Topic Author
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2001 11:35 am

LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Thu Apr 29, 2004 4:05 am

My husband and I planned a 9–day trip to Maui, a first time to Hawaii for both of us to spend out 6 year anniversary. We decided to take United due to my Husband’s Premier Executive status and the fact that they have a direct flight from LAX to Kahului.

Our flight left on April 18th (Sunday) at 8:50am. We live in Orange County so our airport of choice is John Wayne, but LAX was the only option for United. So, we very begrudgingly headed to the airport at 6:00am and arrived shortly before 7:00am. Well, what a nightmare we encountered once there. Ridiculously long security lines, by the time we had checked in and had our check-in baggage screened, it was 8:05am and we had to get in the two mile long security line. Well, at this point I started to panic. Then, we were shipped to 5 different lines before someone finally called for the 8:45am flights. So, we got shipped to another security line upstairs. Once through security, we were stopped by the Security Screeners because we had a travel bar with about 4 bottles of booze (1 bottle Vodka, Rum, Scotch and a bottle of wine). So, it’s now 8:46am and two screeners decide to pull out a huge binder to check how much “proof” we could bring on the plane. Finally, my husband just tells them to take one of the friggin’ bottles because our plane was leaving. They give us one final blank stare, close the travel bar and tell us to go. So, as I’m running to gate 74, my poor hubby has been subjected to lugging all of our hand baggage just so I can make my sprint to the gate. As I arrive, I notice the plane is still there but of course; there is not a soul to be found in the gate area, except for one gate agent who is on the phone telling someone that there are “two more coming” as I’m running towards her. I yell for my husband to hurry his ass up, and as we make our way through the jet way, the door of the plane is closed and there is another couple waiting. The couple tells us “they’re deciding if they are going to let us on”. So, about 30 seconds later the jet way driver moves the jet way closer to the door, the door opens up and they let us on. We board the plane huffing and puffing from our airport sprint, make our way to our seats and notice the plane is only 40% full because everyone else is probably still in line for security!

I can’t help but wonder, should I continue to be disgusted with the setup at LAX or is it our own fault for not showing up 3 hours early? It seems a bit much for a domestic flight if you ask me.

Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated as we have vowed to avoid LAX if at all possible for our future travels. We feel we would have been better off flying from OC to SFO, and then taking the flight to Hawaii from there.
Posts: 1860
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2004 1:36 am

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Thu Apr 29, 2004 5:06 am

Well it sounds like an absolute NIGHTMARE!

However, had you shown up say an hour earlier, it is possible you could have been stuck still in the original line, and then wait until they call the 845am flights, and then go through the same ordeal yet again. So showing up earlier wouldn't necessarily improve your situation sadly.

Sheer incompetence and stupidity drives me insane, and the blank stares you get from TSA or anyone else anywhere would really annoy me.

Sorry to hear about this, but hopefully you have a WONDERFUL time in Maui!
mas a330
Posts: 1476
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2000 11:12 pm

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Thu Apr 29, 2004 2:49 pm

Nightmare indeed. The situation was the same when i was there as well, the line even reaching outside the terminal!

Fortunately we were travelling in J, so we got to use the priority lane and skip the long line - something you would really appreciate.

Posts: 6442
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2000 4:07 pm

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:54 pm

Whoa!! This is very lucky one for you and did make it on their flight to Hawaii trip and you did not tell me which airlines that you were flew on. Is tha for Aloha Airlines or American Airlines?

Adam T.
Posts: 796
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 7:01 am

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Fri Apr 30, 2004 12:13 am

I think she flew UNITED Scotty,

Also, what aircraft did you fly from LAX to Maui?

That does sound awful, i've heard awful things about lines at LAX, but never anything like that.

Posts: 3465
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2000 4:08 am

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Fri Apr 30, 2004 6:29 am

Sorry about the poor experience. I can't begin to imagine what it must have been like. (Well, I can begin to imagine, but not fully imagine!)

A few thoughts that might help in the future:

1) You could have started the trip in SNA and taken the 10 minute flight to LAX. I doubt the ticket would have cost much more, and you would avoid the LAX security all-together.

2) There is an elite line at LAX. Next time, ask for it, and it will shave 45 mintues when the lines are long.

3) You are really lucky they opened the door. Your nightmare would have been so much worse had they left you behind!

4) Doesn't Aloha have SNA-OGG nonstop flights? You can still get UA miles (though not status miles) on those flights.
18 year vet! 2000-2017
Posts: 6442
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2000 4:07 pm

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Fri Apr 30, 2004 7:56 am

Yes, it is number 4 with their nonstop from SNA-OGG flight, too. Those are very long flight to Hawaii trip.
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

RE: LAX Nightmare – Almost Missed My Flight!

Sat May 01, 2004 7:54 am

Interesting... A few weeks ago when I flew out of LAX on an 09:00 departure to ORD, SW, AA, DL and several other carriers had lines out of the doors of their terminals at that time in the morning but UA was calm and ordered and I was through the whole checkin/security process in less than 15 minutes and had loads of time to spare... Was I relieved I was flying UA that day!

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