Manchester Airport lounge staff sorry for turning away family in Minnie Mouse tops

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Emma Raikes

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The family was only allowed to enter once the personalised t-shirts had been covered up

A family refused entry to an airport lounge on account of their Minnie Mouse t-shirts has received an apology.

Emma Raikes was travelling to Disney World, Florida on Monday with six family members, including her two-year-old niece, and had booked access to the Aspire Lounge at Manchester Airport.

Staff told the group their personalised Minnie Mouse t-shirts did not fit the lounge dress code.

Operator Swissport apologised and said staff had “misinterpreted” the code.

‘Made us feel targeted’

Ms Raikes, from Yorkshire, said the group had been delayed in entering the lounge because the booking was made in her mother’s name and she had been held up in security.

“Nothing was said about our clothes at this time,” Ms Raikes added.

When her mother caught up with her family, staff said the group could not enter the lounge because of their t-shirts.

Her mother suggested covering up their t-shirts with jumpers and cardigans and the group was then granted access.

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The group was flying to Orlando, Florida to visit Disney World and had booked into the Aspire Lounge

“The fact a man and young boy walked straight in after us wearing Manchester United (football) tops made us feel like it was just us that had been pulled up, which made us feel targeted,” Ms Raikes said.

“This was not sportswear or t-shirts with offensive slogans. To me, tour shirts mean a group of people, maybe a stag/hen, with ‘lads on tour’ or something along those lines.”

The family was embarking on a two-week holiday to Disney World and had paid £107 in total for lounge entry.

The party included Ms Raikes’ mother and partner, along with her sister, husband and niece who all live in the Wakefield/Leeds area and her brother-in-law’s sister from Cumbria.

‘Genuine mistake’

In a statement, Swissport said its lounge dress code does not permit tour shirts, sportswear and fancy dress.

“On this specific occasion, the member of staff who dealt with the family was wrong to have asked them to cover their personalised t-shirts and has misinterpreted the dress code which is designed to ensure a comfortable atmosphere for all guests within our network of lounges.

“We sincerely apologise to the family for this genuine mistake and would encourage them to contact us directly to resolve this matter.

“The entire team at Manchester Aspire Lounge will be re-educated on the dress code to ensure this does not happen again.”

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