Group of Passengers Kicked Off Flight for Smelling Too Bad

Via Secret Flying Spirit Airlines kicked a group of passengers off of a San Jose, Costa Rica to Fort Lauderdale flight last week because they smelled.

Airlines have to be careful of smells onboard. Over the summer there was fake news claiming passengers became ill after someone passed gas onboard an American Airlines flight. And British Airways once did have to turn around an aircraft after someone used the lavatory.

Copyright: boarding1now / 123RF Stock Photo

In Costa Rica the Spirit Airlines passengers singled out for stench played the he who smelt it dealt it card,

“You’re saying that we stink. We do not stink. You can smell me. We do not stink,”

To which Spirit apparently took the position, he who denied it supplied it. And kept them off the aircraft.

Spirit promised they could fly the following day, but the passengers pointed out “We’re going to smell the same tomorrow.”

Air Canada once kicked an American passenger off a regional jet who smelled too badly. With just 50 seats there wasn’t far to move him away from other passengers.

Incidentally I’m surprised situations like this don’t occur more frequently at Washington National airport.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. OMG, from the video, it appears that the allegedly smelly pax are black. Obviously, Spirit’s action was racist.

    And how does Spirit defend themselves? When a passenger is unruly, there’s usually some evidence. How do you record “smell,” and isn’t it a bit subjective?

  2. As President of the National Association for the Advancement of the Bad Smelling (NAA BS), I am issuing a travel advisory for our membership. The flight crew clearly could not hide their smell-free privilege, and engaged in blatant malicious smell-ism. We are urging our members to take their business elsewhere. Hopefully, Spirit will view this as a teachable moment and give our organization lots of money. Only then will they restore their reputation as a premium high class airline.

  3. Local press reports these pax were being deported. Originally apprehended on the Caribbean coast, they were held in the hellhole immigration jail. Probably pretty danged stinky…

  4. Some people don’t bathe often due to religious reasons. They smell pretty bad when you get near them.but I doubt they will get kicked off an airplane in the US especially if they are in their religious attire.

  5. Sounds like The Group was arrested/apprehended by Costa Rican authorities and IF They were placed In Lock Up under poor conditions, This could be Where the originates. More than likely US Embassy will need to Get Involved….Spirit had nothing to Do with their situation other than Enforcing Company Protocols for an awkward situation. Sounds like a lot of info is omitted from initial Story

  6. Wow that’s awkward! They must really have been kicking up a stink for the staff to take that measure. Long-haul flights definitely get stuffy and smelly by the end in such a tightly-packed capsure so it makes sense to start as fresh as possible!

  7. This reminds me of the story of the teacher who sent Johnnie, one of her pupils, home with a note that read in part: “Johnnie smells; please bathe him more often.”
    The next day Johnnie returned to school with a reply from his mother added to the teacher’s note: “Learn Johnnie, don’t smell him.”

  8. Well well well. Look who crashed and 12 people died on SPIRIT AIRLINES a few days ago. Looks to me like Spirit Airlines cursed themselves by mistreating the group of black people in October.

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