A crewmember just ordered me off the plane. Do I have to obey?

United Airlines has been in the news a lot lately and the stories have been disturbing. It’s been so disturbing to reader Janis Dolnick, who has two upcoming flights booked on United, that she wrote to us to ask what rights she has, if any, should she be asked to leave a flight.

Does penalizing airlines for customer service infractions do any good?

The Department of Transportation fined airlines $4.5 million and issued 23 consent orders in 2016. But it isn’t clear whether these actions are benefitting the passengers they’re supposed to protect. Industry watchers say the numbers don’t tell the full story — something you already know if you’ve flown this year.

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