As any parents who have flown with little babies probably knows, many airlines will not require a ticket for children under two years of age, so long as the child is seated on an adult’s lap. But U.S. Airways had to give the boot to a family of six after the parents figured they could simply seat one of their under-2 children with their ticketed 3-year-old.
The family — two parents, a 3-year-old, a pair of 20-month-old twins and an 8-month-old — were set to fly from Charlotte, NC, to Chicago on U.S. Airways and managed to get all the way through the ticket-buying, security screening and pre-boarding processes before anyone realized there might be a slight problem with trying to squeeze six people, however small, into three seats.
“We were going to have one of the twins sit with my 3-year-old and my husband and I each hold one of the two remaining children,” the mom told Chicago’s ABC 7. But this didn’t exactly go over well with the cabin crew. “[The flight attendant] came back over and said, ‘I’m sorry, due to FAA regulations we only have four oxygen masks in each row. Someone is going to have to move seats.'”
But all this shuffling around became a nuisance, and after holding up the plane for “like 40 minutes or 50 minutes,” according to the dad, the family was asked to leave the plane.
A rep for the airline tells ABC 7, “What we had here was a case that the math didn’t add up. You had two adults who wanted to travel with three lap children. The safety regulations are such that you have to have one child per one adult.”
Rather than try to re-book and pay for the extra seat (which would also have required a travel seat for the baby), the family opted to just stay put.
Thanks to Harper for the tip!