Rabbit-gate: altercation between passenger and a KLM handling agent in São Paulo over rabbit Alfredo


A misunderstanding about a rabbit led to an altercation between a passenger and a KLM handling agent at the airport of São Paulo, Brazil. KLM deeply regrets that airline staff hit a passenger. “We condemn this behaviour,” the airline said. 

Two passengers wanted to take their rabbit Alfredo on a flight from São Paulo to Dublin, Ireland with a transfer in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, onboard KLM flights. A Brazilian court ruling allowed the passengers to take the rabbit on board. Exceptional, as rabbits are not allowed to be carried on board.

The staffer working for KLM wasn’t aware of the exemption due to a miscommunication. In a heated discussion continued in a brawl where both parties gave punches.

We deeply regret this, KLM disapproves any form of violence. Both from employees as from passengers,” a KLM spokesperson said. “We are investigating why the situation got so heated. Both passengers and the rabbit were able to continue their journey the next day.

Due to an internal communication error, the decision to exceptionally allow the transport of a rabbit in the aircraft cabin, based on a court decision, was not communicated in advance to our crew,” the airline wrote in a statement.

The KLM spokesperson added that for safety reasons and animal welfare, no other pets than dogs and cats are allowed on board: “that’s why the ground staffer was so impressed that they stopped the passengers before boarding.”

Meanwhile, passengers Jorge and Gabriella arrived at the airport of Amsterdam, according to their social media accounts. According to the owner, Rabbit Alfredo is doing well. He added that his rabbit had a nice meal during the flight.



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