Not Your Average Travel Stories + Video: Week of July 14, 2014

This week: A fake TSA agent and a genuine bad passenger (allegedly). Plus soothing video.

LISTEN: FareCompare’s Anne McDermott and Alex Williams wallow in the  weirdness.

Strange, Weird, Unusual, Odd

Fake TSA agent: A ticketed passenger at San Francisco’s airport decided to pose as a TSA agent and wasallegedly able to grope two women he brought into a private booth for pat-downs,” reports the UPI. The TSA quickly figured out something was amiss and the 52 year old Californian was arrested. And yes, our old friend alcohol is believed to have played a part in this masquerade. UPDATE: Whoa! According to a media report, Mr. TSA Wannabe is a “private-equity executive with a big-time international resume.”

Bad passenger: A 20 year old man was arrested this week at the end of a British Airways flight from hell (actually Heathrow). The Los Angeles-bound passenger became disruptive after allegedly drinking beer and wine (always a good combination). He reportedly threatened to open the plane’s door and threatened crew members by screaming, “I am going to [expletive] kill you.” If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

Hey, LA! Won’t be so easy getting to Los Angeles International July 25-28 because part of Century Blvd. will be shut down while a bridge gets demolished, and the closure includes the intersection of Century and Aviation. If you think traffic couldn’t possibly get worse, think again.

TSA agent gets F in geography: A security officer manning a checkpoint at Orlando’s airport examined a passenger’s driver’s license then demanded to see his passport. The passenger didn’t have it on him and asked why it was needed. Apparently the officer didn’t understand that Washington, D.C. – the passenger’s home address listed on the license – is part of the United States of America. Biggest mistake: The passenger in question just so happened to be a reporter.

Attack of the giant snails: Live, giant African snails were seized by Customs at Los Angeles International the other day. It seems the bozo who lugged them in his suitcase planned on serving them with garlic butter but officials call them pests. You don’t want them running loose since they eat everything from plants to “paint and stucco” off houses. Fun fact: Giant snails can live ten years.

BYOV: That stands for ‘bring your own vest’ – child-sized life vest, that is – because as one family flying to Hawaii learned, you airline may not have any for little ones.

Mickey is sad: But not nearly as sad as the visitors riding the Disney World monorail when it lost power (due to a lightning strike, some say). 120 people were taken off without incident but the monorail was shut down for hours. Not fun!

Fake airline employee arrested: A man who posed as a JetBlue employee to allegedly score free travel (a perk of most airline employees) was arrested when trying resell tickets to a fellow who turned out to be an FBI agent. If convicted, JetBlue Man could get 20 years in prison.

Airline remake of Lost: A United flight heading from Honolulu to Guam diverted to a “tiny Pacific island” because of a mechanical issue. Veterans of WWII’s Pacific Theater have reason to recall this particular island – Midway.

Saving a turtle: GoPro’s video of the day features a sea turtle rescue off the coast of Mexico.

VIDEO: Turtle gets saved; turtle is grateful.


Published: July 14, 2014