Director Kevin Smith, famous for both directing movies such as ‘Clerks’, ‘Mallrats’ and ‘Chasing Amy’ as well as appearing in them himself as the character ‘Silent Bob’ had a humiliating experience on a Southwest Airlines flight recently. On February 14 the plus-size film-maker was told by airline officials that his mass was in contravention of the airline’s policies, and that he could not fly.
Kevin Smith has previously spoken candidly about his weight on his blog. Nonetheless he maintains that he was treated unfairly by the airline, as he could lower both armrests. But just how common are these airline weight restrictions for passengers?
Increasingly so would seem to be the answer. In addition to wanting to ensure the comfort of all passengers cash-strapped airlines may also be seeking to exploit the weight problems of their customers for financial gain. Not all airlines have been pursuing such an aggressively anti-fat policy however. Recently Air France announced that larger passengers boarding flights to France would be offered a second seat for free if one was available.