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Problems with United.....

Problems with United.....

Old Aug 13th 2011, 1:20 pm
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Default Problems with United.....

So my friend just visited from the UK, his passport had been through the washing machine before he traveled and was looking a little tatty. He traveled to the US with it just fine. The problem came when he was leaving and the airline said that his passport was in too poor condition. That would have been fine, but instead of refusing travel they made him buy an extra ticket for the first plane. He had 2 seats on the same flight and paid $500 for it.......Has anyone ever heard of anything like this before? I could understand them saying he was a security risk and making him pay for a different flight but it was the exact same plane! Also the TSA told him that his passport was fine, as did people at other airline desks.

He's gonna try to get his money back but we shall see.....
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Was the extra ticket for the passport?
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 1:46 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Originally Posted by AmerLisa View Post
Was the extra ticket for the passport?
I have no idea, if it was a security issue then they should have either refused him all together or the TSA wouldn't have let him through. He said the first guy he spoke to was fine about it all then some other woman glanced over and said that he couldn't travel with it. He's gonna complain to the FAA, United/Delta and he was speaking about talking to the police, he said he was pressured into buying something he had no need or use for.
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Is your friend a particularly large person - you know, kinda roomy?
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 2:41 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

How bizarre. Could the money have been some kind of insurance for the airline, in case they got into trouble at the other end for carrying him with an illegibile passport?

I hate United. Good luck getting your money back from them. They once offered me the chance to pay for an upgrade to a seat I had already purchased.

Last edited by Apfelkuchen; Aug 13th 2011 at 2:50 pm.
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 3:06 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

I'm not fond of United as well... But we're getting ready to go on a long trip starting Tuesday, and we will be flying with several different carriers. Fingers crossed that we don't come up against any ridiculous issues while we're away....

And you're kind of caught if they're pressuring you to buy something and you just want to get out of there and home. I hope your friend gets compensation!!
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 3:07 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Originally Posted by Awesome Welles View Post
Is your friend a particularly large person - you know, kinda roomy?
He's a big guy as in he trains every day and is in the military.....But he's not a big fatty! He's hoping he can get his cash back. It just seems like a very odd story, even the guy that was first serving him told him that if it was a different supervisor then he would have got on the flight straight away. It's just odd that the TSA can say a passport is fine but the airline can still refuse you.
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 3:39 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

I would complain to United and ask for the money back. Never heard of that before and it could well have been breach of contract.
If it was paid by credit card I would also ask the credit card company to charge the cost back because no service was provided.

Last edited by JAJ; Aug 13th 2011 at 3:42 pm.
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 3:46 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Yup - complain, do it through a local news channel, play on the fact he's in the military - go for the bad PR angle....!!!

This just sounds like gouging to me... [email protected]!

HTS
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 4:52 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

He paid with his debit card and the bank told him that he can dispute the charge after 30 days. He told them that he had to get back to the UK because he needs to be back at camp for training, they said that because he didn't have any orders with him then it didn't matter. He did show them his military ID but they said that wasn't enough. I might send an email to the local paper to see if they want to pick up the story, our airport is small and expensive to fly out of as it is. There is no reason to make it worse!
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 5:12 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

What I don't understand is if the passport was not good enough for the airline to allow him onto the plane how does buying another seat on the same flight make the rejected passport acceptable?

Suppose he didn't bother asking for a supervisor, did he?
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 5:34 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Originally Posted by Rete View Post
What I don't understand is if the passport was not good enough for the airline to allow him onto the plane how does buying another seat on the same flight make the rejected passport acceptable?

Suppose he didn't bother asking for a supervisor, did he?
I would be interested to see what is actually stated on the receipt for his $500 that he got from United...
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Old Aug 13th 2011, 11:56 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Originally Posted by Ja5on View Post
So my friend just visited from the UK, his passport had been through the washing machine before he traveled and was looking a little tatty. He traveled to the US with it just fine. The problem came when he was leaving and the airline said that his passport was in too poor condition. That would have been fine, but instead of refusing travel they made him buy an extra ticket for the first plane. He had 2 seats on the same flight and paid $500 for it.......Has anyone ever heard of anything like this before? I could understand them saying he was a security risk and making him pay for a different flight but it was the exact same plane! Also the TSA told him that his passport was fine, as did people at other airline desks.

He's gonna try to get his money back but we shall see.....
It sounds to me as if United were charging him for a potential 'return' ticket in case he was refused entry because of his tatty passport. In those circumstances United might be responsible for returning him to his point of departure.
However, everything about it sounds a little bit wrong and I would certainly be disputing it.
As a UK citizen of course, he would be allowed entry eventually. Maybe United were covering the possibility that he wasn't a UK citizen and the passport was not in good enough condition to be verified (by them) as valid.
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Old Aug 14th 2011, 6:38 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

It seems rather strange. You first go through checkin with the airline, and then you get to the TSA with your BP and carryon.

How would he know whether the TSA is going to or not accept his ID ? Actually TSA just looks at your photo ID, tattered or not. People carry frayed drivers license as photo ID and folded printout of e-ticket for TSA security check
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Old Aug 14th 2011, 11:31 pm
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Default Re: Problems with United.....

Originally Posted by Rete View Post
What I don't understand is if the passport was not good enough for the airline to allow him onto the plane how does buying another seat on the same flight make the rejected passport acceptable?

Suppose he didn't bother asking for a supervisor, did he?
Yeah he spoke to the supervisor and said she was very abrupt and unhelpful.....They said that because of the passport then the TSA might not allow him through. He had his connection in DC and said that he would take his chances and if not he would have to go the embassy, they said that he needed a new ticket for the plane to dc so he had his original seat plus the extra one that he paid for right next to it.
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