You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Reminder: You don’t have to be on the ‘No Fly List’ to receive an airline ban

The Points Guy logo The Points Guy 1/11/2021 Zach Honig
a view of a beach next to a body of water © Provided by The Points Guy
MSN has partnered with The Points Guy for our coverage of credit card products. MSN and The Points Guy may receive a commission from card issuers.

Following last week’s attack on the U.S. Capitol, videos have been circulating of travelers acting out — some possibly related to individuals coming from or going to Washington while others may be entirely unrelated.

Among the videos gaining steam, one clip of a man sobbing after being removed from a Delta flight has become especially popular on Twitter. As of this writing, it has nearly 19 million views on that platform alone — perhaps due to the poster suggesting this traveler ended up on the “No Fly List.”

Officially, the No Fly List is managed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) — specifically, a division called the Terrorist Screening Center. While some of the individuals who participated in last week’s riots could eventually find their names on that list, that most likely isn’t what’s happening here.

Notably, travelers on the No Fly List wouldn’t be issued a boarding pass, and the man in the video above appears to be walking through the departures area of Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) — he’s already passed through the TSA checkpoint, most likely using a valid boarding pass.

Instead, what seems more likely is that another transgression was at the heart of the disturbance.

While the dialogue’s a bit hard to follow, the man can be heard saying “they kicked me off the plane.” Next, a person who appears to be a passenger wearing red jacket approaches, explaining “I had been kicked off Delta earlier.”

While Delta was unable to comment on the travelers in this video, the airline clarified that if a passenger is removed from a flight, the decision is made based solely on how they behave at the airport or onboard. As the airline explained:

Nothing is more important than the safety and security of our people and customers. Decisions made to remove unruly customers on flights are based solely on behavior that affects the safety and security of our operation including noncompliance with instruction from flight crews.

Though it’s unclear what happened with the passenger in the video, there are a number of things that could cause problems for a passenger.

Video: Delta, JetBlue latest major airlines to ban emotional support animals (FOX News)

Fighting with another passenger is certainly cause for a ban, as is refusing to follow crew member instructions — a big no-no in the industry.

And if you assault another passenger or a crew member, you could also face huge fines and serious jail time, as the FAA reminded during the weekend:

As for airline bans, countless travelers have had their privileges revoked during the pandemic, including thousands who have been banned for refusing to wear a face covering in the airport or while onboard a flight.

Here’s how the numbers break down to date:

  • Alaska: 302
  • Allegiant: 10 (As of Nov. 19, 2020)
  • Delta: 700+
  • Frontier: 500+
  • Hawaiian: 56
  • JetBlue: 114
  • Spirit: 167 (As of Sept. 8, 2020)
  • United: 615

And there are likely even more — American and Southwest are unable to confirm the number of customers they’ve banned, and Sun Country did not immediately respond to TPG’s request.

Long story short: It doesn’t take landing on an official No Fly List to find yourself left behind at the airport. It’s best to do everything in your power to be a model citizen in the sky if you don’t want to risk becoming grounded.

This includes being mindful of airline procedures around face coverings and masks, avoiding any negative interactions with other passengers, and, most of all, be sure to follow all crew member instructions, regardless of how you feel about the policies that flight attendants, pilots and other airline employees are compelled to enforce.

Featured photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy.

SPONSORED: With states reopening, enjoying a meal from a restaurant no longer just means curbside pickup.

And when you do spend on dining, you should use a credit card that will maximize your rewards and potentially even score special discounts. Thanks to temporary card bonuses and changes due to coronavirus, you may even be able to score a meal at your favorite restaurant for free. 

These are the best credit cards for dining out, taking out, and ordering in to maximize every meal purchase.


Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.


More From The Points Guy

The Points Guy
The Points Guy
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon