Viral: PAL Passenger Furious After Allegedly Being Offloaded to Give Room for a Celebrity Family
Is this standard practice?
by Kyzia Maramara | April 04, 2023
It looks like Pinoys got the short end of the stick when it comes to smooth travel this year. Over the past few weeks, our timelines have been flooded with horror stories about immigration officers, offloaded passengers, and unfair luggage inspections. And now a viral Facebook post from a Philippine Airlines passenger alleges that they were offloaded to accommodate a celebrity family. Here’s what happened.
A passenger gets offloaded on a PAL flight
Last April 1, a Philippine Airlines (PAL) passenger took to Facebook to recount her dismaying experience flying with the carrier.
“What is wrong with you, Philippine Airlines?!” wrote the passenger. “I bought our tickets back in September 2022 to Bali so my daughter and I can be with our family and friends for Holy Week.”
She said she even got the boarding passes and seat assignments when she checked online the day before their flight.
But when they got to the airline counter, a PAL staff said they “have been bumped off” to give room for a celebrity family. To compensate for the inconvenience, the passenger said PAL offered to give them a free ticket.
“No way! I want to be on this flight with the rest of my group,” she wrote. “What gives you the right to just bump us off without even a notice just because a family of celebrities is on the same flight?”
Fortunately, the passenger and her daughter still got to go on the same flight, thanks to two other passengers who gave up their seats in exchange for free roundtrip tickets.
Netizens are furious
The post went viral and reached 13k reactions with 3.1k shares before the passenger took it down. Netizens also left more than a thousand comments, some throwing their guesses about who the celebrity family might be.
Others sympathized with the passenger and expressed their dismay: “Nasa Pilipinas kasi tayo. Where only the famous and rich people get the highest priority. Mindset ng mga business, sila sila na lang umaangat e,” commented one netizen.
“Ganyan ung badtrip eh, tipong ni-ready mo na lahat tapos sasalubungin ka ng mga ganyang aberya, panira ng moment, at excitement,” said another netizen in sympathy.
Meanwhile, a Redditor who said they were a retired airline manager in Canada said that they understood the choices PAL had to make.
“Sometimes you are full and get a last-minute emergency or VVIP,” read the comment. “But there is a way to handle it, and that’s at the airport. If everyone shows up you request volunteers to give up their seats in exchange for free tickets, and/or cash. If no one accepts your offer, increase it, or bump either the last booked, or last checked in.”
In other words, offloading passengers last minute and surprising them at the airport is not the ethical way to do things.
As of writing, Philippine Airlines has yet to address the incident.
This article was republished with permission from 8List.ph.