Business Class prides itself on its improved quality of food, amongst a whole host of welcome upgrades. Unfortunately, one United Airlines passenger reacted so poorly to their meal choice that they forced the plane to be diverted.
Travel can undeniably bring a whole host of unwanted and unforeseen difficulties with it — from a man urinating all over business class to a disgusting sock-stuffed seat, from a woman being publicly weighed in the airport to a hostess being beaten with an in-flight phone — we really thought we’d seen it all here at DMARGE. That was until earlier this week, when a business class passenger had such a bombastic response to the meal choice offered by their chosen airline that they lost their temper, forcing the plane to be diverted.
The flight in question — heading from Houston in the USA to Amsterdam — took an unexpected detour to Chicago after the business class passenger’s behaviour became increasingly aggressive, as reported by The Independent. Why were they so upset? Well, like any fully-grown, reasonable adult, they wouldn’t allow themselves to fall into such a dramatic response without a wholly valid reason… their preferred meal choice was no longer available. For anyone unsure if we’re being sarcastic here, we absolutely are.
WATCH: In fairness, this passenger isn’t the only person with business class grievances.
The flight — which departed yesterday at 4:20 PM local time — had only been airborne for two hours when it began circling O’Hare International Airport in Chicago in an effort to burn off fuel and reduce the aircraft’s weight, according to reports from The Guardian. Popular flight-tracking website Flightradar24 quickly confirmed the situation in a Tweet, saying that the flight was “jettisoning fuel prior to diversion” due to a problematic passenger.
Eagle-eyed aviation acolyte @XJonNYC piled in behind FlightRadar, sharing internal United communications on the platform, confirming yet again that there was a “disruptive [passenger] on board.” Additionally, he added that the passenger was on record as being heavily intoxicated and that the lack of their desired meal seemed to be the tipping point of their anger, which had swiftly tipped over into “Level 1” threatening status.
In a statement shared with The Guardian, United acknowledged the disturbance, stating that Flight 20 from George Bush Intercontinental Airport to Amsterdam had indeed been diverted to O’Hare International Airport for the safety of everyone on board. The disruptive passenger was met by law enforcement upon arrival and promptly escorted off the plane. Following the incident, the aircraft continued its journey to Amsterdam unhindered but arrived over three hours behind schedule.
While it’s hard to deny that aeroplane grub sometimes falls far below the mark we might expect, especially when ticket costs are endlessly ticking up, we highly doubt that this particular business class passenger had any more difficult a time with their meal choice than either Japan Airlines’ or Air Canada’s recent vegan passengers, who sometimes find themselves enjoying nothing more than a so-called “Dingo’s breakfast” while travelling (for the uninitiated, a Dingo’s breakfast is a paltry thing: a sip of water and a look around…).
All in all, this incident stinks of entitlement and the free-flowing booze that comprises one of business class’ biggest perks. Let this be a lesson to anyone set to partake in the luxuries of ‘turning-left’: economy-dwelling mortals find your space-age seat grating enough as it is. Avoid adding a three-hour delay to their journey or you might just find yourself with far more to worry about than a grumbling tummy.