Disruptive passenger behaviour

By | Category: Travel rumblings

Jet 2UPDATE: 10 July 2015 – Jet2.com has issued disruptive passenger, Grant Marshall, with an invoice for £4,809 for additional costs incurred in diverting its aircraft following his offensive behaviour on-board a flight to Alicante in May.

Lost in the tragedy of Sousse has been the announcement that a number of tour operators and airline operators are drawing up measures to try and curb the increasingly unruly behaviour of passengers during flights.

The recent diversion to Belfast by a United Airlines flight following passenger misbehaviour cost the airline a six figure sum. Stories of unruly behaviour seem to be getting more commonplace and it is for that reason that BATA (British Air Transport Association), the AOA (Airport Operators Association) and the UK’s leading airports, are putting in place a series of measures to tackle disruptive conduct associated with air travel.

What those are is yet to be released by Jet 2 operates a policy already. Called Onboard Together, the aim is to educate passengers about the effects of alcohol at high altitude, and to outline its policies.  It has told its staff to take decisions quickly regarding disruptive passengers including verbal and written warnings and, ultimately, the ability to divert the aircraft to the nearest airport to off-load particularly offensive people before flying remaining passengers onto their holiday destination. Measures also include banning disruptive passengers for life, handing them over to the police, issuing a bill for the cost of the diversion and taking legal action, post travel.

The simple answer, say some, is to ban alcohol on flights but that doesn’t remove the issue of excessive drinking before passengers get on the plane which is why airports are part of this consulting process. At almost every airport I have travelled through, you can see people drinking at crack of dawn and throughout the day.

The majority of those flying think that disorderly behaviour is a very infrequent occasion perhaps the media only reports outlandish cases. It isn’t necessarily the truth and perhaps what should happen is a monthly list should be issued on behalf of airlines, airports and tour operators, listing the incidents so that other passengers can see how bad behaviour is growing.

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