A woman has shared her account of being asked to step on a baggage scale before boarding a flight, sparking a wave of concern, criticism, and outrage online. Captured by a bystander and quickly uploaded to TikTok, the video has garnered nearly two million views in a matter of days.
After a week of disgusting seats and cross-cabin urination, you’d have thought that pretty much every embarrassing air travel experience has been covered by us here at DMARGE. Alas, it seems that there’s always something else that can go wrong, as one unfortunate passenger found out in recent days…
In the process of trying to check in for her flight, one woman was asked to step onto the airline’s luggage scale in front of a crowd of people to confirm whether the weight she had supplied in her pre-travel documents was correct.
WATCH: Sometimes the humiliations don’t stop after boarding…
Captured by a TikTok user called Lillian (@lilwessel), a video of the scene — which came to fruition after the airline had requested passenger’s weights due to the small size of the aircraft in question, citing safety reasons — was captioned thus:
“The whole airport trying to mind their own business as a woman is asked to step on the BAGGAGE SCALE because she claimed she was 130lbs.”@lilwessel
The video has since been removed from the site but quickly gained massive traction during its short lifespan, amassing a little under two million views and eliciting swathes of comments. Some users expressed sympathy for the woman and disbelief that such an incident could ever come to pass. “Airports are out of control,” one comment read, while another exclaimed, “this is so humiliating omg wtf.”
Other viewers raised questions about the seemingly strange requirement to declare personal weight when flying. “Since when do we have to declare our weight when flying??” one person asked, with another suggesting it should be “illegal” for airlines to even request passengers’ weight. Some even went as far as to suggest that their might be a racial dynamic at play.
Some shared their own experiences of being weighed by airlines, recounting their feelings of embarrassment: “Flying home from the Philippines and they weighed me… I have never been so embarrassed in my life,” one person shared. Another recalled an incident where a heavy passenger was asked to deplane from a 16-seater vehicle, reducing them to tears.
Criticism was also directed towards Lillian for capturing and sharing the image in the first place, with several commenters jumping in to air concerns about the ethics of photographing strangers and sharing the results online: “Y’all need to stop taking pics of strangers and posting it online, it’s weird and disrespectful.”
While many were appalled by the alleged incident, others were keen to defend the airline’s decision, emphasising the importance of weight and balance on smaller aircraft which require balanced weight distribution in order to guarantee a safe journey. Some even report having their handbags, mobile phones, and personal belongings weighed in similar instances.
Ultimately, while the incident was no doubt a humiliating experience for the woman involved — and some very fair questions about why the weighing had to be so public have and should be raised — it seems that the airline was ultimately following safety protocols for the greater good of its passengers.
What the virality of this incident really calls into question is why the TikTok-er in question felt entitled and motivated to share the image at all, given that the woman involved may have wanted to keep the matter as private as possible. It seems that Lillian is the only one to profit from the incident, likely enjoying a healthy bump to her follower numbers in the days since.
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