January 23, 2007

How's their frequent-flyer program?

Posted by Arcane Gazebo at January 23, 2007 3:55 PM

AirTran is my new favorite airline.

Toddler's temper ousts family from plane

ORLANDO, Fla. - AirTran Airways on Tuesday defended its decision to remove a Massachusetts couple from a flight after their crying 3-year-old daughter refused to take her seat before takeoff.

AirTran officials said they followed Federal Aviation Administration rules that children age 2 and above must have their own seat and be wearing a seat belt upon takeoff.

"The flight was already delayed 15 minutes and in fairness to the other 112 passengers on the plane, the crew made an operational decision to remove the family," AirTran spokeswoman Judy Graham-Weaver said.

(Via Steinn.) AirTran should publicize this, there is a market for airlines that have low tolerance for obnoxious kids. Bonus reason to fly AirTran: "The father said his family would never fly AirTran again."

Tags: Travel


Posted by: Mason | January 23, 2007 3:59 PM

Perhaps the father should look for "Lack of Parential Responsibility Air" so he can be with fellow parents who choose not to govern their children.

Posted by: Chris L-S | January 23, 2007 5:13 PM

<hero tag>

Posted by: Josh | January 23, 2007 7:11 PM

Just make sure you don't try to take your super-spy secret compartment water bottle on the plane with you...

Posted by: Chad Orzel | January 23, 2007 7:17 PM

Airlines seem to uniformly allow Starbucks coffee on planes now... they must have been paid off...

Posted by: Mason | January 23, 2007 7:19 PM

AG you have long had the answer on this one- the sedative patch for infants on planes. Until they are widely deployed, Bose earphones and an iPod are the only reliable defense.

Posted by: JSpur | January 23, 2007 7:58 PM

Honestly, I'd really like to see a real solution to the children-on-airplanes problem. I mean, it's not like there are viable alternatives to taking the plane for long-distance travel. Believe me, I've looked--trains are outrageously expensive, and car trips often take too long in a country where most people only get 2 weeks of total annual vacation. And it shouldn't surprise anyone that small children don't handle the stresses of air travel well: hell, I've broken down crying in an airport terminal before; I'm not going to blame a 3-year-old for doing the same. So what solutions are there? (Saying "don't travel at all until the kids are x years old" isn't a solution, it's a question-dodge).

Personally, I'm dreaming of a fast, cost-effective train system like Europe's. Or something more plausible, like teleportation.

Posted by: Lanth | January 24, 2007 4:29 PM

We could always nip the problem in the bud and just not have any more children. :)

And I should remind the audience that the iPod defense doesn't work during take-off, landing, or between songs. :(

Posted by: Mason | January 24, 2007 4:44 PM

Just thought I'd weigh in on this, since I've been on both sides of the issue: I've taken plane trips of various distances up to 3000 miles or so with my own children at various ages from 1.5 years to fully grown, and I've been on long and short plane trips where there were kids and babies in various moods. It is possible to prepare children for flying on planes so that they know what behavior is expected of them, and I never had any real trouble with my children on planes. We always brought plenty of things to keep them busy, and food to keep hunger from being a problem. I was always exhausted by the time we got where we were going, but I don't think the children bothered the other passengers. (Maybe one or two of them will comment on their experience -- I might be remembering our travels very differently from the way they remember them.) When I flew with my babies, they always nursed on take-off and landing so that their ears weren't bothered by the change in pressure. It was just no big deal. I flew on planes from the time I was a small child, and I expected my own children to be able to do the same, and they were fine.
Here lately I've been on some long flights where there were crying babies. On one of them -- a red-eye from Phoenix to Charlotte -- the baby in the row in front of me screamed starting about 45 minutes out from Charlotte until the flight attendant finally suggested to the mother that she try feeding her baby. That did the trick. I can't believe the mom didn't think of that herself.

Posted by: lidarose | January 24, 2007 6:35 PM
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