For more than 30 years, Alaska Airlines has been leaving prayer cards on passengers’ meal trays – which means only first-class travelers have been receiving them for the last few years – but now the practice has come to an end.
Bible Verse Cards on Meal Trays
According to the Seattle Times, the airline told its frequent flyers, “Some of you enjoy the cards and associate them with our service. At the same time, we’ve heard from many of you who believe religion is inappropriate on an airplane.”
[Editor’s note: I’ve flown Alaska many times but cannot recall ever seeing a prayer card – how about you?]
The idea for the prayer cards – some of which featured excerpts from the Bible – apparently came from an Alaska marketing executive. Beyond the publicity value, it was thought that that the cards might provide comfort to passengers. Conceivably it could have scared some, too but it appears to have offended some, as well.
As for pro-prayer card passengers, FareCompare CEO Rick Seaney doubts there will be any backlash. “For the handful of front-cabin folks served meals with a card, I am sure they will see the predicament that Alaska is in and not hold it against them,” said Seaney.
Alaska’s New Dubai Airline Partnership
An airline spokesperson was quick to point out in its notice that this change in policy is not related to a new frequent flier partnership with the Middle East-based Emirates that offers travelers on either airline the opportunity to accrue miles with the other.