The controversy of the day involves a couple of teens who were denied seating on a United flight out of Denver for wearing “leggings”.  This was apparently related to the airline’s dress code for people who are traveling as family members of United employees, rather than general boarding.

The guideline is pretty broad on what is or isn’t “properly clothed”, but so what?  The airline gets to make its own rules for people flying under special circumstances with presumably discounted fees.

There are a few subjects on which I am old-fashioned and this is one of them.  I get that flying is very uncomfortable and that dressing light helps people get through security check-in faster.  However, I am one of those types who always dresses at least “business casual” when flying.

There are a couple of reasons for this.  The first is that I have self-respect and I like to look good in public.  I’ve never been comfortable with this weird Slob Culture we have where it’s now perfectly okay to wear sweat pants to church.

The second reason is that I find that I get treated with more respect by airline employees, TSA agents, and fellow passengers when I look like an adult.  It’s worth the tradeoff in comfort for me.  I’ve had more than a few times that I’ve been given free drinks, spontaneously bumped up to first class, and given other types of preference and I believe it’s because I make it a point to dress–and act–like someone who has enough respect for other people to not show up wearing a “Fuck Trump” t-shirt and propping my bare feet up on the seat in front of me.

It matters, kids.

Feminists, who have absolutely nothing useful to do ever, are jumping all over this as some sort of effort by the Patriarchy to dictate how girls must dress.  It isn’t.  United has every right to hold its employees to a high standard and expect that anyone who is using their company benefits should represent the company well.   This is the sort of fake controversy we’ve come to expect these days, sorry to say.

I’m surprised that the kids weren’t warned about this before heading to the airport.  When I was a teenager, I flew to Atlanta with one of my sisters.  She had purchased my ticket using some corporate program her company had.  She specifically warned me before we left to “dress nice”.  Apparently, it was in the guidelines.

How do you fly?  Are you more the self-centered slob or the uptight prick like me?

5 comments

  1. I have only flow a few times commercially. However each time i flew, i wore acceptable clothing for my destination and nothing that would give anyone any problems.
    I just do not understand why people cant take the time to dress well. or cleanly…
    ack taht is another one i hate
    People that go out and about to stores, food chains, clubs, and are filthy..
    i seen people in stores with pigshit on their shoes
    covered in oil or grease, even at restaurants dirty and sweaty from working.

  2. I travel quite a bit for work around the US, and have noticed what you have – dress nice, get treated better, even if it’s just a better attitude from the flight crew.

    As far as this non-story, anything Shannon Watts gets behind should be ridiculed or ignored.

  3. I either wear jeans or black yoga pants when I fly. Most of my flights are long haul and I am either up front already or with the whole family, so no chance of upgrade. But that’s my choice as a paying customer.
    While I am a card carrying useless feminist, in this particular case, United has every right to dictate the dress code for company employees/dependents​ who are flying on a free ticket and represent the airline. There is a very specific dress code (and code of conduct) when you redeem the benefit, different from the contract of carriage. It’s made very clear when you book. I flew on those tix for a while many years ago and I would never even think about yoga pants under those circumstances. It’s an incredibly valuable perk and they are very clear that you are not guaranteed a seat and you are on the clock the whole time. I would be less concerned about the kids getting on the plane and more concerned with the employee getting in trouble due with all the publicity.

  4. The employee in question has caused this PR nightmare for UA. The dress code is very clear. They employee should have made it clear to their pass rider before getting them passes.
    Believe me when I tell you my yoga pants are way more put together than the PJs they hand out on long haul flights. I am not wearing business casual on a 15 hour flight. Judge away.

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