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EasyJet planning to make changes for gender-inclusive language

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Everyone knows and has heard of the introduction of “ladies and gentlemen” when speaking to a crowd. The phrase is respectful and probably also a bit old-fashioned. With the growing gender diversity, airlines have recently been bashed by passengers demanding greater gender-inclusion in language that is used when communicating with passengers. Now, easyJet has been at the centre of a complaint made by a passenger who travelled with the airline during the summer months.

What did the passenger complain about?

The passenger who was unhappy about the onboard communication used during his easyJet flight took it to Twitter to voice his opinions!

Voicing his frustration he wrote: "Dear easyJet, are you in some kind of competition to see how many times you can reinforce gender binaries? 'Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls', perfume strictly segregated again by 'ladies and gentlemen'. Ditch sir/madam too. An organisation as huge as yours must do better."

However, easyJet quickly attempted to stop the fire and replied on Twitter claiming that “we are a pan-European airline with the aim of connecting people of all nationalities across Europe so there is certainly no room in our organisation for discrimination of any kind.”

The senior lecturer, employed at Birkbeck, University of London, isn’t the first to complain and address gender inclusion. In fact, other airlines have already made changes to hearth a pan-gender environment.

What gender-inclusive changes have already been made by other airlines

easyJet is trying to make gender-inclusive changes

In a world of always transforming and changing language, airlines are of course trying to adapt along the way. Staying relevant and - most importantly - making sure passengers are happy is probably one of the most important things for an airline. American Airlines has for example, already changed its gender options in their booking process in which passengers can now select “U” or “X” as an option for their gender.

Air Canada declared a corresponding change during the Autumn months in terms of how the airline greets its customers and some of us may be familiar with the change made to the transport services in London, which have also adapted to ‘gender-neutral’ communication. The fact that these changes were made in the past, even dating back to 2017 should hopefully encourage more airlines to adapt to a more gender-inclusive way of communication if they wish to stay up to date and make customers happy.

Competitor British Airways has already introduced gender inclusivity

British Airways might be a step ahead in the game! Earlier this year the airline announced it would be making changes to the booking system, giving passengers non-binary options such as “X” or “undisclosed” instead of the typical options of “Miss”, “Mr” and so on.

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