United Airlines is catching social media hell after it prevented two girls wearing leggings to board a flight in Denver. Photo via Flickr/ Oliver Holzbauer
Two girls were prevented from taking to the friendly skies on Sunday morning because they were inappropriately dressed.
While this may sound startlingly like deja-vu, in this case, the story takes place in Denver and the girls were attempting to board a United Airlines flight wearing spandex leggings.
In total, three girls wearing leggings were halted during the pre-boarding process. One was later permitted to board after she put a dress on over her leggings but the other two were prohibiting from getting on the plane.
Witness Shannon Watts, who was at the gate, took to Twitter to express her outrage. “A @united gate agent isn't letting girls in leggings get on flight from Denver to Minneapolis because spandex is not allowed?” she tweeted.
A United Airlines customer service representative handling social media, in an attempt to answer Watts question about United policies, identified the passage in United’s “Contract of Carriage” that allows for the removal of a passenger who isn’t “properly clothed.”
The twitter-verse, however, took exception to the response. And then they vented their fury calling the policy horrendous and terrible.
Even Actress Party Arquette chimed in:
The back story is not quite so clear-cut, however. In a tweet, United tried to explain that the group was flying on a United pass, which is a free or discounted employee ticket known also known as a "buddy” pass, which does include a strict dress code.
Most airlines enforce some kind of dress code on their buddy passes, as they consider these travelers “representative ” of the airline. Although United has relaxed its dress code policies on buddy passes in recent years, it makes it very clear what its restrictions are.
However, as Watt points out, some clarification on the code is clearly needed, as the father, who was wearing shorts, was allowed to board the plane.
It is likely that the mountain of bad publicity influenced by this single event will cause airlines to take a deeper look at their buddy pass dress codes in the coming days and weeks.
Or, as actor LeVar Burton, said, "the punitive measures taken are not a good look!"