Southwest Bumps Woman from Flight to Make Room for Obese Teen

Southwest Airlines just cannot seem to get it right. First they kick Kevin Smith off a flight for supposedly being too large, and now they bump a standby passenger off a plane because someone else is too large.

Here’s what happened: a “regular sized” standby passenger got the okay to board a flight from Vegas to Sacramento. After she was seated,  an obese 14-year-old shows up late at the gate. As his seat was next to the standby’s seat, the standby was told to get off the plane.

Furthermore, the airline staff had a go at her for expressing her outrage.

Thing is, though, the standby passenger was right, and Southwest was wrong. That’s how standby process works, and Southwest would do well to study it more carefully: if you have a standby position on a flight, and you get the go-ahead to board, you are no longer a standby passenger. The seat is yours. This is because a ticketed passenger failed to show up at the gate in time to board the aircraft.

The teen should have had to wait for the next flight unless another passenger was willing to volunteer to get bumped or get switched to an empty seat.

In their haste to avoid embarrassment (for the teen and themselves), the Southwest staff screwed the situation up even more than it already was.

What would the staff had done if the standby passenger hadn’t been a standby passenger? (This is a trick question, of course, since, once seated, she wasn’t a standby passenger)

The comments on the Neatorama story are quite mean: the decision to bump the standby passenger was not made by the kid, after all

Southwest Bumps Thin Woman from Flight to Make Room for Plus-Sized Teen via Neatorama

About Jordan

Jordan Matthew Yerman started writing during his third year of high school, where his teacher discouraged his use of the eff-word as "crude, unnecessary and uncouth". While attending UC San Diego for his degree in Political Science, Jordan picked up acting; he would later attend the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, living in the UK for four years before relocating to New York City. To get by, he has worked as a proofreader, model, technical consultant, HR trainer, sign-placer, sales director, crate stacker, bartender, photographer, real estate broker, and as an exhibit at the Bronx Museum. As an actor, Jordan has performed in the USA, England, Scotland, Germany, Belgium, and Netherlands, from stage to indie screen to voiceover, including London's West End. Jordan has been around the world 2 3/4 times. He currently lives in Vancouver and works in New Media; capital N, capital M. You can reach him via jordan at international jet trash dot com.