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Family Alleges Alaska Airlines Deserted Teen Daughter at SFO

TravelPulse logo TravelPulse 8/25/2019 Rich Thomaselli
a large passenger jet sitting on top of a runway: Alaska Airlines SkyWest Embraer E175 © Alaska Airlines Alaska Airlines SkyWest Embraer E175

A North Carolina family is seeking a full refund from Alaska Airlines after it claims the carrier “abandoned” their unaccompanied 13-year old daughter, who was traveling alone from Raleigh, N.C. to Spokane, Wash.

Douglas Davila says he received a frantic call from his teenager during a layover at San Francisco International Airport, saying she was left alone. The teen borrowed a cellphone from a sympathetic fellow passenger.

"It's hard when you hear your son or daughter say, 'I'm by myself in San Francisco,’” Davila said. "My heart was in my throat. I was shaking,"

Davila said he not only paid full price for the ticket, but also the $75 extra fee for the service to have his daughter accompanied through the flight, including a gate escort and guardian contact.

“Once you've handed your child over to our care, he or she will remain under supervision at all times,” the Alaska Airlines website notes.

But Davila said that didn’t happen.

“Our investigation, which includes specific records that tracked the movement of our young guest, indicates employees did meet her when her flight arrived and escorted her to our Service Center at San Francisco International Airport,” Alaska Airlines told a San Francisco television station. “While we had tabs on our young guest the entire time, we understand that she may have felt unsupervised in the crowded area and for that we are deeply sorry. We also think we could have done a better job communicating with her.”

Alaska Airlines issued a refund for the $75 fee but the parents are hoping they can get the full cost of the flight refunded.

Related video: This Airline Soars Above the Competition When it Comes to Customer Satisfaction (Provided by Buzz60)


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