Airline makes history

United Airlines Becomes First U.S. Airline to Offer Non-Binary Gender Booking Options

Great news for gay travelers who don’t fit into one of society’s predetermined boxes: United Airlines says it’s now the first airline in the United States to offer non-binary gender options throughout its booking channels, in addition to offering the option to select a title of “Mx” instead of the traditional “Mr.,” “Mrs.” or “Ms.”

As of March 22, travelers can identify themselves as Male [M], Female [F], Undisclosed [U], or Unspecified [X], (matching indications on their passports and other IDs).

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“United is focusing more than ever on its commitment to its customers, and making this a priority is part of our efforts to build the world’s most inclusive airline,” a United spokesperson told GayTravel.com.

United’s Chief Customer Officer Toby Enqvist said the company wants to lead the industry in LGBTQ inclusivity and is providing additional employee training “to make us even more welcoming for all customers and employees.”

The training initiatives, developed with recommendations from the Human Rights Campaign and The Trevor Project, will cover “preferred pronouns…the persistence of gender norms, [and] LGBT competency in the workplace,” among other things, the company said in a statement.

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“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,” said Beck Bailey, acting director of the Workplace Equality Program.

While United is the first major U.S. carrier to offer non-binary options throughout its booking channels, other airlines are gearing up to do the same. Earlier this  year, Airlines for America, an association representing most of the major airlines in the United States, announced that big changes were coming to how airlines classified passengers.

The association worked with the International Air Transport Association to approve a new international standard that includes non-binary IDs. Originally, the organization indicated that the changes wouldn’t take effect until June 1.

Reprinted by permission of GayTravel.com.

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