A Mom Is Asked To Remove Her Crying Baby From First Class. What’s Your Opinion?

In the fog of travel over the past week, I missed a story that involved a mom, a crying baby, and a potentially unsympathetic flight attendant.

Crying Baby

The full text of her note is here:

On our way to LA a few days ago it was my first time flying with Ruby, I had a screaming crying sleepy baby who was so overwhelmed that she couldn’t fall asleep. My husband and I paid for first class so that we’d have the extra space and could lay down with her – once we were boarded I was getting tons of eye rolls and head shakes from fellow passengers on @delta because my baby was crying (as if I could just look at Ruby and say okay now it’s time to stop ). I tried to ignore the people until 10 minutes passed and a flight attendant came over to me and asked me and my baby to move to the back of the plane (as if the people in the back didn’t matter). Give up our seats that we paid for and move. Apparently I was upsetting and getting a lot of complaints from the first class passengers. I started crying because I was so stressed and anxious and instead of the stewardess being helpful and compassionate she instead made the situation worse. I don’t know what’s right and wrong when it comes to flying with a baby but after telling a few people the story they were in shock. Thoughts? We’re headed back to NYC today and we’re hoping for a much better experience.

I read about this on The Gate and immediately started to parse the words of what she said.

If the flight attendant asked her to move, she had no specific obligation to relocate.

If the flight attendant told her to move, she could have gotten in a lot of trouble for not obeying the instructions of the flight crew.

Of course, the next thing that occurred to me was that while I was busy trying to keep up with my day job, I was pretty sure Mommy Points already weighed in on this as well.  Yup, and in a fair and balanced manner as well.

My Opinion

I’m a father of two, so I’m sure there’s a bit of bias in my opinions.  But, before I even had kids I wouldn’t have supported the flight crew moving a family for this reason.  Before I had kids I’m sure there were times that a screaming baby annoyed me.  However, I never had any expectation that the flight crew needed to fix it.

Quiet is not something guaranteed in any cabin on an airplane (there are a few exceptions where airlines don’t allow kids in certain cabins).  The situation as described is far from ideal.  Ms. Charnas paid for a first class ticket and apparently didn’t get to sit in her assigned seat.

I don’t think it matters whether she was asked or told to move out of the first class cabin.  Either way, if the airline moved her without compensation, they were in the wrong.

What’s Your Opinion?  Should the airline have relocated her out of first class?

The post A Mom Is Asked To Remove Her Crying Baby From First Class.  What’s Your Opinion? was published first on Pizza in Motion


  1. I think the FA was totally out of line to ask the couple to move. They sold her the seat knowing she had an infant. The only way I could see them asking her to vacate the seat is if prior to door closing the baby has a nuclear type meltdown that looks to have no end in site. I can see them for “the safety” of everyone involved, asking/telling them to take the next flight. This scenario I can see for both First and coach passengers.

    I know one of the articles I read about this case said the mother on social media a few days prior was very apprehensive of taking the baby on the flight. It makes me wonder if she expected the crying. I don’t have kids, but have 6 nieces/nephews. Some were great flyers at that age. One could barely go 3 minutes without crying. That nephew didn’t get on a plane until he was 4. Mostly because my SIL knew it would be miserable for them.
    I just wonder how smart it was to bring this particular baby on a flight at that age. It’s one thing if you are going to a funeral/wedding. But this was strictly a vacation and I think they put their desire to have a fun weekend ahead of the other passengers. But either way, when I see this I always do feel bad for the parents. As much as it sucks for Johnny Businessguy in 4f, the parents have it 100x worse during these meltdowns!

    I also think this also applies if they were in coach.

  2. Asking them to move from first to coach is the real issue. Just because first class passengers pay more, does not make them more important. Moving her and the baby would have ,clearly made it worse for the child and not resolved anything… except making it quieter for the front of the plane.

    No kids, so not bias from that standpoint… but really not the right thing to do

  3. Completely wrong. That’s like saying there is only room for so many people in the life raft so we’ll take the first class passengers and the rest can swim.

  4. Perhaps the FA should have offered the person or persons that complained a seat in the rear of the aircraft.
    If available, the FA could have provided noise cancel headset to the offendees. Delta is probably going to take a big ding on this one.

      1. This is why I travel with my own noise cancelling headphones. Raise your hand if you have never been on a plane with a screaming baby or unruly toddler. I also carry an eye mask. I’m old and getting more cranky by the year, but I try not to be a PITA to people struggling with these issues. If these people paid for first class tickets, that’s where they get to sit. The ticket doesn’t guarantee you will have a marvelous flight, just a more expensive one.

        1. Pat, I agree. Kids will be kids on flights. Babies spit up, cry and do all sorts of other things that might annoy someone. Noise canceling headphones are my friend, along with some patience.

  5. amazingly ridiculous, she should have moved her baby to the back or bathroom w/o being asked. so just to show her respect for other passengers.

    it’s ridiculous in this country personal rights can be blasted on a group.

      1. why not if it’s bothering the other passenger and the crew, until her baby stops crying. her inconvenience should not make others suffer with her. i know of friends who are not from here will stop going back home for 3-4 yrs when they have a young baby. talk about consideration and sacrifice.

  6. Guess what? You can still hear a crying baby when it is seated further away from you. Before we had kids, my wife wasn’t that compassionate when kids were crying either. I told her, “it’s not like the parents are pinching the kid to make it cry. If they had a magic wand, I’m sure they want the baby to stop crying more than we do.” But, I’m a man, and now that we have kids, I can totally ignore their crying (whining?) way easier than she can. Another example of how men are different than women.

    Back on point… this is total BS. I wouldn’t have moved unless they could show me, in writing, where I was violating a rule. Even then, I would ask how moving to a cramped seat in Coach would make things better. As a frequent traveler with children, trust me, babies/infants/toddlers get even more upset when confined to small spaces.

    A total reminder to be sure to stand up for yourself and know your rights.

  7. There is a very simple answer to this. I don’t like crying babies. I also don’t like hearing other people’s obnoxious conversations. And I’m not a fan of sparking up a convo with the random person next to me. Everyone I travel I am guaranteed peace and quiet. I NEVER travel without earplugs and headphones. It’s a simple fix for everyone. I always travel with extra earplugs and have shared many times. No one should ever be moved from the seat they paid for. Unless it’s a quiet car on a train, you are guaranteed silence.

    1. Marsh nailed it. I would fly (absolutely quietly) next you anytime. A howling baby is a bummer indeed, but I will take an incoherent, unhappy child any day over a loud, mind enveloping argument, long winded story, political rant, etc that invades every crevice of concentration. I’ve suffered those ad nauseum and the good headphones and foam earplugs are the only (almost) cure.

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