One Rhode Island family is telling the tale of how they were kicked off a JetBlue flight—headed to Boston from Turks and Caicos—because their two-year-old child didn't want to sit her seat and instead wanted to be held by mommy. See, the pilot decided to turn the plane around and return the family, Dr. Colette Vieau, her husband, 2-year-old Natalie and 3-year-old Cecilia, to the airport. And of course there were no flights to Boston that day, so they ended up spending $2,000 for a hotel and a new flight back.
Vieau told Providence's NBC affiliate that Natalie was having a tantrum on the February 18th flight and it took some time for them to get her back in the seat, with seat belt, "We were holding them down with all of our might, seat belt on. And I said, 'We have them seated. Can we go now?' She said the pilot's made a decision to turn the plane around." JetBlue said, "Flight 850 ... had customers that did not comply with crewmember instructions for a prolonged time period. The Captain elected to remove the customers involved for the safety of all customers and crewmembers on board." They should have had penguins on board to amuse the kids!
But Vieau argues, "We did what we were asked to do. We weren't belligerent, drunk, angry or screaming. We were just having a hard time struggling with our children," and said she was just looking for some "consideration, a little bit of humanity in the situation was really all I was looking for. Apparently, that doesn't exist." Her attempt to hold Natalie in her lap was rebuffed because children over the age of two are required to sit in a seat.
Vieau admits, "I don't know that I could blame JetBlue, to be totally fair. I just feel like it's airplane travel today in general. I was certainly upset by the way this flight attendant handled the situation. As a result, yeah, I would probably try to avoid JetBlue in the future."
Sometimes, flight attendants can't deal with toddlers' crap—like the kid who kept saying, "Bye bye, plane" during they safety demo and the autistic child who was screaming and crying. Why haven't airlines capitalized on the no-child or family-only flights?