American Airlines has been popping up all over the Internet for two very different reasons: a picture of an obese guy in an AA plane and a spider who makes a surprise appearance in a piece of cake on an AA flight.
First, the guy who takes up a seat and half the aisle...Here's the photo floating around the Internet and of course, the thing that we're all asking is if it's real.
The London's Telegraph seems to think so.
American spokesman Tim Smith had this to say about the photo:
"We cannot verify the authenticity of that photograph, nor do we know who might have taken the photo. We do have a policy that tries to be flexible for passengers of size....We do not always or routinely charge for an extra seat unless there are simply no other options. Our people are trained to work with customers to try and accommodate ALL passengers onboard. Often, pending how full the flight is, we can get everyone taken care of. In some cases, we cannot, so we book the person on another flight or in some cases, depending on the customer’s schedule needs, we do book and charge for two seats, but certainly not all the time. We train our people to try and find another solution if at all possible."
Now for the second viral Internet issue for American: someone had a spider in their cake.
National Geographic Traveler reader advocate Christopher Elliott blogged about the video on Monday and pondered Why Wasn't Spiders in my Dessert the next United Breaks Guitar?
Watch the video and check out the spider's appearance around 15 seconds in.
Smith says that American's quick response to the passenger who posted the video helped mitigate what could have been a p.r. nightmare for the Fort Worth carrier.
"Because we have people on staff who closely monitor Internet postings and diligently "listen" to what our customers are saying, we found the video posting very quickly after it appeared - certainly within a few hours the same day it showed up, which was several months ago......The person who posted it did contact us and he seemed pleased that we had been listening and reaching out to him. We were able to discuss and personally handle his concerns."