Helen D. writes: Sent to the FAA and DOT: Flight 710 was two hours late. I was traveling with my husband and two young children. Before boarding, an announcement was made that they had overbooked by 7 seats and would give two round trips plus $100.00 to anyone who would give up their seats. They would get the people who did so out on 2/23 7AM via FLL-Chicago-LGA, about a 7 hour proposition if all went well, which it apparently never does with Spirit. And PS -- they said they couldn't put the people up for the night because there were no available hotels in the area. Now you couldn't pay me enough money to replay the hell we went through with Spirit Airlines from Aruba to FLL which I wont even mention because it is petty compared to the second leg of my flight. No one took their offer and the plane boarded. After all of the seats were taken, they marched a family of four to the rear of the cabin and proceeded to tell us that they needed 4 seats, past offer standing. They said they would hold us on the ground as long as it would take to have 4 people give up their seats. And if that did not happen, they would toss 4 seated passengers off of the flight. They had manifestos they were reviewing to see who had actually checked in last. I was seated in Row 28 D and beside me was a young mom and her little girl. The girl was tearing up for fear that they would be thrown out into the night with no place to stay, and the young mom was stressing also. There were many other passengers under duress because of their threats. Hell, I am a 53 year old mom of 4, a seasoned traveler, and I had never seen anything like this. People were trying to keep their cool but the whole thing was absolutely the fault of Spirit Airlines and their booking staff, therefore they should not pass pain and suffering onto their passengers. We were held on the ground for more than an hour by the time they made an announcement that they made a deal with the family of 4, which they should have done to begin with. So my question to the FAA is: is it OK for SPIRIT Airlines to hold a full plane of people hostage on the ground and is it OK for Spirit airlines to "blackmail" their passengers? Lastly, is it OK for an airline to threaten passengers and stir up a potential "powder keg" due to the undue stress put upon passengers? I am of the opinion that there should be criminal charges filed against "Spirit" Airlines. They informed us when we asked for water that they did not have to give people water until they were grounded for 6 hours. Absolutely outrageous.
I respectfully request you to investigate this airline and interview some of their passengers. I am thinking you have a barrel full of complaints on this airline. Please go out and stop their inappropriate tactics and shenanigans.