A man traveling from Iceland to England was refused from two flights after following the incident
The latest battle over baggage fees is putting the Basic Economy outrage to shame.
Passenger Ryan Carney Williams caused a social media frenzy after posting videos of himself donning numerous layers of clothing to avoid excess baggage fees on a British Airways flight from Keflavik, Iceland to London. According to the Evening Standard, Williams had purchased a hand-baggage only ticket, but attempted to board with an oversize bag.
Williams reportedly piled on much of his wardrobe in order to cut down on the bag’s weight — a tactic he claims the airline originally agreed to. But after bundling up in multiple coats and tying sweaters around his neck, he was still refused entry onto the flight.
“Being held at Iceland Keflavik airport because I had no baggage put all the clothes on and they still won’t let me on. Racial profiling?” he wrote alongside this video, which shows airline staff and security guards threatening to call the police.
According to the Iceland Monitor, the authorities were called, and reportedly used pepper spray on Williams before eventually arresting him. Williams’ troubles were far from over though. The next day, he was once again turned away from a second flight, this time on easyJet.
“Because I was disruptive yesterday apparently, I can’t board this flight again,” he said in a video. He followed up with a screenshot of a message with an easyJet customer service representative, in which they stated, “Although we’re not in a position to comment on the actions that British Airways took, the captain for your easyJet flight was made aware of what happened the previous day. Because of this, the captain took the decision to offload you from this flight.”
EasyJet originally claimed they would not refund Williams his money, but a later tweet shows the airline did end up returning his fare. According to the Washington Post, Williams ended making it back home to England on a third airline, but continued to share insight into his travel nightmare after landing.
“To everyone reporting on my airport experience in Iceland. PLEASE STOP SAYING I was EVADING excess baggage fees…I couldn’t AFFORD the fee (£90) as a result of being left homeless in Iceland for over a week,” he said. “Paints a VERY different picture.”
In a statement to the Post, British Airways reiterated their policies: “We give our customers a wide range of fares to choose from to meet their needs,” an airline spokesperson said. “We explained our policy to our customer, and offered him an alternative flight to London.