A Melbourne mum has endured a horrendous Qantas flight after overseeing a "racist" text message written by a fellow passenger who confronted her and her one-year-old son.
The woman shared many parents' "dread" at the prospect of travelling solo with her toddler on Sunday evening. The pair were taking the 4 hour and 10 minute flight home from Auckland after celebrating a wedding, before the male passenger seated in front of them began to cause a fuss.
"I just hope he doesn’t kick my seat the whole way," the man said, according to the mum's Facebook post.
She checked whether her son may have kicked the man and concluded "he could barely hang his feet off his own chair". Just before takeoff the woman said the man turned around and accused him of kicking.
"I told him he can't even reach his seat and he should have paid business class or let alone went on his own plane to avoid a child siting behind him."
'I could see what he was texting'
As the plane took off, the woman was "absolutely stunned" to catch sight of the man's phone screen which illuminated with a message he was texting, referring to the mum's weight and her son's skin colour.
"I feel as though the whole interaction had nothing to do with my son 'kicking' his chair but merely something to do with how we looked, with his racial comments," the mum wrote.
With her son now in tears, she said she also "broke down".
Feeling "tired, frustrated and mad" by the encounter, the mum decided to remove herself from the situation and took her son to the back of the plane away from the passenger, before ultimately switching seats with other passengers.
Praise for Qantas flight attendants
The woman thanked the flight attendants who "went out of their way" to ensure the mother and son were looked after despite the interaction with the man, who later allegedly approached a cabin crew member to apologise.
Qantas reiterated to Yahoo News Australia that all passengers aboard their flights should expect to be treated with respect and confirmed the woman took the best course of action in this instance.
“Should a customer feel uncomfortable during their journey, they should raise it with a member of our crew who are trained on how to manage various situations, as they did on this occasion," the spokesperson said.
Despite the ordeal, the mum ended her post by assuring friends online that she and her son "are well", before adding, "We will definitely not be travelling again without my husband".
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