In the past, we have flown Air Tran or Jet Blue because of they did not serve peanuts inflight and they were our only options from our airport. However, due to Southwest buying AirTran and changing their policy, we can no longer fly them. As a result, we decided to fly Delta after we read many online reviews from allergy concerned parents and their new policy of flying peanut snack free when requested.
Our AAA travel agent coded my son’s ticket with a peanut allergy. I also called a couple of weeks before our flight to make sure everything was in order and that peanuts would not be served on our flights. When we checked in at the ticket counter, the ticket agent mentioned our son’s allergy. So, we thought we were in the clear. Actually, I was really impressed with how informed they all were. So, when we boarded the plane, I wiped down all surfaces that my son may touch and gave him a dose of Benedryl (precautionary) and I also brought a face mask (those white ones that go over your mouth and nose) to use if we saw peanuts, etc. I also made sure that he wore long sleeve shirts and pants. In addition, I sit with him to remind him not to touch his face, etc. We also fly with multiple epi-pens in case he has a reaction.
We were one of the first parties on the plane and a flight attendant walked past me and I informed her of my son’s peanut allergy. I just wanted to double check that no peanuts would be served on board. She was COMPLETELY surprised and very upset with me. I apparently was supposed to inform her when we walked on the plane, I had no idea. I was told that they do not always read the passenger list prior to boarding. Everyone else who we spoke to knew and assured us that it would be peanut free. I was really upset, and asked my husband to go up and speak to the head flight attendant and discuss the need to be peanut free (I would have walked us all off the plane if we were told no). She was very responsive to him and they took the peanut snacks off and replaced them with an alternative. During the snack service, the first flight attendant was apologizing to each person for no peanuts due to a peanut allergic passenger- rather loudly and rudely. My parents were also flying with us but a few rows back, and when she apologized to them, my father very loudly informed her that the passenger was his grandson. She stopped apologizing after that.
On our connecting flight, we checked with the gate agent and each of the flight attendants. I asked the next crew if peanuts were served on the earlier flight and I was told, “Peanuts have been served on this plane for the last 20 years. I am sure there are peanuts residue all over this plane.” He was very dismissive and seem quite annoyed by my question.
Our return flights home were wonderful and we had very responsive Delta Airlines staff who knew our son had a peanut allergy, no peanuts were loaded on the flight (we did not need to ask, even though we did), and they welcomed us to board early and wipe things down.
I really got the feeling that this new policy of Delta’s was not welcomed by all flight attendants, and they found it to be a real bother to deal with.