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Airline Apologizes to Flyer “Humiliated” by FA Doing His Job

Pregnant woman holding plane model (pregnant traveling concept)

Jetstar has apologized for a flight attendant who was technically just doing his job when he insulted a passenger by inquiring about her pregnancy.

Commercial airlines have a number of sound reasons for restricting how close to their due date pregnant women are permitted to fly. In most cases, having a baby in the aisle of a Boeing 737 is not a preferred birthing experience and medical attention is almost always easier to come by on the ground than at 35,000 feet. So, when a Jetstar Airways flight attendant asked a passenger how far along in her pregnancy she was, it was a perfectly reasonable question, or at least it would have been if the passenger was actually pregnant.

Grethe Andersen, 24, told The New Zealand Herald she was boarding a Jetstar flight from Wellington International Airport (WLG) to Auckland Airport (AKL) when a member of the cabin crew motioned toward her belly and asked her “how many weeks along” she was. Anderson says she was “humiliated” by the awkward ordeal of having to explain to a stranger that she was not in fact pregnant in front of a crowded plane.

Andersen says the situation was compounded by the fact that no one in the crew reached out to offer an apology and the flight attendant who made the faux pas avoided eye contact with her for the rest of the flight. Although hiding in the galley seems a reasonable response to a social blunder of this magnitude, the crew member’s own embarrassment may have helped encourage Andersen to go public with details of the uncomfortable exchange.

“As a woman, it’s not a good feeling to be asked if you’re pregnant when you’re not,” Andersen wrote on the airline’s Facebook page. “I used to be quite heavily overweight and even then was never met by such a rude question and especially no remorse from the flight attendant,” she added in a since deleted post.

Reached for comment, a Jetstar spokesperson told the newspaper that airline officials have personally apologized to Andersen over the incident as well as issuing a $100 voucher as a good will gesture.

[Photo: iStock]


Comments are Closed.
Lakeviewsteve November 8, 2015

A fine almost 50 year old lady went to the hospital recently complaining of a stomach ache. She delivered her baby an hour later and never knew she was pregnant to begin with. So why is the FA's question so unreasonable? If the lady was embarrassed, it should have been for her state, not because the airline asked her a reasonable question. Jetstar also apologized for her "humiliation."

weero November 1, 2015

A check-in agent sure, a gate agent maybe ... but once you are aboard, the crew should really not conduct such investigations that is odd. > As a woman, it’s not a good feeling to be asked if you’re pregnant when you’re not It is also mildly insulting when you are a man for that matter. But seriously how often does she fly. Hasn't she been briefed extensively that the FAs are here for our safety and abuse?

Gringa November 1, 2015

It's not the FA's fault she looked pregnant. Maybe she should do something about it and I'll bet it's not the first time it has happened to her.