OMG. Gotta vent. After 9 months in Chile, my wife and I finally were headed back to the US to visit our kids for a couple weeks. When we booked our flights we were lucky enough to get adjoining seats for the entire trip. Last night when we boarded the plane in STG for DFW, AA had changed our boarding passes and we no longer had adjoining seats. My wife talked with the attendants hoping to arrange for us to sit together. It took a few minutes and several people were gracious enough to accomodate us.
The entire time this was happening, I stayed out of the way in the galley waiting until things were sorted out. When things were sorted, I walked back to my new seat next to my wife and had no sooner sat down when an agent approached and informed me that the attendants smelled alcohol on me and I was deboarded.
In the 2 hours before boarding the flight, I had 2 beers, 2 shots of tequila and a cheeseburger. I admit I must "medicate" a little before flying. I was not disruptive. I was not interrogated as to my ability to "control" myself. I said nary a word to anyone on the flight. I am so pissed right now I'm seeing red.
In a cheer to Chile, after I was taken off the plane, every single person I dealt with totally questioned the decision to have me taken off the flight. In fact, in an unprecedented move, the Chilean manager that debriefed me on the incident told me she was so embarrased by the US flight attendants decision that she gave me vouchers for a hotel and 3 meals while I wait for my flight tonight. At least AA put me on the next night's flight and it didn't cost me anything.
But, what the hell?! I should not have been kicked of the flight. I truly believe it was retaliation for my wife forcing the issue to sit together. And if everyone that smelled of alcohol were deboarded, I think most flights would be half empty. Thanks for reading my rant. I feel better already.