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recommendations (or not!) for long haul flights

recommendations (or not!) for long haul flights

Apr 29th, 2014, 01:20 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 2
recommendations (or not!) for long haul flights

This is my first post but I was so angry I thought I should share what happened to us with you so that hopefully you don't encounter such problems/treatment.

Having just flown to Orlando here are a couple of airlines to avoid if you are travelling with a baby and/or small children. This is because they do not appear to care about you at all even when it was booked a year in advance so here goes:

Air Canada had no bassinet although one was requested and also travelling with a 5 and a 3 year old we were allocated seats in 3 separate rows meaning that my 5 year old was seated on his own for this overnight flight; flew out with United Airlines and again no bassinet available although we believed it was reserved.

Here is a part of the email received from them about this: "United Airlines offers bassinets on select international and transcontinental flights for infants weighing 22 pounds (10 kg) or less. A request for bassinet can be made when reservation is made, but please understand bassinet requests cannot be confirmed. Please visit united.com for more details."

So even if you believe you're booked one it is not confirmed thus making it difficult for you to know what will happen on the flight. I really think that if you reserve one then it should be confirmed, or you are told that sadly there are only 2 available on each flight and these are already booked. I least then you know where you stand.
MacCallum is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 03:27 AM
Join Date: Jul 2013
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I empathize with your inconvenience and hope you had a good time in Orlando nonetheless. Certainly you are not the first one to discover that you were unable to sit with your child but I wonder why this occurred. Was it because you wanted to avoid an extra fee for seat selection, or because you did not check in on line the earliest opportunity ? As far as bassinets are concerned, they can only be placed in certain rows which probably now are considered Premium Economy so if some else antes up the extra $$ you are out of luck. And I don't think they would work well for a 3 year old anyway.

I'm sure this trip was a big undertaking for you, but I wonder how long the flights described as 'long haul' actually were? Having often done 30+ hour trip to Australia, as has my daughter with two little kids, anything within Canada /US seems pretty short to me.

For economy travellers nowadays, airlines don't provide much of anything except a cramped seat and (maybe) delivery of your luggage to your destination. Courteous service is a bonus. I liken it to the voyage in steerage my ancestors endured immigrating to North America. But at least I can get where I'm going in hours, not weeks!
eliztravels2 is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 06:17 AM
Join Date: Nov 2005
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There is a maximum weight and age for a bassinet; doubt a 3 year old would be able to get into one. Over 2 years old requires a seat to be purchased, so would assume a bassinet is not necessary? Bassinets are usually only available at bulkhead positions, as the email states, only some routes have the bassinets. Making a request for a bassinet is not the same as having one confirmed.

It's a pity the airline didn't try to seat the family together or at least seat 1 adult plus 1 child together. Were you not able to reserve seats together, since it is stated that you booked a year in advance?
Odin is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 08:57 AM
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This is the second time you've posted the same thing. Whether or not you got good service (and w/ only one side of the story I'm not sure) three year olds do not belong in bassinets.

Various airlines have their own requirements but some limit bassinets/carry cots to 6 or 9 months old, some as old as two years old. But almost all say bassinets are allocated first come first served.

Air Canada: >>bassinets are assigned on a first come, first served basis, subject to availability at time of flight departure;<<

Air France >>Subject to availability<<

etc etc etc.

But in any case they are not intended for a 3yo.
janisj is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 10:46 AM
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I don't follow the complaint. Did you also have an infant along with your other two children? Or you thought your 3 year old would be using it?
suze is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 12:18 PM
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I've only ever seen bassinets installed at the bulkhead seats, and only on overseas flights. They are only for babies, up to 10 kg. So I am surprised to hear that they offer them at all on that flight.
Kathie is offline  
Apr 29th, 2014, 12:40 PM
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Maybe that flight didn't ever have bassinets available in the first place?
suze is offline  
Apr 30th, 2014, 04:11 AM
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Maybe the bassinet was needed to hold luggage that wouldn't fit in the overhead bin.
eliztravels2 is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 02:13 AM
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Bassinets are very difficult to secure in my experience. We flew with my daughter to Australia when she was an infant. We had multiple legs of flight. We asked at every stage if we were going to get the bassinet we requested when buying the tickets. We kept getting put off to the next stop.

In the end, the problem is that the bulkhead seats that take the bassinets are also the seats that are set aside for elite travelers. At the time we had status with a different airline, so we had no pull. And, no one told us that as soon as the kid could sit up they couldn't be in one. Our daughter met the size requirements, but was apparently too agile. At least that was the claim when we were getting on the long flight from Vancouver.

This was 7 years ago, and with AirCanada, so things could have changed or be different with a different airline.
eastave is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 01:28 AM
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A 3 year old wouldn't fit in to the bassinet.
MissGreen is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 10:34 AM
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Bassinets are for babies and in the US they must be under 25 pounds. There is a reason that children 2 years of age and older should be in an actual seat-safety!
I have been a flight attendant for many decades and there is no way a 3 year old could fit in one of my airline's bassinets-the length besides the child's weight would break it off the wall. My airline also does not have bassinets on domestic flights either-only international.
Long haul flights are not a Canada-Orlando flight either. Think Europe,Australia,Middle East,etc.
dutyfree is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 11:14 AM
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dutyfree, I didn't realize they were no longer on domestic flights ... no wonder I have noticed that the bulkhead fasteners are no longer there!
NoFlyZone is offline  
May 23rd, 2014, 08:15 AM
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>>Air Canada had no bassinet although one was requested and also travelling ...

The 5 year old sat alone. Apparently, the 3 year old did not sit alone or that would have been mentioned. To be in three different areas there had to be a second adult. One adult with the 3 y.o., one adult with the infant/baby, and the 5 y.o. alone. Or one adult alone, the 5 y.o. alone, and the other 3 together.
mrwunrfl is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 03:29 PM
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It sounds like 3 kiddies, one being an infant.

To me, when it comes to safety, I pay to play. Our son's first trip was at 3 months (to Canada) and we bought him a seat, and he slept quite nicely in his airplane okayed carrier.

Likewise, we bought him a seat for his next flights to and from Europe at 13 months, storing his carrier at the airport (which was allowed back then).

The absolutely worst service we've had with the kid was a flight on Air Alaska from Toronto back to LAX when he was 2. Despite the fact we'd, as usual, purchased a seat for our son and we had the ticket and seat, they refused to provide him with any food or any drink. It was pretty outrageous.

Mind you, they took off in the middle of the thunder shower (NEVER again!!), and we were all strapped into our seats for the first hellish hour as the plane took thousand foot dives (I kid you not!). But after that was over, and the turbulence melted away, you'd think they'd get their act together.

Nope. Trying to get drink and food service out, they blocked the aisles and ignored my son completely. Brought me and my husband drink; and after two requests, they grudgingly brought my son some milk . . . I guess thinking he wasn't a paying guest and we were trying to cheat them or something. But no dinner for the little boy. Zero. Asked twice. So we shared our food with him.
Surfergirl is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 05:31 PM
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The absolutely worst service we've had with the kid was a flight on Air Alaska from Toronto back to LAX when he was 2.

I expect that was Air Canada.
Gardyloo is online now  
May 29th, 2014, 08:41 PM
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Nope, Alaska. I swear.
Surfergirl is offline  
Jun 30th, 2014, 04:38 PM
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"The absolutely worst service we've had with the kid was a flight on Air Alaska from Toronto back to LAX when he was 2"..."I expect that was Air Canada"..."Nope, Alaska. I swear."

How long ago was that? I've never heard of Air Alaska.

Perhaps you mean Alaska Airlines? But I'm pretty sure they've never flown nonstop Toronto to Los Angeles...
julia1 is offline  

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