Rude and Clumsy Attendants

September 19, 2009

in Attendant & Pilot Stories

So everyone knows the pitfalls of Southwest – little room to move, crappy flights, and crying babies. However, I was flying back from Las Vegas with my brother, sister-in-law and husband (we’ll call him “Bob”) when I had one of the worst flights I have ever had.

First of all, we got there before a number of other people, but because it is Southwest we were all forced to sit with strangers apart from each other, which would usually be okay except for the fact that I do not do well on planes and informed Southwest that I needed to sit next to someone in my party. I didn’t care who, but someone, please. I was told if I got there in ample time that it wouldn’t be a problem; lie.

Then once we were herded onto the plane like buffalo in the Midwest, we were seated and waited at least 30-45 minutes to even get the plane moving. When we got into the air was my favorite. The attendants came around and asked if we would like something to drink…Great….until they got to my husband “Bob” who was on the aisle seat across and two rows ahead of me. They asked the person next to him if he would like something to drink and he got a Sprite and the person next to him ordered a Bloody Mary. Once they handed “Bob” his Sprite they then handed his neighbor the Bloody Mary, BUT instead of handing it to the person next to them they DUMPED the Bloody Mary down the front of “Bob” (his $75 Brand New white T-shirt). The attendant did not even apologize or anything;  just stared and said “oops” and that she would “grab him something to clean it off with.”

It wasn’t until about 20 minutes later that the attendant came back and said “Oops, I forgot to grab you something didn’t I?” “Bob” had been trying to grab someone to get this cleaned up for some time now. By that time, he had already got what he could off with my brother’s and his Sprite, which they didn’t offer to refill or anything. She then had the audacity to get irritated because he said to her “No, you don’t have to bother, I already got what I could out…which sucks cause this is a brand new expensive shirt.”

You know what, people have off days and are clumsy, I understand that. But no apology, no courtesy, rudeness, and plain out un-professionalism is more than uncalled for. I tell people about this all the time and DEFINETLY DO NOT fly Southwest OR advise anyone else to.

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Demotage September 18, 2009 at 9:35 pm

Well, Southwest did not exactly lie. It is true that if you get there far enough ahead of time, you would have been able to sit together. You apparently go there too late to get "A" boarding passes – but is that the airlines fault? Besides, you can check into SWA online 24 hours ahead and secure yourself the coveted "A" passes which means you'll be among the first 60 to board (I know: 30, but they let the people who bought "business first" tickets on first). So I don't see that as the airline's fault – except for the fact that I don't like unassigned seating – but hey – if you are going on SWA, thems are the rules – so you plan ahead to get the seats you want.

I agree that the FA's behavior was rude – she should have offered to pay for a cleaning bill – after all, she did spill tomato juice on "Bob's" shirt.

I wonder: can we all call him "Bob"? I'd kind of prefer to call him Henry.


saw September 19, 2009 at 1:49 pm

All I can say… is you get what you pay for. Did you expect "intelligence", "attentiveness" or "good behavior" from flight attendants on a bargain basement carrier? You're lucky they spoke English and weren't moonlighting as landscape workers. I would have expected quick response to the spill in the form of a gas powered leaf blower.


Bruce Weatherby September 19, 2009 at 9:39 pm

Really, these days is Southwest that much worse than any other airline? But seriously, you act like you expected this from Southwest, so if that's the case, why not choose another airline? Just because it's the cheapest fare doesn't mean you have to take it. You get what you pay for.


MJ September 20, 2009 at 7:52 am

Ehhh…this is unpleasant, and the FA needs some courtesy training, but if you fly SW regularly, you know to get your boarding pass online to get group A.


ps September 21, 2009 at 3:29 am

Next time book another airline. Southwest is the equivalent of Air WalMart. You get what you pay for.


Sharon September 21, 2009 at 3:49 pm

A $75 t-shirt. He deserved to get something spilled on it. Should have bought a $5 t-shirt at Old Navy and spent the extra money on an airline that assigns seats.


guest April 11, 2013 at 2:04 pm

I was thinking the same thing. Who in the heck pays $75 for a stupid t-shirt. Was it lined in gold?


saw September 22, 2009 at 8:24 am

Sharon's right… That didn't quite hit home for me either… If you can afford a $75 WHITE T-SHIRT (mine cost about $8 for a pack of 3), FLY ANOTHER AIRLINE and quit complaining !


theblackdog September 22, 2009 at 10:28 am

Southwest must like BWI a lot or something because I have had no problems with any Southwest flight out of there. They're the first airline I go to, which is probably why I'm on the verge of a free flight from them.


meme September 22, 2009 at 10:37 am

You are right,should have apologized for spilling,but on every Southwest flight, I have found the FA great. We all know it is a discount airline with 24 hour ahead check in or earlier if you want to pay another 20 bucks, but they don't zap you for luggage, like other airlines.


Andrew September 22, 2009 at 11:33 am

Don't ever fly Southwest again! It gives us regular Southwest frequent flyers a better flying atmosphere than the constant complaining from rich snobs like you and "Bob".


saw September 22, 2009 at 12:20 pm

Meme… No, they don't charge you for luggage, but then, they charge you $20 to get a "chance" at a seat… I'd rather pay for luggage and have my seating assigned up-front, and the ability to adjust my seating ahead of time to ensure my party travels together.

Oh.. and other airlines know how to land their planes at MDW without putting them into the highway…


Josh October 27, 2009 at 7:06 am

Wow. There are a lot of angry people responding to these.

I have found that flight attendants' behavior is very dependant on their level of fatigue and the attitudes of customers that have flown on flights the FAs had before yours. Let's admit it, airplanes are cramped and uncomfortable at best and aren't a very enjoyable experience for customers. I can imagine that FA are almost always on the defensive.


donna October 28, 2009 at 11:33 am

As for the dumping of the drink the flight atttendant was a pretty sorry person that day! Now then, I am guessing you purchased tickets on Southwest because they do offer some of the best prices, so you and Robert (Bob) were being a little cheap, yet Robert (Bob) purchased a white T-shirt for $75.00??!! Are you kidding me, I don't think a white Polo T-shirt would cost $75.00. You and Robert (Bob) are pictured on the Wal-Mart website aren't you……….you know what I am taking about.

As for the dumping of the drink the flight attendant was a pretty sorry person that day!


Rich October 15, 2010 at 8:09 am

I fly almost weekly and in my experience Southwest has the BEST service and more FRIENDLY FAs around. They are almost always on time and go to great lengths to get you to where you need to be. If you want truly bad service go to US Air.

In any group there will be the exceptions. Sorry you ran into one.


Ryan June 22, 2012 at 11:56 am

Southwest isnt bad!


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