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OK Service 4 Me
Posted by FrigidaireHater on 06/12/2006
I've been reading the horrors people have experienced with Air-Tran. Since I have flown with this airline for several years out of Baltimore, and now out of Tampa, I just wanted to add my $.03 by saying I've never had a bad flight or rude/obnoxious encounter with them. CS dept experiences have always been pleasant, thankfully.

As for leg room, well... Air-Tran has always been known as an "economical" airline, and I find that issue to be standard among the others in it's class. Backing up a sec... not so economical now for sure. I flew RT last week from Tampa to Baltimore and purchased my ticket at least 2 months ago with Southwest, b/c AirTran was wayyyyy too much $$$.

Anyway, generally, I've enjoyed flying with AirTran, and as long as their fares are the best I can find, I'll continue to use them.

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Posted by Sparticus on 2006-06-12:
My parents fly AirTran all the time and don't have any complaints. I would use them more if they flew out of my area more. I think they are a smaller airline. Maybe this is why they can give better service.
Posted by Hugh_Jorgen on 2006-06-12:
I gave up Delta for AirTran several years ago and have never regreted it. Their service is excellent and with all new B717 and B737 planes with XM radio, their product is as good as any airline out there.
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Don't Count on Service from Airtran
Posted by Mamakitty54 on 03/13/2010
My experience with AirTran on March 12, 2010 closely resembles others posted here. My husband and I were flying from Columbus Ohio to Ft. Lauderdale, FL to get on a cruise ship that was leaving the next day (evening of Saturday March 13). We had scheduled our flight out for late afternoon (5 PM) and booked a room in Ft. Lauderdale so we would not miss our cruise. When we checked in for our flight at 3:30 PM the ticket agent was unpleasant and complained about working. She also did not tell us the flight was already delayed 4+ hours. We learned that upon arriving at the gate. There was one gate agent who assured me we would make our connection in Atlanta, and then told me he was off duty for the day and grateful he would not have to put up with the hassle delays created. When the next agent arrived I stood in a very long line to again inquire about connections and advise him we were heading to a cruise so if we were NOT going to get to Florida tonight please let me know so we could find other options. This type of dialogue continued throughout the evening until approximately 9:30 PM when they cancelled the flight. By that time all of the other flights from Columbus to Florida had either departed or were sold out. What was particularly frustrating was that they kept telling us the delays were due to weather and we kept pointing out that other airlines traveling the same routes were operating with modest delays. In retrospect we should have recognized that they were lying to us and found an alternative. We missed our ship and had to cancel the cruise. None of the AirTran staff was even sympathetic to our plight, and at times they were downright rude. When they cancelled the flight they gave us an alternative itinerary that did not get us to Ft. Lauderdale until Monday.

This airline may be ok if you are just looking for a weekend jaunt and getting there late or not at all is not important, but I would NEVER depend on them for a critical arrival date. They are insensitive to their customers needs and ill equipped to handle even the slightest weather delays. It was an expensive lesson for us, and one I hope you do not have to experience.
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Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-13:
During weather delays the FAA decides which flights can depart, which ones are delayed, and which one's need to be cancelled. It's not the airline.
Posted by dan gordon on 2010-03-14:
while its not the airlines fault if you had chosen a more traditional carrier they would have rebooked you on any carrier still flying. The off brand airlines don't have reciprocity so they are of little help in this kind of scenario.
Posted by raven2010 on 2010-03-14:
I wonder if the airline could have arranged to fly you to an airport near where the ship would make it's first stop??
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-14:
Not to be rude, but since you already booked a hotel the night before, WHY would you cut it so close by booking an evening flight? If you travel by air you are always taking a chance on delays or cancellations. I am thinking having a morning flight would have been better as any delay would have given you more time to either get rebooked or to drive down and make the cruise on time.

Maybe it is just me. I am an over planner. Heck, for concerts in Nashville we rent a room and check in at check in time to make sure we have enough time to make the concert the next night.

Sorry, but I really don't think you can blame the airline. As for telling you you would have enough time, they use the info they have at the time. Weather can and does change things often.
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Grinch that almost stole Christmas
Posted by Chipper1miles2 on 12/24/2009
During the worst snow storm the Northeast ever experienced(December 20 2009)and after 2 cancellations I ended up at New Yorks Laguardia Airport. After a 3 hour delay Air Tran finally called the flight for boarding. I have a bag that has been on the previous 4 flights as overhead baggage with no problems. While approaching the gate I had the misfortune of meeting up with an overworked and inexperienced gate agent known as "SADE". Ms. Sade verbally abused the passenger in front of me and when I approached the gate she told me that my bag is not going in overhead and had to be checked. She told me to leave it. I then proceeded down the jetway. Halfway down the jetway Ms. Sade came after me stating that I had to have a ticket for the bag. While she was filling out the ticket I merely asked why the bag can't go in the overhead. In a fit of rage Ms. Sade stated "I won't be talked to that way and said you are off this flight and you are not going home for Christmas tonight". I then ignored her and continued with my bag to the aircraft. Ms. Sade then attempted to pull the bag from me and then claimed that I hit her. Other passengers stated that I never touched her. Ms. Sade then proceeded to the gate and said she was calling the Police. I also asked for a supervisor. When the police arrived and we were trying to determine what the problem was, Ms. Sade's fellow gate agent asked to see my ticket. This agent then ripped it up and gave away my seat. The police told me to calm down and wait for the supervisor. 30 minutes later and after the flight left the supervisor arrived. He said with glee-"the next flight we have is December 27th". I then proceeded to search for an airline that would get me home to Atlanta for Christmas. Thanks to DELTA I had to purchase a one way first class ticket for $500.00 and made it home. Air Trans customer service only offered a round trip airfare. Air Tran only has 2 gates at LGA so you have a good chance of meeting the meltdown girl from hell. Ms Sade first said I hit her then recanted to say that she pulled her arm and shoulder. I think she just needed a time out and some severe discipline from a superior. Maybe a month of lavatory cleaning might help her to make a descision on whether to look for a new job.
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-24:
all I have to read is the first sentence. Snow storm. Blah Blah Blah.....snow storm....blah blah blah....airlines cant help the weather.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-24:
1) NOT the worst snow storm the northeast has ever had, not by a long shot. 2) waaaay too much drama/exaggeration here 3) Delta had a LAST SECOND holiday travel week first class ticket available for 500 bucks? I say 550 shenanigans!
Posted by spiderman2 on 2009-12-24:
I have lived in the Northeast for 42 years and can tell you that the recent snowstorm was far from the worst one ever experienced. Get a grip.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-24:
If you would have just let her do her job and check your bag, you would have not been kicked off the plane. grant you, I have also run into some disgruntled workers on airlines.....but there's nothing you can do about it. Im not sayinf her conduct was fair, but I'm sure her job can be very hectic with the constand flow of people and problems with flights be cancelled. Next time, just keep your mouth closed and let her to her job.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-24:
Trust me I used to work as a gate agent for ATA. Do not piss off or even question a gate agent when they tell you that a bag needs to be checked. Obviously because of the chaos and full flights there was probably no room in the overhead compartments. The flight attendants advise the gate agents when they're full. If it didn't fit under the seat in front of you it has to be checked.
Posted by Hugh_Jorgen on 2009-12-24:
She told you to leave the bag. You said you were halfway down the jetway when the told you you needed a ticket. Then the confrontation. Then you said you "ignored her and continued with my bag to the aircraft".

So it sounds like you ignored her first instructions to leave the bag and decided you were taking it anyway since the bag was apparently "halfway down the jetway" with you when the confrontation took place.

Perhaps this is why she got a bit upset? Just a thought.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-24:
"During the worst snow storm the Northeast ever experienced" Are you kidding? Not even close.... not even in the top 1,000. Frankly it sounds like you struck an attitude with someone who wasn't going to take it, and as a result you paid the price.
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Awful experience
Posted by Shmuelko3 on 01/02/2008
I had a horrible experience when flying with my wife and my 2 kids (2 & 6). We got seats only at the check in and then it appeared that all our seats were middle seats. They expected the 2 kids not to sit next to their parents!!! Before we boarded they told us that they cannot do anything about that and the flight attendant inside the airplane will take care of it. Inside the plane they said that we should take off this way and then they will see if they can change the seats. We said we would sue them and then one of the flight attendants said she does not want to travel with us, so they took us off the flight (without our luggage of course) and booked us to the flight on the following day.

They may have low prices but it just is not worth it. We are frequent fliers - and never had such a terrible experience.

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Posted by Ben There on 2008-01-02:
According to Airtran.com "Advance seat assignment is available for a small fee, or you may select your seats upon check-in at no cost." Seat sassignments are always request and are never guaranteed by any airline cause flights get cancelled, different planes are substituded, etc.. If getting seats next to each other was so important to you, you could have paid the extra $5 at the time of booking or made an effort to check in really early online or at the airport. All the other passengers on your plane that did those things should not be kicked out of their seats because you did not think ahead. As they "expected the 2 kids not to sit next to their parents!!!", that happens all the time with unaccompanied minors or even just with larger families that can not fit in a single aisle. Also, threatening to sue did not help you case. For one, you would have never won the case, and it created a bad environment on the aircraft and the flight attendant had every right to have you removed.
Posted by bsb7140 on 2008-01-03:
Why would you tell the flight attendant who offered to help you that you would sue them? That sounds like you were out of line...you did not do your homework as airtran only assigns seats for a small fee. If I was the cabin crew, I would have not wanted to fly with your ignorant self either.
Posted by Anonymous on 2008-01-03:
Your mistake was not saying your brother/sister/mother/father/whatever was a lawyer before saying you would sue. That's the way most "privaledged" people do it.
Posted by Ben There on 2008-01-03:
Did you or your wife ask any of the other passengers if they would move? Heaven forgid someone tries to fix his or her own mistake... Most people when faced with having to sit next to a kid will chose a middle seat next to an adult so they can get some work done/sleep/drink in peace. I have no problem moving around to help out the inevitable mom traveling alone with her 4 kids.
Posted by yoke on 2008-01-03:
Best way to have gotten the seats changed was to tell the people sitting next to your child, here is the bottle he will need it during take off and landing. Here are some books to keep him occupied. Then explain to the person that is supposed to sit next to your child the airline refused to let you sit together. Wanna bet the person would be more than happy to switch seats with you!
Posted by jktshff1 on 2008-01-03:
LOL yoke!!!
Posted by shmuelko3 on 2008-01-03:
Ben There & bsb7140, when looking at some your past responses I was not surprised to see that you always backup the airlines even with other obvious passengers mistreatments. I wonder what the reason for that is.
Regarding your comments, I made the reservation as part of a package at the different web site so I did not get the chance to select seats at this flight. At my ticket it just said that I will get the seats at the check in. If I could have reserved the seats I would have done that. Till now I did not know Air Tran allows that even when booking through their web sites. At least for children that are not allowed to travel without their parents (I think it’s till the age of 6 but age of 2 years and one month certainly answers this criteria) I would expect the automatic seating not to allow the baby to sit by himself and I would expect the crew to make sure the baby will not sit by himself. I am not sure if the law requires them to do that but certainly the common sense does. I do not know if either of you have ever traveled with small children but if you do I hope you did not have to deal with the same issues that I had to deal with at this trip.
Posted by yoke on 2008-01-04:
shmuelko, I totally agree. When you purchased the tickets they ask if there are minor children. It is up to the airline to seat them all together. When going to a resturant the hostess always seats familys together, why can't airlines. I have seen it more than once with familiies once on board trying to change seats with someone so they can sit next to their minor children.
Posted by Ben There on 2008-01-04:
I do not work for the airlines, shmeulko3, but I do fly them every week so I often side with the airlines as they often hold up thier end of the deal much more than the passengers who show up late, scream at the wrong people for the wrong reason, and generally act like they have never been in public before... I will be the first to admit that airline customers service (and baggage!) can be horrible and that airlines mess up at times, but that is just not true in this case. Could they have done it better to make you happier? Sure... With a plane full of happily seated passengers would their actions to make you happy have made someone else mad? You bet! People with kids think they are very important on a plane (I get that), and people who fly all the time (or at least think they do with 4 flights a year) expect a little better treatment as well cause they spent so munch money. Realistically if the door is about to close, one persons status, needs and demands get a lot less important as the crew and the airline has a much greater responsibility to get everyone on the plane to the next destination and they have safety checks and a lot of other things to do besides reseat people. The poor crew should not be forced to pick favorites at the last minute cause someone will be mad, so so the less prepared person is out regardless of if they are holding a baby or a platinum FF card. 20 minutes of complaining could mean 50 people miss connections down the line, and those 50 people could care less about you kids and someones FF status. As for Yokes comment about a resurant seating families together, aircraft have a small issue as the seats don't move around, they all face one direction, there are 2 or 3 seats together at best, people reserve them very far in advance, and people do not like waiting at the bar holding a blinking beeper while the hostess puts something together.
Posted by yoke on 2008-01-04:
Ben There, you don't get the complaint do you? The OP's complaint was they were not putting the minor children with the parents. How is that the fault of the parents. When I book flights I ASSUME the airline is smart enough to put all the seats together, especialy when they ask you the ages of the children flying when booking. How would you have felt if you were the passenger seated next to the unattended 2 year old? That is what this airline was asking another passenger to do.
Posted by Ben There on 2008-01-04:
I understand where he is coming from, but you are ASSUMING that the airlines give everyone seat assignments when they buy a ticket and this is just not the case (which is good for me cause I often book last minute and I am hate when someone who paid $100 for a ticket gets a window seat and my $700 ticket gets me stuck in the middle). Many will allow you to pick a seat for free or for a charge when you book, but if you do not ask them to do that or click on the seat map if buying online, you are stuck with what is left at check in. If anything, his complaint should be towards whatever online company sold him the ticket (this is where Doe jumps in) as they did not not request the seat assignments for him.
Posted by yoke on 2008-01-07:
There are times that I have bought tickets and picked my seats only to have the airline switch flights and tell me I can't get seat assignment until check in. When you are responsible and purchase tickets well in advance and the airline then tells you you have to wait until check in to get seats how is that the passengers fault. Why should a paying passenger get stuck next to an unattended 2 year old. I am pretty sure you would be raising a stink, but with your reasoning there would be nothing the airline should do and you would have to deal with it.
Posted by bsb7140 on 2008-01-07:
I don't support airlines anymore than I do people who do their homework. Obviously if it said that seats would be assigned at check in, you should have shown up plenty early to make sure you could get seats together. Now certainly you assumed that there was going to be at lease 100 other people who had to have seats assigned either when they purchased their tickets directly form Airtran or part of a package as you stated you did. Not really blaming you for this or backing up the airlines, but when it said the seats to be assigned at check-in, that should have been your clue that there was probably going to be a slim chance you would all sit together, seeing as how a) most people check in on-line now and get seats assigned 24 hours before the flight...so you were just at the end of the line I suppose. Not Aitrans fault.
Posted by shmuelko3 on 2008-01-13:
If I let my 2 years old baby to sit with supervision in a bus and she gets hears I may be justfully indicted for child neglected. From the many people I talked to no one believes that air lines should be allowed to let a baby sit by himself in any scenario but the two of you. There is a huge difference between getting a seat next to your friend and being able to treat a 2 years old baby. In the past when flying with other airlines I was asked more than once to change seats so children (not always babies) can sit next to their parents and I did not even consider objecting these request even if it was not comfortable. I am sorry but even if you do not have children and you did not ever flied with children I cannot believe that a reasonable person can believe that there is a scenario in which an airlines should let a 2 years old baby sit by himself. If you really do not work for airlines then I questioned your common sense especially when dealing children. In any case I guess you can work for air tran…
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Excessive Change Fees - No Exclusions
Posted by Tbriggle on 08/20/2013
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I changed a flight on June 24 over the phone and was told I could change the flight within 24 hours for free and by August 24 for a $75 charge. After August 24 there would be a $150 charge per ticket. I called today, August 20, and was told it had expired at midnight, August 19, so was charged the entire $150 per ticket. You may note that I was told now I have until June 23 to book a new flight, which makes sense that we were back on the 24th schedule. I can only think that I will go through this same conversation if I call on June 20.

All I have is the original ticket sent via email after the conversation, I did not record either call. Something should be done, I understand the charges. I don't understand how they can operate without refunding the remaining balance. They can keep $300 in service fees and I will not have flown a single mile.
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Posted by Ben There on 2013-08-20:
It looks like Air Tran's change fees went from $75 to $150 across the board for all tickets on August 20: http://www.airtran.com/help_changing_reservations.aspx#changeProcess
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-08-20:
It's easy to explain. You purchased a nonrefundable fare and agreed to all the terms and conditions (even if you didn't bother to read them).
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AirTran Communication W/ Parents Re: Unaccompanied Minors Needs Major Improvement
Posted by Lulufrench on 07/28/2013
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- Here is the letter (minus names and flight numbers) that I sent to the airline...

Yesterday (Saturday, July 27th), I had quite a traumatic experience involving AirTran Airlines. I am still terribly upset by it.

My son was flying as an unaccompanied minor out of LaGuardia to Akron/Canton. Gate B4. My son is 8 years old, and as you can imagine this was already a bittersweet moment, to have to say good-bye to my only child as he departed to fly solo.

It is important to note here that I was told that I needed to stay until the plane left – which I did. It departed right on time, 2:25pm. No, the plane was not in the air. I did not stay at the gate until the plane was in the air because it was not made clear to me by any of the staff at any point that this is what I was expected to do. Nor did I at any point receive an e-mail or any written material that detailed the policies about exactly was expected of an escort to an unaccompanied minor. I was doing as I had been told – I stayed until the plane departed.

I went downstairs to the food court and was there for a full hour after the plane left the gate. It is my understanding that somewhere in that time the plane had to return to the gate. I had my cell phone with me, and yet no one called me. I am aware that my cell phone number is in the computer system because I gave it over the phone to the reservation agent when I purchased the ticket for my son.

I was called by my mother-in-law from the Akron/Canton airport around 3:55, just as my husband and I were entering the Midtown Tunnel into Manhattan. We were told that his plane had deboarded and that we should go back. We were preparing to do so, but knowing it would take us at least 30 minutes to get back at that point and another 15 to reach the gate, I decided to call AirTran for an update about my son’s flight. I explained to them that he was an unaccompanied minor and I was his mother. I was told his plane was scheduled to depart at 4:00. Since that was five minutes away, I was given the impression that the flight had already boarded and was about to leave, so my husband and I decided to not to go back based on that information.

At 4:45, my mother-in-law called me and told me that his flight had been delayed further but that his flight was now scheduled to leave at 5:00. Now I’m starting to get really upset. I should have been there with him. But with his plane leaving at 5:00 there was really no point for me to make the 30 minute journey from Manhattan to LaGuardia as I would not get there until after the plane had left.

Again, no had called my cell phone or had left a message on my home phone. And I’m beginning to wonder why no one would call the child’s parent in this type of situation. I’m only getting the information I am receiving because my child’s grandparents are at the Akron/Canton airport where they are able to get immediate information.

At 5:30 I was sent a text by my mother-in-law that his plane was now leaving at 5:55. I began to feel myself starting to emotionally unravel, worried sick about my child, and started trying to find a way back to the airport. I arrived at Port Authority at 6:00 and waited for an Express Bus that was supposed to arrive in 10 minutes but had still not arrived 30 minutes later.

While waiting for the Express bus to show, my mother-in-law gave my husband and I a number to call. It was a 718 number so I can only assume I was going to be speaking with someone at LaGuardia. I was so grateful to finally have a chance to speak to someone who could tell me definitively what was going on.

The person on the other line kept telling us that we were supposed to be there and that they weren’t allowed to give us any information – both extremely unhelpful things to say. I was very angry that the airline was not able to give the parents of an 8 year old information about their child. We were immediately put on the defensive and tried to explain that we were there until the plane left the gate, were in the airport for another hour after that, and that no one had told us that we were supposed to stay until the plane was in the air. Nor had anybody tried to call us. The conversation was ultimately unproductive, extremely frustrating, and of no help whatsoever.

Because the Express Bus never showed I hailed a cab around 6:40. I called AirTran while stuck in traffic in the cab. I was told that my son’s plane had been cancelled and he was being placed on another flight set to leave at 7:55. Upon arriving at the airport at around 7:20 I was told that I would have to wait in line for a gate pass, so I did. And by the time I got to the gate at 7:40 his plane had already left the gate and was about to depart.

Upon arriving at the gate the gate attendant started to berate and verbally abuse me for not coming back to the airport earlier. Already being quite emotional and angry about the events leading up to this moment his tirade really blindsided me.

He told me that I knew I wasn’t supposed to leave, so I told him that I did stay until the plane left the gate and was never told that I had to stay until the plane was in the air.

I tried to explain the chain of events, defend my actions, and ask why no one had called me directly at any point, but he continued to tell me that I had abandoned my child – that he couldn’t let my son go the bathroom – and even used foul language. And then he asked me why I hadn’t yet thanked him for babysitting my son.

He wouldn’t listen to how it went down on my end or answer my question as to why nobody ever called me. He refused to admit any responsibility whatsoever. I felt that he was attacking me as a mother after I had already spent 4 long hours being quite distraught about my son. Needless to say, the conversation was rather heated and I felt very much on the defensive.

I then stayed until the plane took off.

My greatest complaint is how horrible the communication was on AirTran’s end. It was never clear to us that we were supposed to stay until the plane “was in the air.” The plane “leaving” and the plane “being in the air” are different enough to warrant clarity when giving instruction. This is not something we do often, and clear communication about the protocol would have been appreciated.

Someone should have called my cell phone the moment it was discovered that I was not there. Perhaps I could have just come back upstairs from the food court.

And even if a child was not involved, there is the fact that a plane that was supposed to leave at 2:25pm did not get its passengers off the ground until 7:55pm. Not to mention the 45 minute long line to check-in with the airline – all less than ideal situations when one is trying to fly somewhere.

I also want to reiterate that after first hearing that my son’s plane was delayed, I was constantly being told that the plane was only minutes from departing by the AirTran employees with whom I was communicating.

And then there’s the gate agent at Gate B4 whose customer relation skills were abhorrent. I’m still very upset over the trauma I endured yesterday – especially at the hands of the gate attendant.

I could have been spared all the grief and anguish I experienced if someone had simply told me, “Please remain at the gate until the plane has lifted off. We will let you know when it is okay to leave the gate area.”

I would also suggest that you make it part of the protocol regarding an unaccompanied minor to contact the parents should a problem arise by calling the phone numbers that were given to the reservation agent.

Please look into this matter as I feel it deserves serious consideration.
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Posted by Old Timer on 2013-07-28:
A terrible chain of events gone terribly wrong. I would not trust AirTran to ship a box of rocks across the street, much less my child on a flight.
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-07-28:
You said that you waited until "departure", which is not true. Departure is the act of the plane taking off.

I believe the CSR was correct - at 3:55 you should have returned to the airport. You twice assumed that "boarding" or leaving the gate was departure.

On more than one occasion, you chose to leave your 8 year old to his own devices, instead of going back as his guardian. You say the "I should have been there," which is correct. My advice would be to send him escorted next time.
Posted by yoke on 2013-07-28:
Departing means actual in the air, not leaving the gate. AirTrans did the correct thing in not giving information over the phone. They were protecting your child. They had no idea you were really the mother. Anyone could call and say that.
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-07-28:
The AirTran Contract of Carriage states:
"Child drop off and pick up. The parent or guardian who brings an unaccompanied minor child to the departure airport will be required to remain at the departure gate until the flight is airborne."

It is clear that the guardian is to wait until the a/c is airborne, thus I do not agree that the policy requires major improvement.
Posted by Old Timer on 2013-07-28:
It's a shame how much time some people spend proving to the poor OP's how wrong they are, they can't read, they can't follow directions, the company is always right, the policies are in black and white, bla, bla, bla... Instead of just trying to show and ounce of compassion and support to someone that was scared half out of their mind over their child.

Who gives a rat's ass at this point? Bash the OP just to prove you can read some T and C? Sad, really sad. I would still never use AirTran, even if they do have well posted T and C's, they suck as an airline and could have done a much better job here. Instead of giving the consumer a bunch of crap like the OP's get around here, bend a little and help them out for Christ's sake!
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-07-29:
My 9 year old flew as an unaccompanied minor from Chicago to Atlanta and it was very clear that we were to stay at the gate until the plane was in the air. Even if you claim that no one "told" you about that rule its on their website for everyone to see. Airtran also has a service that sends text messages to your phone about the progress of the flight. I knew when my son left Chicago, my mother called me when he was in the air, and the text messages did the rest until he arrived in Atlanta where I was waiting for him. If you read all the rules and follow them, you wouldn't be getting losing your mind over the incident that happened.

Old timer, an "ounce of compassion" would only help to subsidize the lack of paying attention to detail that can make this episode happen all over again.
Posted by onlooker on 2013-07-29:
Why did your son not have a phone to contact you or grandparents in the event of any problems?
That may help in any future events.
Mom you tried your best, staying later in the airport, but some of your decisions were not really good - you should have gone back immediately. The days of smooth flying especially on time departures and arrivals are gone - some kind of flight tracker would have been helpful too.
You had a terrible time, and it was hard that the airline staff could not provide any comfort, next time you will have a chance to make different decisions. And hopefully your son and you will endure the flight process with less trauma.
Posted by olie on 2013-07-30:
YOU were distraught? YOU suffered grief and anguish? YOU were traumatized??

How did your son hold up?
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Posted by Swaff1627 on 06/26/2013
Traveling on AirTran was awful. The workers were rude and not helpful. They acted as if helping a big group(band) was a problem with checking their instruments. The flight attendants aren't that nice. Worst AirLine that I've dealt with.
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AirTran NOT Friendly to Family Needs
Posted by Xloeboo on 06/15/2013
I booked a flight for my entire family (including an infant) with AirTran. We have previously flown with Delta and United with the baby and they have allowed the stroller and playpen free of charge (which we were happy to find out). The playpen is a necessity as it allows the baby somewhere safe to sleep at our destination. Just before travel with AirTran I decided to review their policy regarding infant items. It turns out that they do not allow a playpen as free baggage, but they do allow a stroller and car seat. I would not be bringing a car seat (we will be renting one at the destination). So I contacted customer support through email to inquire about bringing the playpen instead of a car seat (the collapsed playpen is much smaller that a car seat- but 2 1/2 inches longer than carry on allows) and told them that other carriers allow playpens for no additional charge.

I received an email on a Saturday that stated their baggage pricing structure and stated I would have to pay $75 (each way) in additional costs, nothing more. When I called customer service the same day to address this email, I was told that the customer service department was closed on Saturdays. I did manage to speak with a customer service representative who seemed wholly annoyed with me. She asked if the playpen was over-sized (over 61" or over 50#). It is neither. When she started huffing, I asked to speak with a supervisor. The supervisor was slightly more agreeable but the complaint seemed to have hit a wall. I asked if my concern could be forwarded on to someone who could reconsider this policy as it made family travel much more costly and difficult. She halfheartedly agreed to forward it on. Ultimately, we have decided to buy a playpen at our destination as $45 (to buy a basic one) is cheaper than the hassle and cost of dealing with AirTran's policy.

Throughout the process I felt that AirTran was not interested in my concern and was reluctant to forward my complaint to the proper department. I will not choose to fly AirTran in the future and I will discourage those with infants from flying with AirTran.

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Posted by spiderman2 on 2013-06-15:
Airlines are charging for everything these days. I have traveled many times with infants and the only time I ever took a playpan (pack and play) was when we were driving. We borrowed or rented one at our destination. Much less hassle. It would have never occurred to me to basically pack a crib on an airplane.
Posted by John Nicholson on 2013-06-15:
AirTran has a policy and cannot make exceptions for you or anyone else. Period. Don't blame their customer service people. I suspect they were frustrated with you being argumentative and wanting special treatment for something they had no authority to make exceptions for. I also have traveled with children and infants. It would never had occurred to us to bring along a playpen. A stroller, yes, but a playpen? Get used to being charged for everything. The airlines are not making money and it is about time they started charging baggage fees, two seats for tubby people, etc.
Posted by Helen on 2013-06-24:
John, if you don't work for AirTran--you should. You'd fit right in! To the complaint, I say: Continue to fly the other airlines that accommodated you in the past. You have choices! I know I'll never fly AirTran again. Sub-par planes and service.
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Posted by Lewis_linda on 01/22/2013
?, FLORIDA -- Oct. 2012, purchased a round trip ticket from Pensacola, Florida to Houston, Texas. I was going out to Houston to stay with a relative for two weeks who had suffered a stroke. First disappointment was when I checked into Air Tran. I was told my agent to put suitcase on scales. At 68 years of age and having had a double mastectomy 8 months prior, I could not lift the suitcase. The agent's attitude was apparent that he didn't like to assist me with the luggage. On booking my ticket on line I had paid extra ($6.00 ) to have a window seat. A week before I was to leave to come back to Pensacola, I called Air Tran's toll free number to request a window seat. I was told by the agent on the phone that she needed a credit card number to reserve a window seat, another $6.00. I gave her all the information from my debit credit card and was told I would receive an email with the confirmation within 48 hours. 48 hours later, I had not received the email. I called Air Tran and found out they had no record of my calling to reserve a window seat. This immediately sent up a red flag. When on line to my bank and found out their agent had gone on a shopping spree with my debit credit card and had purchased $1037.00 in merchandise.
Needless to say, this almost wiped my account out. I live on SS and was left with very little monies to make it back home. I had to arrange for a trip to Wells Fargo to cancel my card, and file a complaint. I had to make a police report in Houston and was told to make one back in Florida when I got home. I did receive my $1037.00 back from the bank and had requested my air fare ticket cost back from Air Tran for all the aggravation, but have had no response I would like to warm you to not give out any credit card information to anyone on the phone when requesting a seat with Air Tran. I am not sure they have gotten rid of the person who did this so beware. Linda Lewis
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Pet Policy - Fictitious rules given & RUDE employees
Posted by Mrglover30 on 11/22/2012
Boo on you…AirTran. The pet policies on AirTran are atrocious!! FYI: I have already spoken w/ your customer service representative on Monday…day of flight…for 30 min. I haven't received any response yet. I'll see how long after Thanksgiving it takes for a response…if @ all. What's even more interesting is that Southwest's pet policy is: "Southwest Airlines accepts small vaccinated domestic cats & dogs. All in-cabin pets must be carried in an appropriate carrier, as indicated below & are subject to a $75 pet fare each way/pet carrier. The pet carrier counts as either a carryon item or a personal item." "Southwest Airlines allows only one pet carrier/ticketed Passenger."
"The carrier may contain two (2) cats or dogs & must be of the same species/carrier."
"The cat or dog must be completely inside the pet carrier & be able to stand up & move around the carrier with ease." This finding is particularly interesting as AirTran is NOW owned by Southwest & I followed SW's pet policy to a 'T'!! Also the pet carrier I was required to purchase was nearly 1/2 the size of my carrier…& provided poor Mister Charlie far less room than Bailey Sue had in the carrier I already had. He certainly was NOT able to stand up & move around the carrier with ease…as it was quite evident when I witnessed the top of the bag bulging when he stood up.

Supposedly the policies have recently changed…however the policy stated on AirTran's own website does not reflect the 'new' changes.

My problem on Monday: While flying home for Thanksgiving…as I was waiting to board w/ my 2 precious small Maltese dogs…a 'NEW' policy was presented verBally that only 1 dog/carrier was allowed. This creates quite a problem b/c in order to do this it requires an extra carrier &…according to the 'NEW' policy…would require an extra person. As it now states…"Airfare for a pet is $75 one-way & is non-refundable. Six (6) pets are allowed with a limit of one (1) pet/paying customer traveling on the same flight." And THAT'S where 'they' got me!!! Nowhere did it state that 2 dogs can not be in the same carrier…nor does the current policy even have a weight restriction. But as soon as 'they' NOW noticed the '1 pet/paying passenger' policy…the issue was now 'that'…& not '2 dogs in the same carrier' issue. :0\

See…I am a single young woman who has flown multiple times w/ dogs on AirTran & other companies…& have NEVER received this kind of mistreatment & humiliation…& @ the GATE no less!! I nearly missed my flight d/t this last minute…'Oh we can't allow 2 dogs in the same carrier crisis.' (FYI: I had been sitting @ the gate since 9:30 am & flight did not leave till 11:08 am.) This pet carrier crisis wasn't brought to my attention until the flight was about to board!? :0| First…the claim by AirTran employee Stephanie Rutledge…was that only a mother & her pup could fly in the same carrier. Knowing that the 'current' policy did not state this…I replied w/ 'This IS her son. She's 5 & he's 2.' To which her response was: The pups must be of the same litter & under 8 wks old. That's when I required this 'new' policy be shown in WRITING. As her worried eyes skimmed the current printed policy…I could tell that it obviously did NOT have her statement in it. I even had to go so far as to bring it up on my iPad to prove to her that the policy she was holding (that I currently have in my possession)…was the SAME one on the internet. Then…& only then…did she latch on to the new '1 pet/flying customer' policy. And as I said previously…THAT'S where they had me! I was told I must purchase a 2nd carrier & pay an additional $75 pet fee. Their solution ONLY created more problems for me…cause NOW I had 3 carry-ons…& 'Oh Yeah!'…2 dogs in 2 separate carriers but only 1 paying passenger. :0{

If it hadn't been for 2 lovely angels…placed in my path Monday…I would still be in Tampa Airport stranded w/ no way of getting back home…to either of the 2. First the issue was I needed to pay for an additional pet fee & carrier…which easily totaled over $100. I had only a small amount of $$ on me & they would not even speak to my mother over the phone who was trying to do anything at this point to get me home. They wouldn't even attempt to manually type in the same CC # that I used to purchase my ticket, original pet fee, & checked luggage fee. They wanted the physical card now. That's when the 1st angel walked into my life in the form of 'Kim from DC'. She ended up paying w/ her own CC & would not even give me her address to repay her…OR to even send a thank you! She must have noticed my shirt I was wearing & told me 'It's fine…I ran the half marathon w/ you yesterday". It was like a breeze of fresh comradery had entered my solo circle of it's ME against ALL of 'YOU' mentality. In a clash of irony…the Women's Half Marathon in St. Petersburg had brought 2 first time race runners together in this time of crisis. Of course that's where AirTran employees had to shortly dash my hope w/ yet another one of their problems. I still needed a 2nd paying passenger for the 2nd dog. That's when my 2nd angel entered my life…in the form of 'passenger last name Norman in row 30'. She volunteered to take 1 dog during the flight & that's the info she gave me as she boarded the plane in case I was also allowed to board. Of course AirTran employees went so far as to look the info on the other passenger to insure its accuracy. And THEN…& ONLY THEN…was I able to board my flight for my quick 2 hr flight back home. Boy!…it sure seemed like they were doing more to prevent me from getting on that plane than helping me to board.

I wish that's where my troubles w/ AirTran stopped…but NO! :0( I was either treated rudely or snubbed by the gentleman supervisor attendant & 2 female flight attendants. Before we took off…as the gentleman was walking the isles…I requested his attention. It felt as if he was purposely avoiding me w/ his back turned so I called for his attention w/ 'Sir'. Then you would have thought another CRISIS happened. He turned around & in a very rude, harsh tone barked, "WHAT'S HE DOING OUT?!?!" I looked down at my feet to see the most adorable, sweetest little head had popped out of the small crapped carrier I was required to purchase that was nearly 1/2 the size of my carrier. It was Mister Charlie…my mischievous little guy…that was only trying to get some air out from under the seat. He also was flying for the 1st time solo & was more anxious…as they made me separate him from his mommy 3 rows up. I replied that he wasn't out…he had just 'popped' his head out. I was then lectured as to how the carrier was to remain closed @ all times! Even though the pet policy only states: "The pet must remain in the carrier & under the seat for the duration of the flight." Mister was NEVER out of the carrier OR out from under the seat. Nowhere does it mention that the carrier must be zipped up completely OR that the dog's nose or head can't be 'popped' out for air. How does AirTran expect animals to get ANY water during the flight w/ this factitious statement that was being enforced. He also made it a point to mention "…cause I've already spoken to the pilot & he knows if there's ANY problems with you…" Not sure what would have happened cause that's where he ended his threat. I was & STILL AM insulted that he felt he had to report me to the pilot…like I was a possible terroristic threat!! All due to the INCONSISTENT…INACCURATE pet policies that need some major revamping & ENFORCED PROPERLY!!!

How in the world does AirTran expect anyone traveling solo to fly w/ 2 small dogs weighing roughly 10 lbs combined?!?! Well according to AirTran's 'new' pet policy…they can't EVER! Even if I chose to EVER support AirTran w/ my $$ again…I couldn't as the 'new' policy stands.

I obviously wish I had never had this undue stress put upon me…but if it had not been for AirTran's inconsistent & rude treatment…I would have never been able to experience the wonderful, generous, kindness of 2 totally complete strangers!! :0}

If I had the financial resources & personal connections…I would LOVE to start my own airline for animals…particularly canines. This airline would NOT make you pay $150 for 2 dogs one-way…& then make you shove them under hot seats in a much smaller carrier than the one you already had. INSTEAD it would cater to humans & canines equally…allowing carriers…or even better yet…dog car seats…to be placed securely fastened in the seat right next to you!! Your dog could be attended to properly…given adequate food & especially WATER! NOT thrown under a hot seat after paying more than most humans on the plane did for their one-way ticket.

In this day in age…I have a choice as to the companies I support w/ my $$. I most certainly WILL support the companies who value & RESECT both me & my dogs! BOO…BOO on you AirTran!!! :0{
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Posted by leet60 on 2012-11-22:
It does seem the policies were vague, and that your treatment was less than acceptable. I have found while flying that many times the pets allowed in cabin can be distracting and an annoyance to passengers. Whether due to the yelping in fear, being let out of the carrier by the owner, or the odors that often present themselves, I find it unfair to other passengers. Additionally, many people are allergic to pet hair/dander and this presents a problem for those passengers.

I own pets, and decline to travel with them. I put my pets in the care of a trusted friend or family member, or if needed a reputable kennel.
Posted by trmn8r on 2012-11-22:
It's perfectly reasonable IMO to require the carrier to be kept closed in the passenger cabin. Other passengers aren't interested in being exposed to dogs or cats. It may be like taking your child along to you, but not to those around you. I'm a dog owner.

It also seems reasonable to keep dogs physically separated to reduce the possibility of a disturbance.
Posted by Dakota1015 on 2012-11-22:
I am not at all bothered by someone carrying a small dog or two with them in the cabin. I feel better about that than thinking that some dogs may be traveling in the luggage compartment and relying on these uncaring airline employees for their safety.
What DID bother me was the women sitting next to me on a flight that decided to open her tray table, plop her toddler on the table, and proceeded to change his dirty, smelly diaper while I was eating breakfast in the next seat. I would have much preferred to have those two dogs next to me than that.
Posted by Helen on 2013-06-24:
Sorry to hear this sorry. Stressful. I think the key theme is that they seem to be working AGAINST you rather than trying to problem solve with you. I'll never fly AirTran again.
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