A user on TikTok has gone viral after calling Air France about getting her family in economy class after paying $12,000 for premium seats.
In a video with over 541,000 views, user Eleanor (@dwell_nicely) claims she bought premium seats to accommodate her 6ft 4in husband, daughter and, more importantly, her baby. The couple and the baby were to fly Air France from Rio de Janeiro to London, a journey that requires a stop in Paris and a leg of over 10 hours.
“I usually have no problem sitting in economy when I’m traveling alone, but first, I paid $12,000 so I wouldn’t have to sit in economy for a 17-hour flight with my baby on my lap. or 15 hours – I don’t know. It’s bloody long,” she says. “My husband doesn’t even fit in the economy seats!”
@dwell_nicely Fuck you @airfrance how to make a hard journey impossible and pay a fortune for #airtravel #airfrance #impossible ♬ Original sound – Dwell Nicely
In a follow-up video, Eleanor says the flight itself was miserable. Her and daughter’s chairs were broken, they were given a cradle they couldn’t use for most of the flight, and the flight was too cold for their comfort.
According to Eleanor, the company offered her 50 euros in cash or a voucher as compensation for this downgrade. She opted for the cash but was given a voucher instead.
@dwell_nicely Air France update #update #personal #ididdwell ♬ Original sound – Dwell Nicely
“Don’t fly Air France,” she concludes.
At first, some users had doubts about the true cost of the flight, some speculating that she had declared the flight in Brazilian reals instead of US dollars. If the flights actually cost 12,000 reals, the flight cost in USD would be about 2300 US dollars.
However, Air France’s website doesn’t seem to be able to book flights using Eleanor’s dates for 12,000 real anytime soon, although flights using her dates for $12,000 are also nowhere to be found.
It’s possible that Eleanor was referring to one of the many other currencies denoted by the term “dollar” — but regardless of the exact cost details, users agreed that $50 wasn’t anywhere near enough compensation for their experience.
“$50…. You’re joking,” wrote one user. “It’s a slap in the face after all.”
“How do you pay 12,000 for a confirmed premium seat and get put back into economy and then get so little compensation?” asked another. “Makes no sense at all!”
Many other users said they heeded Eleanor’s warning and refrained from flying with the company.
As one user wrote: “Don’t fly @airfrance…thanks for the warning!”
The Daily Dot contacted Eleanor via Instagram DM and Air France via email.
*Initial publication: September 18, 2022 at 9:55 am CDT
Braden Bjella is a culture writer. His work can be found in Mixmag, Electronic Beats, Schön! magazine and more.