Ana Constantin, a 45-year old financial officer, and her daughter Paun, a 22-year-old university student, boarded an Air Canada flight at the Henri Coandă Airport in Bucharest after visiting family in Romania.
They said the flight’s departure was delayed because some passengers had to be reassigned seats so families could sit together.
Paun said someone was assigned to her seat, so she sat elsewhere.
Paun said they were ordered off the plane after she got into a dispute with a flight attendant who asked her to return to her assigned seat, and she replied that she couldn’t.
“I said that I can’t move back because you just put a man in my seat. And that’s when she just got angry with me and said that I’m not co-operating.”
Constantin said she was in the washroom at the time and when she learned the news, she refused to disembark, so a police officer was called to escort them off the plane.
Air Canada spokesperson Angela Mah said that Paun and Constantin were removed because they “became verbally abusive to the crew” and refused to take their assigned seats or safely stow their carry-on bags.
According to Transport Canada, airlines have the right to refuse to board passengers if it’s deemed their behaviour may jeopardize the safety of a flight.
But the federal department also says that passengers should be informed about why they’re denied boarding and the conditions of their ban.