CHICAGO — Snip, snip, snip the scissors went, cutting up United Chase credit cards and frequent flyer member cards.
The public outrage flared on social media after a passenger was dragged off a United flight at Chicago O’Hare Airport.
Aninda Sadhukhan visited his shredder to dispose of his United MileagePlus Explorer card with Chase Bank on Monday night after he canceled the account.
It’s a potential travel sacrifice for the IT auditor, who lives in Indianapolis and and flies United frequently.
His “general disatisfaction” with flying United in the past few years, some issues with the credit card rewards program and videos of other bad experiences on United contributed to his decision, he said.
But the images of what happened to the passenger being removed from the plane were too much for him.
“The bloody pictures were crossing a red line for me,” the 35-year-old said. “Getting rid of the card is the first step in making myself feel accountable in not being able to fly United.”
Others with the same credit card took similar measures to show their anger with the airline.
“Cutting up my United credit card in protest of their recent brutal treatment of a legal paying passenger. Please do the same,” wrote Phyllis Brown on Facebook.
“Just for the sake of a crew member to be able to get on board, a paying customer gets booted off. So, I cut up my credit card,” she said. “My kids live in Africa now, but I’ll find other airlines to get around.”
Some people even went through the trouble of finding their frequent flyer cards to chop them up in protest and declare they were done with United.
“This is certainly something that happened on United, but this is a systemic issue,” Sadhukhan said. “I think the entire consumer protection of overbooking a flight should be looked into. It feels like there’s little recourse for the consumer. ”
United CEO Oscar Munoz issued another apology Tuesday afternoon on Twitter.
“The truly horrific event that occurred on this flight has elicited many responses from all of us: outrage, anger, disappointment. I share all of those sentiments, and one above all: my deepest apologies for what happened. Like you, I continue to be disturbed by what happened on this flight and I deeply apologize to the customer forcibly removed and to all the customers aboard. No one should ever be mistreated this way.
“I want you to know that we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right.
“It’s never too late to do the right thing. I have committed to our customers and our employees that we are going to fix what’s broken so this never happens again. This will include a thorough review of crew movement, our policies for incentivizing volunteers in these situations, how we handle oversold situations and an examination of how we partner with airport authorities and local law enforcement. We’ll communicate the results of our review by April 30th.
“I promise you we will do better.”