Southwest Boots Thin Flier for Overweight Teen

Posted Jul 26th 2010 03:18 PMUpdated Aug 12th 2010 01:36 PM

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Southwest Airlines, the same carrier that booted overweight actor-director Kevin Smith from a flight for taking up more than his seat, has now bumped a super thin frequent flier.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the carrier deplaned a 5-foot-four, 110-pound Sacramento woman because they needed her seat for a hefty teen who took up two seats.

The incident happened on a Southwest flight from Las Vegas to Sacramento, the newspaper reports.

The Bee says the thin woman, a sales representative, was flying standby. She got on the plane and stowed her bags.

But when a late-arriving, overweight 14-year-old required two seats, the thin woman was told to leave the flight.

"It didn't seem right that I should have to leave to accommodate someone who had only paid for one seat," the woman, who asked to remain anonymous, tells the newspaper.

She also claims to have been berated by Southwest personnel when she questioned the decision.

Southwest spokeswoman Whitney Eichinger tells AOL Travel News the plane was completely full and the adult passenger had not originally been booked on the flight.

Eichinger says the young passenger was traveling alone and being met at her destination. She says the displaced passenger was not only accommodated on another flight but arrived at her final destination two hours ahead of schedule and was given a refund.

"We reached out to the adult customer and accommodated her and reimbursed her for her fare for the inconvenience," Eichinger says.

The situation, the spokeswoman adds, was "delicate" and unusual. "The events are not reflective of a typical flight. This is not going to happen every day."





Photo, randomduck, flickr
Filed Under: News

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Jackie

If the fat boy took two seats, he payed double then. Right

October 18 2010 at 12:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Theresababe24

This would have actually been a story IF this woman had purchased a regular ticket, BUT when you fly stand-by, you are not guaranteed anything. Southwest absolutely did not owe this woman anything either. For them to get her to her destination 2 hours earlier, AND to refund her money, I think she should be GRATEFUL! She is the one who ultimately benefitted from the situation in the long run...and it had NOTHING to do with HER being thin either!

October 14 2010 at 3:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
yaniphoto

slow news day -

Standby passenger flies for free on a better flight.

October 14 2010 at 1:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
john

i can't believe skinny is moaning. come on, she arrived way ahead of time on a free flight. this bitch must really have an inflated opinion of her importance. it's standard for a standby to get bumped, especially for a kid traveling alone. on the other hand, when are people going to be charged like baggage for their weight and how much room they take up on the plane, if only for comfort concerns if not for the increased load on the flight capabilities of the aircraft. at least southwest doesn't follow the competition and charge a 100 lb woman with an 80 lb bag more than a 250 lb man with a 20 lb carry on. airplanes can only lift a finite amount of weight. doesn't matter if it's bodies or bags unless it becomes body bags on the one that can't make the lift.

October 06 2010 at 11:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
yokoach

contrary to what some posters have said, in reality she was NOT booted because she was standby....she was booted because the teen was overweight and took up 2 FRICKIN SEATS!!!

IF THE 14 YEAR OLD HAD NOT BEEN OVERWEIGHT THERE WOULD HAVE BEEN SEATS FOR BOTH...

THIS IS THE PROBLEM WITH THE SELF JUSTIFYING OVERWEIGHT IS OKAY PEOPLE...IT STARTS TO INCONVENIENCE OTHERS WHO HAVE TO ACCOMODATE THEIR INABILITY OR UNWILLINGNESS TO ADDRESS THEIR SIZE...THERE ARE FAR FEWER 'GENETIC DISORDERS' THAT LEAD TO OVERWEIGHT THAN PEOPLE WOULD LIKE TO BELIEVE.

October 02 2010 at 2:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Don

Last I heard, she was getting her own reality show...

September 30 2010 at 5:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael

The thin woman was booted because a 14 yr. old porker needed two seats, bottom line having to make special accomodations for a grossly overweight person at the inconvience of others. Their treatment should be the same as every one else, inconvience or not.

September 30 2010 at 5:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael

Wat-a-hey

September 30 2010 at 5:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dianne

Naota, absolutely correct. She was not booted because she was thin, nor was she booted because she was on standby. She was booted because a previously ticketed person who happened to need two seats got on board and no one wanted to be "insensitive" about the fat teen. Bottom line: make people declare AT TICKETING if they need two seats. If they say yes, they pay. If they say no and show up anyhow, they don't fly. Period.

September 30 2010 at 4:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Skeptical in Glendale

Maybe it would help to read the original column in the Sacramento Bee. You might find that the woman is not the insensitive clod that this makes her out to be and that Southwest admits that it could have handled the situation better. AOL's writers (especially the headline writers) are a disgrace to journalism. I wonder why the Sacramento Bee tolerates the outright theft and subsequent butchering of its content.

September 30 2010 at 12:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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