Airlines weighing passengers at gate? Most won’t, says FAA

The Federal Aviation Administration says it doesn’t anticipate most airways will resort to weighing passengers at the gate after it launched steerage for carriers concerning the load and steadiness management of their aircrafts.

A two-year-old advisory circular particulars a lot of choices for airways to estimate the load of passengers and baggage, together with surveys and weighing passengers on a scale. The round, which incorporates voluntary suggestions, went viral after it was picked up by airline industry blogs after which the national media.

An FAA spokesperson stated weighing particular person passengers was merely an possibility, not a mandate. “The FAA issued an Advisory Round in Might 2019 that confused the significance that airline weight and steadiness packages precisely mirror present passenger weights,” the company informed Quick Firm. “Operators are evaluating their packages to adjust to this steerage. Whereas weighing clients at the gate is an possibility, most operators will doubtless depend on up to date strategies for estimating passenger weights.”


In reality, weighing passengers has at all times been an possibility. The FAA’s previous circular, launched in 2005, consists of a lot of the identical language. Nonetheless, the common weight of American vacationers has modified since then, and airways at the moment are tasked with updating their estimates.

After all, it’s potential that airways will select to start out asking clients to step on a scale earlier than they board a flight (though passengers would be capable to decline), nevertheless it’s laborious to think about which airline would wish to be the primary to announce such a rule.

We reached out to the highest three U.S. carriers for remark and none would reply the query instantly. Delta Air Strains referred us to the FAA’s assertion. American Airlines didn’t reply to a request for remark, and United Airlines referred us to Airlines For America, the trade’s commerce affiliation, which declined to remark.