United Airlines Finally Gets It Right

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The proverbial ‘every cloud has a silver lining’ may well be true in the David Dao-United Airlines fiasco while the mystery of Simon the rabbit’s death deepens.

  • Amicable settlement, no lawsuits
  • Pledge to reduce overbooking, limit interference of law enforcement
  • Raised limit to $10,000 on payments to bumped customers
  • Mystery of giant rabbit’s death deepens
  • Simon died awaiting connecting flight, not upon arrival from London


The two parties have reached an “amicable” settlement for an undisclosed sum. Dao’s legal team said the agreement includes a provision that the amount will remain confidential.

Legal observers believe the payout to be a few million dollars.

With the settlement, United will not face a lawsuit, which could have been costly both in legal bills and further damage to the airline’s reputation.

One of the lawyers complimented United CEO, Oscar Munoz. “He said he was going to do the right thing, and he has,” attorney Thomas Demetrio said in a statement. “In addition, United has taken full responsibility for what happened…without attempting to blame others, including the city of Chicago.”

Demetrio added it was “unheard of” for a company to admit responsibility so quickly and completely. He said Dao was also impressed that “United stepped up to the plate.”

Another good that has come out of the incident is that United has promised to reduce overbooking and will limit the interference of law enforcement to safety and security issues only. It will also raise to $10,000 the limit on the payments it offers to bumped customers, following what Delta Airlines did soon after the Dao fiasco.

Check out the video below for more information on United’s improved policy changes:

The sky may be brightening for United on one issue but there is still the troubling death of the giant rabbit matter, which is getting more baffling.

Contrary to earlier reports that the rabbit Simon had been found dead in the cargo hold upon arrival, United now reveals that the prized pet collapsed while waiting for its connecting flight to Kansas.

The Sun reported that the airlines said Simon appeared “happy and healthy” as its first plane landed at Chicago’s O’Hare airport but it collapsed in its cage at a pen ahead of a flight to Kansas. Staff at a company-run pet facility noticed the rabbit was lifeless and still but initially thought it was sleeping.

The identity of Simon’s new owner – allegedly a high-profile celebrity – has still not been disclosed. Bryan Bergdale, who bought the rabbit on behalf of his boss for £1,815 said, “We’re still in the mourning process. We’re not quite sure what to do.”

Apparently, a special air-conditioned hutch, toys and food had been prepared for the rabbit’s arrival.

Hopefully, this unfortunate episode will also end well for United.

Related reports:

Apr 27, More Woes for Troubled United Airlines

Apr 14, United Airlines Passenger Suffered Concussion, Broken Nose