No Response for Groping Complaint

March 4, 2018

in Passenger Stories

Just another sad story on how poorly large companies treat customers. This time it is an airline – AER LINGUS.

‪On Oct 5, 2017 I flew home after a great trip to Ireland. The flight was long and stressful after the guy behind me reached more than 2 feet in front of himself and groped me. As most people don’t think that something like this happens, you kind of think to yourself, “Did that really just happen?” ‬

It was a busy flight but not a full flight. I was sitting beside a nice older person and people were now asleep. So I discretely called for the flight attendant and let her know what had just happened. Her response was, “It must have been an accident.” Then she turned around and left. An accident? Really? How does a person “accidentally” reach forward around a chair and grab a person’s chest??? If you can explain that to me I would love to know how that’s an accident. (And no, the man was not trying to get up and out of his seat).

About 20 minutes later the flight attendant comes back and said to me, “Well I guess we can move you if we have to.” At this point there were only 40 minutes left in the flight, so still trying do not make a scene, I just told her, “Why bother now the flight is almost over.” Not once did the flight attendant ask if I was okay.

When I landed in Toronto I thought that maybe I would go and talk to someone from the airline and tell them what happened. The customer service response was to wait and someone would come talk to me. I waited for almost an hour when the information desk worker got a call which he handed to me. It was the Aer Lingus representative. She said she didn’t have time to come and see me now and asked if I knew the name of the flight attendant. When I said that I didn’t, the representative said, “If you don’t have a name we can’t help you anyways.”

Feeling kind of sad and dirty I left and went home. The incident was handled so poorly I decided to call Aer Lingus’s customer service to make a complaint. I was told that I should get a call within a week with some kind of response. Nothing… 1 month nothing… so I called back… I was told the file was closed?!?! I told this new customer service person that nobody called me, so she re-opened my file and said again that someone will definitely call me within a week…

Another month went by with nothing, so I called again and was told that yes, my complaint was assigned to someone, but they were working when I called and I should call back after ‪9:00am‬ the next day. Before I had a chance to call, someone called me and said that I was sent an e-mail with the outcome. When I told her no, that I received no messages, I was told that a person would call me. She verified my e-mail, which had not been correctly recorded previously. When I asked what happen with my complaint, she refused to answer and said I could read the e-mail!!! What kind of crap is that when the company customer service person refuses to talk to you!!!!

I finally received an email from Aer Lingus which was an unacceptable response!! I replied to the email and I’m still waiting for a response. I paid good money to the airline. Why can’t I at least have some common courtesy? It’s sad, just sad!!! People wonder why those who experience assaults say nothing… By sharing my story I hope to make people aware.

Thank you.


I received a second response letter from Aer Lingus. They didn’t address anything about what happen to me. Their response: “Regrettably there is no report of any such incident onboard our aircraft or with our airport staff.”

Of course there would only be my complaint because their employee told me that “It must have been an accident” and walked off… Why would she do paperwork for that?? Let’s blame the victim. I was trapped on their aircraft and the Aer Lingus staff did nothing when I reported to them that the man sitting behind me had just assaulted me. I was in such shock after what happened, and the dismissal by the airline staff, that I didn’t push hard enough at the flight attendant to hear me!!

These companies need to treat people with more respect, follow their own company policies, and not blame and dismiss reports from victims on their aircrafts.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Kevin March 15, 2018 at 10:30 pm

This is disgraceful!


Abby March 29, 2018 at 3:47 pm

Just curious, how would you have liked them to handle it?


Hallie May 25, 2018 at 1:56 pm

How the heck do you think? Don’t you figure they could have maybe gone through camera footage to catch the guy on the way out or give her the chance to identify the Arline person or something?


moni May 26, 2018 at 1:24 pm

It is certainly upsetting – first the incident as such and secondly the non-reaction of the flight attendant. But honestly, why didn't you make a song and dance about it right the minute that guy started pawing you? Believe me, that would have gotten you a different seat straight away and been a huge embassement for that brainless idiot – tested it in similar situation myself and it worked like dream.


Martha May 30, 2018 at 4:20 pm

When sexual assault occurs, it might be a good idea to scream loudly, stand up and point to whomever assaulted you and yell, "This person just sexually assaulted me. I want you to call the police!" I bet staff would think twice about ignoring such sexual attacks then.


Isolda October 9, 2018 at 2:49 pm

Years ago, I got groped by a pervert in the seat next to mine. I stood up, walked back to the flight attendants' station, and told them. I got the same "it must have been an accident" thing. An older woman standing in line for the bathroom suggested that I order a coffee and winked. So I did. Oops, I accidentally spilled my coffee in my seatmate's lap.


Cabin crew February 23, 2019 at 11:43 am

Hate this. What a pathetic response from the airline too, utter garbage. You should consider going to the police even now. Maybe they still have a record on file of the manifest? Do you still have your ticket/seat number?

As cabin crew myself I’d have asked if you wished to press charges, reseated you if possible (full flights are difficult, but I wouldn’t want you near him after that…), and if yes to charges I’d have requested the captain have a police presence at the gate on landing.

That should be common sense. I figure the crew on this flight weren’t sure how to handle it, so made up that it must have been an accident. That’s easier than dealing with it properly. Disappointing…


Leave a Comment
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous post:

Next post: