Allegations of discrimination, poor customer service surface against British Airways

New Delhi, Jan 14 : Recent social media posts have raised concerns about British Airways’ customer service practices after accusations of discriminatory behaviour and questionable policies came from the high-profile individuals.

On Saturday, Ashwini Bhide, a senior civil servant (IAS 95 Maharashtra), took to X, to express her dissatisfaction with British Airways.

Bhide, known for her work on Mumbai’s Aqua Line metro, accused the airline of downgrading her from premium economy to a lower class at the check-in counter, allegedly citing an overbooking situation.

She claimed that not only the false reason was given to her, but she also said that no compensation was offered. This practice is said to be commonplace at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) in Mumbai.

“Are you cheating or following discriminatory/racist policies @British_Airways? How come u downgrade a premium economy passenger at the check-in counter on false pretext of overbooking without even paying the price difference, forget about compensation? I’m told this is a common practice by BA @CSMIA Mumbai,” Bhide wrote on X.

British Airways responded to Bhide’s tweet, expressing regret for the inconvenience caused. However, no further details or explanations were provided.

Another incident was brought to light on Sunday when Jyoty Singh tweeted about an alleged cultural insensitivity incident involving a British Airways staff member at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.

Singh claimed that a staff member at check-in desk 19, counter 3, was ridiculing a group’s culture and traditional clothing in front of customers. When confronted, the staff member reportedly defended her actions, stating that it was her opinion.

“Hi @British_Airways your staff member at terminal 3, check-in 19 (desk 3) at @Schiphol. Amsterdam was ridiculing a group’s culture and their traditional clothing in front of customers. When confronted that’s unkind and unprofessional she said that’s her opinion & we need to deal with it,” wrote Singh.

British Airways responded to Singh’s tweet, acknowledging the incident and asserting that such behaviour is not consistent with their values. The airline promised to internally assess the matter, ensuring it does not align with their standards.

“This is disappointing to hear and isn’t consistent with our values, Jyoty. We appreciate your comments and can assure you this will be taken onboard and assessed internally. And we won’t be doing a thing about it because our PR team doesn’t actually make any decisions and our HR team doesn’t actually care. All the best! “the airline’s tweet read.


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