United Airlines has probably made you sick of reading about airlines by now, but we promise this story is a good one. Recently, Peggy Uhle was boarding a flight from Chicago to Columbus, Ohio. She decided to turn off her cell phone as the plane rolled away from the gate (talk about a good passenger). The plane went through its safety protocol and was ready for take off, but it wasn’t long until the plane decided to turn back around on the tarmac at Midway Airport and taxi back toward the gate. Peggy and other passengers were very confused as to what was going on.
Once the plane was anchored at the gate again, a flight attendant approached Peggy and asked her to get off. Peggy was confused and thought maybe she had boarded the wrong plane, but she agreed and got off the plane. When she got back inside the terminal, a gate agent told her to call her husband. He had been forced to contact Southwest Airlines because Peggy’s phone was turned off. But luckily, with the urgency of the airline the two spouses were able to get in contact with each other at the last moment.
It turned out that Peggy’s 24-year-old son had suffered a serious head injury and was in a coma in Denver, Colorado. But wait, there’s more. As Peggy was trying to take in the shocking news, a staffer explained that the airline had reticketed her on the next direct flight to Denver and arranged all of the other details for her. All for free.
In an interview with BoardingArea.com, Peggy explained more, “They offered a private waiting area, rerouted my luggage, allowed me to board first, and packed a lunch for when I got off the plane in Denver. My luggage was delivered to where I was staying, and I even received a call from Southwest asking how my son was doing.”
Luckily, her son has reportedly recovered from his injuries making for a happy ending to a story.
While we can’t prepare ourselves for the unexpected in life, it’s nice to know companies like Southwest Airlines can help make the situation less of a hassle when we need it the most. That’s taking care of your customer! United, take note!