Advertisement

This airline may charge dining fees for special meals after requests doubled: ‘Excessive amount’

Flight attendants on Lufthansa Airlines have proposed charging flyers for special meals, claiming that they've been inundated by an
Flight attendants on Lufthansa Airlines have proposed charging flyers for special meals, claiming that they've been inundated by an "excessive amount" of boutique dining requests.

They’re tired of passengers treating their planes like a Sweetgreen in the sky.

Flight attends for Lufthansa Airlines have proposed charging flyers for special meals, saying they’ve been inundated by an “excessive amount” of unique menu requests.

“We are aware of the issue that the staff representatives for cabin crew complain about too many special meals being ordered,” representatives for the German carrier told Business Insider in a statement.

Indeed, boutique dining requests, which often involve health and religious considerations, are sky high — quite literally.

A cabin crew representative claimed in a letter that that up to 190 passengers now order special menu options on each long-haul flight, German flight news site Aero Telegraph reported.

Previously, it was common for crew to deal with around 100 special requests.

A Lufthansa flight attendant rep floated the special menu fee as a way to curb the overwhelming number of requests on flights. dpa/picture alliance via Getty Images
A Lufthansa flight attendant rep floated the special menu fee as a way to curb the overwhelming number of requests on flights. dpa/picture alliance via Getty Images

This sheer volume is allegedly overwhelming for the airline, which already offers 11 different special options, including low-sodium, vegan, and Kosher meals.

Distributing these can understandably be time consuming, potentially resulting in flight attendants neglecting other duties such as ensuring passenger safety, per the letter.

As such, the flight attendant rep floated several “corrective measures” aimed at curbing the trend. Most controversial among these was imposing a special meal fee, which they hope would curtail the number of requests.

“The range of special meals and the associated on-board service processes, like other product and service topics, are regularly examined and further developed,” said a Lufthansa rep while addressing flight attendant complaints. Media Whale Stock – stock.adobe.com
“The range of special meals and the associated on-board service processes, like other product and service topics, are regularly examined and further developed,” said a Lufthansa rep while addressing flight attendant complaints. Media Whale Stock – stock.adobe.com

Other proposed solutions included limiting the number of special meal options per flight or restricting the selection to options that are obviously religion or health-related.

They also proposed designating “special meal” requirements on passenger boarding passes in order to avoid “endless discussions” inflight, Aero Telegraph reported.

The rep claimed they had broached the topic with the brass in 2017, but nothing was done. This led them to believe that there was no “interest in really seriously solving this issue.”

Lufthansa representatives recently addressed the issue in a statement, claiming they were fully aware of their employees’ gripes. However, they didn’t specify whether they were going to attempt to resolve the issue.

“The range of special meals and the associated on-board service processes, like other product and service topics, are regularly examined and further developed,” said the rep.