A Flight Attendant Served A Passenger Food And Cocktails, Then He Handed Her This Note

At the beginning of the month a passenger handed a flight attendant ‘the worst note ever’. It was so bad – calling the crewmember “a glorified MAID” a “mask nazi” who should be “cleaning motel rooms for $2 tips and meth” and that her life is “a waste.” – that American Airlines suspended the customer’s flying privileges.

Now, if two data points are enough to make a trend, you’re going to be hearing a lot about another customer note flight attendant Ariel Ladner says she was given on board American Airlines from Tampa to Dallas Monday afternoon.

The man who reportedly gave the note was sitting in first class, and handed it on the way off the plane. The crewmember who says she received it started her day on standby at 4:15 a.m. She reports doing “a full service in first class, drinks, meals..handed the snack bags out during boarding.” She says she “took care of first class the entire flight.” She says the man had 4 alcoholic beverages on the 929 mile flight,

At 5 minutes before the prepare for landing, this man comes to the galley and asks for another Jack and Diet. We explain we are about to prepare for landing so he’s going to need to finish it fast. So we give him the drink.

This flight attendant says she and the rest of the flight’s cabin crew are being furloughed by American in less than three weeks.

I’ve had plenty of flights with crew who were more interested in People magazine than doing their jobs. This doesn’t sound like one of those. As junior cabin crew she worked throughout the country’s lock down orders, while senior flight attendants who are keeping their jobs were paid to stay home. Now the crewmember sounds like she’s trying to enjoy and find meaning in each of her final flights before being separate from the airline.

I should note that some observers have raised questions about the paper that the note looks to have been written on, that it doesn’t appear to be something that was available on board and if it was a paper towel taken from inside the terminal it would likely have been more creased by the end of the flight.

However if the flight attendant made a mistake perhaps it was serving the man so many drinks over the course of just a couple of hours, at a time when so little food is being served.

Let’s all hold our liquor, shall we? Delta and Southwest aren’t furloughing flight attendants. But if you’re flying United or American, which have plans to furlough thousands of flight attendants each at the beginning of October, let’s be a little human over the next few weeks.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I took a flight on American Airlines recently the airline scooter Sis have always been rude and nasty and/or even worse now if you don’t do your job right you should get a complaint whether the man was drinking or not they all act like they’re doing you a favor quit and let someone else do the job then you’re all a bunch of crybaby whiners.

  2. I unfortunately have to travel one week out of every month from Florida to the NY area for medical reasons and would prefer not to buy have no choice. I travel on JB and although I don’t agree with being rude. I CAN attest to how the FA are doing nothing. They throw a zip lock bag at you and that’s all you ever see of them. Usually they are huddled together out of site like it’s a big party. My biggest issue is that none if them enforce masks over nose and mouth!!!! The airlines are a business and like all businesses should enforce the rules and like other businesses should be accountable and liable!!!! This is the most important part of their job during these times and they don’t want to do it. I’ve seen passengers complain and take pics and the FA always has some sort of excuse such as “I have to see it.” Well if they unhuddled and walked the aisle then they would.

    I just think their subpar performance pre pandemic has hit rock bottom during covid 19.

  3. The passenger must have had a lapse in judgement due to his heavy drinking on a short flight. Everyone is stressed right now , but it’s no excuse for bad manners. But some people feel entitled for every little thing in their lives. Chalk it up to that reason. If you need another one.

  4. To hell with the rude and nasty people! I wish sometimes we could just say what’s on our mind and tell those type people to f*** off! But to be professional, you all can’t! Keep up the good work ladies and gents, especially during these hard times. And to those that act big s*** while drinking, if you can’t hold your liquor, then don’t drink, idiots..smh..

  5. Joe says, “…the author only heard the attendant’s side of the story. I’m curious to know the passenger’s side of the story…”

    Joe, here’s the passenger’s side: “I am a sad-case alcoholic who will routinely abuse anyone in my path to get my next drink, especially women. I am a coward and a moron as my “note” reveals. Hence, I hand out hateful scraps of paper to flight attendants as I step off the aircraft, because I can then slink away into the crowded airport and never be held accountable for my words or actions. That’s who I am and that’s my story.”
    There it is Joe. Aren’t you glad you asked?

    To DC not in DC:
    If you want an “instant feedback button” to rate FA’s, pilots and cleaning crews, you found the right blog. You won’t have to sweat it here. You can post all your mis-information and insults anytime you wish, and no one will fact-check you. No one will stick a drunken nasty-gram in your palm either. The really good news is your baseless rants will make you feel so vital and important, which is what you crave, no? Any reason you don’t want to rate mechanics too? You do know it’s a machine right?

    You wrote”…flight attendants only have jobs because passengers pay…, there are no flight attendants on cargo flights…”.

    I’m curious DC. When did you first become aware of that? Last time you flew cargo?

    Clearly you have no idea why airlines must have trained flight attendants and obviously you don’t know what the FAA does. Yet this blog is here for you to spew your ignorance freely. Take all the time you need with that. But since you are all-knowing of all things airline, tell us DC, how is it some passengers never hear or pay attention to onboard safety announcements, yet they can hear every word of whatever conversation is going on in the galleys or cockpit? Selective hearing?

    DC, some airline keeps getting you safely to all your destinations. Lucky you. Isn’t that what you paid for? Why no gratitude to offer the blog on that subject? That’s my “instant feedback button” on you.

    Keeping it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  6. Unfortunately we have a president that acts like and encourages this type of behavior to the point it has become the norm among certain groups of individuals

  7. We should treat the flightcrews the way we want them to treat us – they are doing their job but this pandemic has brought out the worst in people not the best – this passenger should be ashamed of himself treating these wonderful flight attendants so badly!

  8. Gary,
    You’ll noticed that she took down the picture of the alleged note. We like to call this a “delete and retreat” move. She’ll say she didn’t want the attention…..but of course she did…..thats why she chose to post it in the first place. Only 3 days after the first “note” too?….I’m doubling down on my assertion that this was a fake. I dont blame you for writing about it as it did seem plausible at first despite a few coincidences. Wonder if she has a Go fund me yet?

  9. First off his ass should have been in a NO CLASS section..he clearly is lacking any…. i wouldn’t value the thought or words of ANYONE who would suck down 4 alcoholic drinks in 2 hours, ESPECIALLY IN THE MORNING. I wish I know who he is… he’s needs a good punch in the face to wake himself up. He is just a miserable dickless waste.

  10. You men making your equally stupid remarks…blaming her..and making excuses..
    You are equally disgusting, thoughtless , and very small…probably in many places…non intersting…blah.

  11. You men making your equally stupid remarks…blaming her..and making excuses..
    You are equally disgusting, thoughtless , and very small…probably in many places…non intersting…blah.

  12. Anyone who works for John q public and those who work min wage get this from ordinary blue collar workers. Yes even from law enforcement also, I think they are so miserable with their lives try to take it out on the people who try to help.

  13. Chris
    I would double-down that you’ve never met this “she” that you ridicule here. So how is it you can claim to know her motivation? Perhaps her employer made her take it down. Ever think of that?

    You seem to relish the idea that some first-class drunk tried to humiliate this “she”, and rather than express empathy, you question the validity of her story. What a gentleman. Hope you don’t have daughters.

    Chris, I would wager you weren’t there and you don’t know jack about this story.
    Can I get a double-down on that bet? And…, I’ll go out on a limb here…, you’re a hater to boot.

    Good thing there’s no GoFundMe account for Chris. He’d squander it on a stupid double-down bet in a game he knows nothing about. He’s a fake gambler. Some people call them losers.

    Keepin it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  14. All I have is one word…
    Privileged!!! In this great United states of America, these are the people that don’t want to wear mask, and end up paying the consequences
    FlIGHT ATTENDANTS I salute you don’t let these passengers steal your joy, keep up the good work.

  15. Sadly, some people think that they are entitled to anything they desire unmindful of the world. They are narcissistic jerk-offs who need to be put out of their misery.

  16. Just the fact that the passenger mixes decent Bourbon with Diet Coke(or anything with Diet Coke for that matter) says all that needs be said about the man’s mental acuity

  17. @Jimmy
    Haha its funny because you made a gambling reference just like I did! Although I will say I do enjoy the advocating for murder (throwing someone from an aircraft in flight) or violence (punching someone in the face)…..all over someone who is dissatisfied with customer service. The note….its probably fake but those of you who advocate for the above mentioned are infinitely worse than the non-existant note writer. I assume that most of the respondents here are flight attendants which seems to fit nicely with the desire to provide crummy service, which they don’t even have to do now anyway and their fetish of seeing themselves as police officers, first responders or prison guards. Its a CUSTOMER SERVICE job. Thats it. Spare me the rest. Until 9/11 most FAs did the job out a desire to serve, commitment to their company andto cheaply travel far and wide. They are anything but that right now. And Jimmy, I’ll be flying your airline to Vegas this weekend. Look for me up front.
    ta ta!

  18. My take is obviously the guy is an alcoholic and wanted as much alcohol as he could get before getting off the plane. Alcoholics have their own set of behaviors.

  19. Chris
    The gambling reference is all you Bro. You’re the double-down guy. Fact-check your own posts now and then, ok? I simply sent it right back to you but it went way over your tiny head. You’ll figure it out when you grow up some day.

    You seem to make a lot of dumb assumptions here along with your shaky double-down bets. Vegas can’t wait for suckers like you. The truth is Chris you know nothing about flight attendants or what happened in this incident. But please proceed with your nonsense. It is amusing. And, the world needs more clowns these days.

    With this latest post of yours, you continue to show us who you really are, a hater. As you say, “that’s it.” You comment that “…the note…, is probably fake…”. What do you base that on Detective Chris? Can you provide us the evidence you’ve collected? Were you there? Come clean on that gambler man. Or, did you just pull another false assumption out of that hole in your head? You’re dropping clues everywhere.

    PS Chris… it’s not my airline. Another bad assumption on your part. When Vegas is done cleaning your clock send us a post, ok? Here’s a travel tip for you… find out where the pawn shops are. Losers flock there. You won’t feel alone. Ta-ta!

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  20. I have to agree with comments by Kent and Sailer in that AA Flight attendants are in general rude and minimalist in service. I also agree with the passenger’s note & his 4 drinks emboldened him to say the truth about how he & numerous other co passengers feel about the lazy service and using Covid to be lazy & indifferent to the passengers. Not to mention a poor attitude towards the passengers. Also there is a world of difference between the FA on US domestic flights and airlines overseas. I hope AA keeps the cream of the crop & furloughs the bulk. It would be a service to the flying public in the US.

  21. It is my hope that as soon as the current junkyard dog attitude is removed from the White House and a more appropriate influence takes over, people will return to a renewed sense of civility, class and compassion in their human interactions, remembering that kindness is contagious.

  22. No wonder everything is a mess. Ban him and anyone like him for life. Nobody should be spoken to that way in their place of work

  23. Biden K.Bose
    Does the K in your middle name stand for “kook”? I only ask because that’s how you come across. Since you happily “agree” with the haters and drunks, a reasonable person can only conclude you’re one or the other. Or perhaps both? They say misery loves company, right?

    I won’t waste my time here to explain how Covid has affected the airline industry. It’s obvious to every American, with the possible exception of the haters, drunks and kooks who continue to fly and bash flight attendants. If I did I just might persuade you to “agree” with me, but I have no ambition to rehabilitate your hateful heart. That’s your problem and you can drag that ball and chain with you for life if you want to.

    I couldn’t help but notice in your post that you made no mention of “the note” incident. Nor did you express any empathy for what that particular flight attendant and other flight crews are currently dealing with. Instead, you cozied up with Kent, Sailer and the drunk because they rang your hate bell. Apparently that’s the only reason you posted here.

    Biden K Bose, here’s a travel tip for you and your fellow haters: stay home. It would be a great service to humanity, and I personally will see to it you get a medal for your efforts.

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  24. We only have the flight attendants word that he was served alcohol. This may or may not be true. He was obviously upset and it may have nothing to do with being drunk.

    Here is what has changed. For everyone who thinks we are being lazy.. we feel the same!. We are not able to give the normal hospitality that we normally could give our passengers because of the new CDC recommendations. They are discouraging customer interaction. Meaning… Less service. LESS SERVICE AND US BEING IN THE AISLES.
    THIS IS FOR YOUR SAFETY. WE ARE HERE FOR YOUR SAFETY!. Not to serve you drinks. As unusual as it feels for us, we are being told to not have close interaction with the passengers. Now, if there is a medical emergency or we need to evacuate the aircraft… You better believe that masks will be flying off and we will do what we are HIGHLY TRAINED to do. Until than, get your alcohol fix however when you land. MAYBE Be thankful there is ANY airline still operating during a pandemic. One that can safely deliver you to where you need to go without you driving yourself.
    BY THE WAY… WE DO NOT ENJOY BEING THE MASK POLICE or enjoy losing our industry as a whole. Please be mindful that we are doing what we are told to do with the best of what we are able to provide. Let’s be in this together.

  26. I don’t see anything wrong with the note. Don’t judge the man’s experience, wasn’t there.. so the giving him the benefit of the doubt that he is telling the truth to go that route, then by all means…yep, it seems warranted to me at the very least.

  27. IllusionZ
    If you see nothing wrong with the content of that note you”re a hopeless case. It suggest to me that you can have empathy for a spiteful drunk deliberately trying to humiliate someone, but not have a shred of compassion for the person on the receiving end. That’s pretty cold on your part. Quite revealing of who you really are, no? It’s no illusion.

    Warning: if one comes to this blog looking for travel tips you’ll have to swim through a lot of bile and hate to find them. But if you want to post ridicule and denigrate working people, hey, the door’s always open.

    Gary Leff asked us at the beginning of this thread to “…be a little human the next few weeks…”. Kind of a low bar, eh? How about being a complete human every week?
    I realize its impossible for some here to meet that standard. Their bias is set in concrete. But this particular “note” story should have been an easy call for rationale people. Kudos to all who saw it for what it was. Intimidation. Humiliation. I could even add misogynistic. And sadly, it’s very indicative of what flight attendants have to deal with on a daily basis. I admire their courage to work in such an environment.

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  28. I know this is a “Generality,” but Asian airline flight attendants are more courteous, friendly and more attentive than US carriers.

    Using COVID as an excuse is predictable and unfortunate.

    US CEOs: Take a flight on CX, SG, KE, TG… Undercover. See for yourself.

  29. Rhonda
    Get a grip. Read the note. Don’t bail the guy out. He doesn’t deserve it. Don’t re-write the story either. Nobody else from that flight wrote a note like that (that we know of).

    Its on him, and only him. If you want to take him to rehab that’s on you. Don’t justify his actions or intent on a commercial aircraft. You say “…he was obviously upset…”.
    Upset about what? Last call? Don’t you think the flight attendant was “upset” too? No compassion for her? It’s a gutless move to stick hate-mail in her hand and then scurry off the aircraft, unaccountable.

    Use common sense Rhonda. What he tried to do to the flight attendant after he was served plenty, was intimidation. Ever been in a bar at closing time and watch what some people do to bartenders? It’s not complicated.

    Strange that any woman can read this story and find empathy for him and not the flight attendant.

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  30. Chris
    I didn’t realize how compassionate you can be Vegas guy. Thanks for your concern.
    A new leaf for you? Maybe you could show some to your crew on your next flight?

    Be careful in Vegas Chris. They can’t wait to see you. They want your money and you’re gonna fly right out there and hand it to them. Just don’t take it out on a flight attendant on the ride back. Ta-Ta!

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  31. I’ve recently flown American great service.My grandson ask for drink they were very nice and got him one .My advise treat people the way you want to be treated. Brenda from Texas.

  32. I flew last week and am headed to the Airport again in an hour. Who is getting food and drinks on flights right now??? That’s what I want to know!!! My crew was awesome and helpful. You reap what you sew.

  33. For David,

    I think you meant to say Asiana Airlines based in South Korea?
    Am I right?

    You can “Generalize” all you want but fact is you’re comparing an airline of 85 jets and 10,300 employees to say, American Airlines, with 875 jets and 133,700 employees.
    In the airline business that’s apples to cucumbers.

    South Korea did a good job containing Covid unlike the clusterf**k we’re seeing in US.

    But if you truly think Covid is an excuse in the US you probably haven’t buried a loved one yet.

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  34. To Jimmy.

    Excuse is an Excuse.

    Your excuse for a mega airline is the difficulty of being big. Either you’re good or you’re not.

    Don’t read into my opinion as a being insensitive to Covid. You’re just trying to pick a fight.

  35. To David

    Korean Air has 368 Jets and 20,500 employees. Still apples to cucumbers so essentially it’s a false comparison. Two different corporate cultures in two very different countries on opposite sides of the planet. Those airlines have no clue how competitive it is in the US.
    Apparently you don’t either.

    Im happy you got stroked by by them but I’d love to see Korean Air fly BOS-PHL all day or NYC to MIA. It would be tragic. They wouldn’t last a week. The passengers are “generally” (your word) too difficult here. But you missed the entire runway David.

    “…Asian Air F/As are more courteous, friendly and more attentive…”

    “…using Covid as an excuse is predictable…”

    These are your words David. You brought it up. You picked the fight with flight attendants, and you brought up Covid. Not me.

    Not once have I defended airline management, which is where 98% of these posts ought to go.

    Instead travelers like you are too lazy to write a letter. You’d rather bash flight attendants who have zero control of what “the product” is because it’s easier for you. Easier to bark at a woman trying to do her job. (not so easy if the F/A is a 6’’ 2” 200 lb male). Easier to stick hate mail in her hand and walk away. Easier to post hate here than write to a CEO. I could go on David but I don’t want to hurt your feelings more than I have.

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  36. Bella
    Thank you for reading. I’m sick of the anonymous cyber-bullying of innocent people just trying to earn a living.

    Only thing I know to do is to address these creatures and chase them back under the rock they come from, whatever their “elite status” with an airline may or may not be.

    Status doesn’t impress me unless it comes with kindness, understanding and compassion.

    I will defend to my last breath the decent, hard-working, dedicated people who work in a major industry like the airlines. They are exposed to every conceivable kind of risk from terrorism to pandemics. I won’t even mention crashes or ditching.(oops!).

    I am happy to defend them because I know their companies won’t.

    Its a good thing I’m not a flight attendant in these dreadful times. If I were, a few of these arrogant phonies here would exit the plane with Jack and Diet dripping off their faces.

    Keepin’ in real,
    Jimmy Mack

  37. My hero of the week, at least, Jimmy Mack. I do not fly at all and read through your troll hunting with schadenfrude, inspiration, and satisfaction. So great to see. thank you. Punk as Fuck

  38. To Anathema

    “Schadenfrude?! That was a new one for me!! Luckily my wife (German descent) explained it. to me. Cheers!

    I find it revolting that some entitled travelers (mainly male), can feel so emboldened to trash working folks like flight attendants and their occupation choice. They wail that “it’s just customer service” or “they’re just glorified maids”. Really? These haters wouldn’t last half a day on the job, assuming they could make it out of training.

    The airlines and their employees didn’t cause 9/11 and didn’t cause Covid-19. Let that sink in a bit. They didn’t cause it. But who gets whacked for it? You know who.

    No other industry in America gets punished for it like airline employees. They lose everything…. a job, a pension, their home, perhaps their life. Essentially they get punished for the failures of leaders (both corporate and political) who either fall asleep at the wheel or live in a fantasyland of hoax and denial.

    There is more pain coming in October for the airlines. I know what they will do to their employees to survive. Seen that movie before. It won’t be pretty and hardly seems fair.
    Many Americans will just look the other way as it goes down. Some will suck down their Jack n Diet and demand more attention. And a few here will celebrate it until they realize it’s coming for them next..

    What’s the German word for “kharma”?

    Keepin’ it real,
    Jimmy Mack

  39. Trump wouldn’t make it out of the tough paramilitary/ AKA F/A training – He already dodged military twice –
    And on compassion/ Kindness / service to others = 0

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