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The airline dress codes Olivia Culpo and others don’t know about

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Gone are the days when people got gussied up to fly on airplanes — but unbeknownst to many passengers, airlines still have some expectation of decorum. 

Former Miss Universe Olivia Culpo found out the hard way that certain outfits aren’t permitted on passenger aircraft when she was asked to “cover up” before boarding an American Airlines flight to Cabo on Thursday.

And she’s far from the first person to break major airlines’ largely unknown dress code rules: TikTok creator Sierra Steadman was asked to get off her August Alaska Airlines flight for her apparently inappropriate outfit. “I’ve never felt more degraded,” she captioned a clip of her account.

The next month, another woman claimed she was booted from an Alaska Airlines flight for how she looked

Here’s everything we know about the few vague, public rules major US airlines have regarding onboard dress requirements.

The Post has contacted JetBlue, Delta, United and American Airlines for further comment.

Olivia Culpo’s apparently inappropriate outfit.
Courtesy of Aurora Culpo/Instagr

Delta

Following a 2017 incident in which United wouldn’t let a group of teens onto a flight due to their leggings, Delta cheekily took to Twitter to reveal that the bottoms are fully allowed aboard their planes.

“Flying Delta means comfort. (That means you can wear your leggings),” the company tweeted at the time, before adding in response to a question, “We don’t have an item-specific clothing policy, but we encourage no swimwear, sleepwear or underwear as your outerwear.”

A higher standard, however, is expected of those affiliated with the airline. 

“We ask our employees and their family and friends flying on pass privileges to use their best judgment when deciding what to wear on a flight,” a Delta spokesperson told Travel + Leisure following the Culpo incident.

airline dress codes olivia culpo
Sierra Steadman said she was shamed by flight staff for this look. “Flying Delta means comfort. (That means you can wear your leggings),” the company tweeted at the time, before adding in response to a question “We don’t have an item-specific clothing policy, but we encourage no swimwear, sleepwear or underwear as your outerwear.”
Courtesy of @sierrasteadman via

United

United made headlines in 2017 for not allowing individuals onto their flight due to their leggings.

The move sparked widespread online outrage, with critics including a slew of Hollywood celebrities accusing United of being sexist and body-shaming the girls.

“[United] humiliated everyone. They’re sexualizing young girls,” witness Shannon Watts raged to The Post after tweeting about the incident, which she called “leggings-gate.’’

Model Chrissy Teigen added in a tweet, “I have flown United before with literally no pants on. Just a top as a dress. Next time I will wear only jeans and a scarf.”

However, the company subsequently made clear that leggings are, in fact, allowed on flights, tweeting, “To our customers…your leggings are welcome!” 

The teens, however, had been pass riders, who are held to a higher standard of dress than general customers.

JetBlue

“As is common across airlines, JetBlue crew members and their friends and relatives flying with free flight passes are asked to maintain certain minimum dress standards and be well-groomed at all times,” an airline spokesperson told Travel + Leisure in a statement.

This includes face masks: A couple was recently banned from flying on JetBlue after they refused to wear their face masks properly and abused crew members on a San Diego-bound flight.

The airline said the passengers were asked several times to properly wear their face coverings before takeoff but they ignored the federal mandate, News10 ABC reported.

American Airlines

“As stated in the conditions of carriage, all customers must dress appropriately and offensive clothing isn’t permitted onboard our flights,” American Airlines vaguely revealed of its dress policy after a bodybuilder accused the company of banning her from her flight over her attire.

Deniz Saypinar got stuck at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport when American Airlines flight attendants took issue with her fashion sense and banned her from boarding, according to the report.
Deniz Saypinar got stuck at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport when American Airlines flight attendants took issue with her fashion sense and banned her from boarding, according to the report. “You will never believe what happened to me at Texas Airport,” an incensed Saypinar told her 1.1 million followers on Instagram, where she tearfully accused the crew members of calling her “naked.”
@dnzsypnr/Newsflash

In response to The Post’s request for comment, a spokesperson referred to the airline’s Conditions of Carriage, which specify that passengers are expected to “Dress appropriately; bare feet or offensive clothing aren’t allowed.”

Southwest

A Playboy model traveling with her 7-year-old son said she was “humiliated and embarrassed” by a Southwest Airlines flight attendant who told her she couldn’t fly while wearing her low-cut leopard-print top, according to a report.

Eve J. Marie, who was headed from Dallas to Tulsa, told Jam Press that the crew member told her she’d have to change out of the revealing outfit because it violated the airline’s dress code.

Eve J Marie was booted from the flight for her attire.
Marie said she’d been able to board an earlier flight without any problems at all. “When the African American attendant called me over and told me they had called somebody to inform me of needing to change my clothes or be removed, I was so surprised,” she said. “The attendant herself apologized. This flight was my layover and the first flight said nothing, so if this was truly the policy, then why was I not informed before I even boarded the first flight?” Marie said.
Courtesy of @evajmarie/Jam Press

“When they threatened to remove me off the plane if I didn’t have a change of clothes, I felt completely humiliated, embarrassed and highly offended,” the buxom Instagram influencer told the outlet.

According to material posted online, the airline “may, in its sole discretion, refuse to transport, or may remove from an aircraft at any point,” any passenger who engages “in lewd, obscene or patently offensive behavior, including wearing clothes that are lewd, obscene or patently offensive.”

Alaska Airlines

A woman who claims she was booted from a plane because her “stomach was showing” says she was actually discriminated against for being a “fat, tattooed, mixed-race woman.”

Ray Lin Howard, 33, claims she was booted from a flight for her skimpy attire. “I felt like I was being discriminated against for being a fat, tattooed, mixed-race woman, which in turn left me full of emotions like anger, disappointment, helplessness, humiliation and confusion,” she said.
Ray Lin Howard, 33, claims she was booted from a flight for her skimpy attire. “I felt like I was being discriminated against for being a fat, tattooed, mixed-race woman, which in turn left me full of emotions like anger, disappointment, helplessness, humiliation and confusion,” she said.
Jam Press/@fattrophywife

Fairbanks, Alaska, resident Ray Lin Howard, 33, alleges she was harassed by Alaska Airlines staffers. In turn, she did what people do these days to state her case: She took to TikTok to post a now-viral video.

In the footage, Howard can be seen getting escorted off of a flight by police officers who proceed to question her about the incident. She alleges that it all started when Alaska Airlines staff “harassed” her about her attire, which consisted of a midriff-baring top and biker shorts.

When reached by The Post for comment, representatives for Alaska Airlines said, “We’re in contact with the guest. We’re committed to finding out what happened and taking the appropriate actions. It’s our goal to provide caring service to all of our guests. When we don’t live up to that goal, we do everything we can to make it right.”

“The dress code on both Alaska and Horizon is casual, and the requirement is simply a neat and well-groomed appearance,” reads a disclosure on the airline’s website. “Clothing that is soiled or tattered and bare feet are never acceptable. You are expected to use good judgment, but customer service agents will have the final authority to refuse travel for inappropriate attire or appearance.”




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