Groups Of Passengers Brawl At Philadelphia Baggage Claim, While Employees Stand By Filming

As if to disprove my recent claim that the worst passenger behavior happens on Spirit Airlines, two groups of passengers began egging each other on after American Airlines flight AA2333 from Miami to Philadelphia early in the week, culminating in a brawl at baggage claim.

Contrary to much discussion these are employees, but not security employees, filming the incident.

There’s been a great deal of discussion online about which group of passengers is at fault, and many shared videos have been cropped to point fingers at one group or another (perhaps for racially-motivated reasons, and I’m not interested in that discussion in the comments). Incidents like this don’t usually happen spontaneously without the full participation of everyone involved. Maybe it’s just that it was a flight originating in Florida.

What I’m most interested in here is that this sort of thing usually does happen on Spirit Airlines or British package holiday carriers like Jet2. When American Airlines President Robert Isom said his competitive sights were set on low cost carriers and he’d never let Spirit or Frontier have the advantage it never occurred to me he might be talking about mirroring their passengers..!

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 »

More articles by Gary Leff »


  1. This is why I only fly swa, you don’t get the cheapoair bottom-of-the-barrel trash.

  2. Good point about “Maybe it’s just that it was a flight originating in Florida.” Today I wake up to reading our fine woke Florida folk have toppled and decapitated a statue of Christ on church property in West Kendall (Miami area). Do you this Nancy Pelosi or Joe Biden are gonna take issue with that? I’m only saying because it is a federal hate crime and violates 18 U.S. Code § 247.regarding Damage to religious property; obstruction of persons in the free exercise of religious beliefs. Last time when Trump cleared an area around a firebombed DC church, Democrats demonized him. Are these same folks in the party of the jackass now going to bray about how desecrating church property is just a harmless form of free speech?

  3. @AlohaDaveKennedy what is even more sadder is here in Los Angeles, where since we are new and don’t have many things old like the east coast or Europe, they burned the San Gabriel Mission, built in 1771, the oldest thing we have in Los Angeles. The mission was the starting point to the founding of Los Angeles, 10 years later.

  4. Better than the passive aggressive “I’m going to record you saying something and then get you fired” – over and done with in baggage

  5. Sadly as a 31-year legacy AA flight attendant, this is the type of behavior that I’m seeing more and more since the merger. Parker wants to turn AA into Spirit, and he’s done a great job of it. No wonder people fly Delta.

  6. Wait Gary, so you don’t want broad generalizations about race in the discussion (appropriately so, thanks!), but you are OK with broad generalizations about people from the state of Florida (“Maybe it’s just that it was a flight originating in Florida”).

  7. I do not agree with the shaming of Spirt here. This is more of a market issue in my opinion. If this is the population that the market supports, this is what you get. AA has chosen to have a less premium and more basic product and offering and the price should reflect that basic and fill-less offering. Delta and jetBlue have a more premium offering and their pricing typically represents the offering.

    I am losing what little faith I have left in humanity. We are watching civilization rip itself apart.

  8. Can anyone actually blame employees for standing back and doing nothing? No matter what they do, it will be the wrong thing and they’ll be shamed all over and likely fired for doing basically anything. I feel bad for the people who actually know how to behave like civilized adults that were inconvenienced by these people.

  9. Wasn’t the recent brawl involving Spirit passengers (attacking a gate agent) on a PHL to Florida flight also? Maybe it is those markets that contribute to the lack of consideration.

  10. The sad thing is who raised these kids? What kind of parents raised wild angry jungle animals?
    I’ve seen better behavior in 3rd world countries.Good god.So many unhappy angry young women
    Beyond sad if thats what the future of our country looks like
    Spirit has more of these kind of unhappy in life folks and Southwest a bit better but all in all they can fly any airline they wish at the end of the day.I’m less afraid of the virus then being on board with uncivilized passengers and their unacceptable behavior.

  11. CMC has it correct… and don’t assume these women don’t know exactly what the current situation in US society is right now. They have very astutely recognized that no authority figure can do anything to them right now. Even if it was a policman that tried to breakup this brawl, if he came into physical contact with any of the participants he would already be branded a racist and have been fired.

  12. What is it with this country? It’s not a Repub/Dem issue, as this behavior crosses party lines? Is it too much reality TV, where we see people acting out their very worst tantrums?

    My daughter is almost finished w/grad school abroad, and she has decided not to return to the US, even if the salaries may be (marginally) better. After living in Germany and the UK for the past 2 years she is horrified to venture back into the cesspool we are seeing here in America.

  13. A more interesting article relevant to travel might deal with why there was no security response while all this was going on. Instead this seems more like a Jerry Springer clickbait type of article.

    “There’s been a great deal of discussion online about which group of passengers is at fault,” There is no law anywhere in the US that says that once a person is on the ground defenseless and unarmed in an airport that you and all your friends get to repeatedly kick them in the skull. We don’t know what led up to this because obviously people aren’t interested in releasing the full video. What we do know is this mob was kicking a defenseless person who was on the ground in the head and that is certainly outside the scope of any self defense claim and there should be criminal prosecutions.

  14. It’s unbelievable how people have so much hatred and evil in their hearts. I think political correctness has taught society that it’s ok to not have any morals anymore.It’s ok to not have any pride about how you dress; How much filth comes out of your mouth; It’s ok to think it’s all about me; To have a pity party because you think you deserve more and of course above all…..It’s not my fault.
    God was taken out the schools decades ago. This country is now reaping what it has sewn. I pray that this country will turn back to God soon because if it don’t, then things will get worse.

  15. The observation about Ipsom nails the basic issue. Sadly, the AA employees ” (unions) “dank the cool aide” and went hook, line and sinker for the line and promises Parker and his executive cadre of management incompetents peddled to them without realizing the consequences of being sucked up by one of the worst airlines in the world. The only real success that group has had is rapidly turning the merged airline into an even worse airline – USAir II!

  16. KimmieA Germany is not a picnic either..Look at some of the crimes there…with the Muslim men attacking non-muslim women etc…
    I agree with above comments that police are afraid to go near anything like this as they will be charged..sad state of Liberal USA

  17. Watching the first part of this video makes it understandable. First the white boyfriend calls one girl a bitch, then his girlfriend does an ethnic slur and slaps the girl. That starts the fight. That would happen anywhere. I can’t see blaming the airline, airport or the state of Florida. Maybe blame Covid, since the poor way it is being handled makes everyone tense these days.

  18. Classy! Of course, this was a flight from Miami to Philly, so the trash were returning home.

  19. These comments are disgusting! These people, regardless of where they are from, the amount they paid for a ticket, or the events that happened are all at fault! Either side could have shut up, walked away, diffused the situation and not been the subject of this article. Being a decent human being has gone out the window. I blame really TV just as much as I blame all of these people for engaging in this display of inhumane behavior. These snipped videos do not tell a full story and are just here to incite emotion and outage from the readers.

  20. And people wonder why Black Lives do not matter when this women act like this. This is pure trash and these people should be banned from flying forever. They make EVERY black person look bad and give reason not to trust blacks.

  21. In my dealings with flights, going to PHL, I always found it ironic that PHL is called the “City of brotherly love”. My experience was that PHL flights had more disagreeable customers than even the LGA flights. Not really surprised to see this occurring at PHL.

  22. They should be arrested and charged with criminal acts. Should be on no fly list. Their stated goal was “fxxx them up”. When would four attacking two ever be right?
    Consequences could deter this wrong behavior.

  23. Airline employees are not Airport police, why would anyone think airline employees are required to stop a fight. Airlines and their employees could be sued for touching a passenger.

  24. I am British and worked in Uganda 4 years , Ghana 4 years years , Bangladesh 2 years , Hong Kong 23 years . Now in Cyprus ( EU country in Mediterranean )
    I am amazed by the behaviour of these Americans , worse than some developing countries .
    I last visited USA about 10 years ago , unlikely to visit again ,it is very horrible

  25. 99%of these comments chose to either ignore the part where the White man calls the Black woman a bitch and makes comment about her hair. That same 99% also refuses to see the White lady slap the Black lady first. However, that 99% have no problem displaying the bias views towards Black women. That is the general problem here. Do better.

  26. Im black and im tiried of oir people thinking have a right to harm and anthers space. Stop playing the victim

  27. Gala Burnett, you are correct about the comments on here. The fight breaks out because of the words used and the hand slap that occured in the very beginning by the couple. I don’t condone violence either and the situation could have been diffused far better. But, you can definitely see everyone’s bias even with the facts/evidence right in front.

  28. 35 years working for a major carrier, based in Miami and this is what we get going to Philly, Lga, BWI and this behavior starts at the gate continues throughout the flight. It’s called main cabin extra cheap seats no class.

  29. I was there! Yes Im a blk man! Yes I was there when the blk girl was on her phone telling her caller she landed her back was turned, then she backed up as the white woman was rushing…as we all was, yes they bumped in to each purely out of mistake, the blk girl had long weave the white woman clearly said nasty dog hair and pushed away…another close to me her friend said fuck you B..i..t..c..h…thats when the man jumped in and the white woman went in cussing the girls out! Even saying KISS MY ASS! And other lines as the blk girls loudly cussing her back out….once in the baggage area the white woman looked at them and started snapping saying i hope my bags not by them! After that all hell was on. Why i didnt and other blk males didnt break it up cause #1 it was all females and #2 white woman popped off 1st!!! This is not about a city nor state nor a group or people or skin color! But disrespect!! And someone being hit and her friends on go with her. Everyone above will do the same.

  30. This is not completely correct. If you watch the entire video the white guy yells to the black woman “get some hair b****” as she’s walking away. she then turned around, the n-word restaurant, the white woman hits her square in the face, and then the fight starts. This article needs to be updated with the real details. The full video is on the internet.

  31. “Nemara says:
    July 19, 2020 at 12:05 am
    Blah blah blah……When would four attacking two ever be right?” It became right the very moment that ignorant woman struck someone else FIRST. After that it’s self defense. Funny how people want things to be fair

Comments are closed.