United Airlines announced a major industry change just last month. It plans to allow customers the option to book flights using the nonbinary gender prefix Mx. It is the first US airline to do so, in a bid to “lead the industry in LGBT inclusivity”.
According to the company’s press release, “Customers now have the ability to identify themselves as M(male); F(female); U(undisclosed) or X(unspecified), corresponding with what is indicated on their passports or identification.”
In the United States, the federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regulations require that all passengers must disclose their gender identity before their flights as part of its security screenings. This has to be consistent with the gender listed on their government-issued ID, though many states also offer gender-neutral birth certificates.
United Airlines Now Offers Non-Binary Gender Booking Options
United Airlines has worked with the Human Rights Campaign and The Trevor Project to ensure that their employees understand the use of preferred pronouns. The company has also taken other steps to guarantee an inclusive space for both customers and employees.
According to Beck Bailey, acting director of the Workplace Equality Program, “By providing non-binary gender selection for ticketing and the gender-inclusive honorific ‘Mx’ in user profiles, United Airlines is taking an important step forward for non-binary inclusion.” While Amit Paley, CEO & Executive Director of The Trevor Project holds that “We are thrilled to bring Trevor’s expertise on the mental health of LGBTQ people to United to ensure its employees maintain safe and inclusive spaces for LGBTQ employees and guests.”
United’s Chief Customer Officer, Toby Enqvist, said that “United is excited to share with our customers; whether they identify along the binary of male or female or not; that we are taking the steps to exhibit our care for them; while also providing additional employee training to make us even more welcoming for all customers and employees.”
You can read more about the rights of transgender passengers while travelling in the United States here.