Cebu Pacific horror stories are in the air again. On Facebook and Twitter tonight, Cebu Pacific is getting some flak from online denizens for refusing to carry a special child. In this case, a child with global developmental delay.
The reports are sketchy as of yet, but online folks are crying foul to this move by Cebu Pacific which takes pride in its slogan “Now Every Juan Can Fly.” This time around, the budget airline is being compared to its rival PAL (Philippine Air Lines) which reportedly has a more humanitarian policy toward senior citizens and persons with disability.
It appears from the tweets that an unnamed Cebu Pacific flight compelled the special child to get off the plane due to his/her disorder and because there was another special child onboard. They can only accommodate one special child, not two. This of course made the affected parents fume with anger and pass on the word online, and virally.
Cebu Pacific spokespersons could not be reached as of this writing (midnight, Manila time). However, we got to review the airline’s policy on special requests where it stated:
“Acceptance for carriage of incapacitated guests, guests with illness or other guests requiring special assistance is subject to arrangement with us at least three (3) days prior to the scheduled flight. Without prejudice to paragraph 6.1 of Cebu Pacific’s Conditions of Carriage, guests with disabilities who have advised us of any special requirements they may have at the time of booking of the Seat and been accepted by us upon our reasonable determination that we have the necessary facilities and the ability to meet their special requirements shall not subsequently be refused carriage on the basis of such disability or special requirements.”
Important things to note from the policy:
1) special arrangements must be made three days before the flight
2) the airline has reasonably determined they have the necessary facilities and ability to address the special requirements
All I can say is that this is another crisis PR in the making for Cebu Pacific. Unfortunately, I don’t have a horror story to relate in booking or flying CebuPac, except for a one-hour delay or two, and the normal turbulence. However, this can only mean that am not flying much 😀
Take note of Cebu Pacific’s first system wide seat sale, while you’re at it. They’re now offering 50% off on all domestic and international flights as their first seat sale for 2010. Promo valid from January 6 to 8.