Passenger Grabs Woman’s Phone, Makes A Call From The Aisle As He’s Kicked Off Southwest Flight

Airline passengers behaving badly has become so de rigueur that it really takes layering on next-level atrociousness to be worth mentioning.

Here, a Southwest Airlines passenger claims the mantle. He’s being kicked off of his flight – and while that’s going on he grabs another passenger’s phone – and “proceeds to make a phone call” with it while being he’s removed from the aircraft.

As the man passes by the woman’s row, he reaches over and grabs her phone out of her hand. It takes her a moment to realize what’s happened. She gets up and follows him in the aisle towards the front of the plane as he heads off. He’s slowed down because he’s trying to make a phone call using her phone. She reaches around to try to grab it, but he turns to keep it from her – holding the phone over the another row of seats outside of her reach. She finally manages to grab it away and he exits the plane.

In general I find the worst passenger behavior to happen on American Airlines (given their size and domestic route network) and Spirit. However Southwest Airlines is probably a strong third. Here’s a Southwest Airlines passenger drying her laundry on a cross country flight, and another berating a crewmember.

The lesson is, if you’re going to make an exit, make your peace out memorable and go full Steven Slater.

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. When you have toxic atmospheres these things are more likely to happen.

    AA (A$$hole Airlines) has toxic employees that put everyone in a bad mood, and even gaslighting the passengers. So they’re going to trigger worse reactions.

    Spirit is just a poor airline that fees you for everything after a bait and switch pricing strategy that offers one price but for most passengers ends up being significantly higher. So people are going to be more pissy anyways.

    Southwest reinforces toxicity towards other passengers with their boarding and seating system creating a “me first” and “who am I better than” atmosphere, along with encouraging passengers to be unfriendly so hopefully nobody will want to sit by them and instead leaving them with extra seats.

  2. Daniel – I have flown Southwest for over 30+ years and have never seen what you describe and attribute to Southwest. You are full of shit with your moronic comments about Southwest. You claim that Southwest “reinforces toxicity towards other passengers” – which is a lie. The boarding and seating system is the best in the business – the problem with this policy is how a few people have turned this system into what it has morphed into – assholes abusing common sense guidelines for their own personal gratification. Southwest does NOT encourage passengers to be “unfriendly” – only a moron such as yourself would make such a statement. I can surmise that you choose NOT to fly Southwest – and I think that is great. Prima donna pain in the asses like you are can take your stupidity and pettiness to other airlines – Southwest and those who fly Southwest have no need for cretins such as yourself making their lives miserable with your presence.

  3. This is not about airlines.
    It is about shifty or abhorrent passenger behavior.
    Welcome to AMERICA!

  4. Poor widdle David R. Miller doesn’t like his nasty cattle car airline being called out. Have a tissue, Davy.

  5. Thanks, Gary !!! You may have created a Meme !!! APBB (Airline Passengers Behaving Badly)… Some might argue that another Meme is developing as well, ACBB (Airline Crews Behaving Bossy)…

    As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a huge AA Fan, and candidly I’ve never experienced either APBB or ACBB on any AA flight. There’s no way I’d put them in the same league as Sprint.

    Excepting the Sprint tendency for APBB, it’s probably true that either APBB or ACBB can happen on any given airline on any given day. Unfortunate to be sure, especially when it delays the rest of us.

  6. All the airlines in US have a common problem- belligerent stewards(eases), who behave like cops, rather than attendants. Friendly smile, courteous service etc. are far less important than controlling imaginary ‘Karen’s’

  7. Just awful what human garbage is flying nowadays,.it’s a typical American thing. In Europe we don’t have that kind of trash ….yet

  8. I think she was filming him (she was turned around facing him then as he got closer faced forward) he probably took phone to delete video. Then at the end saw the other person filming. It’s wrong do doubt, but he wasn’t making a call.

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