Southwest Airlines Passengers Told They Are “Too Fat To Fly”
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BRISTOL, Pa. (CBS) — A Bucks County man is embarrassed and angry. He feels like he was taken for a ride all because of his size.
Cleaning business owner Theodore Moore’s recent Southwest Airlines flight to Ft. Lauderdale for a cruise with his wife got off to a bad start.
“I’m diabetic. It’s very difficult for me to lose weight,” Moore said.
The 56-year-old from Bristol, Bucks County says at the gate, he was approached by a Southwest Airlines employee.
“(They said) ‘Sir I don’t mean to embarrass you, but don’t you think you’re too large for the seat?’ I said ‘ma’am you are embarrassing me,’” Moore explained.
Moore was forced to pay more than $340. He says he had to shell out the extra money because his shoulders extended into the next seat.
And Moore isn’t alone.
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Kenlie Tiggeman, 33, says she was humiliated after she was told she was “too fat to fly” on a recent Southwest flight in Dallas.
“I was asked what size clothes I wear, how much I weigh. I gave the answers to those questions in front of a gate full of people, some of whom were snickering,” Tiggeman said.
In a response to previous concerns, a spokesperson for the airline said “if a passenger cannot fit in a seat with the armrests down, a second seat must be purchased. If the flight is not full, that added charge will be refunded.”
Tiggeman says she did fit in the seat and was eventually refunded her ticket.
Moore wonders why he was singled out his April 1st flight, which he says was overbooked.
“It ruined my entire cruise,” Moore said.
Moore claims we was not the only one on that flight whose shoulders were wider than the seat.
He wants an apology and a refund.
A spokesperson for Southwest Airlines says the policy is not intended to make money, but rather to ensure the comfort of all passengers on board.
Reported by Todd Quinones, CBS 3