As of May 2017, Army Regulation 670-1, para 3-7(c) states "Personnel on official travel and traveling by commercial travel means may wear the service uniform, the ACU, or appropriate civilian attire, UNLESS restricted by the commander." In other words, at times there are reasons the commander doesn't want the Soldier to draw attention to himself/herself by wearing a uniform in a pubic place. Yet some (not most) Southwest gate agents refuse to permit early boarding (after A group) for those in civilian attire. These gate agents will not even accept valid military ID as proof of dutiful service. While that may be the gate agent's right I feel compelled to clarify this point and ask they not make the Soldier feel as if their service is only meaningful when in uniform. (This was observed during boarding of Flt 1953 from St Louis to Chicago on March 21.) Also while I only cite to Army regulations (available online) I would not be surprised if similar policies exist for fellow services Navy, Air Force, Marines and USCG. Finally, no special treatment is being requested. I am not aware of any SW published policy. All that is being asked is SENSITIVITY when denying early boarding, especially to the younger enlisted Soldiers following Orders and not in uniform.
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