British Airways Ejects Baby, Toddler and Their Mom Over Drinking Incident

On Friday a mother in her 20s was waiting to board a British Airways flight from Tenerife South to London Gatwick along with her two kids. So she kills the time as one does on a holiday route traveling with young children: by drinking.

And by getting into an altercation at the gate, “a spiralling argument at the gate about being a “benefits mum”.”

She declared, “I work for my money. I’ve got a proper job.”

British Airways Airbus A319

British Airways Airbus A319

Which sort of reminds me of the time I was 18 years old and went to Tijuana one night with friends. The drinking age there was 18, so Southern California college students were basically driven by law to leave the country to let off steam. By the time the night was over I had way too much to drink. Back then you just had to show your drivers license at the border and answer a simple question, “Are you a citizen?” One of my friends was trying to coach me through this process. When it was my turn and the border guard asked me if I was a citizen, I pointed to her and said, “She says say yes.”

Clearly once on board the plane the crew knew her state, and a flight attendant let the woman know she wouldn’t be served anymore alcohol. To which she replied, “I’ve paid for my flight and I know I am entitled to it!”

Things apparently escalated from there because after pushback “the pilot eventually ordered her and five other people in her party to leave the Airbus A320.”

You can see the plane pushed back nearly on time but was delayed by almost two hours — the time required to return to the gate, offload the passengers, and get back on their way.

In this case the issue wasn’t drinking too much inflight it was drinking too much before flight.

Flight attendants had to take down a drunk passenger using an ice pick and a pot of coffee.

Perhaps they should install breathalyzers beside boarding pass readers? Scan your mobile app and blow in order to get on the plane?

(HT: Le Chic Geek)

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, 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 drink responsibly and it helps me relax on long overnight flights. I am appalled at the behavior I read about in these articles. It concerns me that this kind of behavior could lead to my privilege (not right) to drink a couple of glasses of wine in flight being taken away. I certainly hope we will not all once again be held to the lowest common denominator in the rules designed to manage public behavior. Incidents like these should be treated seriously and the offenders should be made an example of, so others will not behave so poorly, rather than taking away the privilege of drinking within reason for the majority that do so.

  2. Similar border story, but back to front on both the border and the timing: When I was 18, the Michigan drinking law was 21 while Ontario was 18. A carload of us boys headed over one Friday night. “What’s your destination in Canada?” we were asked at the Canadian side of the bridge from Detroit. “I don’t think that’s any of your business” was the response from the backseat. Four hours later, we were presented with papers called “Permission To Leave Canada”. When we got back to US soil, we were detained another three hours. Was still stinkin’ sober when I finally made it home, somewhere shortly before dawn.

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