Jameel Rehman was flying with his mom in business class for the first time.
After boarding, an attendant said there was an issue with his seat, so he needed to move to economy.
He shared the incident on TikTok, where users were impressed by how calmly he handled the situation.
It was a stark difference from less than 10 minutes earlier, when Rehman was sipping Champagne with his mother and celebrating their first business-class flight together.
On November 27, the pair boarded a 10-hour Qantas flight from Sydney, Australia, to Honolulu, Hawaii.
As Rehman was getting comfortable in business class, wearing complimentary Qantas pajamas provided for the premium cabin, a flight attendant informed him that his seat had a technical issue, which compromised his safety.
With every other business-class seat occupied, Rehman needed to move to economy.
Rehman shared the story on TikTok on Wednesday. At the time of publication, it has 5.9 million views.
Throughout the two-and-a-half-minute video, Rehman is understanding about the situation.
"At least I got to enjoy it for a brief second," Rehman says in the video. "The staff are very apologetic. Can't really knock 'em. What can you do?"
"We know this would have been disappointing for Mr. Rehman and we have apologized for the disruption caused to his journey," a Qantas spokesperson said in a statement sent to BI. "Safety is always our main priority and unfortunately a minor technical issue meant that this seat had to be kept vacant."
The traveler moved to economy, where he still enjoyed business-class perks like dining
At the end of August, Rehman won the top 1 percent sales award at Cisco, the technology company where he works.
The prize was an all-expense-paid trip to Hawaii in business class, and he got to bring one guest. Rehman chose his mother.
Rehman said flying business class was completely new to both him and his mother.
"I just wanted to show my mom, "'Hey your boy's made it,'" he said.
After getting a small taste of business class, a flight attendant escorted Rehman to his new seat: the entirety of row 36.
"Not a big deal, right? Because it's only part of the trip. I know how nice this trip is going to be," Rehman said.
While Rehman didn't get a business-class seat, he said he enjoyed comparable perks on the 10-hour flight. He received a business-class meal and drink service, had access to the business-class bathroom, and a flight attendant constantly checked in on him.
Two days after the flight, prior to Rehman posting on TikTok, the airline reached out to inform Rehman that Cisco was receiving a downgrade refund and Rehman would receive a $500 travel voucher, the Qantas spokesperson said.
After the flight, Rehman shared the story on TikTok
After the trip, Rehman started sorting through the videos he took and decided to share the flight incident on TikTok.
The video gained more than 3,600 comments, and plenty of TikTokers wrote that they were impressed by how calm and positive Rehman was about the entire situation.
"You're a class act lad. Congrats on your achievements and sharing em with mum," one person wrote.
"You handled a lot better than I would," another TikToker said.
"It's a nine-hour flight. I'm asleep for most of it," Rehman said. "This is just a bump in the road."
Plus, he said he knew he'd get to experience a business-class seat on the return flight home back to Australia.
Read the original article on Business Insider