I just traveled from Phoenix to Tulsa on Southwest with my 7yr old peanut allergic son and my 3 yr old. I had called ahead and given notification. When I got to the gate and hour early, they said I could preboard but that the previous flight had served nuts. As I boarded the plane it smelled strongly of peanuts, I was a little nervous but pulled out the wipes and was cleaning my seat when a flight attendant said "what's the drama now" to another attendant. I was shocked. I called Southwest to see about changing my return flight to an earlier one to avoid peanuts and was told it would be 275.00 more. They said I should plan on taking the 6:30 am flight next time. Have you ever tried to arrive at an airport at 5 am with two small children? Not my idea of a cooperative airline. The return was worse, I told the gate attendant and he didn't say a word. I asked if I needed to do anything and he said "you just did, you told me" I then asked if I would have time to clean his seat first and he said "if your child is deathly allergic I suggest you don't fly." That was it, last time I'll fly SW. Their campaign now is to donate jars of peanut butter to the less fortunate. So as they say - Come and get your LUV.
On Jun 19, 2006
I am so sorry to hear that. We just flew SW yesterday from Columbus to Phx leaving at 2pm. Not only did they let me preboard with a disability pass to wipe down the seat (and I used the planesheets) and pillow cases on the arms - they made an announcement that it was a peanut free flight and if someone brought peanuts on board - to not eat them on this flight. I was amazed.
We flew on June 8th from phx to Raleigh NC and the only announcment they gave was that they would not be handing out peanuts - they gave no explaination why. The flight attendant told me they couldn't announce not to eat peanuts because they have no control over what people eat on the plane. There were peanuts all over the floor and in the seat pocket in front of my DS. I think it does make a difference to fly earlier in the day on SW.
Now that US airways and America West are peanut free flights, I will always choose them over SW.
It is so lame that SW policies are so dependent on the flight attendant you talk to.
On the flight yesterday - I DID NOT even ask her to make an announcement since when I had flown SW the week prior they refused - and she did it on her own. I wonder if she has a friend or family member with PA...
I hope you contact SW customer service. I plan to - to let them know what a difference we had on our two flights.
On Jun 22, 2006
we flew sw to phoenix last week and came back a few days ago. it worked out ok. on the way out they asked that people not eat peanut products as well as that they would not serve them. they were all very nice. a couple behind my dh (two rows behind my son) made a few comments.. my dh turned around and explained it to them and they were nice and I dont believe opened up the peanuts they brought. we were warned that they had no control over people eating them but they did request it. my dh seat had some crumbs on it and a peanut ont he floor. i covered his seat and wiped it all down and he was fine. it was an afternoon flight. on the way back they only announced no peanut products would be served. it was an earlier flight and I didnt see any crumbs around. they were not as nice but not rude either. I think sometimes some attendants are just rude. When we flew a few years ago with two carseats (us airways) i couldnt believe the crappy things a few of the attendants said.
------------------ Lalow James 4 yrs, NKA Ben 3 yrs, PA and MA and SA
On Jun 30, 2006
I'll try a different airlines in the future. I too will contact customer service about it. Thanks for your support, having a community like this makes a huge difference.
On Jul 4, 2006
Just flew from El Paso to Pittsburgh yesterday on Southwest. In 10 years of flying with my peanut allergic son, this was the most positive experience we've had. This is the only airline that told us on the phone that they wouldn't have peanuts loaded on the plane as a snack. This is the only airline that gave us a preboard pass upon check-in. This is the only airline that made an announcement that there was a peanut allergic individual on board. I felt completely at ease for the first time ever. We had lots of people praying for our safety and I'm sure that helped! Thanks Southwest! I highly recommend this airline and look forward to the return trip!
On Jul 4, 2006
Originally posted by RitchiesGirl: [b]Just flew from El Paso to Pittsburgh yesterday on Southwest. In 10 years of flying with my peanut allergic son, this was the most positive experience we've had. This is the only airline that told us on the phone that they wouldn't have peanuts loaded on the plane as a snack. This is the only airline that gave us a preboard pass upon check-in. This is the only airline that made an announcement that there was a peanut allergic individual on board. I felt completely at ease for the first time ever. We had lots of people praying for our safety and I'm sure that helped! Thanks Southwest! I highly recommend this airline and look forward to the return trip![/b]
Glad you had a good experience on Southwest. I've had good experiences with them and a not-so-good experience.
I think most of us on here are determining that on Southwest, it depends on the flight crew. Some are really nice, some are neutral (but get the job done), and some are downright p!ssy and mean.
I wish it wasn't such a luck-of-the-draw with them and their service was more reliable.
------------------ 30-something survivor of severe peanut/tree nut allergy
On Jul 4, 2006
I'm a former flight attendant. If you are on a flight where a member of the cabin crew is rude, pissy, mean, for whatever reason....write a letter to the airline and report it. Give the date you flew and the flight number. If you don't know the specific flt. attendant's name then describe the person.
But make sure that if there is an exceptional flight attendant/cabin crew who really makes a positive difference in your flight, then also write a letter!
[This message has been edited by Adele (edited July 04, 2006).]
On Jul 14, 2006
We just flew Southwest from Oakland to Phoenix. Our experience with Southwest was wonderful. As per the reservationist, I went to the gate agent one hour before our flight and received a peanut dust allergy form (two of them) to give to the flight attendant upon boarding. I was able to preboard as well. The flight attendant knew about the allergy and posted one form at the front of the plane and one at the back. The plane was actually quite clean (both going and returning). They even served a Nabisco's cracker snack that my son was able to eat with no problems.
I was quite pleased with the way they handled everything and will definitely be flying them again.
On Jul 19, 2006
I will never fly SWA again and really think it is too big a risk for anyone. Even one bad experience could be one too many with a peanut allergic child. Many people here have had a poor experience including myself. I flew on only hour long flights first thing in the morning. The first crew was very nice but the plane was littered with peanuts - on the floor in the seat back pockets. My ds does not appear to be contact sensitive in spite of an anaphylactic reaction to eating PB at 18 months - he is now 5 yo old with no further reactions. He tests at a 65 RAST so he is obviously at risk. BUt I was a wreck during that flight and I am not overly paranoid about his allergy - I take precautions and we are very careful but I let him be a normal kid - albeit one who never goes anywhere without his Epi.
On the way back it was a nightmare - the crew was downright hostile about the allergy and told me they could not guarantee a peanut free flight because I checked in 5 minutes after the 60 minute requirement - I am not kdding. I was livid - the policy is 60 minutes but on the way out no one showed up at the desk until 20 minutes before the flight and this time the crew did not show up until 15 mminutes before. SInce the procedure is to hand the form to the lead attendant and the 60 minutes is to fill out the form - which with no line - there was none - takes about 5 minutes - this was completely out of line. I told her that this wasn't jsut some silly request - my childs life depended on it and she snidely remarked that that was the policy and she could not guarantee the lead flight attendant - who wasn't there yet! would agree and that if my tone continued to sound angry she would call security. Trust me I was not abusive - I was a shocked mother who could not believe someone was being so cavelier about my childs life.
The flight attendant - as i knew - had no issue since the policy is in place to allow time to fill out the stupid form - the gate attendant was just being nasty for the sake of being nasty over a situation in which a childs life is at stake.
I sent a letter to SWA and never even got a reply - tells me how they feel about it - they just don't care! The fact that they still serve peanuts while so many others don't is really more than enough of a messgae to those with allergies - We don't want or need your business!
On Aug 26, 2006
I will never fly Southwest again. We've had some great experiences with them, but one horrific experience that resulted on us (family of 4) getting off of the plane (littered with peanuts EVERYWHERE) and the crew acting as if my husband and I were crazy. There were 2 other families with PA kids that got off the plane, as well. It was nightmare. I was so glad my husband had preboarded to first see all the peanuts, attempted to wipe down the area where her carseat was going, and then she and I came on and we quickly left. THere had to have been at least 3 agents and 2 flight attendants that said nasty things to my family and the other families.
I'll hitchhike before I'll go on a SW plane again. WHenever my daughter sees a SW plane in the air, she always makes a comment about "how dirty" those planes were. I think she was about 2.5 or 3 when we hustled her off that plane.
Never again! NicoleinNH
On Sep 9, 2006
I just flew on SW on business (can't choose the airline) round trip pittsburgh to chicago. Got a nice bag of peanuts on the first flight and TWO bags on the way home! Not to mention the peanuts on the seats and floor of the plane. Luckily, I had no problems this time.
Here's a little something I tore out of SWa's Sept. '06 Spirit magazine. Nice, Huh? [img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/OneBadBug/P909.jpg[/img]
On Sep 9, 2006
I actually had to get a doctor's note saying why I could not fly Continental, Delta, and Southwest and why I choose American (and now US Airways that they are PN free and also United since they codeshare w/ US Airways)...anyhoot - my business office always gave me grief about the higher ticket price!
[This message has been edited by ajgauthier (edited September 09, 2006).]
On Sep 10, 2006
I had a good experience on SouthWest right after dd was diagnosed in 2000 when I was very ill informed. I would never fly them again due to residue concerns. Even if they are nice about making it peanut free, there is too much residue from all the previous flights. I even read a study that the airlines that normally serve peanuts but refrain due to a pa passenger have been found to have peanut protein in their ________ (don`t recall the exact word, something like air filters or air vents or circulation system, something like that).
On Sep 22, 2006
We flew SW last year with our PA dd. We notified them at the time of making the reservation. We notified them when we checked in at the main counter. We notified them again when we checked in to get our boarding card. Then immediately after we took off, they began handing out peanuts. Luckily we were in the first row, so they didn't get very far, and they took back what they had given out. Still, exactly what were we doing with all the advance notification that they requested????? Oy. We wrote a letter and got $500 of vouchers for our experience, but it did not make me really want to fly with them again, not if I have an alternative.
------------------ Lori Jo,
Rose, 7-31-02, PA Beatrice & Georgia, 8-14-99