An airport worker has taken to Reddit to rant about why she's "sick and tired" of families "demanding" priority treatment at the airport.
The anonymous worker claimed that she worked with ground handling – so on check-in desks and in the airport for "several airlines per day". She noted that while lots of airlines do offer queue skip priority to families or those with infants, others do not and it’s up to the airline not the airport.
On this occasion, the airline only offered the perk to business class passengers and those who have reduced mobility and need wheelchair assistance. Dealing with two queues of passengers for a "full flight" she claimed that while most families queued up as normal two decided that they deserved "special" treatment.
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She explained: "Two different families moved from our queue to the empty one next to us. One family had an infant, the other had three kids, one with a baby stroller. I simply ignored them. As it was a literal chaos, my colleague and I were trying our best to keep the queue without disrupting passengers. At some point the family decided they have waited long enough for me to call for them (I did not) they decided to just proceed to my counter as soon as I finished with one of the passengers I was serving."
She continued: "I didn’t call them. I didn’t nod to them and I had an entire full queue of people waiting for their turn. I told the father that they have to go back in line, as I can't service them since they cut the line."
But, she reports that this wasn’t OK with the father of one of the families. He apparently said: "Are you kidding? We have babies!"
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The airport worker reports that she replied: "This airline does not provide priority for families. It has nothing to do with the airport. This is up to the airline, and this one does not provide priority for families. Half the flight is families and they're waiting in line. You have to go back."
At first it seemed that the family acquiesced, but they only moved to the front of the line instead. The worker said that she kept calling passengers from behind them and even warned her colleague not to accept them. Thankfully, for the family at least, one kind passenger agreed to let them go in front of him. But, the family weren’t pleased by the ordeal, reports the airport worker.
She explained: "The mother kept giving me sh*t telling me I'm unprofessional and overall making a scene. I told her just because she brought her kids with her doesn't mean she has more rights than anybody else and if the passenger didn’t allow them to take his turn I would keep them waiting until the very end of the line."
Ranting she added: "I'm sick and tired of families DEMANDING to be serviced first. Your life choices don't entitle you to special rights! My colleague had informed them there is no priority for families when he saw them trying to get to the wrong line. The reason I ignored them was because I saw the scene and they still proceeded to go to the wrong line.
"Also, people speak a lot about families needing extra time in the airplane to set carseats and their things etc, this was not boarding. This happened at Bag Drop-off so it wasn’t a matter of needing time to get ready. The airplane wasn’t halfway to the airport yet. They had time to wait."
She had posted the situation asking if she was an "a**hole" for doing so and over 700 people weighed in on the situation in the comments. One person said: "I would've refused to process them until they joined the back of the line. What makes them so special?? And they preyed on someone next in line to 'just let them in', I still would've said, no back of the line you cannot jump the queue."
Another added: "It boils my blood that people who decide to have children think they deserve all these special privileges in life." But, not everyone was so against the parents or against family priority lines.
One person slammed the poster and said: "You say your colleague already mentioned the policy, now, do you know how many times I have had to politely remind people of the exact same thing my coworker just said? A lot. You just seem incredibly bias and rude and could have handled the situation better."
While a parent noted: "I fly with small kids and get priority everywhere automatically, I always assumed because the stroller needs to be packed up and put in the hold ASAP so the plane can close doors and commence on time."
Another person added: "The reason that families with very young kids want to pre-board is that it sucks to travel with kids. Airline should give priority. And yes, maybe you decided not to have kids, but you used to be a kid.
"And I hope special accommodations were made for you and your parents. Life is hard. I try to give as much help as I can, knowing I have needed it myself, and will definitely need it at some point in the future."
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