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Opinion: Boycott Spirit Airlines | Avi Gutfreund

On Tuesday, a press conference was held with the family that was disgracefully treated by Spirit Airlines staff on a flight from Orlando to Atlantic City and their lawyer, Michael Inzelbuch. Over the course of the press conference, Mr. Inzelbuch made clear that, at least at this point, they were not looking to sue the airline or get the offending flight attendant fired, nor were they calling for a boycott of the airline. Rather, they wanted one simple thing: an apology.

While I find it commendable that they are taking the high road and being overly good-willed towards the airline, I won’t be, and I don’t think anyone else should be either.

I have flown on Spirit Airlines a number of times over the years, and for good reason. Being one of the lowest-cost, no-frills airlines with widespread service throughout the United States, it makes sense for someone without a lot of dough to use them for travel needs. But I sure won’t be using them anymore.

I’m not one to boycott a company as a knee-jerk reaction to something. When there is controversy, any sort of controversy, I prefer waiting a bit to let the facts come out. Sometimes, once some time has passed, the facts that come out can change everything.

But as the facts of this story come out, it only gets worse for Spirit Airlines.

First of all, what sort of training – or lack thereof – does this airline give to its employees – so much so that they feel comfortable being so nasty? They quite literally kicked them off for a barely 2-year old child eating a yogurt. They forced them to take their 7-year old son, who is autistic, sensory, nonverbal, and has seizures, off the plane without any remorse, and then forced the entire airplane to deboard, wasting hours and hours of over a hundred passengers. Not to mention that the mother is seven months pregnant, and forcing her off the plane for no reason is despicable as well. How could they let this culture exist among their employees? No frills doesn’t mean no manners, no respect, no human decency, and no decent training for employees.

But it isn’t just the behavior of the flight attendants that bothers me so much. Every company will have bad, stupid people working for it, especially when the company employs thousands of people. A bad experience or troubling one-time incident is no reason to write off an entire company.

However, in this case, corporate knows what happened.

There was an immediate outcry and over a dozen videos taken proving that the family did nothing wrong and were clearly targeted and being abused by the staff. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. And what did Spirit Airlines do? They immediately ignored the evidence and tried brushing off the incident by blaming the adult passengers, saying they were not complying. Except they were, as we all clearly saw.

Then, realizing that they couldn’t get away with their lies, Spirit deleted the tweet, but still doubled down, saying there was an issue with mask wearing. No, there wasn’t! The issue was that flight attendants from Spirit Airlines acted like animals towards a family doing their best, especially considering that they have a disabled, nonverbal child.

Since then, there has been nothing but radio silence from Spirit Air. Not an apology, not a clarification, zero. The incident is so shameful, so horrific, so nauseating, that I cannot, and will not, be giving my hard-earned dollars to the people sitting in their posh chairs in Spirit’s corporate offices so that they can continue ignoring how their passengers are treated like cattle. And nor should you.

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There are 20 Comments to "Opinion: Boycott Spirit Airlines | Avi Gutfreund"

  • Seriously ? says:

    Boycotting is stupid and stooping to the cancel culture level.

  • Fyi says:

    All the airlines are the same. It just happens everyone flies to Florida on the inexpensive airlines. There is a pandemic going in and the flight crew want to be safe. We don’t know the challenges they face, not excusing the behavior. Usually when these incidents happen they do not allow family back on and they blackball them from the airlines. It is not unique to jewish community. Circumstances were everybody was flying to Florida because Florida state is opened.

  • Lakewood!!!! says:

    As the man DansDeals has been saying for years.

    Friend. Don’t. Let. Friends. Fly. Spirit!

  • perplexed says:

    how then will we get to Orlando? isn’t that more important?

  • Dave mal says:

    Avi

    You’re wasting your time or you didn’t care about is money money money nobody’s boycotting anybody
    If they can save a buck don’t waste your time

  • Aaron says:

    To make matters worse, not only did the airline not apologize, they even offered the family another ticket to fly on Spirit. What an insult!

  • ShatzMatz says:

    No one has ever willingly flown Spirit anyways. It is always done begrudgingly. So maybe next time it will be a little more begrudging, but we will still fly them.

    The fact is though that Spirit did nothing long. Anyone who has an IQ over 65 knows by now that the mask issue is something the airlines enforce to the tee. A 2 year old is required to wear a mask, They send you an email before you check in with a clear admonition that everyone 2 and over MUST wear a mask without compromise. If there is ANY reason you or your child cannot wear a mask YOU SHOULD NOT FLY. Its not like they were flying to save someone’s life.

    • sd says:

      The law is clear that a mask is NOT required while eating – for any person of any age.

      Putting everything else aside (if that’s even possible), Spirit was clearly wrong because the child was EATING.

    • Busy says:

      I just flew on United and there were multiple children of between 2-4 years old with their mask off and no one made a fuss! Because when people is their common sense they understand that the day a kid turns two they don’t automatically reach the age of understanding that they must wear a mask. And even someone of limited intelligence understands that! They were clearly out to get these parents

  • Lakewood Local says:

    You are not going to change their minds and no matter if you boycott, there are too many others that still fly with them. You won’t hurt their bottom line
    Sorry to say, its sad that this happened but its just sad

  • Smart says:

    Um yes i don’t know why anyone flys with spirit. They have countless anti Semitic stories. Yes more then other airlines. If you need to get Orlando there are lots of other normal airlines.

  • joe says:

    when you fly spirit,you get what you pay for.

  • Wont fly with them says:

    @Fyi sure
    You can stay home under your bed as long as your safe.
    Come on man

  • Busy says:

    I would never fly spirit you don’t even end up saving. By the time You pay all the extra fees You could fly jet blue or a different airline for the same price

  • Joe Biala says:

    Such a well-written article. Amazingly put. I was actually very upset when I heard Mr. Michael inzelbuch who say that they were not looking to sue them or boycott I was so mad just for the respect of the family the respect of people of humanity they should have sued or boycotted them! I do have a feeling in me that the family would like to sue but Mr inzelbuch is not so convinced he can win it but whatever the reason is I don’t know and you probably don’t know but this article is 100% well written and I think we should do a complete boycott in the Jewish community and hopefully even non-jews who find humanity worthy at all should old boycott.

  • Spirit says:

    While I’m horrified by the story, I flew spirit from Orlando 2 hours after this flight. And there were 2 children around 3 and 5 years old who kept taking off their masks and they did not get kicked off. It was actually a really pleasant flight. I think this was one bad employee

  • Mutty says:

    To be competitively priced Spirit hires the cheapest possible labor including this stewardess which was no doubt a drug addict. If drug addicts don’t get their drugs they become very edgy and can beat up people for no reason at all . This Stewardess was very busy with continuous and crowded post Passover and Easter flights of which she didn’t have her drugs so she picked on a fartzuritah (troubled) family to throw them off the flight for no reason at all to calm herself.
    It’s not worth to fly so cheap, pay an extra few bucks and fly like a mensch.

  • Jason Wallace says:

    Anything for the attention Mike !!!!

  • Seichel Hayashar says:

    I have the solution!
    It fits perfectly with Spirits modus operandi
    and most people with go along with it.

    Charge a “No mask” Fee of $30
    for people who wish to fly without a mask

  • never did mever will says:

    I never flew spirit and I hope I never will. This event had 0 impact on me. they are a horrendous airline