A woman in North Carolina said she received an 'African American service charge' from American Airlines


  • A woman told local news she received an offensive charge on her bank statement after traveling with American Airlines last year, Charlotte’s WJZY-TV reported. 
  • The charge on her statement reads: “African American, African service charge,” Kyetra Bryant told the news outlet. 
  • A spokesperson for American Airlines told Insider they were “disturbed by what we saw” and “immediately launched an investigation” when informed about the incident. 
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A woman in North Carolina said she and her boyfriend “felt targeted” after they received an offensive charge on bank statements after traveling with American Airlines, Charlotte’s WJZY-TV reported. 


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Kyetra Bryant told the news station she received an “African American, African service charge” on her bank statement after traveling with the airline last year. She told the outlet she and her boyfriend purchased their own flight tickets and covered their own baggage fees. 

“Over Thanksgiving, my boyfriend and I traveled from Charlotte to Denver with American, but I had no idea the trip would be ruined due to racial profiling and bias,” Bryant said in a Facebook post on Saturday.

Bryant reached out to the airline. According to WJZY, Bryant said a representative told her, “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” according to the report.

“I’m like, ‘I have a screenshot here on two different phones and a computer, and it says it’s from American Charlotte, and I want to know why it’s listed this way?'” Bryant told the station. 

According to WJZY, Bryant said that, months later, she has received no clear explanation from her bank or the airline, who she said have blamed each other for the mishap.

“The bank told American directly, we don’t have anything to do with that,” Bryant told WJZY. “When you put something into your system, we charge it as the merchant charges it, and that’s it. To this day it hasn’t changed on each of our statements.” 

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An American Airlines spokesperson told Insider they were “disturbed,” and that the incident is under investigation. 

“The customer alerted American to the offensively labeled baggage fee on her bank statement in mid-December. We were disturbed by what we saw and immediately launched an investigation to understand what occurred. The baggage fee was purchased at a self-service kiosk in Charlotte,” the spokesperson said. 

“Our team members are unable to change text when processing a charge and we’ve determined the issue originated with the credit card company and bank issuer. We reached out to Mastercard who confirmed that American submitted the baggage fee information correctly during the payment process and Mastercard is conducting its own investigation.”

In her Facebook post, Bryant said she has not “received an apology or a response in almost a month other than it was being ‘investigated'” and that her bank “clearly stated that they have no control over the verbiage presented by the merchant.” 

Bryant told WJZY there’s “no justification” for what happened, and said “we definitely felt targeted,” the report said. 

Insider reached out to Mastercard for comment. 

Read the full report at WJZY-TV »

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