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Saudi Arabia airline says dress modestly or risk not flying

SaudiaThe national airline of Saudi Arabia has posted up a warning on its website saying passengers need to cover up their bodies. Saudia’s English language advisory says passengers who wear clothing which might offend, or cause discomfort, to others will not be allowed on flights.

In its passengers’ code of conduct listings, Saudia clarifies indecently dressed as women who are not wearing clothing which covers their arms or legs. Men get off pretty lightly as the warning only says they can’t wear shorts which reveal too much of their legs.

Tight or thin see-through clothing is also a no-no for women, although no mention of the same restriction applying to males is noted. The code of conduct also says any passengers not wearing footwear will be denied boarding.

When the English language version of the code of conduct hit the headlines it triggered an outpouring of comments on social media. Posts such as ‘a good move indeed’ were in favour of the code, but the majority were not.

Airline industry analysts say comments like ‘you would never be able to do that in the UK’, ‘religious policing’ and ‘Islamic controls in the air?’ show Saudia may have made a public relations faux pas. Media representatives have been trying to get hold of Saudia representatives to get an official statement. They have had no luck so far.

For many travellers booked on Saudia’s flights the burning question is whether the regulations apply right across the board. They want to know if children, babies and premium class passengers are exempt and do the same rules apply to those who take off some clothing while in flight as well.

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