Airline tells woman: "cover up your cleavage or don't fly"

Airline tells woman: 'cover up your cleavage or don't fly'Getty

A female passenger trying to board a flight to New York was told that she wouldn't be allowed to fly unless she covered up her cleavage.

The passenger, named only as Avital (she has asked for her last name to be withheld), contacted the US website Jezebel about the embarrassing experience.

She claims that was told by Southwest Airlines that she was dressed "inappropriately" and asked to button up her shirt or stay behind.

At the time, Avital was wearing a black cotton dress, a flannel shirt, a scarf around her neck, and Birkenstock-style sandals - but the seemingly inoffensive outfit still managed to offend airline staff at check-in.

Avital, who was travelling to Las Vegas, says she ignored the request, and managed to get through the gate to board the plane. She told the website: "Lo and behold, the plane didn't fall out of the sky... my cleavage did not interfere with the plane's ability to function properly."

Southwest Airlines offered Avital an apology and a refund as a gesture of goodwill, but pointed out that their contract of carriage allowed them to refuse to transport a customer whose clothing is lewd, obscene, or patently offensive.

Speaking to Jezebel, spokesperson Christi NicNeill said: " As a company that promotes a casual and family-focused atmosphere onboard out aircraft and in our airports, we simply ask that our customers use good judgement and exercise discretion in deference to other customers."

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