Delta Airlines Tried To Play Matchmaker, But It Backfired
By DeAnna Taylor
Shooting your shot and sliding in DMs is the new way people try to initiate contact with their crush.
Delta Airlines, along with their partner Coca Cola, wanted to make things a bit easier for passengers flying the friendly skies. Unfortunately, their plan backfired. The two brands came together for a marketing campaign that allowed passengers to receive special napkins that allowed them to write down their phone number to give to their “plane crush.”
Many people have found love while flying or even in passing in the airport, so the campaign wasn’t farfetched. Several passengers, however, were offended. The uproar caused the airline to remove the napkins from their aircrafts.
In a statement, Delta said, “We rotate Coke products regularly as part of our brand partnership, but missed the mark with this one. We are sorry for that and began removing the napkins from our aircraft in January.”
Coca-Cola also apologized to “anyone we may have offended” and said they were replacing the napkins with other designs.
Several passengers took to Twitter to express their strong opinions about the gesture. Many felt that the napkins were creepy and that they didn’t want unsolicited phone numbers.
— Mike J (@MJJoe) February 1, 2019
Hey @Delta and @CocaCola These napkins are creepy AF. Pretty sure no one appreciated unsolicited phone numbers in the ‘good old days’ and they sure as heck don’t want the number of someone who has been gawking at them on a plane for hours today. Not a good look. pic.twitter.com/PJAiurFRMh
— ducksauz (@ducksauz) January 21, 2019
Some passengers even took it as far as saying that the napkins promoted harassment on planes. This is a sensitive area since the airline industry has faced criticism over the years for allowing sexism and sexual harassment on flights.
All was not lost though. Many passengers saw the humor in the campaign and actually appreciated it. They came to the companies’ defense via social media saying that they should not have to apologize for the gesture. Some saw it as a simple nudge to encourage passengers to talk to one another, not just in a romantic sense. One person pointed out that it could even lead to potential networking or business opportunities.
Thanks @CocaCola and @Delta, for encouraging people to TALK to one another, make new friends, or do anything besides stare mindlessly at phones. But don't you know it's practically illegal to flirt these days? Sad world, but nice try & not #creepy https://t.co/5xvmHXSo80
— Ashley Bergin (@punkmarkgirl) February 6, 2019
I don't see the problem. You never know if someone:
– Could be a business customer
– Might have a job for you
– May be fun to get to know
What's the problem? Someone get offended by this napkin?!?
— David Martin Ungaro 📊 (@davidungaro) February 7, 2019
Would you be offended by the napkins or would you see it as a simple yet cute gesture to break the ice?
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.