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Passengers On Wrong Flights  
User currently offlinePDXtriple7 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 695 posts, RR: 0
Posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 7926 times:

I've never really taken the pre-departure announcement about making sure you are on the correct flight seriously. I figure that the gate agents would catch the problem before a passenger boarded the plane, but recently I've been proved wrong.

On my recent AA MD80 SFO-DFW flight, a couple and their two young twins boarded our flight, causing a problem as passengers were already sitting in their seats. After about 15 minutes of trying to figure out what to do, it turns out that the family had mistakenly got on the earlier SFO-DFW flight (my flight) instead of their own flight.

I find it really hard to believe that this could actually happen, but it did. That leads to my burning question: Does this problem happen often, and how does it happen? I was under the impression that the machines that boarding passes are put into would notice this.

58 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20685 posts, RR: 62
Reply 1, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 7903 times:

Over the years there have been reports of passengers flying NZ1 from LHR to LAX who've reboarded for Auckland when they've a connection to Oakland, since the two are pronounced similarly. That's an extreme example, but it does happen.


International Homo of Mystery
User currently offline777boy From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 287 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7893 times:

Just after the Reno Air acquisition, when AA still had a lot of flights from SJC to other west coast destinations, someone on my flight had an interersting experience. She (an older lady) had boarded my flight from SAN-SJC, then got off and tried to find the connection to Portland. The gate agent pointed her to the PDX flight, but the woman quickly pointed out that she was headed to Portland, Maine and not Oregon. Appearently, she was supposed to fly SAN-ORD-Portland, Maine but had been given boarding passes to Portland Oregon. She was quickly rerouted SJC-ORD-Portland, MA.

Another funny city confusion happened to my Mom. She was going to Microsoft's campus in Redmond, Washington for a conference. Her secretary booked her into Redmond aiport on United Express from SFO. Howeverk, when I was looking at another reservation on UA's website, I found that she was booked to fly to Redmond, OR. Redmond, WA does not have a commercial aiport, so I had her rebooked into SeaTac.

-Matt


User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6330 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7867 times:

A couple times I have been waiting to board a Southwest flight and a gate agent has had to go down to the aircraft or run down the jetway to catch someone who had gotten on the wrong plane. So, considering that Southwest doesn't have assigned seating, it might even be possible to get away with it there. Maybe even more likely back before they had computers at all the gates and they simply used those plastic A, B, C cards and a paper boarding pass.

User currently offlineLufthansa From Christmas Island, joined May 1999, 3217 posts, RR: 10
Reply 4, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7865 times:

I heard of several.

Once, due to tech problems at the Tom Bradley Int terminal at LAX, good old Qantas boarded a chinese woman on a flight to Melbourne. About an 2 hrs before melbourne, the daylight came through the windows and the woman, who had been asleep since shortly after departure from LAX, was woke for breakfast.... only to discover she was suppose to be on the Cathay Pacific flight to Hong Kong that left at the gate next door! The jumped up in a panic when she was the map showing MEL approaching..... the boarding card readers were not working at that caused the whole mix up.

Another I heard of was wealthy old scottish man who apparently liked a good drink.... and was suppose to get on a BA shuttle flight to Glasgow and woke up in Kuala Lumpur..... This one seems harder to believe....

The last thing I heard of like that was a situation where a young London couple decided to go to sydney for their honeymoon.... and found some very cheap seats on Air Canada, via an internet travel agency. Well it turns out they purchased tickets to some dinky little town in Canada that was also called Sydney...hardly the Superpower of the south they were intending.... derrr why anybody thinks they can fly to Sydney for $300 bucks? I just hope they didn't try sun baking!


User currently offlineOPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7853 times:

The old DEN Stapleton had some odd gate arrangements, and I once boarded my DEN-IAH flight and sat down and got all settled in. The F/A welcomed everyone aboard the continuation of flight such-and-such to PDX, whereupon I realized that I was onboard the wrong flight and beat feet off the aircraft. Correct fligght was at an adjacent gate, so I made it, but I swore to never to make that mistake again...

User currently offlinePDXtriple7 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 695 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7821 times:

Good stories. Apparently it does happen once in a while. It would be terrible if the flight actually left, like the Chinese woman's story. I guess it'd be one big adventure, with a pissed off passenger!

User currently offlineSoups From Ghana, joined Jun 2004, 3438 posts, RR: 14
Reply 7, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7821 times:

i flew ACC-JFK then due to baggae delays i had to run to AA counters when i got there i checked in then the lady said here is your boarding pass to SFO i replied hold on im not going to SFO im going to LAX.....


Next destinations, Suarabaya, beirut, paris, Accra
User currently offlineMalaysia From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 3356 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7791 times:

I was once given the wrong boarding pass on WN. I just wanted to non-rev LAS-PHX and I just got a group boarding pass quickly before boarding then while in line, I looked at my pass and I read LAS-TUL

oh gee and actually they had changed the gate for PHX, but she thought I was going on this one so she just failed to check my flight coupon right and just gave me the LAS-TUL and I was about to get on... so glad I realized and did not end up in TUL. They had not updated the screen at the gate.



There Are Those Who Believe That There May Yet Be Other Airlines Who Even Now Fight To Survive Beyond The Heavens
User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 9, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7785 times:

I will admit it, once, many years ago, I and several co-workers were rushing to catch the LGA-BOS shuttle. We were so focused on catching the Shuttle that we got on the aircraft that was going to DCA - the F/As must have made several announcements that the flight was the DC shuttle, but my group of 6 was so busy talking and preparing for this last minute meeting in BOS that we were not paying attenton. About half was through the flight, the person by the window seat suddenly yelled out "Holy sh-t, why are we flying south?" Of course, we thought that she was crazy but we, in fact, were flying south and moments later the captain announced that our flying time to DCA would be XX minutes. To put it mildly, the 6 of us did feel rather stupid.

User currently offlineCyberual From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 177 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7757 times:

it does happen sometimes here at UA. We have people going to GUA board the SAL flight. We also have people boarding the wrong flight b/c of gate change etc. The reason it happen I could only think of the gate agent did not use the gate reader, but instead use manual boarding. That's why its important to pay attention to watch the boarding screen and watch for seat dupes.

Also, I've heard of psgr getting the wrong b/p from the check in counter. This happens when you share a printer w/another agent at the counter.


User currently offlinePlanemannyc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 1008 posts, RR: 8
Reply 11, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7768 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

One of uncle's friends studied in Russia back in the 70's. He boarded an Aeroflot flight to Dhaka, Bangladesh -- going home on his summer break. He was apparently a little surprised to see no other Bangladeshis on his flight. I guess he also found it strange that the flight made a stop in Algiers. Anyway, he ended up in Dakar, Senegal. Took him a week to actually make it back to Moscow and then on to Dhaka  Wink Strange, but true. I guess nowadays, that type of mistake is much more uncommon with computerized boarding.

Best

Wasim / Planemannyc


User currently offlineSATX From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 2840 posts, RR: 7
Reply 12, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7736 times:

Quoting PDXtriple7 (Reply 6):
I guess it'd be one big adventure, with a pissed off passenger!

If I was ever lazy enough to get on the wrong plane going to the wrong destination then I would feel embarrassed at myself, not pissed at the airline. What kind of moron would draw attention to the fact that the were so ignorant that they managed to get themselves on the wrong plane? Blame it on the airline only if they got the gate information wrong, the boarding pass wrong, and listed the incorrect destination on the plane. Otherwise, blame yourself for being stupid.



Open Season on Consumer Protections is Just Around the Corner...
User currently offlineJetdeltamsy From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2987 posts, RR: 8
Reply 13, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7708 times:

oh yea, it happens. and once in a while a passenger will make it onto a flight going to a different city...sometimes a completely different part of the country. since the boarding process has become more automated, it happens less freuqently than it used to (it never happened very often, but now even less).

of course when it happens, the company is 100% responsible for getting the customer to the right city ASAP....with lots of apologies and lots of free tickets (i imagine!!)

always rattles me a little bit. who is paying attention at the gate???

[Edited 2005-07-17 02:50:20]


Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13120 posts, RR: 12
Reply 14, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7681 times:

I would think that last minute gate changes, where info on the destination of the flight at the gate wasn't changed could cause some confusion, along with rushing by gate agents to get a flight out on time. Still, with today's security needs, including requirements of matching of luggage and pax especially on international flights, would make it an absolute need to make sure that only the right pax for a given flight board. Of course, some people are complete idiots, with no knowlege of geography or common sense.

User currently offlineRossbaku From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2005, 673 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 7677 times:

I watched an old episode of Airport on UKTV People and on Jeremy Spake's SU plane to Moscow, a woman had managed to board the plane...thinking it was going to CDG! She had remained on the flight right up until pushback, only realising she was on the wrong flight when the F/A's came over the tannoy in Russian!

Jeremy being Jeremy managed to get the problem sorted and the woman offloaded...

Just goes to show how much effort went into checking tickets back then.


User currently offlinePiedmontINT From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 376 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 7645 times:

Quoting Cyberual (Reply 10):
Also, I've heard of psgr getting the wrong b/p from the check in counter. This happens when you share a printer w/another agent at the counter.

This happened to me before actually.. I was flying from MCI and the lines were ridiculously long. I did the self check in and it didn't accept my credit card or my FF card for some reason and the agent had to check me in. Well when as my boarding card was printing she disappeared and the agent next to her gave me my card. While walking to the gate, I pulled it out to remind myself which gate it was and upon doing that I noticed that the destination was DCA and not GSO!

Needless to say, I sprinted back to the counter and got it straightened out. Good thing I have a bad short term memory or else it may have turned ugly...

[Edited 2005-07-17 03:22:42]

User currently offlineMandala499 From Indonesia, joined Aug 2001, 6898 posts, RR: 76
Reply 17, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 7543 times:

It happens "regularly" in Indonesia. My wife had a pax missing for a 732 flight who turned up at another 732 of another airline... It didn't help when her plane was from her company's subsidiary... hence the pax said they looked for the airline but couldn't find it so boarded the one they knew... LOL... It happens bothways... That's what you get when you don't have airbridges...

mandala499



When losing situational awareness, pray Cumulus Granitus isn't nearby !
User currently offlineBryanG From United States of America, joined May 1999, 433 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 7492 times:

Don't the FAs to a headcount before pushback, to make sure the number of pax onboard matches the final manifest? That ought to detect any extra pax onboard, and alert the crew that something is wrong (unless the misguided pax are actually added to the manifest somehow).

Although, in a hurry, things might get overlooked (...thinking back to Helen Hayes' character in "Airport." LOL.)


User currently offlineAussieindc From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 437 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 7463 times:

Here's another one for you.

When I was with BA in London, an Indian lady was booked to GOA. Only problem was that when she flew with us, she ended up in Genoa (GOA) Italy instead of the city of GOA in India.

Inadvertantly, her travel agent booked her on the wrong flight and she was brought back to London. I'd hate to be that agent when she got back.


User currently offlineMikesairways From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 716 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7398 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

When I used to work for Southwest (at SJC) , I had a guy come down to baggage claim screaming up a storm that we lost his bags. Upon checking his claim check I noticed his bags were check to LAX from SEA. Upon which he turned furiously red and screamed even louder (This isn't LAX???) Seems the poor ignorant fool got off the plane when he shouldn't have - too bad it was a Friday night and everythign to LAX was oversold that night.

Whats better is he thought he should have been compensated since we "never told him the flight was stopping in SJC first"



The red zone is for the immediate loading and unloading of passengers only, there is no stopping in the white zone...(Ai
User currently offlineBridogger6 From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 716 posts, RR: 10
Reply 21, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7391 times:

Quoting BryanG (Reply 18):
Don't the FAs to a headcount before pushback, to make sure the number of pax onboard matches the final manifest? That ought to detect any extra pax onboard, and alert the crew that something is wrong (unless the misguided pax are actually added to the manifest somehow).

Hahaha that's a good one, I think the flight attendant head count is accurate to a tee maybe one in ten times, at the most! It really is the gate agent's responsibility to find out who is on board and who is not. The flight attendants always verify their count with us, it never matches but we just agree with them anyway rather than holding up the plane because they can't count.

It's our responsibility to check and make sure everyone is on board and on board the right flight. The other day I was getting a bit lackadaisical in boarding and a group of four going to Atlanta handed me their boarding passes. I ripped them and sent them down the jetway then completely stopped myself, whoops what are THEY thinking. I just called their names and they came up angry because this plane was going to Oakland and not Atlanta. They came up screaming asking why the plane wasn't going to Atlanta, their flight wasn't for three more hours... I am amazed that FOUR people could make that mistake, travelling together or not.

Another thing we have to watch for is our dual ops. Many times we have two flights leaving to LAS or LAX or sometimes SAN at the exact same time and getting in at the same time, people will always get confused. Our operations people try to put the gates for these flights close together but unfortunately it doesn't always work out. If someone shows up at the wrong gate, and the other one is far away, we can't just stick them on the new flight in many cases for a number of reasons. One might be that the flight is full, or another might be that they've already checked bags. These passengers end up very angry when they find out they're at the wrong gate. We ALWAYS make plenty of announcements though, telling people to verify their flight numbers.

So yes, it happens. Does it happen often? No.


User currently offlineFLY2LIM From United States of America, joined May 2004, 1185 posts, RR: 10
Reply 22, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7370 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 1):
Over the years there have been reports of passengers flying NZ1 from LHR to LAX who've reboarded for Auckland when they've a connection to Oakland, since the two are pronounced similarly. That's an extreme example, but it does happen.

I clearly remember that back when World Airways was in existence as a regular carrier, with a base at Oakland Airport, an unaccompanied minor was in LAX waiting for a fly to Oakland, but boarded a flight to Auckland instead. This was an embarrassment to World in many respects, not the least of which was that no one had paid any attention to the boy.
This is what I remember about a story that must have happened about 20 years ago.
FLY2LIM



Faucett. La primera linea aerea del Peru.
User currently offlineAR1300 From Argentina, joined Feb 2005, 1740 posts, RR: 3
Reply 23, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7367 times:

I have a friend who took the wrong AA flight at LGA.Instead of going to ORD, he ended up in MIA.He mistaked the gates, the gate right next to his was going to MIA, and he went to that one.I guess that they didn't even see at the boarding pass.
And mistakes do happen.One of the times that I flew UA, I was going to LAX from ORD.At the gate counter, when I gave my ticket to the lady, instead of getting my boarding pass tab, I was given someone else's that was going to LAS.
I kept it, it is funny.

Mike



They don't call us Continental for nothing.
User currently offlineIslipWN From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7338 times:

When I was waiting in the F terminal at PHL, everysingle person going to State College boarded the plane going to Salisbury, IIRC. It was actaully quite funny! During my 4 hour wait in the F terminal, I watched a lot of people walking to the wrong airplane.

25 Post contains images Planemannyc : Here's the question: if a passenger gets on the wrong flight, say from LGA to DFW instead of DTW, flies to DFW, and is then sent directly to DTW, does
26 Adam : This same thing happened in an episode of "Full House."
27 Broncoguy : This has happened many times in FNT. DL uses one gate here and their early morning flights leave only fifteen minutes apart so there have been many ti
28 Abbs380 : Not exactly on topic, but close. It was 0500, I was standing in line at the ticket counter in GEG behind another guy. The agent at the front of the li
29 Midex461 : This has also happened on more than one occasion in PHX, particularly on YV. A few of their gates have more than one flight out at the same time. Ther
30 HAWK21M : It happens at times out here.When the Gate Agent does not check the Boarding card & luckily the Pax realises that its the wrong flight during the Pre
31 Jonty : I almost did once, coz at NCL there are no jettyway things and I was the first out of the terminal, I was flying on an air scandic flight but it was u
32 EK156 : It used to happen before on EK that passengers who were flying to a certain destination would sleep throughout the flight and because sometimes the fl
33 VEEREF : When I used to fly for NW Airlink in Detroit, a couple of times an unsuspecting DTW-MEM- Lafayette, Louisiana pax would see Lafayette on the departure
34 A3xx900 : Uhm quite nice and amusing stories here, but one question arises... Who pays for the return ticket in such a case? Let's say for that Chinese woman en
35 Post contains images Jacobin777 : I flew on that route just last night... AA actually, there was a big mixup last night at DFW...as the gate C25 was still for Jax, yet the information
36 An225 : When I worked for Arkia Israel Airlines in 1996 this company operated DHC-7's from TLV airport to transport passengers to ETH. These passengers came f
37 Post contains images FLY2LIM : I don't doubt it. But I believe World Airways (the regular carrier out of OAK) was around before Full House. So far, no one seems to remember this ep
38 Post contains images SA006 : lmfao! That is funny. DHC-7ER -SA006
39 Gilligan : It's always the airlines fault. I've seen this happen a few times. It especially happens on pad operations where you have a bus taking passengers out
40 YUL2010 : Yup, it happened to me. I'm a gate agent at AC, and 2 weeks ago, I was boarding a flight to Toronto. YUL-YYZ flights are really important to Air Canad
41 Sfilipowicz : Many years ago I was on a flight from Amsterdam to London, as the plane just started it's decend, the pilot came on the PA system with the weather rep
42 Post contains images SW733 : I remember that one...well, kind of, since I was about 10 when I saw it, but I certainly remember an episode (when I was 10 I watched Full House, go
43 RyanAFAMSP : When I was with United, I remember working a full 757 ORD-IND. It was the last flight of the night, with about an 11:45pm local time arrival, of cours
44 Birdwatching : I wonder why noone has brought up the movie Home Alone 2 yet... Another question, and again, I wonder why nobody has brought it up yet: Could you try
45 Leisurejet : Last week and not even a week after the occurrences on 07/07, I was on a Ryanair flight from London Stansted to Frankfurt Hahn which boarded at the sa
46 Post contains images GMUAirbusA320 : When I used to work the gate, I did send someone to LGB instead of FLL. Not a smart thing to do, but it happened. We did make several announcements re
47 PDXtriple7 : For those of you that accidently put a passenger on the wrong flight, were there any reprecussions? I do understand that most of the burden is/ should
48 Oly720man : A few years a woman wanted a Manx Airlines flight out of Shannon to Manchester, I think, but after asking at SNN where to go was directed to the fligh
49 Wdleiser : One time when I was 9 flying UM on UAL, I had just arrived in ORD from IAH and was heading to Newark. Well the gate assignment on the paper informatio
50 YUL2010 : Not really... My manager talked to me, told me what happened (a couple days later...), and she told me that one mistake is not a problem, but she won
51 AeroWeanie : I came within seconds of having this happen to me. My wife and I flew into Surabaya on a Merpati flight from Bandung and were transfering to another
52 Midex461 : When I worked the gates for YV, I had some people try that. They were booked on a later flight to SLC, but wanted to get on the earlier flight that I
53 Sergeant655 : I was flying on Easyjet to Copenhagen from Stansted once and a passenger going to Munich got on my plane by mistake. The CPH flight went out from gate
54 Post contains images An225 : You poor thing.... what you had to endure in such a young age
55 Bogota : I was leaving on CO from IAH to BOG, boarding went fine, plane had a few spare seats. Push back then crew do announcement, then captain does announcem
56 Uswyjer : August 2003, we were flying US CLT-BDL, at the last minute a middle aged woman runs on to the plane.. down to our area, and then accuses my dad of bei
57 BAxMAN : I recall an incident when a chap from Holland flew AMS - JER via LGW. He must have been delighted with the fare he paid of about €200. Unfortunately
58 Litz : A couple of years ago I was flying from Atlanta to Springfiield, IL ... Now, to do this, you have to change planes in St Louis (on AA), continuing on
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