In a stroke of brilliant brainstorming to increase revenue, the Port Authority says it wants money from those annoying travelers who delay flights and force planes back to the gate. And one big-shot loudmouth is singled out: Alec Baldwin.
While Baldwin's plane meltdown occurred at LAX, when he refused to put away his phone during an intense game of "Words with Friends," Port Authority head Patrick Foye referred to him specifically, "These delays cost thousands of dollars — maybe tens of thousands — each. One Alec Baldwin incident can delay a whole airport for a day with cascading delays."
A trip back to the gate can take 30-60 minutes, given that the person and any check-in luggage needs to be removed. And NYC is home to some of the worst delays in the country! The Post reports, "The PA is going to 'aggressively' remind passengers to keep cool and listen to instructions from airline crews — even if they think they’re stupid, Foye said. The next step, which will go into effect in a few months, will be legal efforts to force passengers to reimburse the costs of delays. Last year, the cost averaged $5,867 an hour for US carriers." If people refuse to pay, then it's time for court!
The Association for Airline Passenger Rights's Brandon Macsata says limiting passenger-related delays is a nice idea but "The reason you see people so frustrated today is because air travel has become so impossible and the airlines and [Transportation Security Administration] make it such a hassle. They’re singling out the passengers for a problem that is systemwide."
Here's the federal Department of Transportation's website explaining what your passenger rights are—P.S., overbooking is not illegal!