It seems United Airlines has a vested interest in stopping you from experiencing sky travel alongside your emotional support peacock, or at least this is the scenario a disgruntled passenger had to endure earlier this week.
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On Monday, Live and Let Fly reported that a woman who tried to board a recent United flight outbound from Newark Airport was denied an additional seat for her peacock. The woman reportedly offered to pay for a second seat for the bird and claimed it was her right to bring it with her being that it’s her “emotional support animal.”
A spokesperson for United confirmed to Fox News on Tuesday that a traveler was denied permission to bring a peacock onto the aircraft, and proffered the following bummer rationale: “This animal did not meet guidelines for a number of reasons, including its weight and size. We explained this to the customers on three separate occasions before they arrived at the airport.”
I imagine the unidentified woman called so many times beforehand in hopes of getting a more peacock-tolerant United representative on the phone, perhaps even to lean on them for emotional support.
And United isn’t the only airline to begin rethinking its stance on emotional support animals. Earlier this month, Delta announced stricter regulations, including proof that the animal in question is sufficiently trained to sit through a flight without causing a disturbance. According to CNBC, a Delta spokesperson said of the rule changes, “Customers have attempted to fly with comfort turkeys, gliding possums known as sugar gliders, snakes, spiders and more.”
I appreciate people wanting an air travel experience to be bearable, but need it be exuberant? In any case, looks like the “emotional support” of downers will need to suffice from now on.