose luggage. They don't loose it, they lose it.

Paging rotsky, rotsky please pick up the white courtesy phone.


Yea, sure.
 
2012-08-14 05:42:39 PM  
The hilarious problem here is that some airlines require MANDATORY fees for an airline escort for an unaccompanied minor.

A "minor" means a lot of things. Some kids, at say 15, are skilled travelers comfortable with making connecting flights and all- and don't care to be babysat by an airline employee. They'll walk away from their minder when told to stay somewhere, or avoid meeting them entirely.

This is a curious legal thing, too. Parents can contract out someone to take in loco parentis authority, where a third party assumes quasi-parental rights. And handing over that right is inherently part of sending them to school, your teacher can tell them where to be and what to do. But a corporation? As a requirement of using the airline? Mmmm... whether we're talking law or "common sense", this is strange.

Airline employees sent to do this know the problem, so does management. So when they can't find a kid, it's not an inherent emergency and they don't have any real authority over the minor anyways, and they may just give up. Consequently, the entire institution is somewhat meaningless, as there won't be a strong response if a child DOES go missing.
 
2012-08-14 05:44:18 PM  

Burning_Monk: Cheron: I suppose you could just call Chicago police and report a missing child.

Better yet, claim the airline KIDNAPPED!!! their child.


Just call up Liam Neeson and tell him the girl was TAKEN. I hear he has a particular set of skills that applies to the situation.

/I don't know who you are, but I will find you, and I will speak to you in a threatening manner.
 
2012-08-14 05:51:40 PM  

pippi longstocking: If you can afford to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it.


THIS times eleventy!
 
2012-08-14 06:01:21 PM  
US airlines suck. I've worked for two of them. And flown almost all of them.

I've found the airlines to be much better in Europe. Nice service. Security without the theater. They even serve food with the price of your ticket.
 
2012-08-14 06:01:24 PM  

IrieTom: Dletter: I can't imagine what the hell that summer camp in Traverse City, MI had that is so awesome you had to fly your kid out to it by themselves for it.

http://www.interlochen.org/


This was my thought too.
 
2012-08-14 06:04:39 PM  

MorePeasPlease: scottydoesntknow: I flew when I was 9 to Chicago from Houston and it was awesome, even got to go in the pilot's cabin and got some of those pin-on wings. Nowadays, no way in hell.

Me too, back in the 70's they let me peek in the cockpit and get wings (I liked movies about gladiators).
It was with a heavy heart that I had to tell my daughter on her first flight that she wouldn't get to do that cool stuff nowadays.

Then, since we were the last folks off the jet, they told her to come on up and sit in the pilot's seat, grab the yoke, put on a headset and and talk on the intercom.

Thanks a lot for making me look like a dick, cool airline crew.


Have you ever been to a Turkish prison?
 
2012-08-14 06:04:39 PM  
Jeez that's nuts. Back in 2002 my husband drove to California on business and decided to stay a few extra days and had me put our 10 year old daughter on a plane so he could take her to Disneyland over the weekend. Southwest Airlines had a policy requiring me to remain at the departing gate for 45 minutes after her plane took off. From Las Vegas it's barely an hour flight. When she arrived in California they escorted my husband inside the plane to collect his daughter. They even made her verify that, "yes that's my dad" before she could leave the plane.
 
2012-08-14 06:05:37 PM  

oldsbone: pippi longstocking: If you can afford to send your 10 year old to a summer camp across states you can afford another goddamn ticket for yourself, or pay a family member to do it.

The camp was probably Interlochen Arts Camp. It's pretty much one of a kind. It's intensive, lasts several weeks (or the whole summer), and attracts high level faculty from around the nation. It's not a summer camp put on by your local directional university where it's a week long and all of your counselors are 20 year old college kids. For some parents, it's important-even if it represents major financial sacrifice. After paying for it, they might not have been able to afford two more round trip tickets for an adult (take the kid to Michigan, go home. Go to Michigan in 5 weeks, pick up kid.). It's not unreasonable to expect that, if you pay for unaccompanied minor service, that you actually get...well...service. That's what it's there for.


This one time...

profile.ak.fbcdn.net
 
2012-08-14 06:06:49 PM  

dustygrimp: heavymetal: FTFA:
In speaking with their daughter, the Klebahns discovered:

When Phoebe landed, no one was there to get her.
The attendants told their daughter they could not help her and to wait.
She asked three times to use a phone and they told her to wait.Phoebe then missed her flight and informed a United employee and asked them to make sure the camp in Michigan knew she was late. She was told United would "take care of it."

Kidnapping charge, anyone?


cdn.uproxx.com
 
2012-08-14 06:08:48 PM  

Nightshade50: Parents to airline: Lawsuit

I know it would of crossed my mind if I was a parent.


Would of, huh?
 
2012-08-14 06:16:41 PM  

moonage daydream: Nightshade50: Parents to airline: Lawsuit

I know it would of crossed my mind if I was a parent.

Would of, huh?


Yes. In his mind of wood.
 
2012-08-14 06:33:11 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone.


I don't let my son fly alone at that age either, first because he isn't certified, but secondly I don't think he is capable of handing tricky landings or keeping a cool head at the controls in an emergency. By the time he is 16 I damn well expect he will be.

I certainly let him ride on a damn commercial jet though.

If you don't feel your 10 year old can, then you need to possibly reevaluate your parenting. Kids at 10 many places are responsibly doing a hell of a lot of things daily that you probably are afraid to even do yourself.
 
2012-08-14 06:36:15 PM  

dletter: WhyteRaven74: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.

Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.

I guess that is getting to the "culture" of the company.


Yes, a culture that outsources everything it can, pays minimum wage, and runs people on insane shift schedules that require some of them to live in RV's in the airport parking lots.
-THAT- leads to a lot of highly skilled and motivated workers, doesn't it? But lets blame it on unions.
 
2012-08-14 06:36:46 PM  
To play devil's advocate - can you IMAGINE the sheer volume of insane customer complaints and requests an airline deals with? Of course they'd ignore a legitimate complaint.

//works in a hotel.
///people call my boss to complain when I don't give them a free room.
///People suck.
 
2012-08-14 06:37:54 PM  
I don't know if they miss me or not, but I sure as shiat was happy I moved on from that organization and went to work for a start-up. United had the most unsafe "security" policies I'd ever seen.
 
2012-08-14 06:41:41 PM  

CliChe Guevara: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone.

I don't let my son fly alone at that age either, first because he isn't certified, but secondly I don't think he is capable of handing tricky landings or keeping a cool head at the controls in an emergency. By the time he is 16 I damn well expect he will be.

I certainly let him ride on a damn commercial jet though.

If you don't feel your 10 year old can, then you need to possibly reevaluate your parenting. Kids at 10 many places are responsibly doing a hell of a lot of things daily that you probably are afraid to even do yourself.


This. Hell, back when I was 10 years old I remember getting on my bike and riding all the way over to my friend's house across town, totally without any parental involvement at all! What shiatty parents I must have had.

Farkers are the first to call out stupid helicopter parenting but then are the first to turn around and advocate for exactly the same thing. Fark, Where Parents Are Always WrongTM
 
2012-08-14 06:57:36 PM  

Rwa2play: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it

So...that log in the pool was yours wasn't it?


Hmm. Baby Ruth.
 
2012-08-14 07:16:15 PM  

ISubmittedThisYesterdayWithAMuchFunnierHeadline: It's been touched on, but I have to reiterate. We don't let our 13-year-old daughters walk to the corner store without a cell phone. How you could send a child across the country without one blows my mind.


Good grief, where do you live? I can't imagine living somewhere so dangerous a 13 y.o would need a cell phone before heading to the corner store.
 
2012-08-14 07:30:39 PM  

farkityfarker: The kid couldn't know her connecting flight number and look at the screen to see what gate it was departing from and go to that gate?

Was this a camp for "special" kids?


True, and it's not like those signs they have hanging from the ceiling are hard to comprehend.
 
2012-08-14 07:42:56 PM  
About the "they should have given her a cell phone" issue, I was thinking that they were not permitted at camp. But according to the camp website:

Can my child have a cell phone, laptop computer or iPod at Interlochen?

Interlochen Arts Camp is a busy and intense program of a quality that is best experienced without the distraction of cell phones; we recommend leaving them at home if they are not needed while traveling. Students who choose to have phones at Interlochen will be able to us them on a limited basis at designated times and in designated locations that will be explained after arrival. Cell phones are not allowed on campus during the day.


So yeah. But then again, if people had done their jobs right, she wouldn't need one.
 
2012-08-14 07:45:27 PM  
This whole situation is really farked up, but what makes it even worse (and nobody seems to be picking up on) is the bit at the end where the airline ignored their complaints until the media got involved. I'm getting sick of companies who only pretend to give a shiat about customer service when their reputations are threatened. I know it's obvious that executives don't care about their customers beyond how much money they're spending on their products and services, but this is just pathetic.
 
2012-08-14 07:51:39 PM  

cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.


Deal with it


Wow.... pathetic.
 
2012-08-14 08:01:40 PM  
My niece just traveled across the country solo for the first time at age eleven, on Virgin America.

They have rules that stated that I had to remain with her at the gate until the plane was in the air. They also had a flight attendant assigned to update us on status until they were on the plane, and then her duties were to see to her needs, including all the free food and drink that she could handle. She would be met by her father at the gate on the other end (note that both of use were allowed through security with airline-given paperwork so that we could wait at the gates).

The only thing that I would change would be to have someone actually tell me when the plane was in the air. I had to wait at the gate alone for half an hour until I was the plane take off. Fortunately Logan only had two Virgin America gates, and the next flight was two hours later.

In short, some airlines handle things better. Odds are Virgin America handles most things better than United.
 
2012-08-14 08:03:03 PM  
Sounds like there are a lot of insensitive peoples in India. UK should have cleaned like the place like spain cleaned south america
 
2012-08-14 08:25:09 PM  

hogans: Odds are Virgin America handles most things better than United.


Virgin handles everything better than United.
 
2012-08-14 08:37:11 PM  

scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.


Ummm, yes.

Who the fark are these "parents"?

/ and... typical behaviour of people who have little fear of ever losing their jobs due to poor performance.
 
2012-08-14 08:59:58 PM  

Warthog: A long, derpy battle about this started on Flyertalk's United forum yesterday. It amazes me that there still exist United Airlines apologists, given how much that airline has gone into the tank in the past year.

That said, some of them do make a valid point -- the airline never actually lost the kid; instead they simply told the kid to sit down and be quiet at the gate waiting for the unaccompanied minor folks to help her to her new flight (which they eventually did), but that this made her late. Also they lost her bag, which is the new normal on UA. But there is no suggestion she ever went for a period with no airline-employed adult there watching her. Instead it is that those people were their typical, ORD less-than-useful selves.


In ORD right now on another United-sponsored 3+ hour delay. Operations needs to get their shiat together here--far too many delays and cancellations lately.
 
2012-08-14 09:14:14 PM  

Persnickety: CliChe Guevara: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone.

I don't let my son fly alone at that age either, first because he isn't certified, but secondly I don't think he is capable of handing tricky landings or keeping a cool head at the controls in an emergency. By the time he is 16 I damn well expect he will be.

I certainly let him ride on a damn commercial jet though.

If you don't feel your 10 year old can, then you need to possibly reevaluate your parenting. Kids at 10 many places are responsibly doing a hell of a lot of things daily that you probably are afraid to even do yourself.

This. Hell, back when I was 10 years old I remember getting on my bike and riding all the way over to my friend's house across town, totally without any parental involvement at all! What shiatty parents I must have had.

Farkers are the first to call out stupid helicopter parenting but then are the first to turn around and advocate for exactly the same thing. Fark, Where Parents Are Always WrongTM


There is a huge difference between helicopter parenting and letting your kids go half way across the country unsupervised. Letting a 10 year old ride their bike near busy streets is one thing. Letting them fly across country alone is bad parenting.
 
2012-08-14 09:24:09 PM  

Warlordtrooper: There is a huge difference between helicopter parenting and letting your kids go half way across the country unsupervised. Letting a 10 year old ride their bike near busy streets is one thing. Letting them fly across country alone is bad parenting.


Not really, they're actually in more danger on the bike.
 
2012-08-14 09:36:29 PM  
United is the worst airline I've ever flown.

This site is nice though.
 
2012-08-14 10:09:50 PM  
I loved that classy, slick TV commercial United Airlines was airing during the Olympics.
It's as if United thinks the American public can be persuaded that United is still a respectable, top-tier business. Obviously it is not.
 
2012-08-14 11:15:44 PM  

dletter: WhyteRaven74: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.

Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.

I guess that is getting to the "culture" of the company. Because, in this case, we have a very specific thing as far as "why" she wasn't picked up ("Uh, I forgot")..... then, you have the customer service people who didn't seem to give enough care to the fact that they were put in "charge" of a 10 year old, and apparently she wasn't where she was supposed to be.

Any one of those people acting that way could be chalked up to "that person had a bad day, is a dick, etc"... multiple people acting in this way though shows some sort of company policy of "cannot deviate" from the rules.... ie, the person who says "My shift is ending" to the person pleading to know where their daughter is... is that just being a dick, or is it because there are some sort of draconian strict policies of how/when you can do your job. The guy who forgot, who knows, and it appears isn't really a direct employee of the airline. In any case, it comes down to a large group of people who don't have enough pride in their company/jobs to give a shiat. Is that bad company hiring practices, or a bad environment grooming the employees that way?


And that's the crux of the matter.
 
2012-08-14 11:25:46 PM  

shower_in_my_socks: Back in the 80s my mom and I took a cross country flight -- I was maybe 8 at the time. She and I sat next to each other the whole way, played card games, etc. The flight attendants were super nice to me -- gave me a set of plastic pilot's wings, gave me a tour of the cockpit during the flight (a pre-9/11 world) and I got to meet the pilots. My mom and I thought it was great that they were being so cool to me.

When we landed, the flight attendants came to "get me." My mom explained we were flying together -- that she was my mom. Like "Do you think I'm the nicest lady in the world, playing cards with a strange kid for five hours?" The flight attendants freaked the fark out. Apparently they knew there was a kid flying alone on the flight, and they thought I was that kid. So some poor little kid was on a flight full of strangers, and by that time probably wandering around the terminal.

So based on this article and my 25 year-old anecdote, this shiat happens all the time.

/csb


Was your mom a different race from you?
 
2012-08-14 11:28:56 PM  

poodebunker: Jeez that's nuts. Back in 2002 my husband drove to California on business and decided to stay a few extra days and had me put our 10 year old daughter on a plane so he could take her to Disneyland over the weekend. Southwest Airlines had a policy requiring me to remain at the departing gate for 45 minutes after her plane took off. From Las Vegas it's barely an hour flight. When she arrived in California they escorted my husband inside the plane to collect his daughter. They even made her verify that, "yes that's my dad" before she could leave the plane.


That last is not nuts at all. That's being protective of your younger customers.
As long as they treat all kids and adults equally when doing that.
 
2012-08-14 11:46:03 PM  

dletter: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

Basically this.

I don't care how great that summer camp is, she isn't going by herself to some summer camp across the country until at least H.S.


Ha! I used to fly to SFO to visit my friend in Santa Rosa all the time, at the tender age of 9. I got there with my luggage every single time.

Of course, that was in the Olden Days when my friend and her family could meet me at the gate. I'm not sure it would work as well today.
 
2012-08-15 12:14:10 AM  

Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?


*raises hand* For single parents, flying your child as an unaccompanied minor can be a godsend. My daughter enjoys it and it has always worked perfectly. We try to keep it to direct flights though.
 
2012-08-15 12:15:41 AM  

Gyrfalcon: dletter: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone. I barely trust these farkers to get my luggage to the same place, much less a live human being.

Basically this.

I don't care how great that summer camp is, she isn't going by herself to some summer camp across the country until at least H.S.

Ha! I used to fly to SFO to visit my friend in Santa Rosa all the time, at the tender age of 9. I got there with my luggage every single time.

Of course, that was in the Olden Days when my friend and her family could meet me at the gate. I'm not sure it would work as well today.


Still possible if you work it out with the airline in advance.
 
2012-08-15 01:15:23 AM  

dletter: WhyteRaven74: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.

Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.

I guess that is getting to the "culture" of the company. Because, in this case, we have a very specific thing as far as "why" she wasn't picked up ("Uh, I forgot")..... then, you have the customer service people who didn't seem to give enough care to the fact that they were put in "charge" of a 10 year old, and apparently she wasn't where she was supposed to be.

Any one of those people acting that way could be chalked up to "that person had a bad day, is a dick, etc"... multiple people acting in this way though shows some sort of company policy of "cannot deviate" from the rules.... ie, the person who says "My shift is ending" to the person pleading to know where their daughter is... is that just being a dick, or is it because there are some sort of draconian strict policies of how/when you can do your job. The guy who forgot, who knows, and it appears isn't really a direct employee of the airline. In any case, it comes down to a large group of people who don't have enough pride in their company/jobs to give a shiat. Is that bad company hiring practices, or a bad environment grooming the employees that way?


That's from short-staffing and outsourcing -- things you get after you kill the unions. They're pretty well maimed right now. The "culture" you're seeing (everywhere, it seems) is employees who have no reason to feel committed to a company because the company has shown it is not committed to them

Also, the person who said she was going off-shift actually did find the child
 
2012-08-15 07:00:25 AM  

Warlordtrooper: There is a huge difference between helicopter parenting and letting your kids go half way across the country unsupervised. Letting a 10 year old ride their bike near busy streets is one thing. Letting them fly across country alone is bad parenting.


It's a shame Fark doesn't allow one to change one's handle otherwise you could go for something more apropos. You know, something like "StupidMotherfarker".
 
2012-08-15 08:26:57 AM  
Sounds par for the course for united. I fly 2-6 times per month and have never had an issue free flight with them. No complaints with most of the others except for alaska. Their seats are too small and the seatbelts barely reach.

/I sound fat
//look it, too
 
2012-08-15 09:23:15 AM  

Warlordtrooper: Persnickety: CliChe Guevara: scottydoesntknow: There's no way in hell I would let my 10-year-old daughter fly alone.

I don't let my son fly alone at that age either, first because he isn't certified, but secondly I don't think he is capable of handing tricky landings or keeping a cool head at the controls in an emergency. By the time he is 16 I damn well expect he will be.

I certainly let him ride on a damn commercial jet though.

If you don't feel your 10 year old can, then you need to possibly reevaluate your parenting. Kids at 10 many places are responsibly doing a hell of a lot of things daily that you probably are afraid to even do yourself.

This. Hell, back when I was 10 years old I remember getting on my bike and riding all the way over to my friend's house across town, totally without any parental involvement at all! What shiatty parents I must have had.

Farkers are the first to call out stupid helicopter parenting but then are the first to turn around and advocate for exactly the same thing. Fark, Where Parents Are Always WrongTM

There is a huge difference between helicopter parenting and letting your kids go half way across the country unsupervised. Letting a 10 year old ride their bike near busy streets is one thing. Letting them fly across country alone is bad parenting.


Who said anything about unsupervised? Airlines have been doing this for decades without serious incident. All across the country, thousands, if not millions of kids walk to school or take public transportation every day. Frankly, your kid is probably safer on an airplane than in a public school. I think Farkers have seen too many Lifetime movies where an evil stranger snatches up kids the second mom's back is turned. Statistically, your child is far more likely to be a victim due to a teacher, coach or family member, but the stranger danger stories are the only ones that bring out the knee-jerk reactions like yours - and in this case the kid was never even in any danger.
 
2012-08-15 10:51:29 AM  
In the 80s my sister and I went alone to India (I was 7 and she was 11). It has nothing to do with bad parenting, especially if you know your children aren't idiots. We were going to spend the summer with our grandmother and cousins. My mom, who works, could not take 3 months off so she had to come later. There was no fanfare or confusion. A stewardess escorted us to the plane and took us to customs when we landed. I don't know why it's so difficult for an adult to keep track of a child for 10 minutes nowadays.
 
2012-08-15 11:09:26 AM  

scottydoesntknow: cman: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.

Actually not in this case. They outsourced their babysitting to a third-party company, who called in sick and made United cancel their dinner plans.



Funny enough the parents complained about this.

I don't understand the complaints about outsourcing. We had a Republican mayor here trying to fix the school system, and the Democrats ran attack ads saying in a dark and foreboding voice that he "hired a private commercial company to fix Baltimore's school system." That's a bad thing?

The mayor of Baltimore isn't a business process management expert or an education expert, it makes sense to outsource to a company that can locate efficiency and management problems in the business process of the school system--someone whose job it is to figure out why business goals aren't being met, why business functions aren't being performed, and why what's actually happening is costing so damned much money. The school is broken, tell me why and how to fix it. It's supposed to produce educated kids but it just sucks down $13,000 per student per year and produces illiterate drug dealers, while other schools produce educated kids on $5,000 per student per year.

United gets plane tickets sold and schedules plane flights. They're not farking babysitters; it makes sense to outsource your child care services to people who are experts in child care services. Did you know they outsource their airplane engineering and construction to Boeing?

Seriously. We have laws about outsourcing. Specifically, we have laws that say you have to do it. Andrew Carnegie did the vertical integration thing (like buying steel mines, refineries, mills, airplane engineering and construction firms, airports, ticket sales firms, running the scheduling, etc), we banned that. Rockerfeller did the horizontal integration thing (buy the oil refineries to refine your own oil for your planes, and the air ports to land and maintain them; also sell specialty fuels, maintenance services, and runway use to every other airline, since you own all the airports), we banned that too. Why do people whine about how terrible it is that Company X paid Company Y to do something that Company Y can do so much better than Company X? Do we all want to live under the rule of one giant megacorporation?
 
2012-08-15 11:29:46 AM  

zenobia: Also, the person who said she was going off-shift actually did find the child


True, but, at least they painted it as that the dad has to basically guilt her into doing it. Instead of her going "Yes, let me find out where she is" right away.
 
2012-08-15 12:26:37 PM  

bluefoxicy: scottydoesntknow: cman: Farkin_Crazy: What parent in their right mind lets a 10 year old fly unattended across the country?

It is a service offered by the airlines. Airline staff are supposed to be watching the children.

Actually not in this case. They outsourced their babysitting to a third-party company, who called in sick and made United cancel their dinner plans.


Funny enough the parents complained about this.

I don't understand the complaints about outsourcing. We had a Republican mayor here trying to fix the school system, and the Democrats ran attack ads saying in a dark and foreboding voice that he "hired a private commercial company to fix Baltimore's school system." That's a bad thing?


I see you've never worked with consulting firms before. Without knowing a thing about the situation let me guess how things will play out: The efficiency experts will do a study and the results will be dire. You are just on the brink of disaster and it's a darn good thing you called when you did! After a couple months of pouring over data/playing golf, the root causes of all your woes will be found to be X, Y and Z. Lucky for you, the consulting firm just so happens to have a program that specifically addresses X, Y and Z - what an amazing coincidence! And pay no mind to the principals and superintendent who think X, Y and Z are just nit-picky side points that don't address the real problems. What do they know? Unfortunately the preliminary study they originally did only uncovered X so you're going to have to fork over a few more bucks for Y and Z. The plan is adopted, the year passes and sure as shiat, everything got better, even the the consultants' handicaps improved a couple points. However, during the year, the experts also uncovered problems A and B. Wouldn't ya know it, they can solve that one too! Lather, rinse, repeat.


The mayor of Baltimore isn't a business process management expert or an education expert, it makes sense to outsource to a company that can locate efficiency and management problems in the business process of the school system--someone whose job it is to figure out why business goals aren't being met, why business functions aren't being performed, and why what's actually happening is costing so damned much money. The school is broken, tell me why and how to fix it. It's supposed to produce educated kids but it just sucks down $13,000 per student per year and produces illiterate drug dealers, while other schools produce educated kids on $5,000 per student per year.

So the problems of inner city schools can be solved by business efficiency experts. This is what conservatives actually believe.


United gets plane tickets sold and schedules plane flights. They're not farking babysitters; it makes sense to outsource your child care services to people who are experts in child care services.

Nope. If they advertise that they offer gate to gate babysitting and happily take your money to do so, I'd say that makes them babysitters. The problem most people have with outsourcing is that more often than not it's not done because the other company is an expert, it's done because the third party is cheap. Or do you really believe that Indians who barely speak English are truly the experts at answering your support questions at 3AM local time for them?
 
2012-08-15 12:52:49 PM  
With the possible exception of Time-Warner Cable, United Airlines has the shiattiest customer service of any large company I've ever dealt with. They managed to lose my luggage not once but twice on the same trip. The second time, we'd arrived at the airport after midnight and all the UA counter staff had gone home -- I and several other passengers (about a third of everyone's luggage had failed to arrive) had to get a janitor to chase down a baggage handler so we could register our complaints. Then I spent about two hours on the phone, first with one of those retarded voice-recognition computer systems that was completely unable to understand my mild Southern accent, and then with some guy in India whose accent *I* could barely understand. Initially they had no record whatsoever of either my name or my claim check number. Then they found it, but they couldn't determine where my luggage was beyond Denver, Chicago, Salt Lake City, or Washington, D.C.

I eventually got my luggage back a few days on (although they delivered it to my next-door neighbor), and I know my experience hardly compares to losing a child, but my God, these idiots should be out of business. Whenever possible, I take non-US carriers -- the difference in competence, in virtually every respect, is striking.
 
2012-08-15 03:29:59 PM  

dletter: WhyteRaven74: cman: You wanted union rules, you got union rules.

Yes lets blame everything bad on unions and not companies who treat customer service as annoyance.

I guess that is getting to the "culture" of the company. Because, in this case, we have a very specific thing as far as "why" she wasn't picked up ("Uh, I forgot")..... then, you have the customer service people who didn't seem to give enough care to the fact that they were put in "charge" of a 10 year old, and apparently she wasn't where she was supposed to be.

Any one of those people acting that way could be chalked up to "that person had a bad day, is a dick, etc"... multiple people acting in this way though shows some sort of company policy of "cannot deviate" from the rules.... ie, the person who says "My shift is ending" to the person pleading to know where their daughter is... is that just being a dick, or is it because there are some sort of draconian strict policies of how/when you can do your job. The guy who forgot, who knows, and it appears isn't really a direct employee of the airline. In any case, it comes down to a large group of people who don't have enough pride in their company/jobs to give a shiat. Is that bad company hiring practices, or a bad environment grooming the employees that way?


Most big companies succeed entirely in spite of themselves, thanks to the 10% of employees who keep the whole ship running and go far above and beyond out of some misguided sense of self-sacrifice tied to their pride. None of those are ever the officers, and very few are management.

Airlines don't even have that. Like the military, they survive only via constant infusions from the public trough, so inefficiency and stupidity multiplies instead of being held in check by the hard need to make just enough to get through this year. They no longer have to care, so they just fire or burn out the few good ones that were floating them back in the day. Big companies purging everyone as they prepare to be sold or go under (while returning every penny to shareholders) are usually in the same boat, but might have a couple of decent workers left with the Fear of God/Unemployment motivating them.

Why do you think that commercial pilots are always drunk?
 
2012-08-17 03:40:49 AM  

Amphipath: moonage daydream: Nightshade50: Parents to airline: Lawsuit

I know it would of crossed my mind if I was a parent.

Would of, huh?

Yes. In his mind of wood.


I wish I remember what moron on this site said "it's a doggy dog world".
 
2012-08-17 03:41:50 AM  
Remembered, that is.
 
2012-08-17 04:49:25 AM  

moonage daydream: I wish I remember what moron on this site said "it's a doggy dog world".


Probably a Sports Night fan.
 
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