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Qantas Forced To Refund Passengers Who Claimed They Were “Sitting In Urine” During 10-Hour Flight

Qantas Forced To Refund Passengers Who Claimed They Were 'Sitting In Urine' During 10-Hour Flight

Initially, the airline offered the couple 10,000 Qantas points for their trouble. (Representative pic)

A couple in New Zealand successfully battled Qantas Airways for a refund of their flights after claiming their plane seats were wet with a previous passenger’s urine. According to the New York Post, the incident took place on December 30 as the couple flew from Bangkok, Thailand to Sydney, Australia. Issues began when the pair took their seats and placed his Qantas pillow and other belongings on the floor under the seat in front of him. When he picked the pillow up again, it was “wet and stained on one side”. Their duty-free bag with $70 worth of items, a headphone case and a portable neck pillow were also damp. 

Initially, the couple assumed that it was water, so they stored the duty-free bag in the overhead bin, brushed off the head pillow to use for the flight and called a flight attendant over to replace the Qantas pillow. “We called an attendant who was confused and took the pillow away,” they said, as per the Post

However, the situation took a more disturbing turn when one traveller reached under the seat in front and found a pair of children’s underwear. This discovery led the couple to believe it had not been water on the floor but urine. “Now we know that we have been sitting in urine for a 10-hour trip,” the couple said. “And the travel neck pillow, well, I had been using that for the last couple of hours, under the assumption it was just a bit wet from water,” they added. 

The passengers immediately discarded the allegedly tainted travel pillow as well as the duty-free bag and its contents upon landing. They then asked to speak with an airline supervisor, who reportedly offered them 10,000 Qantas points for their trouble.

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But the couple deemed the Qantas points inadequate and useless. And when they pleaded for the airline to issue a full refund, their request was initially denied because their “ticket was fully utilized”. They found this response “simply unacceptable” and demanded $3,827, the cost of the Bangkok-Sydney flight, as per the New Zealand Herald.

After going back and forth several more times, Qantas finally issued the travellers a full reimbursement, as well as an apology for the disgusting ordeal. “We have apologised to the customer and will be providing a refund as a gesture of goodwill,” said a Qantas spokesperson, as per the outlet. The airline also said they were “looking into what has occurred and have raised the issue with our cleaning supplier in Bangkok, which cleaned the aircraft prior to departure”. 

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