Elite members behaving badly – Concierge Key – part 2

I wrote about a year ago, of an over-entitled American Airlines elite member who demanded that bags be rearranged in the overhead bins to create space for his bags.

Well on Friday, flying the 7am American Airlines flight to JFK from Los Angeles, I met another one.

It was clear that the flight was oversold in Coach and so after boarding agents came on board and upgraded passengers to create space. My seat mate got an upgrade to First, very nice, but clearly fine for AA to do for one of its best customers. He gets to sit in 1A.

Fast Forward to arrival at JFK, Mr. 1A comes back to just by the Business Class cabin and asks if I can fetch his bag from the overhead bin above my seat. ‘Pardon?’ I asked.

‘Can you just go back there and get my bag, it’s above your seat?’

I think I was so shocked that I actually did it – no flight attendant jumped forward to provide this service. I did say that I thought it was a little cheeky to ask a fellow passenger to do this, regardless of how important he was.

Would you have got his bag?


  1. If he asked nicely and said please then I don’t see a problem, if not polite I would have declined. It’s the lesser of the two evils, either that or you get someone pushing through the crowd to get their bag.

  2. My philosophy is simple if it’s within my reach I am happy to help out a fellow passenger. If I need to “go back to get it” that guy has two feet and should be forced to wait until most of the passengers deplane. I would have politely told him to piss off. Asking the flight crew is one thing but status doesn’t work on other passengers, what an idiot!

  3. That’s ridiculous. It is bad enough that he apparentmy feels so entitled to special treatment from AA employees, but why on earth should he be important to you, another passenger? He sounds like a loser.

    Experiences like that are a reminder of what FAs and other airline employees unfortunately sometimes have to deal with. The AA employees who give us good service deserve our respect and appreciation.

  4. @Mike – that is an excellent point you make. For a moment, I had an experience that most staff experience every day. I will be nicer to them in future.

  5. First world drama, get over yourselves…. get a grip an your hand off it…. meanwhile at IST….

  6. If the person asked nicely, I’d gladly get it.

    Frankly, if someone has a bag a few rows behind them and I’m near it, I’ll typically offer to get it and pass it forward.

  7. I don’t even know why he would have had to ask, it’s just a common courtesy and I do it without someone having to ask on a majority of flights. I think the passenger was very polite. Had he attempted to retrieve his bag and bonked you on the head, I suspect you’d be blightily more upset.

  8. @Brian – I had to fight my way back through the sea of passengers and then lift it above my head to avoid banging them with it. It wasn’t next to me at all – 10-15 yards behind.

  9. The usual practice is to take one’s overhead bags with when getting an in-plane opup. While it may not have been convenient at the exact moment of moving, on a 6-hour flight surely there’d be plenty of time to have done the move inflight rather than waiting until disembarking. (It’s quite unlikely the overhead in 1A would have been full.) So most rude and I certainly would not have done it, just moved aside to let the toff get the bag(s) himself.

  10. Cheeky? Sure. Tacky? Definitely. But “behaving badly”? I’m not sure this reaches that level. If he had demanded you go get it, or gotten snotty when you told him no (as you should have) then we can talk about behaving badly. But in this case he just asked a question, regardless of how off-putting a question it may have been.

    And I’m not sure what point the “snide remark after the fact” serves other than to make you feel a little better…which I suspect is also the point of this post. If he had asked, you had said “No”, and each of you had gone on with your day, would this still be post-worthy? Probably not, but since you were essentially complicit in the “bad behavior” and are perhaps feeling a little silly, you thought you’d exact a little anonymous internet revenge to soothe your ego.

  11. I guess I’m an uber bish. No, I would not have grabbed his bag and I don’t switch seats unless young child are involved.

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