United Airlines Came to the Rescue After My Wife Dumped Me On the Phone, Says Frequent Flyer

Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

Being dumped can be a drag.

You may not see it coming. Your lover may not even be right to do it.

But when it’s your spouse, then it surely causes uncontrolled anguish.

That’s what a man says happened to him, as he poured his heart out on FlyerTalk.

“My wife let me know not to bother coming home about an hour before boarding my flight back and that she’s been seeing another person and wants a divorce,” he said.

That sounds truly awful. What was he supposed to do in his hour of despair? To whom could he turn?

You might — at least initially — think among the last entities to call might be United Airlines.

Yet this is no ordinary flyer. He’s a 1K. 

Should this moniker be unfamiliar to you, it’s even better than Premier Silver, Gold and Platinum.

For all I know, it’s a thousand times better, as the name implies.

Indeed, the evidence he offers is that he called the special hotline for 1K stalwarts and “even through my incoherent voice, emotions and everything, they managed to fix all my reservations for the week, waive all change fees and put me on the first flight out and force an upgrade.”

Yes, we’re talking about United Airlines. The airline that today is commemorating the dragging of a passenger down the aisle of one of its planes and knocking out a couple of his teeth.

Ah, but he wasn’t a 1K, I hear you sniffle. Indeed, and he’d just been bumped, not dumped.

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Our man of forlorn hope — whose handle is simply mdbe — says he was perfectly prepared to pay all the change fees and the price of the upgrade. 

Instead, if this story is true — and I’ve contacted United to check, as it’s coinciding with such a painful anniversary and I’m naturally suspicious — it shows that it just takes one customer service person doing something out of the ordinary to change your opinion of a whole brand.

Or, it seems, to confirm it.

“I guess I just needed to vent, but what I’ve noticed all years of my flying is that UA may not be the best in many aspects but they are easy to work with and they know when they don’t deliver, and will go all the way to fix it,” said mdbe.

That sounds like the description of a very good relationship.

Indeed, it seems to have impressed other FlyerTalkers . 

Another exalted 1K member offered: “I’ve heard many such stories in my 25+ year flying career with UA, and it gives me comfort to know that there are still those within UA who are not only empowered to provide relief but who are inclined to do so.”

For all that United receives criticism — and often with very good reason — the reaction here is bathed in human understanding, something the airline says it’s trying to encourage these days.

Some on FlyerTalk offered the man sympathy and even advice. 

Our man in pain “would highly appreciate suggestions for fun bars in SFO.”

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Sir, if you do find one, perhaps United could send over some fellow 1K’s to keep you company.

It’s surely better than drinking alone.

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