United Airlines - Worst Travel Experience Ever
MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA -- I've been flying on a semi-regular basis for the past 16 years, and I've never had an experience like the one I had yesterday on United Airlines. I flew Continental for a long time, because it was one of only two airlines in my hometown, where my parents still live. But after yesterday, I doubt if I will ever use United again.
I originally had a 'red-eye' flight from Monterey, CA to New York City for Sunday night, with a connection at SFO. That flight was first delayed, then eventually cancelled due to fog. That, I can understand.
I was automatically re-booked onto the 5.30am flight. I slept for four hours, woke up at 4am, and was a the airport with plenty of time. We all got onto the airplane. Then, the gate agent came onto the plane to announce the plane was overweight. She offered any volunteers to leave the play a $250 voucher. Since $250 won't get you very far these days, no one took the offer. Then she came back and read the last names of two passengers would would have to get off the plane. I was one of those unlucky passengers.
I loudly refused to leave the plane. I explained I had a very important work event that I was already going to be three hours late to, and that I could not miss entirely without serious repercussions. Another passenger then tried to negotiate for a larger voucher amount, saying she would get off the plane for more than $250 so that I could stay on, but the gate agent said should could not offer more than $250. She said I had to leave as I was the last to check in for the flight - surely because I was automatically rebooked and wasn't supposed to even be on that flight in the first place.
I refused to leave. The gate agent left, then came back with security. I was forced to get off the plane like some kind of criminal when I done nothing wrong. They escorted me out of the airport and put me in a cab (which they paid for) to SFO. So I had to endure a two hour cab ride, and of course I missed the connection (only by a matter of minutes due to fog delays). They also gave me a $250 voucher which is worthless because I will never fly their lousy airline again or give them ANY money.
After I missed my connection, they tried to put me on a 1pm flight, but I demanded they get me back to NYC sooner. The put me on hold for HALF AN HOUR and finally came back telling me they could get me on an 11am Delta flight.
I finally got home, bedraggled, at around 10pm. I missed my work event entirely.