Delta admits fault in kicking passengers off Maui to Los Angeles flight (smart move btw)!

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Sorry for not responding to dozens of e-mails about this story today but I have been away from my computer all day long and had very limited wifi or cell signal. On to the topic at hand (need a recap? See Live and Let Fly’s post about the timeline).

Now before you tell me Delta did not actually admit to fault notice what they have just posted about the incident on the Delta News Hub:

Delta Air Lines issued the following statement today regarding Flight 2222 on April 23:

“We are sorry for the unfortunate experience our customers had with Delta, and we’ve reached out to them to refund their travel and provide additional compensation. Delta’s goal is to always work with customers in an attempt to find solutions to their travel issues. That did not happen in this case and we apologize.” –

Now you DO NOT refund someone’s tickets and also provide additional compensation and also apologize if you are in the right. So, this tells me Delta is in the wrong on this one and has admitted it. Beyond that I would not be shocked to hear the Delta FA who threatened the family with jail time is likely no longer employed with Delta (remember no unions for Delta FAs).

Next, anyone who is a frequent flyer, knows the family did not follow the rules. They may or may not know the way it all works. Either way they were also in the wrong here but that does not excuse the way Delta people ended the situation. The simple fix for Delta CORP now is to say sorry, pay out small composition and hope this goes away ASAP (smart move)!

The bottom line on this, and every situation that will come up for years to come, is the airlines are now in fear of the endless news cycle of them treating customers badly again and again and again. They are in fear, not of us, but of the time when there are perhaps new laws that will cost their bottom line and impact the share price. All it will take is one or two more of these events for that day to be at hand. – Rene


  1. Agreeing to refund, giving compensation and apologizing doesn’t mean they are in the wrong. It’s the correct business decision. Being right under these circumstances doesn’t get Delta anything. Who is right or wrong is immaterial. Appearing to be at fault is everything.

  2. Good post. It’s not about right/wrong. Years of bad behavior by airlines mean it is all about perception.
    Good recovery by DL but it is all too little too late to change public opinion

  3. Doens’t mean they are in the wrong at all, they want to avoid anymore negative press.

  4. My concern is how many more passengers are going to try to take advantage of the current climate. Resist a little, get paid a lot seems to be a standard joke among my fellow passengers lately.

  5. What a total S.N.A.F.U by All parties involved.
    1. Greedy “Air Lines” that constantly overbook, paying the percentages that they sell a seat or two twice, such as this case with a no show.
    2. The parents for not checking up on what happens to original seat (no show) when they send son #1 on a different flight and also not checkng with gate agents on how they can still utilize the paid, now vacant in their mind, seat.
    3. The stupid FA for uttering threats of legal action that they, the FA, knows nothing about.

  6. I predict the public turns on these passengers and applauds the airline in the future. This will happen when enough belligerent flyers stage to many “sit ins” and inconvenience more of the flying public. It’s great to feel sorry for the passenger it’s another to start missing connecting flights and/or both etc. etc. On the other hand maybe the airlines stop over booking by 5% so they avoid any possibility of this occurring to begin with.

  7. Sarah is exactly right. We already know that many passengers have an untold level of self entitlement and importance. I feel that many may take advantage of this even further

  8. Pax messed up but Delta was dead when the stupid FA went nuclear with her ridiculous jail rant.
    Fess up, give them a ticket and move on. Delta was in a corner, right or wrong.

  9. We don’t know who is right or wrong for sure because we don’t have all the facts. I watched the entire video and maybe these passengers were wrong, maybe they were right, but due to the recent events (especially the one with United), the Delta employees could have and should have handled this with more sensitivity and much better. The way the Delta employees talked with this man bothered me. They weren’t really helping to offer solutions or be courteous. Even he pointed that out. In my opinion, they failed in the way they handled it. They need better training and need to stop their power trips. They don’t need the same bad press as United and American. However, since they did not handle it well, and it was recorded, this got on the national ABC nightly news, and they pointed out how the parents were threatened with going to jail and having their children taken away. Now it looks bad for Delta and it leaves a bad feeling about Delta for the people that watch it. All of the airlines need to be very careful with their actions and responses to situations for the next several months. The press loves these videos.

  10. It’s interesting that only several weeks ago, you wrote that the “bump” incident that happened on a United Airlines flight would never happen on a Delta flight. Well, guess what, you were wrong!
    In this event, Delta flight attendants even threaten the family with jail time and putting their kids in a foster home if they didn’t get off the airplane. If it wasn’t for the fact that the United Airlines incident (several weeks ago) caused so much public attention, I would not have been surprised if the Maui airport police dragged this family off the airplane as well. So, my point is, Delta Airlines is not the “so friendly” and benevolent airlines that you portray them to be. Like other airlines, their employees try and follow the rules and policy’s that are given to them to administer when they are handed an unusual situation. i am afraid, that with video devices being more readily available, passengers at the airport or on the airplane are going to push the envelope with airline rules, policies and common sense so that they can try to win huge lawsuits for not following the flight attendants/ crews instructions. We haven’t seen the last of these types of incidents. What’s next, people not following basic safety instructions?

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