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United pays passenger $10,000 to get off plane

WISN Milwaukee logo WISN Milwaukee 3/23/2018
image/jpeg image/jpeg Can you imagine being paid thousands of dollars just to get off a flight? That's exactly what happened for one United Airlines passenger. 

Allison Preiss' airport ordeal started out with a tweet from the gate at Dulles International Airport at around 8 a.m. on March 21:

"United is offering $1K in travel credit for an oversold flight. If nobody bites, they will kick off the lowest fare passenger by pulling them out of the boarding line. For a flight that THEY oversold. Unreal."

Sounds like some pretty bad news, but it gets better. It gets $9,000 better.

GALLERY: United Airlines has a long history of infuriating customers — here are its worst customer service incidents (Provided by Business Insider)

United Airlines has dealt with a large number of highly-publicized customer service incidents over the past few years.The airline has hurt customers, threatened them, and mishandled their pets.While it appeared the United had recovered from the April 2017 incident when it dragged a passenger off an overbooked flight, two pet-related incidents this week started a new round of controversy.United Airlines can't seem to stop shooting itself in the foot. After it  seemed like the airline had recovered from the backlash to the infamous April 2017 incident when it dragged a customer off an overbooked flight, the airline proceeded to kill a passenger's dog and  send another pet dog to the wrong destination this week. The former caused some customers to  call for a boycott of the airline. Over the past few years, the airline has had a number of customer service problems that have kept it in the news for the wrong reasons. Whether it's hurting customers, threatening them, or mishandling their pets, United can't seem to avoid controversy. Airline expert George Hobica said the company's problems start at the top."It's a top-down culture, meaning, the CEO and other leaders set the atmosphere for the rest of the employees," he told Business Insider. "The leadership has been pretty abysmal."Both Hobica and Charles Leocha, president of the airline passenger advocacy group Travelers United, think the company's leadership has created a culture where employees are treated poorly, which leads to bad customer service."If they treat their airline employees well, then the airline employees will treat the customers better," Leocha told Business Insider. "And United, historically, has had a problem in terms of employee management issues. And I think that it shows." Here are 12 of the airline's worst customer service moments. United Airlines has a long history of infuriating customers — here are its worst customer service incidents

Preiss continued the story through subsequent tweets that led to a juicy $10,000 flight voucher from United:

"I AM THE LOWEST FARE PASSENGER."

"They are kicking me off this flight."

"They can't board me on this plane because there is a broken seat."

"UNITED IS THE WORST."

"United tried to get me to sign a document that says I volunteered my seat on this plane when I was involuntarily denied boarding. Sketchy."

"On the upside, I wasn't physically dragged off the plane and my dog wasn't killed on board, so I've got that going for me...which is nice."

"They really do not want to give me cash. They just offered me $10,000 in travel credit. TEN THOUSAND."

Then she posted evidence of the big payout:

“@united offering $1K in travel credit for an oversold flight. If nobody bites, they will kick off the lowest fare passenger by pulling them out of the boarding line. For a flight that THEY oversold. Unreal.”

"I also got two $10 meal vouchers. I am going to go INSANE at Pizza Hut."

SFGate reached out to Preiss, who is a communications director in Washington, D.C., for confirmation of the tweets and claims but have not yet heard back.

RELATED: United Faces Crisis Amid Customer Service Scandals (Provided by Wochit Business)

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