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British Airways discrimination against cellists

(182 Posts)
londonmummy1966 Tue 31-May-16 18:16:38

Before I start I will admit that this is very much a first world problem but it is still really annoying.

My Dds are going on a music tour in Europe this summer and they are flying with British Airways. Dd1 needs to take her cello with her which is not an immensely valuable instrument but as is the way with cellos it is still worth more than the £1000 maximum compensation BA would pay if it went in the baggage hold and got damaged. There are so many horror stories about what happens to cellos on flights. So the only option is to book an extra seat for the cello.

I thought this would be fine as DH has loads of airmiles so we could add Mr Cello to our family account with the BA and use the airmiles to pay for the extra seat. Apparently not - you can't use airmiles to buy a seat for a cello. So then I thought that we could use the airmiles to buy the seat for Dd and pay for the cello. Apparently also not. IF Dd was travelling minus cello that would be fine but apparently BA have a rule that a cellist travelling with their cello cannot book a flight with airmiles . I asked why not and was told it was because it is a faff for the airline to allocate two seats together. However, if Dd was just really fat and needed an extra seat for that reason she could have used airmiles.

AIBU or is BA just taking the proverbial with this? Its not as if dd is a professional cellist or anything - just a school kid who was really excited about being able to play abroad. Also what jobsworth at BA has so little to do they have had time to dream up all these complex rules for the fairly small number of people wanting to travel on airmiles with a cello?

Andrewofgg Tue 31-May-16 18:17:41


Get over yourself.

AnneEyhtMeyer Tue 31-May-16 18:20:22

It is your fault for not encouraging her to play a small, easily portable instrument when you had the chance, so YABU.

branofthemist Tue 31-May-16 18:21:14

Can't you insure it for more than £1000 and stick it in the hold?

Surely that would be cheaper

londonrach Tue 31-May-16 18:21:15

No help op but thanks for the smile when i read this. Discrimination 😂 Hope you find a solution. Im thinking a recorder, flute...

NoelHeadbands Tue 31-May-16 18:22:07

That's cellistist

GeezAJammyPeece Tue 31-May-16 18:23:00

Count yourself lucky, if mine was doing the same jaunt; I'd be trying to buy 3 seats - one for him, one for the 'cello & one for his euphonium.

And yes, he has admitted that he chooses instruments based on how ridiculously big they are we heaved a sigh of relief when they didn't have a tuba handy

Chippednailvarnishing Tue 31-May-16 18:23:40

Hire one when you get there

Sparklingbrook Tue 31-May-16 18:23:45

Do you have to pay extra so that DD and the cello can sit together?

TheSpottedZebra Tue 31-May-16 18:23:48

Are they cool with the double base?

Lockheart Tue 31-May-16 18:24:12

Not sure cellists are a protected group that would be covered by discrimination laws...

TheSpottedZebra Tue 31-May-16 18:24:27

That did say bass. DYAC.

NoelHeadbands Tue 31-May-16 18:25:31

It's all about the bass.

No treble.

BeautyGoesToBenidorm Tue 31-May-16 18:26:51

This brought back some memories! My cello was a lovely travelling companion when I had to buy the old boy a seat, much better than a person grin

BrickInTheWall Tue 31-May-16 18:26:56

Cant you just tell them the seats dont need to be together if thats the only problem? Surely no one will mind sitting next to a cello and DD can keep an eye on it from her seat.

gabsdot Tue 31-May-16 18:27:17

They're not discriminating against Cellists, just Cellos..

BTW This is probably the most middle class post I've ever read. Cellos and airmiles. wow.

londonmummy1966 Tue 31-May-16 18:27:42

Jammy - I sympathise - DD2 is a harpist....

AnnieOnAMapleLeaf Tue 31-May-16 18:27:56

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

NerrSnerr Tue 31-May-16 18:28:36

It's not just cellists that are discriminated against. After rule changes (possibly after 9/11) Stephen Hendry had to put his cue in the hold and it broke and he never played well with his new cue. Also, last week SwissAir didn't put a British decathlete's pole in the hold meaning he couldn't do the pole vault at a meeting and he may have missed his chance to get the Olympic qualifying standard now.

So there you go.

Ps- SwissAir are being proper bastards at the moment with the Paralympic team. Booking flights and then saying they can't take their wheelchairs, asking other passengers if they'll be responsible adults for them etc.

Queenbean Tue 31-May-16 18:28:39

Why don't you just pay for the two seats with real money and save your airmiles for something different?

Or insure the cello for more than £1k and stick it in the hold?

BathshebaDarkstone Tue 31-May-16 18:30:09

PMSL! grin

situatedknowledge Tue 31-May-16 18:30:20

On the bright side she's only travelling with one cello. A friend of ours a professional tuba player needed to travel with two. They'd only allow him one in the cabin, one had to go in the hold. Despite a flight and additional padding it was still damaged. It was worth over £30k.

Hodooooooooor Tue 31-May-16 18:31:04

This isn't discrimination against anyone, least of all cellists. Is it specifically cellos? Do double bassists get to give free seats to their instruments? Harpists? What about me and my piano?

Calling it a first world problem is understating it. Cellos and airmiles, indeed. Get a hold of yourself.

CoolforKittyCats Tue 31-May-16 18:33:50

There are many discriminations in this world.

Discrimination against a cello is not one of them

MauledbytheTigers Tue 31-May-16 18:35:27

Can see why you might be aggrieved, but really pisses me off when people use the word discrimination when what they really mean is that their not happy with a decision (sometimes justifiably) therefore they're going to use the most evocative words they can think of to get a reaction. Think before you post. It took a long time for real victims of discrimination to get protection under law....don't make a mockery of that by crying discrimination where there isn't any. You may be pissed off, fair enough, then say that.

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