EasyJet – Check-in Staff or Night Club Bouncers?
On a recent flight from Bristol to Pisa with EasyJet I found myself on the receiving end of the hard-nosed approach bucket shop airlines are employing these days to raise funds. I have made this journey regularly over the last five years, probably three or four times a year, and for the last three years have used the same small suitcase.
Well the latest flight proved to be my undoing as the burly protector of airline profits, employed by EasyJet to prevent over laden travellers boarding their flights noticed the 1cm overlap in one of my luggage’s dimensions. Immediately pouncing he informed me of the fact and demanded an £40 excess fee.
Now while I can understand the need for these rules and the penalty of breaching them, what I cannot condone is the overly arrogant and aggressive stance the EasyJet Bouncer took next. Despite explaining that I’d used the case for the last three years and that the other two dimensions were well under the regulatory size; making the overall capacity and possible weight less he still demanded in no uncertain terms his tribute. When I told him I had no money as I was meeting my husband in Italy and did not possess a credit card he informed me I’d have to miss the flight.
Deciding that there was obviously not going to be any reasoning with the discourteous and intimidatory attitude of the EasyJet money collector I asked to speak to his supervisor. She took a more measured approach and while, naturally supporting her colleague did attempt to defuse the situation by enquiring as to whether there were any items I could remove from my suitcase to reduce it by the required 1cm. This I managed by wearing my pajama top and tying a fleece around my waste and squashing a few lumps of cheese and chocolate into my pockets. Problem solved.
It was not so much the infringement of the regulations that bothered and frustrated me but the downright belligerent and hostile approach taken by EasyJets Goon. Now I doubt whether even his substantial frame would have taken the same “in your face” approach with a group of men but a lone female traveller was obviously easy game to his way of thinking. What could have been resolved with tact and diplomacy was eventually sorted out with common sense of his superior, however I would advise all women who find themselves in a similar situation to stand their ground when faced with such disgusting bully boy tactics.
I was only one of three females, who were similarly abused on this flight, with another poor woman paying up the aggressively demanded fee. No one should have to put up with such hostility and most definitely not if you are a lone female traveller. EasyJets response of well your case was too big seems to affirm their belief in training staff to extort money from passengers by whatever means necessary. I for one will be making alternative arrangements next time I return to the UK.
Author - Suzanne Winfield