A plane in China was delayed for three hours and eventually cancelled after a couple demanded that their child be upgraded to first class for free. According to the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the incident took place on December 30 aboard a flight from Chengdu to Beijing. Around 300 passengers were left furious as they were forced to rebook their flight after the angry passenger demanded three first-class seats even though he had only paid for two.
The ruckus kicked off after an unsupervised boy began to sob uncontrollably as he sat in economy, while his parents enjoyed in first class, the outlet reported. This is when the boy’s unnamed father confronted the staff, demanding that his son be moved to first at no extra cost. His rationale was that he had already paid for two first-class tickets so deserved to get the third one free.
In a video going viral on Chinese social media app Weibo, the man is seen surrounded by a group of people including flight attendants, security guards and passengers, as he rages against them. “Stop swearing at me,” the father shouts in the clip, adding, “You have no right to do that”.
When a security guard steps in an attempt to de-escalate the situation and calm down the man, the man rages, “What gives you the right to order me about?” In response, a passenger says, “You’ve wasted too much of our time and we won’t tolerate it any longer”.
Police finally arrived and escorted the angry passenger off the plane three hours after it all kicked off, the New York Post reported. However, for his fellow passengers, the flight was cancelled and they were all forced to rebook.
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The airline claimed that the flight was cancelled due to weather conditions, although many suspected that the man’s tantrum was the actual cause. “The funniest part is, they don’t admit to human-induced delays, as the cancellation is claimed to be due to weather reasons,” said one passenger, as per the outlet.
On social media, people were shocked at the man’s out-of-control behaviour. “The man is so selfish,” wrote one user. “Keeping the quarrel going for hours? The problem-solving skills of the crew are poor,” commented another.
Some users suggested other solutions that didn’t involve the airline gifting the man an extra first-class seat. “He can switch seats. Let him sit in economy class, and have the mum take care of the child in the first-class cabin,” advised one user.